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Crispy Chipotle BBQ Chicken Tacos with Creamy Charred Corn Salsa and a little bit of homemade avocado “crema” too. Shredded chicken in a spicy chipotle beer BBQ sauce stuffed into crispy tortillas with melted sharp cheddar cheese. These easy to make tacos are the best saucy summer tacos. Serve each taco with a creamy avocado crema and charred corn salsa. The perfect summertime twist on a classic taco that everyone will love!

Crispy Chipotle BBQ Chicken Tacos with Creamy Charred Corn Salsa | halfbakedharvest.com

So here’s the thing, vacation and time off is truly a wonderful thing, but the day after returning? It’s not usually my favorite. I know some people will say they feel all refreshed and ready to jump back into things. But when I got home from Alaska Saturday night, I was tired.

Granted it was really Sunday morning when I got home because we didn’t actually get in until about 1 am, which meant bedtime was more like 3 am. Point? Sunday was brutal and I spent the day catching up on things I’d missed and digging through my inbox.

Crispy Chipotle BBQ Chicken Tacos with Creamy Charred Corn Salsa | halfbakedharvest.com

But the one silver lining of returning home? Back to homemade meals! Look, it’s nice to not have to cook on vacation. But the truth is I really love cooking, and the first recipe I made was these tacos.

And they did not disappoint.

Crispy Chipotle BBQ Chicken Tacos with Creamy Charred Corn Salsa | halfbakedharvest.com

The inspiration

Honestly, they just sounded good. Summery, spicy, BBQ chicken and charred corn are two summer favorites. Usually I make them separately, and usually on the grill. But I was craving a crispy cheesy taco like the ones Dad used to make when we were growing up.

I combined two favorites into one and the outcome was delicious!

Crispy Chipotle BBQ Chicken Tacos with Creamy Charred Corn Salsa | halfbakedharvest.com

The Details

These tacos start off with the chicken. Instead of using overly sugary store-bought BBQ sauce, I decided to just do my own, but don’t worry, it’s easy!

Toss the chicken together with some smoky paprika, chipotle chili powder, garlic, cayenne, and salt. Cook everything together in a pot, then just add ketchup, honey, and a splash of you very favorite beer.

And that’s the chicken. Simply simmer it until you can easily shred it, then toss the shredded chicken with the sauce. It takes a few minutes for the chicken and sauce to cook up, but the homemade sauce is 100% worth it.

Spicy, sweet, smoky, and extra saucy!

While the chicken is cooking, make the creamy crema and charred corn salsa. You want to start with the crema since you’ll need it to complete the salsa. It’s simply avocado pureed with lime juice and sea salt. Basic, but also perfect.

For the salsa, I wanted to use charred corn, but I wanted it to be creamier, kind of like a Mexican corn salad. Instead of using mayo, I used the crema to make the salsa creamy.

You’ll have juicy sweet corn with creamy crema and it’s such a great combo! I tossed in fresh jalapeño, lots of cilantro, and some chives too!

Crispy Chipotle BBQ Chicken Tacos with Creamy Charred Corn Salsa | halfbakedharvest.com

Assemble

Instead of using store-bought taco shells, I like to take corn tortillas and stuff them with the chicken and cheese. I throw them into the oven to bake until the tortillas are crispy.

Finish the tacos with the crema and spicy corn salsa. Everything is so delicious…from the saucy chicken, to the melted crispy cheese, to the crema and salsa. Definitely not your average taco!

These tacos remind me of summers as a kid in Cleveland. A mix of dad’s tacos and BBQ chicken…and I kind of love that.

Crispy Chipotle BBQ Chicken Tacos with Creamy Charred Corn Salsa | halfbakedharvest.com

Looking for other summer tacos? Here are a few of my go-to’s. 

Taco Stuffed Avocados with Chipotle Sauce and Cilantro Lime Ranch

Sheet Pan Jalapeño Pineapple Shrimp Tacos with Cilantro Garlic Sauce

Crispy Cauliflower Tinga Tacos with Honey Lime Avocado Crema

Crockpot Carne Asada Tacos with Cilantro Lime Garlic Sauce

Lastly, if you make these Crispy Chipotle BBQ Chicken Tacos, be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is my favorite!

Crispy Chipotle BBQ Chicken Tacos with Creamy Charred Corn Salsa

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings: 6
Calories Per Serving: 525 kcal

Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.

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Ingredients

Salsa + Crema

Instructions

  • 1. In a large pot, combine the olive oil, chicken, chili powder, garlic powder, paprika, cayenne, thyme, and salt. Set over medium-high heat and cook until the spices are fragrant, about 5 minutes. Reduce the heat to low, then add the ketchup, honey, dijon, and beer. Stir to combine and bring the sauce to a simmer.
    2. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes. If the sauce gets too thick, add additional beer to thin. Once the chicken is cooked, shred with two forks. Preheat the oven to 425° F.
    3. Meanwhile, make the crema. Combine the avocado and lime juice in a blender and blend until smooth and creamy. Season with salt.
    4. To make the salsa. In a bowl, combine the corn, jalapeño, cilantro, chives, and 1-2 spoonfuls of the avocado crema. Season with salt.
    5. Warm the tortillas for 30 seconds in the microwave, until pliable. On a baking sheet, rub the tortillas with olive oil. Lay each flat and then layer evenly with cheese and bbq chicken. Fold the other half of the tortilla over the filling, gently pushing to adhere (see above photo). Transfer to the oven and bake for 5-8 minutes, then flip and cook another 5 minutes more, or until the cheese has melted and the tortillas are crisp. 
    6. Serve the tacos with a dollop of the avocado crema, the corn salsa, lime, and fresh cilantro. Enjoy!
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Crispy Chipotle BBQ Chicken Tacos with Creamy Charred Corn Salsa | halfbakedharvest.com

