The Best Shredded Chicken recipe is exactly that! This is the absolute best and most flavorful way to make tender and juicy shredded chicken in just 25 minutes.
Prep Time5 minutesminutes
Cook Time15 minutesminutes
Rest Time5 minutesminutes
Total Time25 minutesminutes
1lbboneless, skinless chicken breasts, or thighs
kosher salt, to taste
black pepper, to taste
1tablespoonolive oil, or avocado oil
⅓cupchicken stock, or broth
Season chicken with salt and pepper. Set aside.
Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Add olive oil and let warm for a minute.
Place chicken breasts top side down. Let cook for 5 minutes without moving.
Lower the heat just a smidge to medium heat and flip the chicken breasts. Add 1/3 cup chicken stock.
Insert your thermometer and cover pan with lid. Let chicken cook until the meat thermometer reaches 165°F for chicken breasts or 175°F for chicken thighs. This takes about 6-8 minutes for chicken breasts and 8 to 10 minutes for chicken thighs, depending on the thickness. (If your broth simmers down completely, add just a little more as needed.)
Once your chicken has reached temperature, remove the pan from the heat. Take out the thermometer probe and keep the lid off. Let the chicken rest for 5 minutes. (Important step to ensure juicy, tender chicken!)
Shred your chicken breasts as desired. Use shredded chicken immediately, or cool completely and freeze for later!
Ways To Shred Chicken:
Hand Mixer or Stand Mixer:This is the quickest method! Add your slightly-cooled chicken to a stand mixer (or bowl, if using a hand mixer) with the paddle attachment. Turn it on medium speed for literally about 30 seconds, and you’re done! I have the larger size stand mixer and it can handle up to 10 large chicken breasts at a time…the standard size can do about 5 breasts at a time. Just remember to watch it closely, because it takes just seconds!
Forks:Easy method with simple clean up. Use the prongs on the two forks to pull the slightly-cooled chicken apart, making sure to pull through the chicken in opposite directions.
By Hand: Best for larger pieces. Once the chicken is cool enough to handle, use your hands to pull apart the chicken breast apart into even pieces. This method is great if you want larger pieces of chicken.
Storage: Store shredded chicken in an airtight container for up to 4 days in the refrigerator. You can serve it cold, or warm it up if you prefer.Freeze: Seal shredded chicken tightly in freezer friendly bags, containers, or a double layer of plastic wrap or foil. Freeze for up to three months, and thaw in the fridge overnight before using for best results!Thermometer: I consider using a meat thermometer to be one of the most important steps. You do not need an expensive one – a cheap one will do just fine – but it makes a world of difference. You can use an instant read meat thermometer if you want to check when you think they are close. Or, use a meat thermometer with a wired probe that you can leave in the entire time and tell you as soon as the chicken reaches the correct temperature.Rest Time: It’s very important to let your chicken rest for 5 minutes before shredding it. This allows the meat to relax and release it’s juices, making it easier to shred, but also juicier!Seasonings: I use just salt and pepper, but you could definitely add different seasonings if you prefer. Montreal chicken, lemon pepper, Cajun seasoning, or taco seasoning would all be amazing! For a basic but still zesty flavor profile, use salt and pepper along with paprika, garlic powder, and oregano.