Chicken Tinga Tacos Recipe – Easy Chicken Recipes

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If there’s one thing I love, it’s tacos, and these Chicken Tinga Tacos tick all the boxes! They’re spicy, but not face-meltingly spicy, and the smoky flavor of the sauce is just so good! Just like classic tinga but in a hand-held taco– yum!

chicken tinga tacos on a wooden plate.

What’s in This Chicken Tinga Tacos Recipe?

If you love classic chicken tinga, I think you’re gonna love these hand-held chicken tinga tacos! All that great flavor in a portable form! This recipe is always on rotation at my house. It’s one that both my kids and husband all love. Plus it has under 10 ingredients. A huge win.

  • Onion + Garlic: Create an earthy and savory base for the recipe.
  • Mexican Oregano: Different from the Greek oregano you may be used to, Mexican oregano is less sweet and has a citrusy twist! If you can’t find it, regular oregano will work in a pinch, but the flavor will be slightly different. I recommend using a bit less to avoid making the dish too sweet.
  • Cumin: Has a unique warm, earthy, and citrusy flavor that goes so well in Mexican dishes.
  • Tomatoes: Diced fire-roasted tomatoes add a wonderful fresh and acidic flavor, plus a bit of smokiness from the fire-roasting. Regular diced tomatoes will also work, but the flavor won’t be as rich.
  • Broth: Low-sodium chicken broth is a great option for adding umami flavor to the sauce.
  • Bay Leaves: Add a subtle bitterness that lightens up the sauce.
  • Chicken: I like boneless, skinless chicken breasts best, but thighs will also work well.
  • Chipotle Peppers in Adobo Sauce: Add additional smokiness and heat!
  • Tortillas: I prefer smaller corn tortillas for this recipe since the meat can get messy, and the corn does a good job of absorbing the sauce.

Control the Spice

While I found this recipe was pretty mild spice-wise, everyone’s tastes and tolerances are different. Dip a pinky in the adobo sauce and give it a taste before deciding how much to use.

Keep in mind that the sauce is less spicy than the peppers themselves. For a milder sauce, use the sauce from the can of chipotle peppers, not the peppers themselves.

open-faced chicken tinga taco on a wooden plate.

How to Store and Reheat

Store leftover chicken tinga meat separately from the taco shells to keep them from turning soggy. The meat will keep well in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat on the stovetop set over medium-low or in the microwave until warmed through.

How to Freeze

Freeze chicken tinga taco meat in an airtight container or Ziplock bag for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.

chicken tinga tacos on a wooden plate.

Notes from the Test Kitchen

An immersion blender is a great kitchen tool for sauces and soups. No need to break out (and then clean) the blender– just blend right in the pot! Plus, it takes up way less cabinet space which is a win for small kitchens.

featured chicken tinga tacos.


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