Slow cooker pulled chicken tacos

So the silence on the blog front is for a good reason – the best, actually.

I set this blog up to detail our cheap eats as we saved a deposit for a house, and I’m thrilled to say that a week ago – finally, finally, finally – we picked up the keys and moved into our own home.

It’s a little terrace built in 1904, and we’ve already started the process of bringing it back to its former glory. Our days and evenings are full of old nails, dust and ugly wallpaper, all of which we hope to remove in time.

Consequently, easy dinners are a priority. I recently stumbled on a recipe for ‘chicken carnitas’ using the slow cooker, which I’ve riffed off and recreated here.

Traditional carnitas (‘little meats’) is a sort of confit-ed pork dish involving huge amounts of oil, fat, and effort. The meat, once made, can go into burritos, tacos, and a bunch of other things. I wanted to make a version that was healthier, cheaper and less labour-intensive – and it’s come out brilliantly.

On this week’s shopping list was a large chicken at £3.39 (I’ve used one breast here here – plans are afoot for the rest); some orange juice (Marc had bought some in for a fried breakfast); and some lager.

We conveniently had spent about £3 on some stubby bottles – you know the sort – at ALDI to celebrate moving in, and I used about half of a bottle. You can use chicken stock if you’ve none lying around.

If the pictures don’t convince you, please have a go – they’re bursting with flavour, and were very hungrily wolfed down in our new garden accompanied by more bottled lager. Divine!

Serves: 2 / Makes: 6

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cook time: 4-8 hours

Ingredients:

  • 1 large chicken breast, sliced
  • 1 finger chilli, finely chopped
  • 2tbsp lime juice
  • 100ml orange juice
  • 100ml lager (or chicken stock)
  • 1tbsp oil
  • 1tsp hot chilli powder
  • 1tsp ground cumin
  • 1tsp garlic paste
  • 1tsp salt
  • 1/2tsp ground black pepper

To serve:

  • Mini tortilla wraps (75p/6pk, ASDA)
  • Shredded iceberg lettuce (35p/130g)
  • BBQ sauce (I bought Red’s Unholy Barbecue for £1.99)

Method:

  1. Combine all the ingredients in the slow cooker and put on low (8 hours) or high (4 hours).
  2. After 4/8 hours, remove the chicken from the cooking liquor and shred using two forks.
  3. Place the chicken on an oven tray and splash with 1/3 of the liquor. Place under the grill at MAX for 10 minutes, or until the edges of the chicken are crispy.
  4. Turn the chicken, add more of the liquor, and repeat.
  5. Serve in a bowl splashed with the last of the liquor. Place in a wrap with shredded lettuce and a drizzle of BBQ sauce – or feel free to go wild with your own toppings. Try guac, avocado, sour cream, diced fresh onion or tomato salsa.

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