Hi. And happy Taco Tuesday.
I love tacos. In my house, our standby is ground turkey tacos — you know, the same as the usual beef tacos, but with turkey. I can only handle so many Taco Tuesdays before I want something a little different, though. These salsa verde tacos are really easy and customizable! Kinda like most tacos….but anyway….
You could make these in a slow cooker, but I’ll be honest — I’m just not organized enough to plan that far in advance sometimes. So that’s when I made these babies.
Salsa Verde Shredded Chicken Tacos
28 ounces chicken breasts (about 4 chicken breasts or 1-3/4 pounds — go ahead and do 2 pounds if that’s easier)
1 medium white onion, chopped and divided
2-1/2 cups (24 ounces) jarred salsa verde (I use Archer Farms)
1/2 tablespoon canola oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
Oregano, to taste (I used about 3 teaspoons)
Onion powder, to taste (I used about 1-1/2 teaspoons)
Salt, to taste (I used about 1 teaspoon)
Black pepper, to taste (I used about 1/4 teaspoon)
Cayenne pepper, to taste (I used about 1/8 teaspoon, but do 1/4 if you like it hotter!)
12 small flour tortilla shells
1 medium vine-ripened tomato, chopped
1 bunch cilantro, removed from stem and chopped
1-2 avocados, chopped
8 ounces 4-Cheese Mexican shredded cheese (or your favorite)
1. Place chicken breasts in a large skillet pan and fill with water to just cover the chicken. Add half of the chopped white onion and a few sprigs (stems included) of the cilantro. Place on stove over medium heat and bring to a simmer. Do NOT boil the chicken — it will become tough. Poach chicken for about 15 minutes, or until they are white all the way through when cut in half at the thickest part.
2. When cooked through, remove the chicken from the pan and place in a large bowl. You can discard the liquid. Using two forks, shred the chicken into bite-size strips. I hear this method also works, but I’ve never tried it!
3. In another skillet pan, heat canola oil over medium heat. Once the oil has heated up for a minute or two, add garlic and saute for about 10 seconds. Add shredded chicken and push around to coat with the garlic and oil.
4. Add salsa verde, oregano, onion powder, salt, pepper, and cayenne and stir. Let simmer on medium-low heat for 20-25 minutes, stirring occasionally. This will help infuse the flavor and cook down some of the liquid. Taste to see if you’d like to adjust the amount of seasoning.
5. Remove from heat and squeeze 1/4 of a lime over the top.
6. Place some chicken in a warmed tortilla and add your choice of toppings: squeeze of lime juice, remaining chopped white onion, tomatoes, cilantro, avocado, shredded cheese, sour cream, etc.
If you have leftover toppings (i.e. avocado, tomatoes, onion and cilantro), you can whip up some homemade guacamole by mashing the avocado, adding the above ingredients, and adding lime juice, salt, pepper and garlic. I also made some homemade tortilla chips (since of course I just ran out) by slicing tortillas with a pizza cutter into fourths, brushing with olive oil, and baking at 400 degrees for about 10 minutes (but watch to see when they start getting crispy but not too brown). When you pull them out, top with salt and dig in!
Hope you enjoy!