Easy shredded chicken comes out tender and tasty thanks to the chicken braising in tomatoes. It's a weeknight delight that can last a couple of meals.
By now, if you've been following along on this culinary journey of ours, you know we need meals cooked in 30ish minutes or less. Chopping for days or creating fancy sauces, all of that stuff isn't in the cards right now. We both work full time and try to get some gym time in before picking up the kids. Without fail, the kiddos are ravenously hungry when we pick them up from school.
It was especially difficult between the ages of 18 months and a little over 2 years old. They were completely hangry every day, and if you didn't give them 10 snacks to make them stuffed before dinner, they would totally lose it and melt down. I started coming home, quickly prepping dinner, putting it on the stove or oven and then would pray our house wouldn't burn down when I left to pick them up. I'm happy to say we've moved past this point, but it's still critical to be quick about getting food on the table. Plus, we genuinely love spending time with each other, so the less time we're in the kitchen, the more time we have to play restaurant or build this badass zoo inspired by our recent trip.
Easy Shredded Chicken is Your Answer
Look no further. You need this shredded chicken in your life. It requires about 45 minutes, so it's longer than my typical weeknight meals, but it can last for a couple of nights. This makes up for the longer cook time.
It's a simple concept: sear the chicken on both sides so there's some browning that occurs and a little bit of extra texture then braise the chicken in tomatoes and salsa. It really doesn't get easier than that.
The Many Uses of This Chicken
What's also nice about this chicken is that you can do so many things with it. I put my shredded chicken in tacos with some cilantro, sour cream, and avocados, the kids had deconstructed tacos (which basically means they dip their chicken in a huge vat of sour cream with some cheese on the side), and John put his chicken over a salad and made a bowl. Everyone can have it exactly as they wish.
If you needed some more evidence for how awesome this chicken is, here's the carnage:
Other Recipes Perfect for Leftovers
- Versatile Dutch Oven Pulled Pork
- Stuffed Shells with Spinach and Mushrooms
- Sheet Pan Chicken Fajitas
- Hibachi Chicken and Hibachi Vegetables
Easy Shredded Chicken with Tomatoes
- 8-10 boneless skinless chicken thighs or you could do 3-4 chicken breasts if you prefer
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 can diced tomatoes I use this brand
- ½ c. of whatever is your preferred salsa spicy, tomatillo, the options are endless
- Heat Dutch oven with about 3 tablespoons of olive oil over high heat. When Dutch oven starts smoking, add the chicken thighs*. Sear without touching chicken for 3 minutes per side.
- Add the diced tomatoes and salsa. Cover with lid. Turn down to medium to medium-low heat.
- Let the chicken cook about 20 minutes before turning chicken over to cook for another 10 minutes.
- Take chicken out of the Dutch oven and shred to your heart's content with two forks.