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PW Wednesday’s: Fried Chicken Tacos

Fried chicken tacos from Pioneer Woman's cookbook.

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.

Easy fried chicken tacos for Taco Tuesday!

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.

Pioneer Woman's Fried chicken tacos make a delicious family dinner or Taco Tuesday night!

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?

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

Looking for more taco recipes?

Try blackened salmon tacos, blackened shrimp tacos, chocolate chile tacos or these spicy shrimp tostadas.

Pioneer Woman's Fried chicken tacos.

Fried Chicken Tacos

Crispy fried tacos from The Pioneer Woman's cookbook!
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 10 tacos


  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless, chicken breasts, cut into cubes
  • 2 4- ounce cans diced green chiles
  • 14 –16 small corn tortillas
  • 1 1/2 cups finely grated cheddar or cheddar-jack cheese blend


  • In a small bowl, mix together the chili powder, cumin, and salt. Set aside.
  • In a large skillet over medium heat, heat 1 tbsp. of canola oil and add the chicken and chiles. Saute for about 3-5 minutes or until the chicken has lost its color.
  • Sprinkle in the spice mixture and saute the chicken until all is cooked through. Remove the pan from heat and set aside.
  • In a separate skillet, heat up 1 cup of canola oil. Drop in a small piece of your tortilla to see if the oil is hot enough. It will sizzle as soon as it hits the oil.
  • Spoon about 1/4 cup of the chicken into the tortilla then grasp the tortilla shut with tongs.
  • Gently lay the filled tortilla in the hot oil, holding down the top half of the tortilla so it remains closed.Cook one side until golden brown, 30-45 seconds, then flip the taco over to fry the other side. Cook the other side until brown and crispy.
  • Remove each taco from the pan, allowing the excess oil to drip out one end. Wrap in a paper towel and gently shake it to remove excess oil.
  • While the tacos are still hot, gently stick some cheese inside then add whatever toppings you like to add to your tacos.

Nutrition Facts

Serving: 1SERVING | Calories: 7633kcal | Carbohydrates: 1520g | Protein: 221g | Fat: 108g | Saturated Fat: 20g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 77g | Cholesterol: 80mg | Sodium: 1834mg | Fiber: 215g | Sugar: 31g

This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition information can vary for a variety of reasons. For the most precise nutritional data use your preferred nutrition calculator based on the actual ingredients you used in the recipe.

Cuisine American
Course Main Dishes
Keyword fried chicken tacos, Pioneer Woman fried chicken tacos

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

Gina Matsoukas is the writer, founder, photographer and recipe developer of Running to the Kitchen — a food website focused on providing healthy, wholesome recipes using fresh and seasonal ingredients as much as possible. Her work has been featured in numerous media outlets both digital and print, including MSN, Huffington post, Buzzfeed, Women’s Health and Food Network.

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