I used one of our favorite soup recipes, Tortilla Soup with Chicken & Avocado, from the America’s Best Recipes cookbook as inspiration for these chicken burritos. Rather than chicken breasts, this recipe calls for chicken thighs, which are much more flavorful. The thighs have a bit more fat and are braised slowly in spices, tomato paste, and chicken broth. I made some cilantro lime rice and guacamole to accompany the burritos. Things can get a little out of control with the garnishes, so feel free to add as many or as few as you want!
Source: Me and My Roommate, Chicken: America’s Best Recipe cookbook
Note: I always make a lot of this chicken (about eight boneless, skinless chicken thighs, or quadruple the recipe) because it takes a while to make. I freeze the leftovers for enchiladas, soup, or taco salads.
For the chicken:
1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
1/4 cup finely chopped onion (about half of an onion)
1 Tablespoon chili powder
1 Tablespoon tomato paste
2 boneless, skinless chicken thighs (if you have bone-in, they’re fine too)
For the rest:
2 soft tortillas
Cilantro Lime Steamed White Rice (find the recipe here)
1 14-ounce can Black Beans, drained and rinsed (If you want to go totally crazy with this, heat up the black beans over low heat with a little olive oil and minced garlic)
Guacamole (find the recipe here)
Shredded Monterey Jack cheese
Salsa or hot sauce, if desired
Heat the oil in a large saucepan or dutch oven over medium low heat. Add the onion and cook until softened but not browned, about 3 min. Add the chili powder and tomato paste and stir with a wooden spoon to mix and cook briefly. Take care not to let the chili powder scorch.
Season the chicken thighs lightly with salt and nestle them in the tomato chili paste, turning them once so they’re entirely coated. Add about ½ cup of chicken broth and adjust the heat to a simmer. (Note: if you are multiplying the recipe, the broth doesn’t need to be multiplied. Just make sure there is always enough to coat to bottom of the pan.) Cover and cook the chicken, turning once, until it’s extremely tender when pierced with a knife, 30-40 minutes. Add a little more broth if the pan starts to dry out.
When the chicken is done, remove it from the pan, let it cool a bit, and then cut or shred it into bite-size pieces, discarding any bones or bits of fat. Set the shredded chicken aside.
To assemble the burritos, fill a tortilla with rice, chicken, beans, and any other desired garnishes. Roll up and enjoy!