Chicken Tinga Tostadas

garnished tostada

These Chicken Tinga Tostadas are packed full of bright flavors! Juicy, chipotle chicken all loaded onto a crispy tostada and topped with avocado, fresh lime and cilantro! The perfect easy, weeknight meal!

This recipe was originally published in August 2018 – I’ve since updated the photos! 

Y’all, you know I love any type of Mexican food. I have TONS of taco recipes on my site so it was a no brainer to develop these delicious tostadas. 

Why You’ll Love This Dish: 

So here’s the low down on these babes. They’re smoky – full of chipotle peppers and other spices, the chicken is a new level of juicy and perfectly smoky chipotle flavored.

They’re INCREDIBLY simple. Truly! They take no time to whip up and most of the time is spent baking the chicken. 

You make an incredible chicken tinga sauce using chipotle peppers, onion, garlic…all the good things in life!

chicken tinga in pan

Then, once you have all of those smoky chipotle good good ingredients all melded together in one pan – you mix that baked chicken in with it! Oh yeaaaaah.

Load it up on the crunchiest tostada (which I had NEVER HAD BEFORE THIS RECIPE AND MY MIND WAS BLOWN) and top with your favorite things like avocado, sour cream or refried beans. Oh, and cilantro. Always cilantro. 

It’s crunchy, smoky, spicy, creamy….all the things and just SO delicious. 

Ingredients You Need:

  • Chicken breast
  • Tostadas
  • Garlic
  • Yellow Onion
  • Salsa
  • Chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
  • Adobo sauce
  • Salt and Pepper 
  • your favorite tostada toppings like refried beans, sour cream, jalapeno, fresh lime, cilantro etc. etc.

Very minimal ingredients. Very minimal cooking process. So here’s how you do it!

How It’s Made:

Start by cooking your chicken. If you wanted to do SUPER DUPER easy, pick up one of those always delicious smelling rotisserie chickens at the grocery store. However, if ya got the time – just bake up a chicken breast!

Baking it makes sure that it stays super juicy and it’s always super easy to shred!

garnished tostada with sour cream

Dice up all of your garlic and onion. Add a dab of olive oil into a large nonstick pan and begin cooking down those onions. Cook ‘em for about 3-5 minutes or until they begin to get caramelized and fragrant.

Next, you wanna add in your garlic and cook for an additional minute or so. Next, pluck a couple of those chipotle peppers out of the can of adobo sauce. Roughly chop them and add both the peppers and about a teaspoon of the adobo. Lastly, you’re going to add in some of my swoon worthy easy homemade salsa.

Stir it around and let it simmer up and let those delicious smoky tomato-ey flavors meld together for a couple of minutes.

Then! Throw it in a blender! Now, make sure that your blender is heat-safe. I use a Vitamix. If you’re blender isn’t heat-proof, you can always let the sauce cool down and then throw it in there! You’re going to be putting it back in the pan anyway.

So. Blend it up. It’s gonna like something like this. 

side by side photos of sauce blended in blender

Heart eye worthy sauce goodness!

So y’all know that by now your chicken should be good and done and you should have shredded it. So, once your sauce is blended up, add both the sauce AND the shredded chicken back in the pan. Place it on low and let it simmer for a good 10 minutes to really let the chicken sink into that good flavor.

Once it’s done simmering, you’re all set! It should look something like this: 

Tostada Topping Ideas:

Oh man. There are a million different options!

tostadas with different topping ideas

I would recommend first topping the tostada with some creamy element. For this recipe, I used refried beans and sour cream! The creaminess lends to a wonderful texture combined with the crunch of the tostada.

Next, the world is your oyster! As you can see in the photo above, I loaded each one with different toppings. I used avocado, sliced radishes, cilantro, and jalapeno! I also made sure to douse each one with a spritz of lime at the end.

side view of garnished tostada

It gives it that bright zippy citrus flavor it needs. Some other topping ideas would be: red onion, regular black beans, cheese, lettuce, guacamole…the list could go on! 

Why did you use tostadas? Can I use something else?

Of course, you could use any vehicle for the  chicken tinga! Flour tortillas, corn tortillas, tacos, burritos, burrito bowls….but I really loved the texture of the tostada! It was like a giant tortilla chip. Salty, crunchy paired with the juicy slightly spicy chicken. It all just really worked for me!

Hope you try these this week. I promise they are as addicting as they sound.

Did you enjoy this recipe? Here are a few others you might like: 

Chorizo Tacos with Cilantro Lime Crema

Breakfast Tacos with Homemade Salsa 

Ground Chicken Tacos with Chipotle Crema 

Thank you so much for following along here, friends! Want to see more? Be sure to follow ourbalancedbowl on Instagram and tag me with your photo if you end up making a recipe! You can also post a photo of your recipe to the Our Balanced Bowl Facebook page! Like a recipe that you saw? Follow me on Pinterest here! I always love to see your re-creations! If you do make a recipe, it would make my whole day if you were to rate and comment so I can get your feedback! Lots of love! – Haylie

5 from 1 vote

Chicken Tinga Tostadas

These Chicken Tinga Tostadas are packed full of bright flavors! Juicy, chipotle chicken all loaded onto a crispy tostada and topped with avocado, fresh lime and cilantro! The perfect easy, weeknight meal!

Course Main Course
Cuisine Mexican
Keyword chicken tinga tostadas
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 2 people
Calories 439 kcal


  • 1 lb chicken breast
  • 4-6 tostadas
  • splash or two of olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3/4 cup salsa
  • 2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
  • 1-2 tsp adobo sauce
  • refried beans, sour cream, avocado, cilantro, limes for topping.


  1. Preheat the oven to 350. Add your chicken to a baking dish. Add a splash of olive oil and salt and pepper to coat the chicken and bake for 30 minutes or until cooked through. 

  2. Meanwhile, roughly dice your onion and 2 chipotle peppers from the can of peppers in adobo sauce. Reserve 2 tsp of the adobo sauce. Finely mince 3 cloves of garlic. Set aside. 

  3. In a large pan, add a tsp of olive oil on medium high heat. Add in your onions. Cook for 3-5 minutes. Add in garlic, chipotle peppers, adobo sauce and your salsa. Stir to combine. Let simmer for a couple of minutes. 

  4. Next, add the tinga sauce to a heat-safe blender. Add a large pinch of salt and pepper and blend until combined. 

  5. Once your chicken is done, shred it. Add the shredded chicken and the tinga sauce back into the pan. Let it simmer for 10 minutes to allow the flavors to meld together. 

  6. Once done, add your toppings to your tostadas. I recommend spreading a thin layer of refried beans and/or sour cream. Add your chicken tinga. Last, top with cilantro, radish, onion, or jalapeno. Don't forget the spritz of lime! Enjoy. 

3 comments / Add your comment below

  1. This recipe is on regular rotation at our home. The chicken is packed with that wonderful smoky flavor of the chipotle peppers. It’s just spicy enough and makes for amazing tacos!!

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