Recipe Index

Mexican | Shot-and-a-Beer Braised Chicken Tacos

Posted on May 24, 2019

These are awesome and somewhat easier to make than the Beef Tacos. They take less time to brown and you don't really have to shred them. Just stirring the chicken around after cooking breaks it up.

Yield: about 16 tacos



3 dried ancho chiles, stemmed and seeded

2 dried chipotle chiles, stemmed and seeded

1/4 cup vegetable oil, more if needed

3 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs

1 yellow onion, chopped

3 cloves garlic, chopped

1 (12-ounce) can of favorite Mexican beer (Tecate)

1 shot (1 1/2 ounces) favorite tequila

1 cup chicken broth, low-sodium

1 cup diced canned tomatoes

2 tablespoons kosher salt

1 tablespoon ground cumin

1 tablespoon dried Mexican oregano

corn tortillas, warmed, for serving (see below for method)

white onion, chopped, for serving

fresh cilantro, chopped, for serving

lime wedges, for serving

salsa, for serving



Toast the ancho and chipotle chilies in a dry, heavy skillet over medium heat, turning once, for about 30 seconds on each side, until fragrant but not blackened. Set aside.

Heat the oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, working in batches, add the chicken thighs and cook, turning once, for about 3 minutes per side, until browned. Add more oil as needed to prevent sticking. As thighs are ready, transfer to a plate and set aside.

Add the onion to the remaining oil in the pot and saute over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes, or until the onion is caramelized. Add the garlic and saute for 30 seconds. Add the toasted chiles, beer, tequila, broth, tomatoes, salt, cumin, and oregano. Turn down the heat to medium-low and simmer uncovered for 15 minutes, until the chiles have completely softened. Remove from the heat and let cool slightly.

Preheat the oven to 325°F.

While the oven is heating, pour the chile mixture into a blender and blend until almost completely smooth. Return the chicken to the pot and pour the sauce evenly over the top.

Cover the pot, put in oven and cook for 2 hours. Remove the lid and continue to cook, stirring as needed to prevent sticking, for about 30 minutes, or until the chicken is fork-tender. If the sauce starts to reduce too much and the chicken begins to stick, add a little water or broth.

Remove from the oven and stir the chicken around to shred it, leave it in the sauce.

Serve with tortillas, onion, cilantro, and lime.

Tortilla Warmer

We bought one of these for about $8 and it works great. Especially for parties, when you need to warm and bunch of tortillas and keep them warm. You can find it at Sur La Table or Amazon.

tortilla warmer


(Ref. "Shot-and-a-beer braised chicken taco" recipe, Tacolicious, page 132.)