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Spicy Shredded Chicken

Total Time

Prep: 40 min. Cook: 4-1/4 hours


8 servings

I love Mexican food, but not the high calorie count that often comes with it. This easy dish is healthy, delicious and a definite crowd pleaser! I like to serve the chicken with warm tortillas, rice, beans and salsa. For an equally awesome dish, you can substitute beef or pork for the chicken. —Heather Walker, Scottsdale, Arizona
Spicy Shredded Chicken Recipe photo by Taste of Home


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 3 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth, divided
  • 6 green onions, chopped
  • 1 medium green pepper, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 plum tomato, chopped


  1. In a large skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Brown chicken in batches. Transfer to a 3- or 4-qt. slow cooker. Add 1 cup broth to pan. Cook, stirring to loosen browned bits from pan.
  2. Add onions and green pepper; cook and stir 3-5 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Stir in seasonings; cook 1-2 minutes. Add tomato and remaining broth; pour over chicken. Cook, covered, on low 4-5 hours or until chicken is tender.
  3. Remove chicken from slow cooker. When cool enough to handle, shred meat with two forks; return to slow cooker. Cook, covered, on low 15-20 minutes longer or until heated through. Serve with a slotted spoon.
    Freeze option: Freeze cooled chicken mixture in freezer containers. To use, partially thaw in refrigerator overnight. Heat through in a saucepan, stirring occasionally and adding a little reduced-sodium broth or water if necessary.

Nutrition Facts

3/4 cup: 202 calories, 10g fat (2g saturated fat), 69mg cholesterol, 436mg sodium, 5g carbohydrate (2g sugars, 2g fiber), 24g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 3 lean meat, 1 fat.

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  • cynthia
    Jan 13, 2021

    This made an exceptionally delicious thick broth. I ended up making it on the stove top and added a can of undrained pinto beans and some torn corn tortillas to it during the last 5 minutes of cooking. Perfect for the cold wintery MidWestern nights. Hands down, one of the best Southwest chicken stews I've ever made.

  • Laurie
    May 25, 2017

    After pulling the chicken set aside. Take the sauce and puree, reheat for a couple minutes and add to chicken. Unbelieveable.

  • pajamaangel
    Jul 17, 2016

    Holy cow was this spicy!!! I will definitely tone down the heat next time so we can enjoy it more. I did use chicken breast as that was what I had on hand. I served it over rice with a big glass of milk! ;)

  • hellmer
    Aug 9, 2015

    I have made this several times--- spiciness can be easily adjusted to suit different tastes... I have made with thighs and chicken breaks, only thighs and only chicken breasts... good any way, but the thighs do give it a bit more flavor and final product is more juicy with thighs added. Making it for the 5th or 6th time this evening--- since I keep coming back to this recipe, I wanted to share how great it is! :)

  • KarenKeefe
    Jun 22, 2015

    Topped this recipe with sour cream and chopped cilantro. It was very good! Will make again!

  • lmmanda
    Jul 18, 2014

    This was good, but not great. I did make a couple of substitutions using a yellow pepper instead of a green one and half of a Texas 1015 onion since I don't like green onions. I also added 1 T of oregano and some garlic salt to taste because it just seemed to be missing a little something. I would make this again, but next time I'm going to drain the grease off before adding the broth to the pan because it was a little greasy.

  • daddyspunkin_n_mommaspuddin
    Apr 21, 2014

    Oh, my goodness, this is so yummy! Heather, you are a genius if you created this yourself. Thank you so much for sharing. I just test tasted it and it is so good. I used half the amount of chicken ('cause I don't have chicken thighs on hand) so I cut the spices in half accordingly. I also used only 2 cups of the broth. I can't wait to have this for dinner... two hours to go! LOL