Slow Cooker Chicken Tinga Tacos are a delicious pulled chicken taco that comes together quickly in slow cooker!
I’m fairly late to jump on the Cinco de Mayo bandwagon, but I think we can all agree that tacos rule the world so it’s an all board kind of situation. We eat Mexican inspired food regularly in this household, including tacos among other easy and delicious meals. And by regularly, I’d say weekly. Tacos are so easy to prep in advance which is why I love them (I can make dinner while the kids are napping and not pass out over the stove when dinnertime actually rolls around). They’re also easy for everyone to add their favourite sides to, which means perfect kids dinners as they can be as picky as they like as long as they eat the tortilla and the chicken. These Slow Cooker Chicken Tinga Tacos are no exception to taco awesomeness.
Tanga means pulled, so essentially it’s Pulled Chicken Tacos. However it may be labelled, it’s a great way to cook a whole chicken that the entire family will love. Here the chicken is slow cooked in tomatoes, onion, garlic and canned chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. If anyone’s adverse to spicy foods I’d recommend halving the amount of peppers. The canned peppers freeze well so pop the remainder into a freezer bag and keep for another use. If the peppers were removed entirely the dish would lose its taco essence, the subtle roasted flavours that linger in the background so I wouldn’t recommend leaving them out.
I used somewhat traditional sides for these tacos including sliced iceberg lettuce, chopped tomatoes (cherry tomatoes since one of my toddlers will only eat whole tiny tomatoes, seriously insert the eye roll emoji here), Mexican Crema, crumbled cheese, and cilantro leaves. I find the crema and cheese helps tame the level of spice which is nice when you’re serving kids as well. Love spice? You could probably do without either the creme or cheese. I ate one of these tacos this morning at 10:30am (quality control is serious my friends) and it was SO good.
The recipe makes a wholesome amount so lunch is good to go for the next day or you could reuse the chicken into bowl and pair with avocados, rice, beans, peppers for a new take on the chicken.
More taco love:
- 1 3-4 lbs whole chicken
- 1 28 oz can peeled whole tomatoes, preferably Roma
- 1 4 oz (115 ml) can chipotle peppers in adobe sauce
- 1 large onion, thinly sliced
- 3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
- 2 tsp dried thyme leaves or 1 tbsp fresh
- 1 tsp dried basil leaves or 3 tsp fresh
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1 tsp fresh ground black pepper
- 1/2 head iceberg lettuce, thinly sliced
- 1/2 lbs tomatoes, chopped
- 1/3 cup sour cream
- 3 tbsp milk
- 1 pinch kosher salt
- 1/2 lime, zest and juice
- 8 small flour tortillas
- crumbled feta, cojita or queso fressco cheese
- chopped fresh cilantro
- thinly sliced red onion
- sliced jalapeño
- lime wedges
Place tomatoes in slow cooker and crush with hands or a wooden spoon. Add onion, garlic, chipotle peppers, thyme and basil. Stir with a spoon until well blended. Place chicken in slow cooker, breast side down. Season with salt and pepper. Cook on high for 3-3.5 hours or low for 6-7 hours.
To make the crema, mix together sour cream, milk, salt, and lime zest and juice in a small bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and keep chilled until ready to eat.
When chicken is finished cooking, remove chicken from slow cooker and allow to cool slightly. Pull meat into bite size pieces and discard skin and bones.
Mix all or some of the sauce from the slow cooker in with the chicken (I used some and reserved the rest for another use).
Top tortillas with pulled chicken, lettuce, tomatoes, crema, and any other desired garnishes.