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Comments

  1. 4 stars
    The flavor was so great!! I was nervous about the amount of ketchup involved, but the sauce was zesty, tangy, and a little sweet– perfect. My only complaint is that the tortillas didn’t crisp up much, even though I followed the instructions exactly. But my husband was so happy with this recipe and I was too!

  2. Hi Tieghan,
    I had this recipe at a friend’s house and it was so good! I pulled up the recipe to try making it this week but noticed that the garlic powder was missing from the instructions. I scrolled through the comments to see if anyone else had noticed and to see if it had been addressed already, which it had. Might you update the instructions so other people don’t continue to have this problem? I make a fair number of your recipes and this is not the first time this has happened. It’s generally the one thing I feel like could use improvement in your recipes. Maybe 1/4 the recipes I make of yours have some sort of missing detail or unclear instruction. I consider myself a very experienced home cook and don’t have a hard time following recipes. I really want to continue using your recipes, I just find these things to be frustrating, especially since you write so many and have a lot people trying your recipes. Anyways, thank you for listening.

    1. Hey Jessica! Recipe is all updated. So sorry about the mistake. It can definitely be hard to catch them all before publishing. Thanks so much for calling the missing ingredient out. Hope you have a wonderful remainder of your week! xxTieghan

    1. Hey Ally,
      Fantastic!! So great to hear that you enjoyed this recipe and thanks a lot for making it. Have a great week!🍂 xTieghan

  3. 5 stars
    This recipe was DELICIOUS!

    My husband and I are very serious about taco nights, and this recipe is now one of our favorites! We were very excited for leftovers the next night.

    I started the chicken early, so it ended up cooking on low for about an hour. We also used flour tortillas as that’s what we had on hand. The flavors were excellent – this is going into our regular rotation!

      1. Hey Stacey,
        Sure, you could definitely do the chicken in the slow cooker. I hope you love this recipe, please let me know if you give it a try! xTieghan

  4. 5 stars
    Ditto what some other folks have said – this is one of the best things I’ve ever eaten. Made it yesterday and family is asking for it again tonight.

    I made a mix of corn and flour tortilla tacos and will say the corn ones fell apart. They might be better for a “tostada” situation if that’s what folks want. The flour ones were perfect though. My avocados weren’t ripe enough to blend so I just used a store bought avocado poblano salad dressing and it was delicious.

    1. Hey Melissa,
      The oil side will be the outside. I hope you love the recipe, please let me know if you give it a try! xTieghan

  5. 5 stars
    This was fantastic! Easy to make and EVERYONE loved it. I changed how long it cooked – kept it in the pot on very low for 2 hours, figured it’d be easier to shred the chicken that way. I definitely suggest saving the extra beer as the recipe states. After shredding, more liquid is definitely needed. I had 2 kinds of tortillas, flour and corn. The flour was a bit larger and the corn great for those who wanted a smaller portion. But everyone did ask for seconds!!! Thank you for another great recipe, it’s a keeper for sure.

  6. 5 stars
    Taaaaaasty. Best shredded chicken I’ve ever made and I didn’t get the tortilla shells perfect but I will definitely try this recipe again.

  7. 5 stars
    TEN OUT OF TEN! Unbelievably delicious! As a mom of a newborn and toddler I need fast recipes and boy did this deliver! Husband devoured them! Will 100% make again ( probably in a few days )

    1. Hey Kathryn,
      Happy Wednesday! Thanks a lot for making this recipe, I love to hear that it was enjoyed! Have the best day:) xTieghan

  8. 5 stars
    One of my favorite HBH recipes to date! My husband is already asking me to make them again lol. The sauce is AMAZING, I think I might use it for enchiladas! YUM!!!

    1. Hey Rachel,
      Awesome! I love to hear that this recipe was enjoyed and appreciate you giving it a go! Have a wonderful week:) xTieghan

      1. Hey Laura,
        I love to hear that you enjoyed this recipe, thanks a lot for giving it a try! Have you tried coating them with olive oil? That usually helps me get the crispiness. xTieghan

  9. 5 stars
    After months and months of cooking the same boring stuff because we’ve been busy with kids, etc. I finally wanted to try something new and tried this recipe… and OMG it was SO GOOD! It was so easy to make and so full of flavour. My husband loved it as well and we had it for two meals in a row haha It also has potential for batch cooking: I’ll double or triple the meat next time and freeze small portions so we can have this whenever want! Thanks Tieghan 🙂

    PS. Do you have a collection of recipes I can batch cook? Busy mom here lol thanks!

    1. Hey Rita,
      Happy Friday!! I am thrilled to hear that this recipe was enjoyed, thanks a lot for giving it a try! So sorry I don’t, but I have a “quick and easy” link on the blog, you might like those recipes! xTieghan