Chipotle chilies in adobo sauce lend smoky heat to these classic chicken tacos topped with avocado, radish, cilantro, and crumbled cotija. This post was created in partnership with SVO Farmer Focus Chicken.
Before kids, I relished all-day cooking projects and made everything from homemade pasta to braises that simmered away for hours. With young kids, cooking was a refuge and creative outlet – a break from nursery rhymes and animal sounds.
But things have changed. Cooking projects still happen on weekends or special occasions, but in the day-to-day, I don’t have time to linger in the kitchen. For years, I’ve asked friends what kind of recipes they’d like to see more of and noticed the near desperation in the eyes of parents of older kids when they’d say: quick dinners! I now count myself among these time-starved dinner providers.
I’ve harbored suspicions about quick cooking in the past – surely these dishes were not as flavorful or sating as meals I spent hours making. But the fact is, with the help of shortcuts and smart cooking, quick and easy meals can be delicious.
These chipotle chicken tacos taste like they’ve been simmered for hours, but come together in about 30 minutes. Skinless, boneless SVO Farmer Focus chicken thighs sear up quickly without drying out. Canned chipotle peppers in adobo sauce are richly spiced and smoky, infusing the chicken thighs with cooked-for-hours flavor.
As I said, I’m wary of shortcuts, and so when I’m cooking a quick meal, I make sure that my ingredients are the very best. Perfectly ripe avocados, radishes sliced paper thin and tossed with sea salt, and always, SVO Farmer Focus Chicken. Farmer Focus chicken is raised on small family farms in the nearby Shenandoah Valley; each package lists the farm where it was produced so you can look up the farm on their site. I’ve visited Farmer Focus farms and can attest to the time and care farmers put into raising their chickens which are all USDA Certified Organic, Certified Humane, Non-GMO Project Verified, and have a Global Animal Partnership (GAP) Step 3 rating. But my favorite thing about SVO Farmer Focus Chicken is the flavor – it’s always tender and delicate and incredibly fresh. Meaning that whether I spend 30 minutes or 4 hours, dinner is always delicious.
- 1 teaspoon sea salt plus more to taste
- 1 pound SVO Farmer Focus Skinless Boneless Chicken Thighs
- 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
- 1/2 cup chicken broth plus more as needed
- 1 large yellow onion diced
- 2 - 3 canned chipotle chilies in adobo sauce chopped, plus 3 tablespoons sauce from the can
- 4 cloves garlic smashed, peeled, and minced
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground cumin seed
- 2 bay leaves preferably fresh
- 2 avocados sliced
- 4 radishes sliced paper thin and tossed with a pinch of sea salt
- 3 green onions sliced thin
- 1/4 bunch cilantro stems and all, chopped
- 1/3 cup crumbled cotija cheese
- 12 corn tortillas
Unfold chicken thighs on a large plate and sprinkle with sea salt on both sides.
Set a heavy-bottomed, 3 - 4 quart pot, over medium/medium-high heat. When hot, add the oil, and then the chicken. Nudge chicken just a bit to prevent sticking, but otherwise, let it cook undisturbed. Sear thighs 5 - 6 minutes per side, or until thighs are golden on the outside and reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees F. Set aside to cool, then shred by pulling chicken apart with two forks or just your fingers.
Meanwhile, turn heat down to medium and deglaze the pot with 1/4 cup chicken broth, stirring to scrape up any brown bits. Add onions and cook until tender and translucent, about 7 minutes. Stir in garlic, chilies and adobo sauce, cumin, and bay; cook 1 minute. Stir in remaining 1/4 cup broth and shredded chicken. Turn heat up to medium-high, just until mixture starts to bubble, then turn heat down to low, cover, and cook for 10 minutes.
Heat corn tortillas in a dry or lightly oiled skillet.
To assemble tacos, layer chicken, radishes, avocado, green onions, cilantro, and cotija. Serve immediately.
This chipotle chicken makes for great leftovers – consider doubling the recipe.