Chipotle Chicken Tacos

Photo Credit: Ashley Cuoco

There only a few meals I really crave. These tacos are one of those meals. If you’ve never had chipotle peppers, they are firey little guys. Full of flavor. I’m not big into spice, but these are more smokey than spicy. Chipotle peppers are actually smoked and dried jalapeños. Adobo sauce is a tangy, kind of sweet sauce. You can find chipotles in adobo sauce in specialty stores or in your local Whole Foods. The smoky pepper gives these tacos such a bold flavor that even Bobby Flay would give his stamp of approval. Chicken thighs make for the juiciest taco!! Give your tortillas a nice char and slice up an avocado. Chop up a little cilantro. Mix up a mojito (or a faux-mo) while you’re at it.

Photo Credit: Ashley Cuoco

4 servings — 1 hour total time

  • 4 large bone-in chicken thighs, about 1 1/2 pounds (with skin for more flavor)
  • 3 scallions, left whole
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 thyme branch
  • 3 black peppercorns
  • 1 allspice berry
  • 2 cloves
  • salt
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small yellow onion, finely diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 3 or 3 chipotle chilles in adobo, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons adobo sauce, from the can
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth (use broth from simmered chicken)
  • 8 fresh corn tortillas
  • 1 cup monterey jack, shredded
  • 1-2 avocados
  • chopped cilantro
  • creme fraiche
  • lime wedges
  1. Put chicken thighs in a saucepan and cover with 3 cups water. Add scallions, bay leaf, thyme, peppercorns, allspice, cloves and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt. Simmer for 30 minutes, then remove chicken and cool. Shred chicken with your fingers, discarding chicken skin and bone. Strain broth and reserve. You should have about 2 cups shredded chicken.
  2. Put olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add diced yellow onion, season with salt and cook until softened and a bit browned, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cumin and cook for 1 minute more. Add chopped chipotle chile and adobo sauce and stir to combine. Add shredded chicken, salt lightly and stir to coat. Add chicken broth and simmer for 2 or 3 minutes, until sauce has thickened somewhat. Keep warm.
  3. Heat the tortillas over steam or by your favorite method, keeping them soft and pliable. I like to char tortillas over my gas burner for a few seconds on each side.
  4. Build the tacos quickly: Put a spoonful of the saucy chicken in the center of each tortilla. Top with avocado slices, shredded Monterey jack and a teaspoon of crème fraîche. Add a few cilantro springs. Serve immediately with lime wedges on the side.

Recipe adapted from New York Times Cooking.