20-Minute Ancho Chicken Tacos

Ancho Chicken Tacos with toppings.

It’s Monday!

We’re back from vacation!

And Minnesota is experiencing some awesomely WARM WEATHER.

Those three things + these 20-minute ancho chicken tacos are a force to be reckoned with in my life right now.

Let’s just get this out of the way right off the bat: these tacos are stupidly simple. Like, this is probably not the right recipe for everyone because they’re SO simple. If you’re embarrassed by easy recipes, we still love you but Goodbye. So long. See you next time.

The rest of us who are the opposite of embarrassed by easy recipes get to stay and enjoy ourselves some extremely simple ancho chicken tacos that make for a perfect hurry-up-and-eat Monday night meal. Party in the kitchen!

One thing I’ve learned about myself in the last few years of creating a food blog is that most of my favorite recipes are focused around sauces or toppings. These ancho chicken tacos are following that Toppings Rule, since the tender spiced chicken gets wrapped up a nice warm corn tortilla and then topped with, um, let me see here, EVERYTHANG —> there’s cilantro, cabbage, a squeeze of lime, plus jalapeños, sour cream, green onions, and avocados if you dare to be that seriously awesome.

To which I say: bring it.

Herbs on a cutting board.
Chicken in a blue bowl.

Yesterday I went for my first spring run around the lake – “spring” meaning both warmer weather and more it’s-still-light-out hours in the day. There were dogs and babies and friendly people in light jackets everywhere, and it was magically happy. SPRING!

When it comes to outdoor running this winter, I have sort of been, like, not doing it. Hibernation was the name of the game this year – I most definitely did buy running leggings and a cute neon pink sweatshirt right around January 1st (I AM A CLICHE) to encourage myself to get outside and run, but the reality is that there is no competition when it comes to Minnesota in January and February vs. the big, squishy gray couch and the fluffy white blanket. None whatsoever.

But good thing I bought the cute running outfit.

Like an athletic spring champion, yesterday I actually put on said cute running outfit for, like, the third time since buying it, and I took on the happy lake run in our hood like a person who had not been outdoors for a lifetime. Speaking of had not been outdoors, I am not even kidding when I say that sometime in February I had the horrible experience of waking up and realizing that, in fact, I had not left the confines of the house for 4 (one two three four) full days. You know, working from home slash Minnesota winter slash I TRAPPED MYSELF IN MY OWN HOUSE.

Buuuut moving right along.

Chicken Tacos with toppings.

Get yourself ready, because these ancho chicken tacos with all the fresh toppings want to say hi to your face!

I’m 100% positive that you can find 20 minutes to make these during the Bachelor finale commercial breaks tonight. You and I both, my friends. You and I both.

Cheers to simple, fresh, perfect Monday chicken tacos!

Chicken Tacos with limes and herbs.
Ancho Chicken Tacos in basket with limes.

20-Minute Ancho Chicken Tacos

  • Author: Pinch of Yum
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 12 small tacos (nutrition information is per taco without toppings)


20-Minute Ancho Chicken Tacos that are ready super fast and go perfectly with cilantro, jalapeño, sour cream, and lime juice!


Ancho Chicken

  • 1/2 cup white whole wheat flour (all purpose also works)
  • 2 teaspoons ancho chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon southwestern or taco seasoning
  • a generous pinch of salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 1 1/2 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts

Tacos and Toppings

  • 12 small corn tortillas
  • a few green cabbage leaves, shredded
  • one bunch cilantro, chopped
  • toppings: lime wedges, sour cream, jalapeño slices, avocado slices, minced green or red onions


  1. Toss the cabbage and cilantro together. Prep the other toppings.
  2. Combine the flour, ancho chili powder, southwestern seasoning, and salt and pepper in a shallow dish.
  3. In a heavy duty pan, heat the oil to medium high heat. Cut the chicken breasts in half or quarters, toss in the flour mixture, and add to the pan. Cook for a few minutes; flip, and cook for another few minutes until the outside is browned and the inside is no longer pink. Remove from heat, sprinkle with a little more salt, and allow to rest for a few minutes. Cut or shred the chicken into small pieces.
  4. Warm tortillas (I just microwave for a 20 seconds or so) and assemble with the chicken and toppings. Be generous with the lime juice and jalapeños for extra zing!


When I heated up the leftover chicken, I tossed the chicken pieces in a pan with a little water and let it simmer a little while – it was phenomenal! It made the chicken a little bit saucy, which we loved.

As written, these tacos are relatively mild. The toppings are what really gives it a kick, so you can pump up the flavor by adding some spicy salsa, jalapeños, or diced red onions, either raw or sauteed with the chicken.

  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 15 mins
  • Category: Dinner
  • Cuisine: Mexican

Keywords: ancho chicken tacos, chicken tacos, taco recipe

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