Perfecting this shredded chicken recipe was a long time coming.
13 years ago, I auditioned for a TV show in which home cooks could compete for their recipe to become a President’s Choice product to be sold in grocery stores nationwide! Exciting right?
Unfortunately, one of the judges didn’t like the cubed chicken on my chimichurri pizza. It wasn’t the chicken per se, but the shape! Back then, shredded chicken wasn’t even on my radar. Now that this recipe is tried and true, I can’t wait to share it with you. I know we use it a LOT and I think you will too!
Our moist, delicious shredded chicken can be used in any recipe!
You may have heard about the chicken sandwich wars. But who knew cubed chicken on pizza could be such a contentious issue? Not being able to cook my gluten free pizza from scratch for the judges was nerve wracking enough. I think we all know that pizza never re-heats very well. So I was taken aback by the less than constructive criticism for the shape of the chicken component.
Oh well, we all have our pet peeves. One of my pet peeves is coming across a recipe that calls for shredded chicken, only to find that the author recommends using rotisserie chicken. It’s a time saver for sure. But if I’m buying a delicious rotisserie chicken with crispy skin, you better believe I’m going to enjoy it as-is, not tear it apart. If you feel the same way, keep this recipe handy.
How to Make Shredded Chicken
This shredded chicken recipe couldn’t be easier. Other than salt and pepper to season, all you need is three ingredients: oil, chicken broth (see stock up on chicken soup with a pressure cooker) and boneless, skinless chicken breasts.
Now, keep in mind that we’re working with almost 2 pounds of chicken here. That’s about 10 ounces for each breast. Depending on the weight and thickness of the chicken you choose, you may have to decrease or increase cooking time.
We’re starting by melting our homemade frozen chicken stock, but feel free to use store bought broth.
Cook the chicken for 5 minutes, then flip it with tongs. My soup isn’t quite liquid yet so I let the chicken cook on the other side for a bit too.
Ladle about 3/4 or a cup of the broth into the pan.
This looks about right. I always just eyeball it.
Now, cover with a lid.
Let it cook for about 7 – 10 minutes.
How Do You Know When Shredded Chicken is Done?
The only way to know for sure if chicken is done is to test it with a digital thermometer. The chicken is cooked fully when it reaches 165 degrees. I actually went over the target temperature by cooking the chicken on the other side and leaving it for 14 minutes after popping on the lid. Despite that, it still turned out moist! Maybe you can’t go wrong with this braising method?
How Long to Wait Before Shredding
No one likes tough, chewy meat! If you’ve ever cut into a hot piece of meat, you’ll know that the liquid tends to pour out. Therefore, resting the meat is an essential step; it allows the juices to evenly distribute, resulting in a tender juicy piece of chicken. Let the chicken sit for at about 5 minutes. It’s best (and easier) to shred the chicken while it’s still warm.
Use two forks to pull the chicken apart.
Now, use the shredded chicken in your favourite recipe, like gluten free chicken crepes! Bonus: use the left over chicken broth to make the sauce for the filling!
Of course, if you’re picky about the shape of your chicken, you can also use this shredded chicken on pizza 😉. If only I could go back in time and put this shredded chicken on my competition pizza. How fun would it be to bring my own frozen pizza home from the grocery store and heat it up for a quick weeknight meal? Speaking of fun pizzas, check out our recipe for gluten free mini pizza.
For a completely different kind of shredded chicken, try our easy chicken mole. Instead of cooking the chicken in a pan, you’ll be combining it with the sauce and using a pressure cooker. Super quick and delicious.
Our recipe category, The Unknown Chef, can be found here.
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Shredded Chicken Recipe
- 2 pounds chicken breast (about 3 10 ounce pieces)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Drizzle of grapeseed oil (or any high smoke point oil)
- 3/4 cup chicken broth
- Heat the skillet of med-high heat and add in oil.
- Place chicken in skillet and season with salt and pepper. Let cook for 5 min. and flip the chicken in the skillet with tongs.
- Add chicken broth and cover tightly with lid. Turn heat to low and simmer for 7 - 10 minutes or so.
- To check for doneness, insert a thermometer into the meat. The internal temperature should reach 165.
- Remove chicken to a dish and let sit for 5 minutes. Shred the chicken apart with two forks. Add some of the liquid from the pan and mix to combine. Save remaining liquid to make chicken mushroom filling for crepes.