Chipotle Chicken

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This quick and easy chipotle chicken recipe is made with boneless chicken thighs (or breasts), delicious for homemade burrito bowls, tacos, quesadillas, and more.

Chipotle Chicken

Chipotle Chicken

This Chipotle Chicken recipe is a delightful combination of smoke, spicy and savory flavors. Whether you cook them in a skillet, on a grill or grill pan, or in the air fryer, the result will be juicy and delicious. If you’re craving a homemade version of the popular food chain restaurant, you’ll love this quick recipe that doesn’t require any marinating time. Turn it into a burrito bowl or burrito with my copycat cilantro lime rice, guacamole and pico de gallo. Or use it for taco night, over salad or quesadillas. My family devours them!

Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs

Why This Recipe Works

  • Quick: It takes only a few minutes to make the rub, and there’s no need to wait for the chicken to marinate. Season and cook it right away – it’ll be ready in about 15 minutes.
  • Juicy Chicken: Chicken thighs are a tasty cut of meat that can be prepared in various ways.
  • Flavorful: The chipotle in adobo sauce and ancho chile powder pack this dish with bold flavors.
  • Easy: This chipotle chicken recipe uses a few pantry ingredients and requires almost no chopping.
  • Gluten-free: Perfect for gluten-free and dairy-free dietary restrictions.

Chipotle Chicken Ingredients

  • Chicken: Trim the fat off boneless, skinless chicken thighs.
  • Garlic: Mince or crush two garlic cloves.
  • Chipotle in Adobo Sauce: You’ll only need one tablespoon of the sauce. Freeze the rest in an ice cube tray and then transfer to a zip-locked bag for later use.
  • Seasoning: Ancho chile powder, ground cumin, dried oregano, salt, pepper

How to Make Chipotle Chicken

  1. Season Chicken: Season the thighs with salt and pepper on both sides. Combine the garlic, chipotle in adobo sauce, ancho chile powder, cumin, and oregano in a bowl. Rub the spice mixture evenly over the chicken and let them sit for a few minutes. You can cook them right away or refrigerate as long as overnight for more flavor.
  2. Skillet: Preheat a large skillet or griddle over medium-high heat and spray with oil. Cook the thighs for about six minutes on each side.
  3. Grill: Preheat your grill or grill pan to medium-high heat. Grease the grill grates with oil and cook on each side for six to eight minutes.
  4. Air Fryer: Preheat the air fryer to 400°F and cook the chicken for 14 to 15 minutes, flipping halfway through.
  5. How do you know when chicken is done? No matter which method you choose, the chicken is ready whenever it’s browned on the outside, and the internal temperature is 165°F when checked with a meat thermometer.
  6. Serving: Once cooked, transfer the meat to a plate and let it rest for a few minutes before slicing. This step prevents the juices from running out of the chicken.

Copycat Chipotle Chicken Bowl

When I order from Chipotle, I always get the chicken bowl, but it’s so easy to make at home. Here is a list of ingredients and toppings you can mix and match from to build your own Chipotle Chicken Bowl:

1. Start with a Base:

2. Add Protein:

3. Add Beans:

4. Finish with Toppings:

How to Store Chipotle Chicken

Meal prep chipotle chicken thighs and have easy meals for half the week. Leftovers will hold in the fridge for up to four days and in the freezer for three months. Reheat it in the microwave until warm, and serve in tacos, quesadillas, burrito bowls, taco salads, and more.

Variations

  • Chicken: If you prefer white meat, use chicken breasts.
  • Ancho Chile Powder: If you don’t have ancho, swap it for regular chili powder.
chicken thighs on grill pan
Chipotle Chicken Burrito Bowl
meal prep chipotle chicken

More Chicken Thigh Recipes You’ll Love

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Chipotle Chicken Recipe

5 from 27 votes
4
Cals:216
Protein:34
Carbs:2
Fat:7
This quick and easy chipotle chicken recipe is made with boneless, skinless chicken thighs (or breasts). It's smoky, spicy, and delicious for homemade burrito bowls, tacos, quesadillas, and more.
Course: Dinner, Lunch, Meal Prep
Cuisine: American, Mexican
Chipotle Chicken Burrito Bowl
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Total: 30 minutes
Yield: 4 servings
Serving Size: 1 /4 th

