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Easy Chicken Tacos with Awesome Flavor

For a different twist on easy chicken tacos, try this! You’ll cook chicken breast in a flavorful combo of orange juice, chipotle, and cilantro. Then you shred it and compile tacos with flour tortillas. It’s like a lighter, fresher, faster version of carne asada.

Easy chicken tacos pin.
©Blog Chef.

Citrus cilantro chicken tacos: What to expect

  • Taste: These tacos have a California vibe to them with a citrusy note and a touch of spice from the chipotle. The flavor, while complex, isn’t overpowering at all. It’s perfectly balanced against the lean chicken breast and the flour tortilla. You can add traditional taco toppings such as lettuce and tomato for extra freshness.
  • Texture: You basically poach the chicken and then shred it. The meat should have a tender texture, which goes nicely with the soft flour tortilla.
  • Foolproof factor: There’s not much to screw up here. You’ll know if your chicken is undercooked when you try to shred it. If that happens, toss it back in the cooking liquid. The only other thing to watch for is burning your garlic. To avoid that, mix the orange juice, cilantro, and Worcestershire sauce before you start sautéing the garlic. That way, you can add the juice mixture to the pan quickly, before the garlic gets too brown.
  • Timing: You can have this dish on the table in 30 minutes.
Collage of prepared chicken tacos.
©Blog Chef.

Question for you all: I made the above collage with Picsart photo collage creator. Do you like the collage effect, or do you prefer single photos of the prepared dish? Let me know in the comments if you have an opinion!

Chicken taco ingredients and how to use them

Ingredients for easy chicken tacos.
©Blog Chef.

Here are the ingredients you need to make these yummy chicken soft tacos.

  • Butter: You need 3 tablespoons of butter, and you’ll melt it in the pan before adding chipotle and garlic.
  • Fresh garlic: The recipe calls for 4 small garlic cloves, peeled and minced. If you hate prepping fresh garlic, get yourself a garlic press like this one. You can throw the whole clove in there, unpeeled, and smash it. Note that this does waste some of your garlic, so you might need to adjust how much you use in your recipes.
  • Chipotle in adobo sauce: These come in cans. You’ll find them in the Mexican section of the supermarket. You only need 2 teaspoons for this recipe, so put the leftovers from the can in a labeled, resealable bag and store it in the freezer.
  • Orange juice: Orange juice is key to the flavor of this dish, so don’t leave it out. You’ll need ½ cup.  
  • Worcestershire sauce: Hopefully you already have Worcestershire in your fridge. If not, you will after you make these tacos. You’ll use 1 tablespoon for this recipe.
  • Fresh cilantro: The recipe calls for ¾ chopped fresh cilantro. Wash your cilantro first and pat it dry. Then lop off a big section of the leafy side and chop. Don’t bother pulling the leaves off the stems — that’s a giant time suck and a waste of flavor. Just chop the cilantro finely and then pick out any large stem pieces.  
  • Boneless skinless chicken breast: You can use 4 whole breasts for a big crowd or half the recipe for a small group.  
  • Yellow mustard: A single teaspoon of yellow mustard whisked into the cooking liquid at the end adds a nice tang of flavor.  
  • Salt and pepper: Let your tastes guide you on the amount of salt and pepper to use. I put a healthy dose of salt and pepper on everything, but you may be more sensitive. You can dip the back of a spoon into the sauce after you add the mustard and decide if it needs more seasoning.
  • Flour tortillas: If you use 4 chicken breasts, you’ll probably need 12 tortillas. The 6-inch size works nicely, but you can pick whatever size you like. If you have giant tortillas on hand, go ahead and make burritos with this chicken filling.  


Two chicken breasts cooking in cilantro citrus sauce in a large skillet.
©Blog Chef.

One of the advantages of this recipe is you don’t need any fancy kitchen equipment. You can prep these tacos with:

  • Skillet: A big skillet is a must-have here. I use a 12-inch Hexclad, which is what I’d call a sticky, non-stick pan. It browns the chicken nicely but is easy to clean up. Cheaper pans also work. You just may have more to clean at the end.
  • Oven: The simplest way to heat the tortillas is to wrap them in foil and heat them in the oven. Alternatively, you can wrap them in paper towels, drip some water over the top, and microwave them.
  • Aluminum foil or paper towels: You’ll use these for heating up your flour tortillas. If you don’t have either, you can heat the tortillas over a gas flame, one by one.
  • Two forks or shredding claws: Two forks work beautifully for shredding the chicken. If you’re into smoking or slow cooking meat, you might want to invest in a set of shredding claws, like these. They’re inexpensive and indispensable for bigger jobs like pulled pork or shredded beef.
Prepared chicken tacos on soft flour tortillas.
©Blog Chef.

More taco recipes

I have tons of taco recipes. So, if you like this one, there are many more to try. The most popular tacos on Blog Chef are:

  • Baked tacos: A fan-favorite for many years. Mix meat and beans, stuff hard taco shells, cover with cheese, and bake.
  • Taco Bell tacos: These do taste like the real thing. Masa is the secret ingredient!
  • Shredded chicken tacos: This is a more traditional chicken taco recipe with a tomato-based sauce.
  • Ground pork tacos: A short ingredient list and quick prep could make this one a go-to at your place!
  • Crack chicken tacos: Breaded and baked chicken makes an awesome taco filling, especially when topped with BBQ sauce.
  • Ground chicken tacos: A lighter twist on our original baked tacos recipe.
  • Barbacoa tacos: This is a slow-cooker recipe, which means it’s super easy to make during the week.
Yield: 6 Servings

Easy Chicken Tacos Recipe

Chicken tacos prepared on plate with soft flour tortillas.

For a different twist on chicken tacos, try this! You'll cook chicken breast in a flavorful combo of orange juice, chipotle, and cilantro. Then you shred it and compile tacos with flour tortillas. It's like a lighter, fresher, faster version of carne asada.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes


  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 4 garlic cloves (minced)
  • 2 teaspoons minced chipotle in adobo
  • ½ cup of orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • ¾ cup chopped cilantro leaves, divided
  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 1.5 lbs)
  • 1 teaspoon yellow mustard
  • salt and pepper (to taste)
  • 12 flour tortillas, 6-inch


  1. Mix orange juice, Worcestershire sauce, and 1/2 chopped cilantro in a bowl. Preheat your oven to 350°F or 177°C. Wrap flour tortillas in foil and set them in the oven.
  2. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic and chipotle and cook while stirring until fragrant (about 30 seconds).
  3. Stir in orange juice mixture and bring to a boil.
  4. Add the chicken breasts. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, over medium-low heat for 10-15 minutes or until the chicken is fully cooked (the internal temperature has reached 165°F or 74°C. Flip the chicken halfway through cooking. Transfer to a plate.
  5. Increase the heat in the pan and cook the liquid until it has been reduced to about ¼ cup. Remove the pan from the heat and whisk in mustard.
  6. Shred the chicken breasts using two forks and return the chicken to the skillet and toss with the sauce until well combined. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in remaining fresh cilantro.
  7. Top the tortillas with the chicken and any toppings you like.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 525Total Fat: 16gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 83mgSodium: 630mgCarbohydrates: 59gFiber: 4gSugar: 3gProtein: 34g

Nutrition information isn’t always accurate.

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