Chicken Taco Recipe
These 20-minute chicken tacos with poblano peppers come together so fast for an easy healthy dinner recipe. So whether you’re using it as a family-friendly weeknight dinner recipe or a festive Taco Tuesday, you’ll want to keep this recipe in your back pocket!
I originally shared this recipe on July 13th, 2017. I have added more useful tips and step-by-step instructions on how to make chicken tacos perfectly to share it with you again today.
Table of contents
Why I Love This Chicken Tacos Recipe
There are so many reasons to love these chicken tacos – I don’t even know where to start – but okay, I’ll start with the fact that they only take 20 minutes to make! That’s right, this is a healthy meal that the whole family will love, and it’ll be on the table in less than a half hour.
This is definitely the recipe to lean on when you’re craving Mexican food and you want a simple and wholesome meal. There’s tender ground chicken, the mild spice of poblano peppers, cumin chili powder and taco seasonings. Plus you can add whatever toppings you want. Taco Tuesday will never get boring in your house!
You can even prepare the filling a few days in advance and reheat it for those busy weekdays when you just want to collapse as soon as you walk in the door. Now grab your tortillas, it’s time for tacos!
Full measurements and instructions can be found below in the recipe card. Here are some helpful tips about the ingredients, purchasing tips, and substitutions.
We like soft corn tortillas, but if you prefer the crunch of a crispy corn tortilla, go ahead and use them instead. Follow the heating instructions on the package. You can also use flour tortillas. Keep in mind a flour tortilla is larger than corn tortillas so look for taco size or Fajita size.
Choose whichever neutral-flavored cooking oil you prefer. I like avocado oil or organic canola oil but olive oil is fine too.
Poblano Chili Pepper or Green Bell Pepper
Poblano peppers are relatively mild chili peppers and add great mild spice to this recipe. If you do not like spicy food or you can’t find poblano, simply sub in one green pepper.
You’ll need one cup of diced onion. Read more here about how to dice an onion. You can use any color onion. If you have a lot of scallions or leeks and want to sub them, that is fine. Measure out 1 cup chopped.
For great flavor use freshly chopped garlic. I prefer to use fresh over jarred because the jarred chopped garlic often contains preservatives and the flavor is not as clean. If you’re short on time you can use a little garlic powder and mix it in with the other dry spices.
I adore cooking with ground chicken and really love the tender texture. It is easier than boneless skinless chicken breasts because there is no cutting! If you cannot find it you can use ground turkey instead.
I’ve found that the best spices for chicken tacos are cumin, chili powder, chipotle, salt and pepper. If you don’t like heat, skip the chipotle. If you prefer to take a shortcut, you can substitute 2 tablespoons of Taco or Mexican seasoning plus salt to taste.
Tomato Paste and Water
This helps to create the sauce for the taco filling. You can freeze any leftover tomato paste in 1 tablespoon portions in an ice cube tray.
Optional Garnishes: Lime, Salsa, Lettuce, Cabbage, and Avocado
I skip the high-calorie cheese and sour cream and use the above healthy garnishes, but if you like to add in dairy, go for it! Feel free to improvise with your favorite toppings for tacos.
Step By Step Instructions To Make Chicken Tacos
Full instructions and the printable recipe are available below in the recipe card.
Step 1: Preheat Oven and Warm Tortillas
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F and wrap your tortillas in foil stacked in two packages of four. Place the tortillas in the hot oven to warm.
Step 2: Cook Vegetables and Chicken
Meanwhile, heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat and add poblano, onion, and garlic, and cook. Stir often until the vegetables are softened and begin to brown, which should be 5 to 8 minutes. Add chicken, and cook, breaking it up into small pieces as it becomes opaque and until the chicken is completely cooked. This should take 4 to 6 minutes.
Step 3: Add Seasonings and Form Sauce
Sprinkle the vegetable and chicken mixture with chili powder, cumin, salt, and chipotle, and stir to coat it evenly and until fragrant, 30 to 90 seconds. Add the tomato paste and water and then stir until the tomato paste is dissolved into the water and it forms a sauce to coat the chicken mixture.
Step 4: Serve and Enjoy!
Finally, once the chicken mixture is cooked you’re ready to assemble your chicken tacos. Fill each tortilla or taco shell with some of the chicken mixture, and top with cabbage, salsa, lettuce, and avocado. A little acidity also is great with them so I add on a squeeze of lime juice and salsa. Or simply serve with the lime wedges, pico de gallo, and guacamole on the side or set up as a topping bar so everyone can customize with their favorite toppings!
