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Chicken Tamales

 Chicken Tamales
“I love making tamales. They’re a little more time- consuming but worth the effort. I usually make them for Christmas, but my family demands them more often.” —Cindy Pruitt, Grove, Oklahoma
10 ServingsPrep: 2-1/2 hours + soaking Cook: 45 min.


  • 20 dried corn husks
  • 1 broiler/fryer chicken (3 to 4 pounds), cut up
  • 3 quarts water
  • 1 medium onion, quartered
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • DOUGH:
  • 1 cup shortening
  • 3 cups masa harina
  • 6 tablespoons canola oil
  • 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 cans (2-1/4 ounces each) sliced ripe olives, drained


  • Place corn husks in a large bowl; cover with cold water and soak for
  • at least 2 hours.
  • Meanwhile, in a Dutch oven, combine the chicken, water, onion, salt
  • and garlic. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 45-60
  • minutes or until meat is tender. Remove chicken from broth; set
  • aside until cool enough to handle. Strain broth; skim fat. Finely

2 of 2

Chicken Tamales (continued)

Directions (continued)

  • chop or shred chicken.
  • For dough, in a large bowl, beat the shortening until light and
  • fluffy, about 1 minute. Add small amounts of masa harina alternately
  • with 2 cups reserved broth, beating until well blended.
  • Drop a small amount of dough into a cup of cold water; dough should
  • float to the top. If dough does not float, continue beating until
  • dough is light enough to float.
  • In a Dutch oven, heat oil over medium heat; stir in flour until
  • blended. Cook and stir for 7-9 minutes or until lightly browned.
  • Stir in the spices, chicken and 4 cups reserved broth. Bring to a
  • boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 45 minutes or until
  • filling is thickened, stirring occasionally.
  • Drain corn husks and pat dry. Place a corn husk on a work surface
  • with the small end pointing away from you. On large end, spread 3
  • tablespoons dough to within 1 in. of edges. Top with 2 tablespoons
  • chicken mixture and 2 teaspoons olives. Fold long sides of husk over
  • filling, overlapping slightly. Fold over ends of husk; tie with
  • string to secure. Repeat.
  • In a large steamer basket, position tamales upright. Place basket in
  • a Dutch oven over 1 in. of water. Bring to a boil; cover and steam
  • for 45-50 minutes or until dough peels away from husk, adding
  • additional hot water to pan as needed. Yield: 20 tamales.
Nutritional Facts: 2 tamales equals 564 calories, 35 g fat (7 g saturated fat), 44 mg cholesterol, 835 mg sodium, 43 g carbohydrate, 7 g fiber, 20 g protein.
Wine: Full-Bodied White Wine: Enjoy this recipe with a full-bodied white wine such as Chardonnay or Viognier.