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Leftover Roast Chicken Tacos

Leftover Roast Chicken Tacos

In this recipe, I'll take tender shreds of leftover roast chicken and infuse them with a medley of exciting flavors. A zesty marinade featuring lime juice, cumin, and a touch of ground coriander will give your chicken a lively kick. Sautéed with bell peppers and onions until they're perfectly caramelized, your chicken filling will be bursting with flavor.
Served in warm corn tortillas and topped with creamy avocado slices, fresh cilantro, and a sprinkle of crumbled queso fresco, these tacos offer a tantalizing blend of textures and tastes. The secret ingredient that sets this recipe apart is epazote, an aromatic herb that adds a subtle, earthy note to the dish.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Course Main Course, Snack
Cuisine Mexican
Servings 4 servings


  • 2 cups leftover roast chicken, shredded
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1 yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • ½ tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tbsp fresh epazote leaves, chopped (or 1 teaspoon dried epazote)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 8 small corn tortillas
  • 1 ripe avocado, sliced
  • Fresh cilantro leaves, for garnish
  • Queso fresco, crumbled, for garnish


  • Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the sliced onions and bell peppers, sautéing until they become tender and slightly caramelized, about 5-7 minutes.
  • Stir in the minced garlic, ground cumin, and ground coriander. Cook for an additional 1-2 minutes until fragrant.
  • Add the shredded leftover roast chicken to the skillet, tossing it with the pepper and onion mixture.
  • Pour in the lime juice and sprinkle the chopped fresh epazote (or dried epazote) over the chicken. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Continue to cook for another 5-7 minutes, allowing the chicken to absorb the flavors.
  • Warm the corn tortillas in a dry skillet or microwave according to package instructions.
  • To assemble the tacos, spoon the flavorful chicken mixture into each tortilla. Top with slices of ripe avocado, fresh cilantro leaves, and a generous sprinkle of crumbled queso fresco.
  • Serve your Leftover Roast Chicken Tacos immediately and enjoy!


Cooking Tips for the Best Results:

  1. Use epazote sparingly, as its flavor can be quite potent. Adjust the quantity to your preference, keeping in mind that a little goes a long way.
  2. If you don’t have fresh epazote, dried epazote can be used as a substitute. However, use half the amount, as dried herbs are more concentrated.
  3. For extra smokiness, briefly toast your corn tortillas in a dry skillet before assembling the tacos.
  4. Customize your toppings by adding a drizzle of hot sauce or a dollop of sour cream for an extra layer of flavor.
  5. If you’re short on time, you can use rotisserie chicken as a convenient alternative to leftover roast chicken.

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FAQs about the Leftover Roast Chicken Tacos Recipe

Can I use flour tortillas instead of corn tortillas for this recipe?

While corn tortillas are traditional for tacos, you can certainly use flour tortillas if you prefer their texture and flavor.

What can I substitute for epazote if I can’t find it?

If you can’t find epazote, cilantro or oregano can be used as substitutes, though the flavor profile will be slightly different.

Can I make this recipe ahead of time and reheat it?

Yes, you can make the chicken mixture ahead of time and reheat it when ready to serve. Just store the toppings separately to maintain freshness.

What side dishes pair well with these tacos?

Rice and beans, a fresh salsa, or a side salad make excellent companions to these tacos.

Can I freeze the leftover chicken mixture?

Yes, you can freeze the chicken mixture for future use. Be sure to store it in an airtight container and thaw it in the refrigerator before reheating.

Read more here for additional info about leftover chicken. Also, I recommend other interesting articles related to this topic, including articles on Classic Leftover Roast Chicken Soup, Leftover Roast Chicken Fried Rice, Leftover Roast Chicken Quesadillas, Leftover Roast Chicken Caesar Salad, Leftover Roast Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo, Leftover Roast Chicken and Spinach Salad, Leftover Roast Chicken and Rice Casserole, Leftover Roast Chicken and Avocado Wraps, Leftover Roast Chicken Pizza, and more.

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