An easy, flavor-packed recipe using ground chicken and canned chipotle peppers
in adobo sauce that’s surprisingly low in fat, calories and carbs for tacos,
burrito bowls and anything else taco meat is used with PLUS my recipe for Easy
Cilantro Lime Ranch!
TABLE OF CONTENTS:
- Jump to the Recipe
- 7 Dishes to Make with Chipotle Chicken Taco Meat
- FAQ on Chipotle Peppers in Adobo Sauce
- The Best EASY Cilantro Lime Ranch Recipe
This is a recipe I started making a few years ago when I was trying to cut
calories. We all liked it so much, it became a regular on the weeknight supper
Funny thing… if I don’t tell them it’s healthy, my family won’t hesitate to
scarf something down if it’s delicious! But, y’all, if I’d have told them it
was, not only low calorie, but also low fat AND low carb, they wouldn’t have
thrown themselves on the floor and feigned abuse.
When we have anything for supper that includes common taco accoutrements, I
just set it out like a bar and let everyone make what they want. The boys like
soft tacos, the girls like burritos and bowls, I like lettuce wraps or salads
and Mama usually just puts it all on a plate and eats it however the spirit
We’ve also fashioned this into a fantastic way to meal-prep soft tacos with
the leftovers. I’ll explain how and list all the ways we use this taco meat
WHAT CAN I MAKE WITH CHIPOTLE CHICKEN TACO MEAT?
Soft or Crunchy Tacos are great (obvi) but we use this meat to make all
sorts of meals and snacks like:
Chipotle Chicken Quesadillas – sprinkle a soft tortilla with shredded
cheese (we like white American because it melts like a dream) then place in a
HOT skillet that’s drizzled with a little oil. Add taco meat to one side of
tortilla then fold the tortilla in half. Flip a time or two to ensure the
tortilla has a few nicely browned spots and cheese is melted.
Lettuce Wrap Chipotle Chicken Tacos – this one’s my go-to fix. Assemble
your favorite taco toppings (for me that’s cilantro, lime juice and red onion)
over taco meat in a 5-inch section of a romaine lettuce leaf.
Chipotle Chicken Burritos or Bowls – make your burrito or bowl how you
enjoy it best. Consider using shredded lettuce, diced cucumber, rice, pinto or
black beans, shredded cheese or queso and Easy Cilantro Lime Ranch (recipe
Nachos with Chipotle Chicken & Queso – this one’s perfect for
leftovers. You don’t need to me to tell you how to assemble a plate of nachos
but you might like how we make ours. For a single serving, use a toaster oven
and for multiple servings, use a standard oven. Tear of squares of aluminum
foil then fold the sides up just enough to keep anything from rolling off. Top
with tortilla chips, taco meat and store-bought queso then heat at 350 degrees
until chips become fragrant and cheese is ooey and gooey. Eat as-is or top
with salsa, pico de galo and/or sour cream.
Chipotle Chicken Taco Salad – Line the bottom of a salad bowl or
crunchy salad shell with beans (refried, black or pinto) then top with taco meat, shredded lettuce, tomatoes, onions, sliced avocado or guacamole then top with
shredded cheese and Easy Cilantro Lime Ranch (recipe below).
Heat & Eat Chipotle Chicken Soft Tacos – I make these up with any
leftovers we have for the kids to zap in the microwave for a quick snack or
meal. Simply place taco meat and shredded cheese in a soft flour tortilla (I
usually use the fajita size) then fold over into the shape of a taco. Layer
the tacos in a zip-top bag then store in the fridge. Reheat one for 30 seconds
in the microwave.
NOTES ABOUT COOKING THIS RECIPE
Ground turkey can be substituted but I really prefer ground chicken in this.
You wouldn’t think there would be a difference but there is.
I almost always add about a cup of grated or minced carrot with the onion
when I cook this to smuggle in extra nutrients. The color of the carrots
blends into the taco meat perfectly so picky eaters will never suspect a
You can add chopped mushrooms, zucchini and spinach (most anything really)
if you’d like. Just sauté with the onions before adding the chicken.
This is a little spicy but nothing my kids bat an eye at. If you’d like to
increase the heat, chop a couple peppers then add to the taco meat (with
FAQ ON CHIPOTLE PEPPERS IN ADOBO SAUCE
WHICH BRAND TASTES BEST? Every brand of has both tomato paste (or
puree) and vinegar in its ingredients but the brands I prefer have tomato
listed before vinegar. A couple brands have more vinegar than tomato which
give them a slight pickled taste I don’t care for in this recipe. The brands I
like best are Goya, Embasa and San Marcos.
HOW MUCH SAUCE IS IN THE CAN? Canned chipotle peppers have varying
amounts of adobo sauce. When shopping brands, shake each can to find a brand
with plenty of sauce. If you can hear and feel the contents being shaken,
there is ample sauce. If the can makes no sound at all when shaken and you
feel no movement, it is packed with more peppers and won’t have as much sauce.
WHAT IF I DON’T HAVE ENOUGH SAUCE? If your peppers don’t have enough
sauce to easily spoon out 3 tablespoons, gently empty the contents of the can
into a bowl, remove any broken peppers, then add 2 tablespoons HOT water.
Gently agitate the whole peppers in the water to “rinse” the sauce off then
add all of the liquid to the taco meat.
HOW SPICY IS IT? The adobo sauce has a tiny kick (nothing my kids seem
to notice if that helps) but the seeds inside the peppers hold a lot of heat.
If you’d like to kick up the heat, dice one or two of the peppers then add
them with the seeds to the chicken.
THE BEST EASY CILANTRO LIME RANCH RECIPE
I’ll take a picture of this next time I make a batch but we go through this
like WATER so it never lasts. I’ve tried several recipes found online that use
a dozen ingredients, I’ve bought every brand the stores have to offer and NONE
of them are as good as this easy recipe:
- 1 1-oz packet ranch dressing mix
- 1.5 tablespoons lime juice
- Zest of one lime
- 1 cup milk
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/4 cup packed finely chopped cilantro
Instructions – Combine lime juice, zest and milk in a glass or plastic bowl
(just nothing metal) then let rest for 15 minutes. Add ranch dressing mix, mayo, onion powder and cilantro then stir until smooth. Refrigerate in an airtight container to store up to 2 weeks (or whatever the
expiration date is on your milk).
Recipe for Chipotle Chicken Taco Meat
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