Chicken Tinga Tacos with Salsa Fresca
Bone-in chicken is simmered with fragrant spices, tomatoes and chipotle chiles for a deeply flavorful taco filling. Both the filling and the salsa hold up well in the refrigerator and make great leftovers for lunch the next day.
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THE OTHER TOMATO
Native to Mexico, tomatillos have a dry, lantern-shaped husk (which should be removed prior to eating) covering their bright, tangy green fruit. They can be consumed raw or cooked – as they are here for the taco filling sauce – and are a good source of vitamin K, which helps support strong bones as well as cognitive and heart health.
2½ lb (3 large) bone-in, skinless chicken breasts
¾ tsp sea salt, divided
½ tsp each ground cumin, ground coriander and oregano flakes
¼ tsp each smoked paprika and ground black pepper
1 tbsp safflower oil
3 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, minced
2/3 cup low-sodium chicken broth
1 cup diced tomatoes, with juices
2 tomatillos, husks removed, diced
2 Roma tomatoes, seeded and finely chopped
16 4-inch corn tortillas
2 cups shredded iceberg lettuce
Arrange racks in lower half of oven; preheat oven to 350ºF. Dust chicken with ½ tsp salt, cumin, coriander, oregano, paprika and black pepper. On the stove top, heat oil in a medium (3.5 quart) Dutch oven on medium-high. Working in batches if necessary, add chicken, flesh side down, and cook, flipping halfway, for 10 to 12 minutes, until browned. Transfer chicken to a plate. Reduce heat of burner to medium.
Add onion and cook, stirring frequently, until softened, 3 to 4 minutes. Add half of garlic and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Stir in chipotle peppers with adobo. Add broth, scraping up browned bits from bottom of pan. Add diced tomatoes, tomatillos and 1 tbsp lime juice. Bring to a simmer. Return chicken to pot, pressing to submerge. Cover and transfer to oven; roast until chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165ºF, 30 to 40 minutes.
Meanwhile, assemble salsa: In a small bowl, combine Roma tomatoes, 2 tbsp cilantro and remaining 1 tbsp lime juice, half of garlic and ¼ tsp salt. Toss to coat and set aside.
Wrap tortillas in foil and warm in oven, 3 to 4 minutes. Remove chicken, discard bone and shred meat with 2 forks. Using an immersion blender, blend sauce until smooth. Bring sauce to a simmer then add tapioca mixture; simmer 3 to 4 minutes, until thickened slightly. Return chicken to pot and toss to combine. Stir in remaining ¼ cup cilantro. Serve chicken with tortillas, lettuce, cheese and salsa.
- Serving Size 2 tacos
- Calories 283
- Carbohydrate Content 16 g
- Cholesterol Content 95 mg
- Fat Content 10 g
- Fiber Content 3 g
- Protein Content 31 g
- Saturated Fat Content 4 g
- Sodium Content 359 mg
- Sugar Content 3 g
- Monounsaturated Fat Content 2 g
- Polyunsaturated Fat Content 2 g