Homemade Chicken Tacos

This is going to seem like a really trite way to begin a food blog post, but nonetheless, here it is: I am so thankful for food. I started thinking about it this month, when Tim and I began doing a weekly cleanse/detox day and I saw, again, how food affects my body.

An image showing chopped chicken on a chopping board and a bowl and knife at the back.

I thought about it when I read some recent posts (which you really ought to check out if you haven’t already) over at Roost and Honey & Salt, which tell the stories of people totally changing the way they eat in order to improve their health. Also, there have been long conversations about nutrition on Friday nights, random chats on the phone and with roommates about digestion, the ever-growing and expanding sea (ocean!) of food blogs out there, which continually blow. me. away. with the diversity and scope and perspectives and recipes.

But mostly, it’s just been the food itself. I mean, man.

Sometimes I’ll look at a blueberry or a lemon or an egg and think, you know, God didn’t have to give us so many different colors and tastes and textures to eat. He didn’t have to design food to provide pleasure or to be the tool that offers nourishment to us.

An image of a showing various diced vegetables on a chopping with a halved avocado and tacos at the back.

He didn’t have to create natural, whole foods that grow on trees and bushes, or the animals that provide dairy and meat. There could have been a different system — maybe a button to press or an IV line to hook up or, I don’t know, computer-like systems that monitor our levels of things and adapt automatically.

Seriously, think of it: There could have been no flavor, no concept of sweet or tart or spicy. No variety in colors, just gray or brown mush.

These are really things I think about sometimes. But we get juicy red strawberries!

And fermented dill pickles! We can make homemade stock and grass-fed sloppy Joes!

It’s so good. I’m thankful.

An image of a hand holding a halved avocado and a knife poised over it, with various vegetables at the back.

And right now, I am specifically thankful for these homemade chicken tacos we made recently, stuffed with some of my favorite chicken and a hodge-podge of other ingredients we had on hand, packaged in sprouted taco shells. I am thankful to eat these things and be full, to be satisfied, and, most of all, to be well.

Homemade Chicken Tacos

This is really less of a chicken recipe and more of a meal idea. We love a good taco (and Nashville has some great ones), but, personally, I really love a good taco with fresh, whole, hand-chosen ingredients.

Balsamic chicken (recipe here), chopped up into small pieces
Taco shells
Lettuce, shredded
Tomato, diced
Red cabbage, shredded
Shredded cheese (we had some leftover mozzarella, but raw cheddar would be great)
Avocado, diced

Warm shells on stove or in oven. Add toppings as you like and enjoy!

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About Shanna Mallon

Shanna holds an MA in writing from DePaul University. Her mantra? Restoring order and celebrating beauty through creative content, photography, and food. Shanna's work has been featured in Bon Appetit, The Kitchn, MSN.com, Everyday Health, Better Homes & Gardens, Houzz.com, Food News Journal, Food52, Zeit Magazine, Chew the World, Mom.me, Babble, Delish.com, Parade, Foodista, Entrepreneur and Ragan PR.

20 thoughts on “Homemade Chicken Tacos

  1. Reading your posts revives my wonder in the world. And lately, I’ve needed that, so thank you. And thank goodness I had mexican last night, or else I would be in that unfortunate circumstance of requiring tacos NOW. As it is, I need to make them soon…

  2. as of late, i also have been reading blogs that focus on health benefits eating, the nourishment of our body, food writing that focuses on making our bodies and minds fuller. it’s all very lovely, but what i personally find so very difficult is the the amount of information out there, from one side to the other, it’s confusing and sometimes, disheartening. that’s when i limit my Google Reader, in which case, after a time, i start to crave for the very thing that i got tired of! it’s a vicious cycle.
    what helps is being surrounded by like-minded people, at least in this area. people who enjoy whole foods, organic living, i learn so much from them! in cyber space and in real life.

  3. I am on the tail end of a 21 day cleanse and I feel great! In the beginning I missed certain things but now I really appreciate good for filling me up and nourishing me. Food is a powerful tool for change!

    This recipe looks divine:)

  4. I, too, am blown away by the flavors, shapes and tastes of food; there were so many striking colors in your blog post. Beautiful. Here in New England, we are waiting with bated breath for springtime, and all its green lovelies.

  5. You’ve written another post that fills me with gratefulness for and awareness of all the blessings surrounding us. Thanks for reminding me that it IS amazing that I have a smoothie in front of me with 11 diverse foods in it, even though I’m now fantasizing about these chicken tacos.

    (Thanks, too, for the link!)

  6. Thanks for making me think about this today. Soon it will be spring here (I hope!), and the markets will be overflowing with beautiful, delicious things again. If you hadn’t just reminded me so eloquently, I probably would’ve been too excited to stop for a second and just be thankful for the many, diverse fruits of this earth that we live on.

    So thanks, as always, for pushing me to slow down and appreciate what I would otherwise take for granted, especially as winter begins to turn into spring.

  7. Food is certainly one of the greatest pleasures of life 🙂 It’s nice to be reminded to be thankful for the variety we have!! As well as the endless cultural preparations!

  8. Shanna, I too am humbled and mystified by the fruits of this amazing planet. Every meal is a gift to be treasured and celebrated… how lucky are we to have access to the bounties of each season? Whenever I go abroad and study/work in areas of extreme food shortage or desertification, I am reminded of the blessings of our harvest and the luxury to decide when to cleanse and when to feast. Thank you for another poignant and meaningful post, I am honored to (almost) be a “Food Loves Writing ” sponsor. 🙂

  9. Caitlin, Ha! I totally saw your tweet the other night about tacos, and I had a craving all over again. : )

    Lan, Yeah. There are so many plans and diets out there, it can get really overwhelming, I know. That’s what I like about returning to what’s natural and whole–no special list to consult or guru to research. And it doesn’t all have to happen overnight either–small steps are still steps. I tell myself that.

    Bianca, Awesome! I definitely want to do a longer cleanse in the future, but it will probably make more sense when I’m living with someone who does it with me.

    Molly, I love the way you put that. The diversity in colors and tastes–just like in nature!–is amazing.

    Joanna, HA! You have my empathy and full heart of support over here for what you guys are doing. For what it’s worth, Tim and I are doing exactly the same thing, just one day a week, and in that smaller way, I can relate. Still praying for you guys!

    Maddie, I’m here in Chicago for a few days as I type this, and I have to chuckle thinking about spring. : ) It IS coming though—you are right about that!—and when the markets are full again in the Midwest, I’m so glad I’ll have your blog to show me how lovely it all is.

    Food Hound, Indeed!

    Angela, I’ll have to check that out! And I’d love to meet up.

    Kelsey, It’s so true that we are especially blessed here, and that it is a luxury to decided when to cleanse or feast. That is a good point. And I’m thrilled to have you here!

    Jennifer, I did just kind of sneak that in there without explanation, didn’t I? I might post about it sometime in the future!

  10. Wow. Great post.
    Just last night I was cutting into a beauty heart radish that’s been sitting in my fridge for almost two months. Not only is it gorgeous, but it’s built for storage — so it was just as fresh last night as ever. And that gorgeous fuschia color was as much a blessing to look at as the radish was to eat.

  11. Shannalee,
    I just love the way you think.
    God is good.
    He knows a thing or two about colour.
    Great pictures as usual.

  12. i love a girl who can pause and spot a miracle in the everyday ordinary.

    thankful, indeed.

    (and we are having chicken tacos, tomorrow! with avocado-cilantro-grapefruit salsa! extravagant, abundant, deeply profoundly grateful)

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