Spicy Braised Chicken Tacos

tacos 1This is my second taco recipe for this blog and it definitely won’t be the last. I make tacos a couple times a month and eat them out twice as often. When I go out for tacos or I’m in the mood for a classic street taco, I usually get carnitas. I love the juicy, almost greasy meat with all of the dark and crispy bits. It’s a flavor and texture combination that can only come from braised pork. Although pork is my number one choice to fill a taco, this chicken recipe is reminiscent of carnitas and inĀ  my opinion is just as good. The chicken is cooked pretty much the same way by braising the meat first then reducing the liquid down and frying the meat in it’s own fat. It’s also easy, inexpensive to make and is perfect for feeding a crowd.

This Sunday we’re having taco party #2 with Spicy Braised Chicken Tacos.

  • 8 chicken thighs with skintacos 2
  • 2 Tbsp canola oil
  • 2 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • 1 can El Pato tomato sauce with jalapeno
  • 1 red onion, diced and divided in half
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 bunch cilantro, chopped
  • white corn tortillas
  1. Heat oil in heavy bottomed pot and fry the chicken, skin side down, until golden. About ten minutes. Do this in batches if necessary so the chicken browns nicely.
  2. Set the brown chicken aside and saute half of the onion in the chicken fat with the garlic.
  3. Once the onion has softened add the El Pato and scrape up any brown bits from the pan.
  4. Put the chicken back in the pan and add the stock. Stir the liquid to cover the chicken evenly. Bring to a boil then reduce to low and simmer with the top on for 30 minutes until very tender.
  5. Take the chicken out of the pan and discard the skin before removing all the meat from the bone.
  6. Shred the chicken and add it back to the braising liquid.
  7. Turn the heat to high and simmer until all the liquid is evaporated and the meat begins to crisp. Stir the meat a few times making sure to shred it a little more. This takes about 20 minutes. If you’re serving a large party and plan to serve the tacos right away, you can fry the meat until slightly crispy but still juicy. You can also stop the cooking once the liquid has evaporated and store the chicken in the fridge until you’re ready to make tacos again. Just crisp the meat up in a hot pan before serving.
  8. When I make this dish I don’t add any salt. The El Pato is salty enough for my taste but you can add salt and pepper if you feel it needs more seasoning.
  9. Toss the remaining half of the onion with chopped cilantro and sprinkle on your taco along with avocado, hot sauce and fresh lime.