KITCHEN TIP: Shredding Chicken

I love me some chicken tacos, but I hate the chore of shredding chicken. I’ve long been a “two-forks” kind of guy, shredding chicken by hand like some kind of 13th century peasant. Shredding by hand not only takes forever, gripping the forks for so long hurts my hands, and the whole thing makes a big ol’ mess.

I read somewhere online that you could shred chicken with a mixer. “No way!”, I thought. But yes, it really does work!


In a perfect world, you’d use a stand mixer with a paddle attachment. We don’t have one of those, but we do have a hand mixer, which works almost as well. You just cook the chicken breasts until done, cut them into smaller chunks (I cut large breasts into three pieces), then toss them into a large bowl and hit them with the mixer. Start off at the slowest speed, gradually increasing speed as the chicken breaks down. In 2-3 minutes, you’ll have a bowl of perfectly shredded chicken with almost no effort!

There are a couple of things to keep in mind, though. One, hot (or warm) chicken shreds much better than cold chicken, so shred it just after cooking, even if you’re not planning on using it until later. Secondly, if you have the mixer set too fast, little chicken shreds will fly out of the bowl. Until you’re used to how much speed you need, you might want to keep a paper plate or towel handy to act as a “shield” whilst shredding.

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