~ Next time you’re thinking “taco night,” think beyond the typical Mexican-style taco bar and try this incredibly delicious Mediterranean Chicken Taco recipe! It’s a fun make-it-your-own dinner that’s easy to prep ahead for busy nights. And, it’s a classed-up version of the traditional taco bar that’s perfect for parties and game day, too! ~
This Recipe Is: • Make Ahead •
*We partnered with Flatout for this sponsored post, and we’ve been compensated for our time in working with their products, however all opinions are entirely our own.
When it comes to making dinnertime fun, there’s just nothing like a taco bar, jam-crammed with loads of yummy topping choices.
Picky kiddos (and, let’s face it … even the adults, too!) appreciate the ability to make their own creations, piled high with the flavors and textures they like.
It’s one of the recurring themes in all of our articles about parenting picky eaters … if you help kids feel empowered and like they’re a part of the entire meal process, then they’ll be much more likely to eat healthfully and try new foods. It really works!
We actually saw this very principle in action when Gretchen first served her kids these Mediterranean Chicken Tacos.
Her littlest looked suspiciously at the roasted red pepper strips. “Those aren’t peppers,” (glaring accusingly at the red slivers). “Yes they are,” Gretchen patiently explained. “They’re just roasted!”
Her daughter proceeded to try one … along with all the other toppings she’d chosen … and guess what! (You know what’s coming here …) That suspicious-looking, roasted pepper strip turned out to be a-ok! Huh! And just like that, her daughter added one more type of vegetable to her “edible” list. Brilliant!
While all of that was going on, Gretchen’s older daughter was eyeballing the feta, certain she’d never tried it before … which is ludicrous since she’s had our Baked Hummus Dip with Easy Tabouli Topping, and Super-Fast Mediterranean Herbed Shrimp Pasta, and Citrus Quinoa and Chickpea Salad – to name a few! That kid has eaten more feta than she realized! And … you guessed it! She felt empowered enough to try it (again) … and she loved it (again! 😀 )!
This is why we really love Flatout’s goal to give kiddos lots of healthy options, through their #FlatoutIsMyCanvas campaign. Flatouts are deliciously nutritious little blank canvases, just waiting for kids to fill in the spaces with healthy foods they love.
These easy-to-make, yummy-to-eat Mediterranean Chicken Tacos are a perfect recipe to showcase how a blank canvas can become a delicious work of art … and how each artist’s masterpiece can be personalized and unique!
So, let’s build some tacos!
To start the taco bar fun, we like offering a variety of flatbread options.
Flatout Foldits, cut in halves, are the perfect starting point for mini tacos. These tiny, personalized tacos are terrific because everyone can build different combinations throughout dinner. They’re also great if you’re serving this taco bar at a party – the little Foldits are ideal for your guests to make perfectly sized party snacks (hello, game day food!).
For those who’d rather create one big, burrito-style soft taco, the larger Flatout wraps are just right. Although there are lots of great whole-grain, high-protein Flatouts to choose from, we found that the Red Pepper Hummus wraps and the Light Italian Herb wraps had flavor profiles that perfectly complemented the other Mediterranean ingredients in these chicken tacos.
After the taco “shells” … next stop … the chicken. (Spoiler alert: it’s made in the slow cooker, so it’s a total breeze to throw together ahead of time! Perfect for busy nights!)
The chicken in these tacos is mildly seasoned with Mediterranean flavors and Greek-inspired spices – a perfect building block for the bursting-with-flavor toppings that are just waiting to be piled on top.
And now (drum roll, please …) the toppings!
This is where the fun really starts and where the big flavors begin. We’ve got a whole list of suggested toppings for you – and when we make this taco bar in our own homes, we usually do offer all the options (and Gretchen and I both love to pile them allllll on!). But just like with Mexican-style taco bars, you can definitely feel free to improvise and offer whatever you think your family will like best.
Bonus for busy nights: the toppings can all be chopped and prepped even a day or two ahead!
