Sous Vide Chicken Tacos

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Prep Time: 35 minutes
Cook Time: 120 minutes
Servings: 4

Serve Mexican-style grilled corn alongside the tacos, or cut the kernels from the cobs and add them to the tacos if you prefer. You can also dress up these tacos with your favorite salsa, thinly sliced radishes and pickled carrots or jalapeños.


For the tacos:

  • 2 chipotle chiles in adobo sauce, minced, plus 1 Tbs. sauce
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 cup (2 oz./60 g) tomato puree
  • 1 Tbs. fresh lime juice, plus more for seasoning
  • 1 tsp. honey
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. ground coriander
  • 1 tsp. ancho chile powder
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 lb. (1 kg) bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
  • 8 corn tortillas, warmed
  • Sour cream for serving
  • Fresh cilantro leaves for serving


Prepare an immersion circulator for use according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Preheat the water to 165°F (74°C).

In a large bowl, whisk together the chipotle chiles, adobo sauce, garlic, tomato puree, lime juice, honey, cumin, coriander, chile powder, 1 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. pepper. Add the chicken thighs and toss to coat evenly with the sauce. Transfer the thighs and sauce to a vacuum bag in a single layer and vacuum seal closed.

When the water reaches 165°F, lower the bag into the water bath and clip the top of the bag to the side of the water basin. Cook for at least 2 hours and up to 4 hours. (Beyond 4 hours, the texture of the chicken will begin to deteriorate.)

When the chicken is ready, remove the bag from the water bath and transfer the thighs to a cutting board to rest for 15 minutes. Pour the cooking liquid into a measuring cup.

Remove and discard the skin and bones from the chicken. Cut the chicken into bite-size pieces and transfer to a bowl. Add about 1 cup (8 fl. oz./250 ml) of the reserved cooking liquid and toss to coat well. Season to taste with salt, pepper and lime juice.

Spoon the chicken and sauce onto warmed tortillas and top with sour cream and cilantro. Serve immediately. Serves 4.

Adapted from Williams Sonoma The Sous Vide Cookbook (Weldon Owen 2017)

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