PW Wednesday’s: Fried chicken tacos

Welcome to the first edition of PW (Pioneer Woman) Wednesdays! For the next two months, every other week I’ll be participating in this with some other lovely ladies (see the bottom of this post for their links) and we’ll be cooking and blogging about our experience with one of the recipes in Ree’s newest cookbook. Each week one of us will “host” the party and that’s where you’ll be able to find the recipe. The rest of us will be sharing our pictures and experiences which, if they’re anything like this first one, you’ll probably get a kick out of reading.

Julie was our first host and she started us off with these lovely fried chicken tacos. Sounds simple enough, right? Tacos…how hard can that be? Prep a bunch of fixins’ (I’m trying to channel my inner Oklahomian…), cook some meat, shred some cheese and throw some hot sauce on it all. Maybe some guac and sour cream if you’re feeling crazy. Done.

Yeah, right. That is until you throw the word “fried” in the title.

I actually had no intention of legitimately frying the tacos in the first place even though that’s what the recipe says. I like fried stuff as much as the next person but that step just seemed unnecessary and complicated. Also, I still haven’t figured out what to do with the half filled OJ container of grease from the sweet potato fritters last month. I don’t need to start stock piling waste oil in my kitchen. Unless it kills ants.

So, I decided to compromise and pan fry them instead. I confidently poured about 3-4 tablespoons of oil into the skillet, threw in the first still frozen corn tortilla and immediately jumped back as oil started splashing everywhere, spraying off the pan, hitting my bare arms. This is when I started screaming in pain from the oil burn but simultaneously went to grab the skillet to remove it from the heat and Ulysses just stared from 5 feet away drying dishes, watching me have a total freak out. I kind of just stood there for a good minute with the pan raised off the heat, outstretched in my hand with my body at a 45 degree angle from the stove trying to decide what to do. There were dishes everywhere from all the prep of the lettuce, tomatoes, cheese, chicken…and there was literally no place to put the damn oil spraying pan. So I threw it in the sink.

That was fun.

Attempt #2 involved much less oil, tortillas that had been defrosted (word to the wise oil + ice don’t really get along) and an apron.

Considering that was my experience with just the tortilla, I can’t imagine what it would’ve been like having tried to fry the tortilla actually stuffed with the chicken filling like the recipe says. I’ll pass on that adventure.

Despite the frying debacle, the taste was spot on. Chicken + green chiles alone is kind of an amazing combination so all trimmed up with your normal taco stuffers, you get quite the flavor profile going on.

And so I’m alive (barely) after round #1. From what I hear, everyone else had some experiences as well which makes me feel better. Hopefully, there won’t be anymore frying in future recipes. Got that ladies?

If you’ve got an apron and want to try these out, Julie is hosting the recipe this week.

You can check out everyone else’s experiences with the little devil tacos through these links:

Megan - Wannabe a Country Cleaver

Rachel - Baked by Rachel

Tina - My Life as a Mrs.


In light of this slight kitchen mishap, tell me your worst kitchen experience!

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  1. 3

    I don’t think any of us realized what we were getting ourselves into with this one lol. So glad they turned out in the end and were super tasty.

  2. 4

    lol, I hate frying stuff! I rarely ever do, I actually have a deep fryer that I use outside. I hate the smell, the mess and the calories! So I fry maybe once every few years. I hate cooking in a little frying in a pan and the oil splashes up. My Husband always says, you have the heat up to high thats why oil is flying everywhere.

    No matter what pain in the butt it was for you, your tacos look great!!!

  3. 5

    first sentence, i was like “woah, we totally read each other’s minds” haha

    oh man, water/ice & hot oil never go well together — i’m sorry you had to find out this way, now i feel BAD that i chose this recipe hahaha..i learned the hard way too though so i guess we were all bound to learn it one day or another! yours look really good despite your mishap! i love that the taco shells have ruffled edges lol

  4. 6

    So, the recipe says to fry the tacos already stuffed? That sounds crazy!

  5. 8

    oh this sounds like a fun project! Her recipes always look straight up decadent and incredible. I bet this was a tasty meal!

  6. 9

    Pan-frying is a great idea, so glad you adapted that way. I much-prefer it to fully deep frying. I can never figure out what to do with the grease either. They look amazing Gina!

