These low-and-slow cooked Braised Chicken Tacos put the comfort in comfort food. Tequila and beer combine with broth, tomatoes, and spices to yield an unctuous, decadent braised chicken taco filling. It will skyrocket your tacos to another dimension of flavor.
Chopped white onion, chopped fresh cilantro, lime wedges, and salsa of your choice for serving
Toast the ancho and chipotle chiles in a dry, heavy skillet over medium heat, turning once, for about 30 seconds on each side, until fragrant but not blackened. Take care they do not burn. Set aside.
Heat the oil in a Dutch oven or other large, heavy pot with a lid over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, working in batches, add the chicken and cook, turning once, for about 3 minutes on each side, until lightly browned. Add an extra drizzle of oil if needed to prevent sticking. As the thighs are ready, transfer them to a plate and set aside.
Add the onion to the oil remaining in the pot and saute over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes, until the onion is caramelized. Add the garlic and saute for about 2 minutes. Add the toasted chiles, beer, tequila, broth, tomatoes, salt, cumin, and oregano, turn down the heat to medium-low, and simmer, uncovered, for about 15 minutes, until the chiles have completely softened. Remove from the heat and let cool slightly.
Preheat the oven to 325°F.
While the oven is heating, pour the chile mixture into a blender and process until almost completely smooth (a little texture is fine). Return the chicken to the pot and pour the pureed sauce evenly over the top.
Cover the pot, place in the oven, and cook for 1 ½ hours for chicken tenders or breasts, or 2 hours for chicken thighs. Remove the lid and continue to cook, stirring if necessary to prevent sticking, for 25 to 30 minutes, until the chicken is fork tender. If the sauce starts to reduce too much and the chicken begins to stick, add a little water or broth. Remove from the oven and use tongs or a fork to loosely shred the chicken, leaving it in the sauce.
Serve with the tortillas, onion, cilantro, and lime.
This recipe uses kosher salt (aka cooking salt, kitchen salt, coarse salt outside of the US). If you are using table salt, definitely scale down the salt as that is a saltier type of salt! The type of salt will make a big difference in how salty your food tastes, so keep that in mind.