Thursday, April 14, 2016

Mexican Chicken Recipe

I truly love those recipes the require you to literally dump some ingredients in the slow cooker, turn it on then walk away.  I mean what's not to love?  No manning the stove, standing over it for hours and waiting on the food to be done.  You literally turn the slow cooker on, walk away and within a few hours you have a hot, delicious meal that is waiting on you.

I think it's safe to say that everyone needs recipes like this in their back pocket.

This chicken will quickly become the star of all of your Mexican cooking.  The options for this perfectly seasoned and flavorful meat are endless.  Stuff it in burritos, use for tacos, on nachos, salads, I mean the list truly goes on and on.

The chicken gets bathed in a mixture of spices, salsa, green chiles, brown sugar and a dash of liquid smoke.  It slowly cooks for several hours which allows those flavors to truly develop and penetrate the chicken.  The chicken becomes extremely tender through the cooking process and literally shreds while being stirred.  After the meat is shredded it continues to cook in the liquid a bit to truly absorb all those yummy, bold and complex flavors.

At this point the chicken can be cooled, placed in freezer bags or containers and frozen to make a quick and easy meal in a snap.  It can also be put into a variety of different dishes, served over rice or even a sub.
And if you're having rice with your meal, Jen, over at Carlsbad Cravings recommends saving the juices and cooked the rice in them.  She guarantees it will be some of the best rice you'll ever eat and I totally believe her and can't wait to try this little tip!

But right now you should go ahead and toss this chicken in the slow cooker so you can be ready for a delicious and easy recipe I'll be sharing with you next week!   

Slow Cooker Shredded Chicken

2 Pounds chicken breasts
1 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 Cup salsa (mild or spicy depending on taste)
3-4 Tbsp brown sugar
1 (4oz) Can green chilies
1 (14.5 oz) Can diced tomatoes, drained
1 Tbsp chili powder
1 Tsp cumin
1 Tsp garlic powder
1 Tsp onion powder
1/2 Tsp smoked paprika
1/2 Tsp ground chipotle powder
1/2 Tsp dried oregano
1 1/2 Tsp salt
1/2 Tsp coarse ground black pepper
1 Tsp liquid smoke
Hot sauce, to taste


Rub the chicken breasts with oil and place in the slow cooker.  Add all of the ingredients, except the hot sauce and stir to combine.  Cook chicken on high for 2-4 hours or low for 6-7 hours, until chicken is extremely tender and can be easily shredded.

Remove the chicken from the slow cooker and transfer to a cutting board, allow to rest for about 5 minutes.  Using 2 forks, gently pull the chicken to shred, return chicken and any juices on the cutting board to the slow cooker and cook on low for an additional 20 minutes.  Taste, adjust seasonings, add hot sauce if desired and serve.

*The brown sugar will help balance the heat, use less if using a mild salsa and more if using a spicier salsa.
*This chicken can be made, cooled and frozen ahead of time.
*Save cooking liquid to use to boil rice.  More water may be needed to achieve the right amount of liquid.
*Chicken breast can be placed in the slow cooker while still frozen.  Cook on low for 6-8 hours.

Recipe source: Carlsbad Cravings

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