  7. 10

    This is a fun little cooking group you ladies formed and that grease/oil burns….eeek!!! Hope you’re doing okay now. That, along with stinking up my house, my hair, and my clothing for 3 days, is why I never fry…ever.

  8. 11

    I have SO been there with splattering water into hot oil! I once splattered hot bacon grease near my eye when I tried to flip frying bacon with a dripping wet pair of tongs. Glad you were alright!

  9. 12

    I’m fairly new to reading your blog and I just want to say I love it! I’ve made the chia-kefir pudding part of my weekly breakfasts and have several other recipes lined up to try. I also enjoy your writing and photos quite a bit, so thanks!
    Frying is definitely my biggest fear in the kitchen. I tried to make donuts recently and my “dance” (more like a nervous skitter with twitchy arms) to and from the pot of oil had to be hilarious to watch. Pan frying also caused my worst (knock on wood) kitchen injury to date; flipping a piece of polenta over somehow splashed oil out of the pan, over the edge of the stove, and onto the top of my bare foot. Oof. So I feel your pain literally, and I hope I can overcome my frying trepidation to make these delicious tacos!

    • 13
      Running to the Kitchen says:

      Thanks Ashley :) I’m just envisioning the oil on the foot thing…ouch! But, YUM to polenta, that’s one food that might be worth the burn ;)

  10. 14

    Yup, like everyone else has mentioned, I avoid frying like the plague. For all the reasons listed AND the fact that I’m a walking disaster and would need the fire department on standby. Thanks for taking one for the blog ;) If it’s any consolation, these look delicious, especially the curly crispy looking edges on the shells.

  11. 15

    My fave recipe from her is the fried onion straws w/ cayenne. So freakin’ good on a pulled pork bbq sandwich. ;)

    And I’ve had fried potato tacos that you fry all together – amazing! So I bet this fried chicken tacos would work well, too. And girl, you sounds like you need to improve your oil + taco making skills. haha.

    • 16
      Running to the Kitchen says:

      I haven’t seen the onion straw one! That almost sounds like it would be worth another frying attempt…

  12. 17

    Hot oil splatters on your skin is the worst… Looks like this dish worked without having to fry the whole thing. The less oil contact, the better. Love this!

  13. 18

    oh my goshhh!!!! These look INCREDIBLE!!

  14. 19

    My worst kitchen mishap would have to involve cheesecake burning. Not the best…

  15. 21

    These look incredible! Glad you made it through alive. I really want to make these tonight!

  16. 22

    Oh my lordy do those look scrumptious! What a mouthwatering combination of flavors… I want these for dinner tonight!

  17. 23

    Those look INCREDIBLE. And I love this whole Pioneer Woman thing! That’s such a cute idea, can’t wait to follow along :)

  18. 24

    Aww! That’s why I’m scared of frying! Seriously, hot oil terrifies me way more than I like fried foods, lol. These do look super yummy though, I’m glad they worked out the second time :D

    • 25
      Running to the Kitchen says:

      agreed! This was all for the sake of the series otherwise they would’ve been toasted in the toaster oven!

  19. 26

    okay,lets see todays wednesday which = my day off,i get a phone call for you know what.Wheres the invite for chicken Tacos.HUH??

  20. 27

    great job, G!

  21. 28

    YUM! These look fabulous.

  22. 29

    omg I’m in luv (not the creepy kind, but the one where I want her to come over and feed me every day) with p-dubs! So excited that you’re doing this.

  23. 30

    These look so good…but I’d definitely skip the frying trick or leave that step to my husband :)

  24. 31

    I’m not really into frying things but I love how fresh and colorful the pictures look!!! Sorry about the kitchen mishap- I’ve had many of those, most of them coming from the fact that I neglect to carefully read recipes. Oops!

  25. 32

    oh my yum, tastiness!!! everything fried always tastes better!!!

    looks great! thanks for sharing

  26. 33

    Weirdly I have never had a taco, let alone a fried one. These look so yummy!

  27. 34

    Hot grease is super painful! I would have freaked out too. Gorgeous pictures, looks like it turned out great in the end!


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