Crispy Chicken Tacos

crispy chicken tacos
Photo: Paola + Murray
Prep Time:
20 mins
Total Time:
1 hr 10 mins

For an a-maize-ing upgrade, this easy dinner recipe has you quickly fry soft corn tortillas in hot oil just until their edges are crisp. This turns them into a crispy handheld treat filled with a hearty mix of shredded chicken thighs and a quick homemade tomato salsa.


  • 2 pounds bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs, patted dry

  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

  • 2 plum tomatoes, seeded and finely chopped (about 1 cup)

  • ¼ cup finely chopped sweet onion, such as Vidalia

  • 1 jalapeño, ribs and seeds removed, finely chopped

  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

  • Vegetable oil, for frying

  • 12 small (6-inch) corn tortillas

  • Shredded iceberg lettuce, for serving


  1. Preheat oven to 425°F. In a shallow baking dish, season chicken with salt and pepper; roast until a thermometer inserted in thickest parts (not touching bones) registers 160°, 40 to 45 minutes. Let cool slightly. Remove skins and bones (reserving skins); chop meat into bite-size pieces. Toss tomatoes with onion, jalapeño, and lime juice; season with salt.

  2. Heat about 1/2 inch oil in a small skillet over medium until shimmering. One at a time, fry tortillas until golden, about 15 to 20 seconds a side. (They should be crisp around the edges but still pliable.) Transfer to paper towels; season with salt.

  3. Fry reserved skins in oil, a few pieces at a time, until golden, about 1 minute per batch. Transfer to paper towels (they will continue to crisp). Once cool, roughly chop into small cracklings. Fill tortillas with chicken, cracklings, pico de gallo, and lettuce; fold and serve.

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