These Instant Pot Chicken Tinga Tacos are a delicious smoky take on a Mexican food favourite – made with fire-roasted tomatoes and a hint of chipotle, they're gluten-free, come together in 30 minutes and you can prep the toppings while the chicken cooks!
Chicken Tinga Tacos you forever have my heart.
I always get them from my fave taco place in Toronto called Mi Taco Taqueria, located along Queen Street West. You know, the street that was voted the second coolest neighbourhood in the world by Vogue?
I feel so lucky to call this city home! <3
So…my gym is around the corner from Queen West, and about a five minute walk from this taco place. They've got this AMAZING elote (Mexican street corn in a cup) along with some super tasty tacos, and they're pretty cheap. I'll usually grab a couple on my way home if I don't feel like cooking. And let me tell you, I'm in love with the chicken tinga.
So obviously when I saw Pinch of Yum feature chicken tinga tacos from the cookbook The Minimalist Kitchen, I knew I had to try them. And after about 3 or 4 times making them without even having to peep the recipe anymore, I knew I had to try a version in the Instant Pot!
Oh Instant Pot Chicken Tinga Tacos.
You are most definitely going to be on repeat for the next little while!
How to Make Chicken Tinga Tacos
Let me break down what makes these chicken tinga tacos so amazing. First of all, it's definitely the sauce. You really can't go wrong.
Start with onions and garlic, add in a little bit of cumin and chili powder followed by some chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. Add in a teensy bit of chicken broth, a little salt, fire roasted diced tomatoes and boom, you've got a chicken taco sauce that's to die for. Seriously, I don't think you'll ever make chicken tacos any other way after this!
The traditional version called for some sauteeing of these ingredients before you blend them in the blender, but for the sake of making this an easy dump dinner Instant Pot recipe, I've only blended the fire roasted tomatoes.
Because that's the thing every time I've made these chicken tinga tacos: I've had to cook the chicken ahead of time or rely on leftover/rotisserie chicken, and I find that the chicken cooking takes up SO MUCH TIME that you could spend actually eating it.
So, what's a girl to do?
Cook the sauce and the chicken at the same time, and in one pot!
Basically, you're going to dump all your sauce ingredients in and then add three whole chicken breasts, then cook on high pressure for 5 minutes. That's all there is to it!
You could definitely also make this a chicken tinga slow cooker recipe by doing the exact same thing and cooking on low for 8 hours (or on high for 5-6 hours). I haven't exactly tested it this way but based on my knowledge of the slow cooker I'd say you're in the clear here.
Really, this chicken tinga recipe is all about cooking the chicken in the sauce, then removing the chicken and shredding it before adding it back to the sauce. Soooooo simple.
Of course while the chicken tinga is cooking away (whether you go the slow cooker route or with the Instant Pot), you'll have more than enough time to get all your toppings ready!
And because, like I said, I live in the greatest city in the world, I also happen to live close by to the infamous Kensington Market! Across the street, really. So that means that when I'm not too lazy to cook, I have the chance to swing by all the international food markets and grab ingredients like cotija cheese and real corn tortillas.
None of those grocery store flour bullshit ones. I hate those!
Of course all the toppings I've listed below are just ideas so you can use up whatever you have lying around in your fridge, but I highly recommend the cheese and the sliced avocado. The perfect pairings for these Instant Pot Chicken Tinga Tacos…well, any type of tacos really.
And don't forget the cilantro! I always add extra on mine!
Will you be making these Instant Pot Chicken Tinga Tacos?
I swear they are my new fave taco – I don't think I could ever eat any other type of taco filling ever again!
The Instant Pot DUO Plus 60 is the version I use in this recipe.
Grab some Glass meal prep bowls for your leftovers.
And of course I get all my free-range chicken breasts from Butcher Box!
Instant Pot Chicken Tinga Tacos
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 medium-sized yellow onion, finely diced
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tbsp chili powder
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 tbsp adobo sauce (from a can of chipotle peppers)
- 1/3 cup chicken broth
- 1 cup fire roasted diced tomatoes (pureed in a blender)
- 3 medium-sized chicken breasts
- corn tortillas
- Raw onions, diced
- Tomatoes, diced
- romaine lettuce, chopped
- Sliced avocado
- chopped fresh cilantro
- Cotija cheese, crumbled
- Add olive oil, onions, garlic, chili powder, cumin, salt, adobo sauce, broth, tomatoes and chicken to the Instant Pot in that order. Cook on high pressure for 5 minutes (Instant Pot will take 10-15 min to preheat) and do a quick pressure release once the cooking cycle is finished.
- Open the lid when safe to do so and remove the chicken breasts. Shred apart with a knife and fork, or let cool and shred with your hands. Add back to sauce in Instant Pot and stir until well combined. Replace lid and let sit another 5 min.
- Meanwhile, microwave corn tortillas for 30 seconds and prepare toppings of choice. Add toppings and chicken to tortillas, then serve and enjoy!