FAQs and Expert Tips
You can top your ground chicken tacos with your favorite things! Some of my favorite choices are limes, salsa, lettuce, cabbage, and avocado. I tend to swap the cheese and sour cream for those garnishes, but if you like to add in dairy, go for it!
Start with sauteeing garlic and onion before adding in your ground chicken. Onion and garlic alone add a lot of flavor, but then once the chicken has cooked through, you can add in the best spices for chicken tacos! Sprinkle cumin, chili powder, salt and chipotle over your chicken mixture, but if you don’t like heat, skip the chipotle. If you prefer to take a shortcut, you can substitute 2 tablespoons of Taco or Mexican seasoning, plus salt to taste.
Ground chicken should take 4 to 6 minutes to cook over medium to high heat. Be sure to break up your chicken to help it cook evenly. You’ll be able to know if it’s done by eye if the chicken is opaque.
This filling can be meal prepped ahead up to four days. To reheat, heat until it’s steaming hot in the microwave. Alternatively, rewarm it with a couple of tablespoons of water in a medium skillet over medium-high heat, stirring often until steaming hot.
What To Serve With Chicken Tacos
- These Easy Chicken Tacos would be delicious with my Mexican Coleslaw and this Mexican Quinoa Salad.
- Or you could make this Mexican Bean Salad or this Mexican Corn Salad to serve alongside this chicken taco recipe.
More Mexican Food and Taco Recipes
- My new Veggie Tacos with Black Beans are hearty and filling and nobody will miss the meat!
- These Cod Fish Tacos are amazingly delicious and super speedy too. The avocado crema is the best!
- These Maple Chipotle Flank Steak tacos are a little sweet and spicy and will rock your world.
- This meal prep Beef Barbacoa Taco recipe is made in the slow cooker and has a delicious corn salsa that goes with it.
- This Picadillo Taco recipe can be made with beef, venison or bison.
- If you love Mexican food, make sure to check out these Easy Chicken Enchiladas and Steak Fajitas. They’re both great fast weeknight dinners!
- Ground Turkey Enchiladas are a super easy variation on a Mexican classic! Enjoy these bold and authentic flavors in just 45 minutes!
- These Healthy Chicken Quesadillas are packed with seasoned and shredded chicken breast, black beans, corn, and cheese, all encased in a crispy whole-wheat tortilla! This is a 30-minute weeknight meal everyone will love.
Thanks so much for reading! If you are new here, you may want to sign up for my email newsletter to get a free weekly menu plan and the latest recipes right to your inbox. If you make this recipe, please come back and leave a star rating and review. I would love to hear what you thought!
Happy Cooking! ~KatiePrint
20 minute ground chicken tacos with poblanos are the perfect super simple kid friendly Summer entree!
- 8 corn tortillas
- 1 tablespoon avocado oil or organic canola oil
- 1 poblano chili pepper or green bell pepper, seeded and diced
- 1 cup finely chopped onion
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 pound ground chicken
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground chipotle, or to taste
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1/4 cup water
- limes, salsa, lettuce, cabbage and avocado for serving
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Wrap tortillas in foil stacked in two packages of four. Place tortillas in hot oven to warm.
- Meanwhile, heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add poblano, onion and garlic, and cook, stirring often until the vegetables are softened and beginning to brown, 5 to 8 minutes. Add chicken, and cook, breaking up into small pieces as it becomes opaque, until the chicken is completely cooked, 4 to 6 minutes.
- Sprinkle with chili powder, cumin, salt and chipotle, and stir to coat until fragrant, 30 to 90 seconds. Add tomato paste and water and stir until the tomato paste is dissolved into the water and it forms a sauce to coat the chicken mixture.
- Serve the chicken in the warm tortillas and top with desired toppings.
To Meal Prep This Recipe
This filling can be meal prepped ahead up to four days. To reheat, heat until steaming hot in the microwave. Alternatively, rewarm with a couple tablespoons of water in a medium skillet over medium high heat, stirring often until steaming hot.
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Cook Time: 12 minutes
- Category: entree
- Method: stove top
- Cuisine: Mexican
- Serving Size: 2 tacos each
- Calories: 333
- Sugar: 5 g
- Sodium: 487 mg
- Fat: 15 g
- Saturated Fat: 3 g
- Trans Fat: 0 g
- Carbohydrates: 28 g
- Fiber: 5 g
- Protein: 25 g
- Cholesterol: 105 mg
Keywords: ground chicken recipe, Chicken Tacos, ground chicken tacos, 20 minute taco, Healthy Chicken Tacos, pollo tacos, Healthy Ground Chicken Tacos, Ground Chicken Soft Tacos