My sister Natalie told me of this easy way to shred chicken and it's one of my favorite cooking secrets now! It's so much easier than shredding with 2 forks and it creates perfect chicken for Mexican recipes, salads or casseroles. I almost always use frozen chicken breasts, but the magic number is 165 degrees F for an internal temperature.
Uncooked, skinless, boneless chicken breasts
For flavor: Dried minced onion, chicken broth or lemon slices (optional)
- POACH ON STOVE: Place chicken in a large skillet and add 1-2 cups of water or chicken broth and add onion or lemon slices for flavor, if desired. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover, and cook for 10-15 minutes until chicken reaches 165 degrees F.
- POACH IN OVEN: Place chicken in a single layer in a roasting pan. Add lemon slices or dried onion for flavor. Bring 4 cups of water or chicken broth a boil and immediately pour over chicken. Cover and bake at 400 degrees F for 20-35 minutes, checking for an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.
- BOIL: Place uncooked chicken breasts in a pot and barely cover with water. Season with a few shakes of onion for flavor, if desired. Bring to boil, then turn heat down to a gentle simmer. Simmer for about 20 minutes, or until chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.
When chicken breasts are cooked, add them to a stand mixer and mix with the paddle attachment until finely shredded. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve or immediately add to recipe.