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs, trimmed of fat (about 8 thighs)
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt, and fresh ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced or crushed
  • 1/2 to 1 tablespoon chipotle in adobo sauce, from 1 can, you can freeze the rest for future use
  • 1 teaspoon ancho chile powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano

Instructions

  • Season Chicken: Season the chicken thighs with salt and pepper on both sides.
  • In a mixing bowl, combine the minced garlic, chipotle in adobo sauce, ancho chile powder, ground cumin, and dried oregano. Rub the spice mixture evenly over the chicken thighs, making sure they are thoroughly coated. Let them sit a few minutes to let the flavor set in. You can cook right away or refrigerate as long as overnight, the longer the more flavorful!

Skillet Method:

  • Preheat a large skillet or griddle over medium-high heat and spray with oil.
  • Place the chicken thighs in the skillet and cook for about 6 minutes per side or until browned on the outside and the inside reaches an internal temperature of 165°F.
  • Remove the chicken from the skillet and let it rest for a few minutes before serving. This will help the juices redistribute for maximum flavor. Slice it up and serve in tacos, rice bowls, burritos, etc.

Grill or Grill Pan Method:

  • Preheat your grill or grill pan to medium-high heat. Grease the grill grates or grill pan with oil to prevent sticking.
  • Place the chicken thighs on the grill or grill pan and cook for approximately 6-8 minutes per side, or until they are fully cooked and reach an internal temperature of 165°F.
  • Once cooked, remove the chicken from the heat and let it rest for a few minutes before serving. Resting allows the flavors to meld together and the juices to redistribute. Slice it up and serve in tacos, rice bowls, etc.

Air Fryer Method:

  • Preheat your air fryer to 400°F. Place the seasoned chicken thighs in a single layer in batches as needed in the air fryer basket.
  • Cook the chicken for 14-15 minutes, flipping them halfway through to ensure even cooking. Check the internal temperature with a meat thermometer to confirm it has reached 165°F.
  • Once cooked, transfer the chicken thighs to a plate and let them rest for a few minutes before serving. This step ensures that the chicken remains juicy and flavorful. Slice it up and serve in tacos, rice bowls, etc.

Last Step:

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Nutrition

Serving: 1 /4 th, Calories: 216 kcal, Carbohydrates: 2 g, Protein: 34 g, Fat: 7 g, Saturated Fat: 2 g, Cholesterol: 69 mg, Sodium: 561 mg, Fiber: 0.5 g

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42 comments on “Chipotle Chicken”

  1. Avatar photo
    Lisa Weinberg

    This recipe is a keeper! It’s very tasty and moist and simple to prepare. We marinated it overnight and served it on top a salad (with fixings like a Chipotle salad bowl). Mmmm mmm! Thank you!

  2. Excellent flavor! I did a double recipe and it came out great. I didn’t think it was going to be enough seasoning so I just covered one side of the chicken and it was still great.

  3. Avatar photo
    Margaret Kruger

    I couldn’t believe how much flavor this recipe has! I seasoned the chicken thighs and let them marinate for a few hours before I cooked them in my iron skillet. My husband commented on how flavorful the bowl was. I will definitely make this recipe again!

  4. This was really good and tasted just like chipotle. I let it marinate for 2 hours. I made the cilantro lime rice also, sauteed peppers and onions and did a bowl with pinto beans, lettuce, cheese, salsa verde and it tasted just like chipotle to me.

    1. I’m amazed at how your American women cook. So much. How long does it take to make all that food? I take my hat off to you.

  5. This was delicious chicken! We made ours into an amazing taco salad with pico de gallo, cheese, and the Peruvian green sauce. A huge hit!

