Chipotle Al Pastor Chicken Recipe

Chipotle Al Pastor Chicken Recipe

Are you tired of the same old chicken recipes that lack flavor and excitement? Well, prepare to have your taste buds awakened with this incredible Chipotle Al Pastor Chicken recipe.

Bursting with smoky chipotle flavors and tender, juicy chicken, this dish is sure to become a new favorite in your kitchen.

But that’s not all, there’s a secret ingredient that takes this recipe to a whole new level – one that will leave you craving for more.

So, are you ready to discover the mouthwatering magic behind this Chipotle Al Pastor Chicken recipe?

Chipotle Al Pastor Chicken Recipe
Chipotle Al Pastor Chicken Recipe

Key Takeaways

  • Marinating the chicken helps to infuse it with flavor and can be done for as little as 30 minutes or up to 24 hours for a deeper flavor.
  • When grilling the chicken, preheat the grill to medium-high heat, oil the grates to prevent sticking, and flip the chicken only once to achieve grill marks.
  • When assembling the tacos, start with a warm tortilla and layer on the grilled Chipotle Al Pastor chicken, then add toppings and experiment with different flavor combinations.
  • To fully enjoy the Chipotle Al Pastor chicken tacos, pair them with refreshing beverages such as Mango Margarita or Agua Fresca, and serve with side dishes like Cilantro Lime Rice or Grilled Corn Salad.

Ingredients for Chipotle Al Pastor Chicken

To make the delicious Chipotle Al Pastor Chicken, gather all the necessary ingredients. This flavorful dish offers different variations that cater to every taste bud. The benefits of chipotle al pastor chicken aren’t only in its mouthwatering taste but also in the nutritious ingredients it contains.

For the base of this dish, you’ll need boneless, skinless chicken thighs. These provide a tender and juicy texture that perfectly complements the smoky chipotle flavor. Next, gather a ripe pineapple, which adds a sweet and tangy element to the dish. The pineapple is traditionally used in al pastor recipes to tenderize the meat and enhance the overall flavor.

To create the signature chipotle marinade, you’ll need canned chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, garlic cloves, lime juice, and a blend of spices such as cumin, oregano, and paprika. These ingredients come together to create a spicy and aromatic marinade that infuses the chicken with rich flavors.

Marinating the Chicken

Prepare the chicken for marinating by ensuring it’s thoroughly cleaned and patted dry. This step is crucial as it helps the marinade penetrate the meat more effectively, resulting in a flavorful and juicy chicken. Once the chicken is cleaned and dried, you can move on to the next exciting part of the process – choosing the marinade.

  1. Different marinade options: The beauty of marinating chicken is the opportunity to experiment with various flavors. You can opt for a tangy and spicy marinade by combining chipotle peppers, pineapple juice, lime juice, garlic, and a hint of brown sugar. Alternatively, you can go for a smoky and savory marinade by using adobo sauce, apple cider vinegar, smoked paprika, cumin, and oregano. The possibilities are endless, allowing you the freedom to customize the flavors to your liking.

  2. Marinating times: The marinating time will depend on your preference and the intensity of flavors you desire. For a quick and mild infusion, marinate the chicken for at least 30 minutes. If you want a deeper flavor, you can marinate it for up to 24 hours. Remember to refrigerate the chicken while marinating to prevent any bacterial growth.

Grilling the Chicken

Once your chicken has been marinated to perfection, it’s time to fire up the grill and achieve that mouthwatering charred exterior and tender, juicy interior. Grilling the chicken is a crucial step in creating the delicious Chipotle Al Pastor flavor. To ensure the best results, it’s important to master the right grilling techniques and pay attention to the cooking time.

Start by preheating your grill to medium-high heat. This will allow the chicken to cook evenly and develop a beautiful caramelized crust. Before placing the chicken on the grill, make sure to oil the grates to prevent sticking.

When grilling, it’s essential to keep a close eye on the chicken to avoid overcooking. Cooking time can vary depending on the thickness of the chicken breasts or thighs. Generally, chicken breasts will take around 6-8 minutes per side, while thighs may require a few minutes longer. To ensure the chicken is cooked through, use an instant-read thermometer to check for an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C).

Throughout the grilling process, remember to flip the chicken only once to achieve those desirable grill marks. Avoid constantly turning the chicken, as this can lead to dryness. Once the chicken is cooked to perfection, remove it from the grill and let it rest for a few minutes before slicing.

Chipotle Al Pastor Chicken Recipe
Chipotle Al Pastor Chicken Recipe

Assembling the Al Pastor Chicken Tacos

Now that your grilled Chipotle Al Pastor chicken is perfectly cooked and ready to be enjoyed, it’s time to assemble the delicious tacos that will showcase its mouthwatering flavors.

Get ready to experience a burst of taste with these cooking techniques and flavor combinations:

  1. Start with the base: Take a warm tortilla and lay it flat. The softness of the tortilla will complement the tender and smoky chicken. Feel the freedom to choose between corn or flour tortillas, depending on your preference.

  2. Layer on the chicken: Grab a generous portion of the grilled Chipotle Al Pastor chicken and place it in the center of the tortilla. The juicy and flavorful meat will be the star of the show.

