Chipotle Chicken

Chipotle Chicken is a copycat recipe that tastes just as good as the popular Mexican Grill. It is spicy, smoky and perfect for tacos, burritos, salads, burrito bowls and more.

Grilled Chipotle Chicken on a wooden cutting board with full pieces of chicken and chicken cut up into bite sized pieces.

Copycat Sauce/Marinade

This recipe tastes just like the Mexican Grill. It has amazing flavor that is versatile. You can use it to make delicious burritos, tacos, burrito bowls, loaded nachos, quesadillas, enchiladas, eat it on its own.

For this Copycat Chipotle Chicken you will need a can of chipotles peppers in adobo sauce as well as a can of chipotle sauce.

Chopped red onions and minced garlic along with some fresh lime juice and liquid smoke round out the spiciness of the chipotle peppers and adobo sauce. They bring a little smokiness, zest and a hint of sweet.

The red onions don’t need to be chopped super small. Just rough chop them.

Chopped red onions.

I use bottled/jarred minced garlic. Fresh minced garlic works great too.

Usually 1/2 tsp of the bottled or jarred minced garlic is equivalent to 1 fresh clove of garlic, minced.

Plastic bottle of mined garlic

The spices you will add are, cumin, black pepper, dried ground oregano, kosher/coarse salt, smoked paprika, onion powder and chili powder. All seasonings are necessary to give it the perfect blend of flavor.

Just put it all in a blender or food processor and blend it up.

Chipotle Sauce and chipotles in adobo sauce dumped into a food processor.
Chipotle sauce and chipotles in adobo sauce with red onions, minced garlic and seasonings in a food processor to make the chipotle Chicken.

It will be a thick sauce that will be your marinade for the chicken.

Marinade sauce for chipotle chicken that was blended in a food processor.

Marinate the Copycat Chipotle Chicken

You will need about 2 lbs. of thin sliced boneless skinless chicken breasts. If your chicken breasts are not thin, or vary in thickness, just pound them to a thin, even thickness using a meat mallet (or anything you can hit it with).

If the chicken breasts are larger, I cut them in half.

Chicken breasts cut into pieces and sliced thinner.

Put the chicken breasts in a zip top bag.

Chicken breasts placed in a zip top bag to marinade in.

Next, pour the chicken sauce/marinade in the bag with the chicken. Seal the bag and shake the bag, making sure the sauce/marinade is covering all pieces of chicken.

The marinade/sauce being poured into a zip top bag filled with chicken to marinate the chicken.
A zip top bag of chicken marinating in a chipotle sauce.

Put the chicken in the fridge to marinate for at least 3 hours.

Grilling the Chipotle Chicken

Grilling is my favorite way to cook this chicken. It gives it that smokey, grilled taste.

To grill the chicken, heat your grill on medium heat. Place the chicken on the grill. (Discard the leftover marinade).

Chicken on the grill with chipotle sauce on it.

Grill the chicken about 8 minutes on each side. Grill the chicken until a meat thermometer reads 165 degrees Fahrenheit in the center of the largest/thickest piece of chicken. Take the chicken off of the grill when it is done.

Cut the chicken into large or small pieces, whatever you prefer.

Grilled Chipotle Chicken on a wooden cutting board with full pieces of chicken and chicken cut up into bite sized pieces.

Other Ways to Cook the Copycat Chicken

SMOKING THE CHICKEN: If you do not want to grill the chicken, you can smoke the chicken on your smoker at 400 degrees Fahrenheit. It should take about 15-20 minutes. Flip the chicken halfway through smoking and make sure the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit.

OVEN BAKED: You can oven bake this chicken. Place the chicken on a parchment paper lined baking sheet, or grease the baking sheet. Bake the chicken at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for about 20 minutes. You do not need to flip the chicken half way through baking. It is done when the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit.

CROCK POT: If you prefer to use your crock pot to cook the chicken, put the chicken in the crockpot and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours or on high for about 3 to 4 hours. Stir/scrape the sides of the crock pot every now and then making sure the sauce doesn’t burn on the sides of the crock pot. You will know the chicken is done when it shreds easily.

NOTE: If you cook the chicken in the slow cooker it will be more of a shredded chicken.

What to Make with Chipotle Chicken


My most favorite thing to make using this Chipotle Chicken is Copycat Chipotle Burritos.

I chop up the grilled chicken into small pieces so it’s the perfect size to stuff in a burrito.

