Chicken Tinga

Chicken Tinga or Tinga de Pollo is shredded or pulled chicken in a chipotle & tomato sauce, it’s usually done with chicken or beef, but just about any meat would work. The chipotle gives the dish a delicious smoky flavour and adds a nice chile kick.

Traditionally the chicken would be cooked in a pressure cooker, then shredded and added to the tomato salsa and boiled for 20 mins or so. This recipe uses a slow cooker just because it makes life so easy, you can put it on and forget about it and come back hours later to a delicious meal.

Tinga is served on top of Sopes, in a quesadilla or simply as a taco filling.

This recipe serves 4
  • 500g Chicken thigh (you can use breast as well, but thigh has more flavour)
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • Tomato, diced (1 tin or ½ kg of fresh ripe)
  • 1 large Bay leaf
  • 1 Chipotle, diced (this is a dried, smoked jalapeño that is then rehydrated in tomato salsa, it has a very unique smoky flavour – Sold in a tin, you can usually buy these where Mexican products are sold)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Olive oil for frying
  • 1 large potato, diced and par boiled
  • Tortillas to serve


1. Sauté onion on medium heat until soft and clear, when the onion is half done add chipotle and continue to fry, once onion is done add the garlic cook and for about a minute more. Transfer to slow cooker.

2. Seal chicken in the same pan over a high heat, add salt and pepper. The chicken does not need to cook, this is just to add flavour. Transfer to the slow cooker.

3. Add tomato to the same pan and bring to boil. Transfer to slow cooker. Add bay leaf to slow cooker and cook on high for about 4 hrs or until chicken is falling apart.

4. Once chicken is falling apart, stir with a fork to break chicken up. Add par boiled potato and leave for a further ½ hr (you don’t want the potato to overcook and fall apart).

5. Use as a topping on Sopes or melt cheese in a tortilla and serve as a quesadilla


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