  3. Add the toppings: Enhance the flavors with a variety of toppings. Squeeze some fresh lime juice over the chicken to add a zesty tang. Sprinkle on some chopped cilantro for a burst of freshness. For a little kick, drizzle some chipotle sauce or salsa on top.

As you assemble these tacos, let your taste buds guide you. Experiment with different combinations of flavors and textures. Whether you prefer a simple taco or a loaded masterpiece, these Chipotle Al Pastor chicken tacos will satisfy your cravings and give you a sense of culinary freedom.


Chipotle Al Pastor Chicken Recipe

Recipe by Heather SmithCourse: Main DishCuisine: Fast Food-InspiredDifficulty: Moderate


Prep time


Cooking time





The Costco Chicken Bake is a popular and delicious item from the Costco food court. It features a combination of chicken breast, bacon, Caesar dressing, and cheese, all wrapped in a pizza dough and baked to perfection. This recipe replicates the flavors of the Costco Chicken Bake, allowing you to enjoy this tasty dish at home.


  • 2-3 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce

  • 3 cloves garlic

  • 1/4 cup pineapple juice

  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar

  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano

  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

  • 1/4 cup olive oil


  • In a blender or food processor, combine all the marinade ingredients. Blend until smooth.
  • Place the chicken thighs in a large bowl or resealable plastic bag. Pour the marinade over the chicken, ensuring it's well-coated. Marinate in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or preferably overnight.
  • Preheat your grill or oven to medium-high heat.
  • If using a grill, remove the chicken from the marinade and grill for about 6-8 minutes per side or until fully cooked. If using an oven, preheat to 400°F (200°C) and bake for approximately 25-30 minutes or until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C).
  • While the chicken is cooking, you can brush it with extra marinade for additional flavor.
  • Serve the Chipotle Al Pastor Chicken in tortillas or over rice. Top with pineapple chunks, chopped red onion, cilantro, and a squeeze of lime juice.
  • Enjoy your delicious homemade Chipotle Al Pastor Chicken!

Serving and Enjoying the Delicious Dish

To fully savor the delightful flavors of the Chipotle Al Pastor chicken tacos, follow these simple steps for serving and enjoying this delicious dish. Once you have assembled your tacos with the perfectly seasoned chicken, juicy pineapple, and vibrant toppings, it is time to dig in. The combination of smoky, tangy, and spicy flavors will tantalize your taste buds and leave you craving for more.

To enhance your dining experience, consider pairing the Chipotle Al Pastor chicken tacos with refreshing beverages and sides. The table below provides some pairing suggestions to complement the flavors of this dish:

Beverage PairingsSide Dish Pairings
Mango MargaritaCilantro Lime Rice
Agua FrescaGrilled Corn Salad
Mexican BeerBlack Bean Dip
Hibiscus TeaAvocado Salsa
Citrus-infused WaterTortilla Chips

You can also explore variations of the Chipotle Al Pastor chicken recipe to cater to different preferences. Some popular variations include using shrimp instead of chicken, adding roasted red peppers for extra smokiness, or incorporating a homemade pineapple salsa for a burst of tropical flavor.

Now that you have all the necessary information, grab a taco, take a bite, and let the explosion of flavors transport you to a culinary paradise. Enjoy every mouthful and embrace the freedom to savor this delectable dish exactly the way you like it.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Long Does It Take to Marinate the Chicken for Chipotle Al Pastor Chicken?

To marinate the chicken for Chipotle Al Pastor Chicken, you’ll need to let it soak in the flavorful mixture for at least 2 hours. If you don’t have the recommended cut, you can try using alternative cuts like thighs or breast. Enjoy the freedom of experimenting!

Can I Use Boneless Chicken Breasts Instead of Bone-In Chicken for This Recipe?

Yes, you can use boneless chicken breasts instead of bone-in chicken for the Chipotle Al Pastor Chicken Recipe. It may require adjusting the cooking time. Alternative options for marinating the chicken include using a zip-top bag or a shallow dish.

Can I Grill the Chicken Indoors if I Don’t Have Access to an Outdoor Grill?

If you don’t have access to an outdoor grill, no worries! You can still enjoy grilled chicken indoors. Try using a stovetop grill pan or an electric grill for a similar smoky flavor.

What Toppings Can I Add to the Al Pastor Chicken Tacos?

For the best sauces to add to your al pastor chicken tacos, try a tangy chipotle mayo or a creamy avocado salsa. Get creative with toppings like pickled red onions or fresh pineapple for a burst of flavor. Enjoy the freedom to customize your tacos!

Can I Refrigerate the Leftover Al Pastor Chicken and Reheat It Later?

Yes, you can refrigerate the leftover al pastor chicken and reheat it later. Just make sure to store it properly in an airtight container. When you’re ready to eat, simply reheat it in the microwave or on the stove. Enjoy!

Chipotle Al Pastor Chicken Recipe
Chipotle Al Pastor Chicken Recipe


In conclusion, this Chipotle Al Pastor Chicken recipe is a true flavor explosion that will transport your taste buds to culinary paradise.

The succulent marinated chicken, perfectly grilled to tender perfection, is then nestled in warm tortillas with vibrant toppings for a taco experience like no other.

Prepare to be blown away by the smoky, spicy, and irresistibly delicious combination of flavors.

Trust me, this recipe will make your taste buds dance with joy!

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