Thursday, April 24, 2014

Mexican Shredded Chicken

I like to find easy ways to do things.
 I really like to find easy ways when it comes to cooking because, if we are being really honest, I don't really enjoy the task.  
At all.
Ya I said it.
Ironically, I feed 8 people three meals a day so I have been extremely motivated to figure out ways to cut corners.

This is one of my favourites.  I make two meals in one session.

Pictured here is some of my shredded chicken and a whole bunch of beautiful veggies about to get chopped.

We use this chicken many different ways.  Want a list?  Here ya go...

~chicken tacos
~chicken enchiladas
~mexican chicken salad
~chicken taco soup

The list goes on really.  I love having shredded chicken on hand for quick meals.  Here is the how-to.


*I am very loose with my measurements.  I learned that from my Mother In Law, she just keeps working at it till it tastes right.  If more people decide to come over, you add a little more of everything.  I believe for most meals, this works (not everything) please be flexible with yourself and be willing to taste as you go and add as you like.
*Also, I have a gigantic family so my portions are large.  You can modify by cutting a recipe in half if you are feeding a family of 4 OR, do yourself a favour and make it "Banman size" so you have leftovers for another meal!

**one more thing!  This is a wordy explanation, I promise its really very simple!  The chicken will be cooked through in the boiling step but the cooking step is where you add the flavour.  I hope that makes sense:)


for boiling step:
-4 chicken breasts bone in or boneless (you can also boil a whole chicken, if you'd like)
-2 onions, sliced in half
-4 carrots, washed and chopped in half
-4 stalks of celery, washed and chopped in half
-2 tsp chili powder
-2 tsp cumin
-2 tsp salt
-2 bay leaves

for cooking chicken:
-1 tsp coconut oil
-shredded chicken (made above)
-1 Tbsp chill powder
-1 tsp cumin
-1 tsp salt
-1 tsp garlic powder
-1/2-3/4 cup coconut milk

-chopped cilantro (optional)
-1/2 cup salsa (optional)
-hot sauce to taste (optional)


for boiling:
-throw everything in a large pot
-add filtered water until all ingredients are covered completely
-bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for one hour (at this point, you could simmer for longer, it's very forgiving)
**the above task can be done overnight or during the day in the crock pot.  Simply add all ingredients, set on low and cook for 6-8 hours
-pour the cooked contents into a strainer with a large bowl or a pot below to catch the broth. (congratulations, you just made chicken broth!! Save that)
-transfer the cooked chicken to a bowl.  Discard all the vegetables, bay leaves and bones.
-using two forks, shred the chicken.  (if this feels tedious, you can just chop the chicken)

for cooking chicken:
-melt coconut oil in a sauce pot on medium heat
-add shredded chicken, all the spices and coconut milk
-stir until mixed and heated through
-add more of any of the seasonings, or any of the optional additions as you prefer.

How is this two meals?

The first meal is your shredded chicken served how you like it, Mexican Chicken Salad , Chicken Tacos, Empanadas or Chicken Burritos, so many options.  

The second meal is Mexican Taco Soup.  (post coming)

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