Sunday, February 26, 2012

Cafe Rio Inspired- Shredded Chicken & Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette

My slow-cooker is one of my best friends in my kitchen. With K's work schedule so sporadic, I know that I can throw something in there and once it's finished cooking I can keep it on "keep warm" until he gets home. Last Friday I was really wanting Cafe Rio and though I'm really lucky to have a restaurant 20 minutes away I didn't want to make the drive. Through the help of Pinterest I was able to find this great recipe pinned by Make Ahead Meals for Busy Moms. I had all the ingredients which made it even easier (no groceries store runs!). The recipe didn't disappoint! The taste was super close to the real thing, it felt like I did make that 20 minute drive. There's nothing like throwing everything into your crock pot and eight hours later having a delicious meal. Here's the recipe:
Recipe (slightly modified from original post)

2-4 frozen chicken breasts 

1/2 a small bottle of zesty italian dressing

1/2 Tbsp. minced garlic
1 pkt ranch dressing mix (mixed with 1/2 cup of water)
1/2 Tbsp. chili powder
1/4 Tbsp. ground cumin
Place all the ingredients into your slow cooker. I put my chicken in frozen, no need to thaw when the slow cooker will do the work for you. Set on low for 8 hours or high for 5-6 hours.
 Around 5 hours check the progress of your chicken. By this time your chicken should be cooked. 

The best way to shred your chicken without taking it out of the crock pot is by using a hand held mixer. It's super easy, super fast with no mess. Shred your chicken and continue cooking.
I wanted to make tacos with the chicken, though you can also make a salad or burrito. Since I'm still on a healthier eating kick I didn't want to do a creamy salad dressing. I found a Cafe Rio inspired Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette on the Favorite Family Recipe website. It was perfect and tasted divine.
2 tamatillos
1/2 bunch cilantro

2 cloves garlic

1 tsp. diced jalapeno (canned) --you can use more if you would like it spicy.
Juice of 2 limes
1 Tbsp. sugar
1 c. balsamic vinaigrette salad dressing (make sure it is the dressing NOT the vinegar)

Place everything except the dressing into a food processor and blend well. Add the balsamic vinaigrette salad dressing and cover. Place in the fridge for at least two hours before using.

Everything is now set for a delicious dinner. Grab your tortillas, lettuce, sour cream and everything else you want to add. K didn't get home until pretty late but it was worth the wait to eat this delicious meal with him!



Pierce + Stacy Thiot said...

Did you use uncooked tortillas? Those are my favorites. If so, where did you find the small ones? I can only find the uncooked big ones at Costco. Yum!

B&K said...

I found them at Vons in the refrigerated section. I love them!

Gem said...

this looks delicious, will be trying this on my menu plan next week!