  6. We cook a lot in our house and have made a lot of skinny taste recipes which never disappoint. But my husband and I agree that this may be the best thing I have ever made… not just among skinny recipes but among all recipes. We made it exactly as directed in the air fryer and it was perfection. We had it in burrito bowls over rice with black beans, guac, tomatoes. This chicken is so good I would just eat it with a fork and knife. Would also be great in tacos. Make this chicken. You will not regret it.

  7. Has a good kick and I love this marinade! Grilled up the chicken and it was delicious. I followed the copycat chipotle bowl recipe too.

  8. Just made this! It is a winner. We have them in brioche buns with the coleslaw from the chicken sandwich recipe.

  9. This is so delicious, definitely a keeper. Made it with chicken breast on the griddle. Turned out great. Thanks Gina

    1. How long did you cook it on the slow cooker? How did it come out? Is there anything you would change? Thanks!

  10. Avatar photo
    Mary Lou Skeens

    Now this is my kind of meal! I made the chicken in the air fryer (easy). I chopped lettuce, red onion, red pepper, added black beans and corn. Made a dressing of light sour cream and pico de gallo and topped it off with monterey jack cheese! Scrumptious! Definitely keeping this on the list!

    1. Coming back to say that the slow cooker worked. Here’s what I did: 5 chicken breasts in the crockpot, 3 canned chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, 1 tbsp (roughly) of the adobo sauce from the can, a small amount of water just to barely cover the chicken, and followed the recipe list of spices without the other chili powder. I made this a couple days ago so I don’t remember if I subbed regular chili powder or not.
      After 6 hours on low I pulled apart the chicken, placed it in a 9×13 pan and poured the juices and peppers in so the meat could marinate. It marinated for an hour or so.
      The heat and texture was perfect for our 2 and 4 year olds to chew and enjoy. We at it like a Chipotle burrito bowl with quac, pico, brown rice, sour cream, salsa, lettuce, cheddar/Monterey jack cheese. This recipe will definitely be on rotation here.

  11. Ohh the seasoning for this chicken is on point. I bought ancho chili specifically for this. Followed all main ingredients exact. I used thighs on my cuisinart and wow. Just about a half hour in fridge before making. Juicy and tasty, spices not over powering. I get the difference between the ancho and regular now and also using breasts vs thighs. The thighs are incredible with this.
    Made as a salad with homemade guacamole and pico de Gallo with some low fat shredded Mexican blend cheese, low fat sour cream, jalapeños, and black beans. Oh and some sliced black olives yum. Beats Chipotle’s hands down!

  12. This was fantastic! I made it in the air fryer and even the kids went back for seconds. Chicken was very flavorful. I let it marinade in fridge for about 5 hrs. This was a quick and easy meal that is going in our rotation.

  13. This was SO GOOD. It required a little extra time to prepare but it was AMAZING. Can’t wait to make it again.

  14. So simple and so delicious. Everyone could customize their own bowl, which is always a win. Gina’s guac recipe complemented it perfectly.

    1. I buy a can and purée it on a blender and scoop teaspoons on a sheet pan and freeze. I can pull it out of the freezer as I need it.

  15. Love the recipe! Also love the corn salsa, added both to my favorites and will be making again very soon. For the chicken I did a combo of boneless chicken breast and thighs. You never disappoint!

  16. This is such a crowd pleaser! My husband and my 13 year old
    asked that I make this again. And I will oblige:)

  17. Marinated overnight and cooked in the instant pot. Moist and flavorful. Loved it and will definitely make this again.

  18. Avatar photo
    Samantha Maver

    I made a double batch of this tonight and it was incredible!!!!! Can’t wait for the leftovers. I love air fryer everything

  19. Made this in the air fryer and so yummy! My bowl consisted of Cilantro Lime Rice ( box) , black beans, pico de gallo, guacamole, fresh grated Monterey cheese and the chicken! Tastes just like if not better than Chipotle’s!!!

  20. Avatar photo
    Emily Fischer

    This recipe turned out superb! The flavor of the chicken was delicious and perfect in our homemade burrito bowls. My toddlers had deconstructed bowls with the chicken and they loved it. Kid friendly and not too spicy for them!