Chopped up chicken with chipotle flavor .

For a chicken burrito, use the chicken and add some Cilantro Lime Rice, sour cream, shredded quesadilla, Mexican blend or cheddar cheese, and green salsa. I roll it all up in a large flour tortilla (Don Pancho is the best brand).

Black beans or pinto beans are tasty stuffed in the burrito. Or add fajita veggies, guacamole, lettuce or queso.

A burrito being made with chipotle chicken, sour cream, cilantro lime rice, cheese and green salsa on a flour tortilla, ready to be rolled up.

The burritos using this Copycat Chipotle Chicken taste every bit as good as the burrito you would order from the Mexican grill. (I even roll mine up in foil so it feels like the real deal)!

A burrito wrapped in foil with a bite taken out of it showing the chicken, rice, cheese, sour cream and green salsa inside the flour tortilla.
Up close shot of a hand holding a burrito with chicken, rice, cheese and sour cream wrapped in foil.
A chicken burrito with a bite take out of it to show it is stuffed with chipotle chicken, rice, sour cream, cheese and green salsa.


Chicken Tacos are also delicious with this chicken. I like to use small corn tortillas (white corn tortillas are in the photo). I add the chicken with Cilantro Lime Rice, shredded cheese, sour cream and green salsa.

Chicken tacos with Chipotle Chicken, rice and sour cream, cheese and green salsa
Chicken tacos with rice, sour cream cheese and green salsa.
Chicken tacos with copycat chicken from Chipotle

This chicken can be used for salads, burrito bowls, enchiladas, quesadillas or loaded nachos!

Make it today!

A pile of chipotle chicken chopped into small pieces.

For some other tasty recipes try my Slow Cooker Mexican Chicken, Copycat Cafe Rio Chicken, Shredded Mexican Chicken in the Crock Pot or my Easy Taco Chicken.

If you liked this recipe please take the time to leave a comment and a star rating below! Also, don’t forget to follow me on Pinterest, Facebook and Instagram!

Chopped up chicken with chipotle flavor .

Chipotle Chicken (Copycat Recipe)

Chipotle Chicken is a copycat recipe that tastes just like the popular Mexican grill. It is perfect for burritos, tacos, and more.
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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Marinating Time in the Fridge (at minimum): 3 hours
Servings: 8 Servings (more or less)


  • 2 lbs. Chicken, boneless skinless
  • 1 (7 oz.) can Chipotles Peppers in Adobo Sauce
  • 1 (7 oz. Can) Chipotle Sauce
  • 2 Limes, juiced
  • 1/2 Med/lrg Red Onion, chopped
  • 3 tsp Minced garlic (bottled/jarred) *if using fresh garlic, use 6 cloves, minced
  • 2 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp ground oregano
  • 2 tsp kosher/coarse salt
  • 2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp liquid smoke *any flavor, Hickory or Mesquite
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika *if you don’t have this, just add a little more liquid smoke and 1/2 tsp paprika


  • Pound out the chicken so they are thinner and even in thickness. Cut the larger pieces of chicken into smaller pieces as needed.
  • In a food processor or blender, add all of the ingredients except the chicken. Blend until smooth.
  • Place the chicken in a zip top bag. Pour the blended marinade/sauce on top of the chicken and seal the bag. Squish and shake the chicken so the marinade/sauce covers all pieces. Let the chicken marinate in the fridge for at least 3 hours.
    *You can place the chicken covered in the marinade/sauce in a dish and cover it tightly to marinate if you don’t have a zip top bag.
  • After the chicken has marinated, heat your grill on medium heat. Place the chicken on the grill (discard the extra sauce left behind). Grill the chicken for about 20 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 165℉. Flip the chicken half way through cooking.
    *See blog post above for different cooking options.
  • After the chicken has cooked, slice it or chop it into the desired sized pieces. Use this chicken in burritos or tacos- see blog post above for how I make mine!
    Also use it for loaded nachos, quesadillas, burrito bowls, salads, enchiladas and more!
  • Store any leftover chicken in the fridge for up to 3 days.


See the blog post above for other cooking options.
See the blog post above for how I make burritos and tacos with this chicken.

Nutrition information is automatically calculated and should only be used as an approximation.

Serving: 1Serving | Calories: 134kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 73mg | Sodium: 1303mg | Potassium: 444mg | Fiber: 0.3g | Sugar: 0.1g | Vitamin A: 215IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 15mg | Iron: 1mg

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