With so many great, healthy topping choices, any toppings your kiddos choose are a win. And every single one adds up to more big flavor! Salty kalamatas and feta? Check! Vibrantly fresh tomatoes, cucumbers, spinach and parsley? Yup – got those, too! Wanna jazz it up and go a little highbrow with artichokes and roasted peppers? Sure thing – just pile ’em on!
There’s no wrong answer here, friends – build your tacos any way you like!
Just don’t skip the yummy hummus dressing! It’s crazy-easy to whip up, but absolutely pulls all the flavors together.
And don’t forget to offer a couple of things that you aren’t positive your kids will go for … because who knows … while they’re having fun creating their own masterpieces, they just might surprise you by trying something new!
Have Fun with These Other Great Taco Recipes, Too!
- 3-Ingredient Crock Pot Chicken Tacos from Two Healthy Kitchens
- Salsa Verde Chicken Tostadas from Gina at Skinnytaste
- Turkey Taco Lettuce Wraps from Michelle at The Complete Savorist
- Shredded Chicken Tacos with Balsamic Strawberry Salsa from Taylor at Food Faith Fitness
- Lime Shrimp and Rice Tacos from Cindy at Hun … What’s for Dinner?
Chicken Taco Meat
- 1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar (white or golden balsamic are fine, too)
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
- 3/4 cup plain hummus
- 3 tablespoons water
Taco Bar Options
- Flatout flatbreads (see note on sizes and flavors)
- Optional toppings: chopped baby spinach, diced tomatoes, seeded and diced cucumbers, chopped roasted red peppers, chopped (canned or jarred) artichokes, chopped kalamata olives, minced fresh parsley, crumbled reduced-fat feta cheese
- Place chicken in slow cooker, and add vinegar, 2 tablespoons water, basil, garlic powder, onion powder, parsley, salt, oregano, and black pepper on top.
- Cook in a 3-4 quart slow cooker, on high for 4-5 hours or on low for 6-8 hours. If using a larger 5-6 quart slow cooker, cook on low for about 6 hours. (See note.)
- Just before serving, shred chicken (with two forks) and stir back into remaining liquid in bottom of slow cooker, to incorporate.
- Meanwhile, combine hummus and 3 tablespoons water to make dressing, stirring or whisking until smooth. (You can adjust the exact amount of water slightly, depending on the thickness of your brand of hummus and how thick you'd like your dressing.)
- Serve chicken in flatbreads, allowing everyone to select toppings and drizzle with hummus dressing, as desired.
Flatbread options: If you'd like to serve this recipe as mini, personal tacos for a fun dinner or as appetizer-sized party tacos, we recommend using Flatout Foldits. Cut each Foldit in half to form perfectly sized mini soft taco shells. Alternately, if you'd like to serve larger, heartier-sized soft tacos, try using Flatout wraps – we found that the ProteinUP Roasted Red Pepper and Light Italian Herb varieties had flavors that paired nicely with the Mediterranean ingredients in this recipe.
Make-ahead tips: Because you're using your slow cooker, you begin the chicken hours ahead of serving it. In addition, though, you can also cook it even a day or two ahead, then refrigerate it after cooking and reheat it for serving. You can also prepare and chop all of the toppings up to a day or two ahead. Store each topping, wrapped separately, in the refrigerator.
Cook time and slow cooker variations: Through all of our testing, we've found that slow cooker chicken recipes like this one typically work best in a 3-4 quart slow cooker. If you’re using a larger 5-6 quart model, we recommend cooking on low for only about 6 hours. We do not recommend cooking this recipe on high in a 5-6 quart slow cooker because the chicken may overcook and become dry. At the end of cook time, the chicken should be cooked through and should shred easily and be really moist. Also, note that the exact heat and speed of cooking can vary between different slow cookers. Our research has also led us to believe that some models allow for imperceptible evaporation of liquid (although you’d expect that no liquid would be lost when using a slow cooker), which can leave your recipes less saucy and moist. Because this particular recipe uses very little liquid, it’s particularly sensitive to these variations. No need to worry – it’s delicious even when cooked until it’s a bit drier.