Chipotle Chicken Tacos are spicy, a bit sweet, saucy and topped with a creamy chipotle lime sauce. Ready in only about 30 minutes!
For chipotle chicken:
- 4 teaspoons neutral oil (canola, vegetable, grapeseed, etc.), divided
- 1 pound boneless skinless chicken thighs
- 1 medium onion (preferably sweet onion)
- ¼ cup canned chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (see note 1)
- 1 teaspoon salt, plus more for sprinkling
- 1 teaspoon sugar (optional)
- ¼ cup water
- juice of 1 – 2 limes (depending on your taste and how juicy your limes are)
- warm corn or flour tortillas (see notes 2 – 3)
For creamy chipotle lime sauce:
- ⅓ cup mayo
- ⅓ cup sour cream
- ½ teaspoon salt
- juice of ½ – 1 lime (depending on your taste and how juicy your limes are)
- 2 ½ teaspoons liquid from can of chipotle peppers (see note 4)
- 1 tablespoon water
- lime wedges
- shredded cabbage
- black beans
- shredded cheese
- Heat 2 teaspoons of oil in a large skillet on medium high heat. While the pan is heating up, chop the onion into roughly 1/2 inch pieces. When the oil is hot, add the onion to the pan and sprinkle with salt to taste. Cook for 3 minutes, or until slightly browned on the edges and softened, stirring occasionally. Turn the heat off but keep the pan on the stove.
- If you have a stick (immersion) blender: remove onion from the pan and place into a small, straight sided heat-proof container (like a 2 cup glass measuring cup or wide-mouth jar). Or, place the onion in the bowl of a food processor or blender.
- To the container with the onion, add the chipotle peppers, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon sugar (optional), 1/4 cup water, and juice from 1 – 2 limes. (If your limes are very juicy, you may only need one; if they are small or not very juicy, or if you really like lime flavor, use 2 limes.) Blend until mostly smooth; a little texture in the sauce is ok. Set aside.
- Heat the remaining 2 teaspoons oil in the same pan over medium high heat. While the pan is heating, cut excess fat off the chicken thighs if necessary and chop the chicken into small pieces.
- Add the chopped chicken into the hot pan in an even layer. Sprinkle with salt to taste. Let cook without moving the chicken pieces for 2 – 3 minutes until some browning has developed, then stir the chicken and allow to cook, untouched, for another 1 – 2 minutes until some browning has developed on the other side.
- Turn the heat down to medium and pour in the chipotle sauce. Scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon or spatula, then let simmer for 6 – 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until most of the excess liquid has absorbed from the sauce and the chicken is cooked through.
- While the chicken is cooking, whisk all the creamy chipotle lime sauce ingredients together in a small bowl.
- Serve with warm tortillas and toppings of your choice.
- For my tastes, 1/4 cup chipotles resulted in a level of heat that I would call spicy but not overpowering. Because spice tolerance is very subjective, take caution and use less at first if you don’t tolerate spice well.
- You can warm your tortillas in the oven or microwave. If you want to use the oven, wrap tortillas in foil and preheat the oven to 350 degrees right before starting to cook. When the oven is preheated, place tortillas in the oven while you finish making the recipe. They should be warm by the time the chicken is ready to eat.
- If you want to use the microwave to heat the tortillas, wrap a stack of 6 (or less) in wet paper towels, place on a microwave-safe plate, and microwave on high for 30 seconds. If they need more time, microwave for another 15 seconds. Microwaving should be done right before you are ready to serve the tacos.
- If you want more heat in your sauce, you can mince ½ to 1 whole chipotle pepper and add it to the sauce along with the juice.
Keywords: chipotle chicken tacos, chicken tacos, chipotle chicken