Slow-Cooked Shredded Chicken Tostadas

Shredded chicken tostadas are a tasty twist on the usual chicken tostadas. Slow-cooked chicken is seasoned with Mexican flavors before being shredded and piled on top of crispy corn tortillas for an easy weeknight dinner that the whole family will love.

This image is a close up of finished chicken tostadas. Herbs, lime and tomato in the background of the picture on cutting board.

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This recipe was inspired by a cup of leftover coffee, which I decided to use to make these tostadas rather than throw it out.

The combination of coffee and cocoa adds a deep flavor to Mexican recipes. If you like this recipe, you might also like this bison chili recipe.

Why You Will Like This Recipe

  • It’s a simple recipe with very little prep time, dump the ingredients into the slow cooker and walk away.
  • It’s healthy and made with wholesome ingredients.
  • Tostadas are very customizable, top it with your favorite toppings or whatever you have on hand and everyone will love them.

Here Is What You Will Need

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This is an overview of the ingredients and steps to make this recipe, scroll down for a printable recipe card with exact measurements and instructions.

THe ingredients on a board: chili powder, cumin, garlic, orange juice, tomatoes, coffee, cocoa powder and boneless chicken breasts

Ingredient List

  • brewed coffee
  • cocoa powder
  • fresh squeezed orange juice
  • diced tomatoes (fresh or canned)
  • garlic cloves
  • chipotle chili powder
  • boneless chicken breasts
  • corn tortillas
  • Toppings such as: shredded lettuce, avocados, lime juice, salsa, cabbage, tomatoes, cheese


Here is How to Make This Chicken Tostada Recipe

Prepare: Use a citrus juicer to extract the juice from the orange, chop the garlic and measure the remaining ingredients.

ingredients for chicken sauce in a slow cooker

Step 1.

Add the sauce ingredient ingredients to the slow cooker.

Step 2.

Whisk all of the ingredients together.

chicken tostada sauce mixed together in a slow cooker

This image shows step three of the recipe with the ingredients and chicken breast in the slow cooker.

Step 3.

Place the boneless chicken breasts into the slow cooker and toss them in the sauce until they are coated.

Step 4.

Cover the slow cooker and cook the chicken.

cooked chicken in sauce in a slow cooker

shredded chicken in a slow cooker

Step 5.

Use two forks to shred the chicken, cover and keep the chicken warm.

Step 6.

Place tortillas in a single layer on a baking sheet, brush them with olive oil, or spray them with cooking spray and bake until they are crispy about 15 minutes.

4 tortillas on a baking sheet

Ingredient Notes & Substitutions

Boneless chicken breasts can be substituted with boneless chicken thighs or a combination of both.

Tortillas. Tostadas are typically made with corn tortillas, however, you can use flour tortillas and toast them in the oven too. We like La Tortilla Factory’s yellow corn and wheat tortillas or their corn tortillas.

You can also purchase tostada shells in most grocery stores if you want to keep it simple. Keep in mind that the store-bought tostada shells are fried, and may contain more ingredients and calories than the baked tostada shells.

Fresh chopped garlic is used in this recipe and can be substituted with 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder.

Chipotle chili powder is spicier than chili powder, and it can be replaced with chili powder if you don’t care for spicy food.

Serving Suggestions

Serve these easy chicken tostadas with your favorite toppings such as shredded lettuce, red onion, avocado slices, green onions, garden salsa, salsa verde, sour cream, cheddar cheese, queso fresco, chopped fresh cilantro, or guacamole.

Storing Leftovers

Store leftover chicken tostada ingredients in separate containers. The chicken should be refrigerated (for up to 5 days) and the toasted tortillas should be wrapped and stored at room temperature.

Freeze the shredded chicken for chicken tostadas in an airtight container for up to three months.

Thaw the chicken in the refrigerator overnight and reheat it on top of the stove over low heat.

If you prefer a more traditional Mexican flavored chicken, try making this Easy Crockpot Chicken Tacos recipe.

Overhead view of tostadas on a plate with a fork

Recipe Variations

Pork Tostadas. Swap out the boneless chicken breasts with boneless pork ribs, loin, or shoulder and cook for an hour to an hour and a half more.

Veggie & Chicken Tostadas. Add chopped vegetables to the crockpot such as cauliflower, carrots, or mushrooms.

Beef Tostadas. Replace the chicken with cooked ground beef.

Tostada Salad. Top the crispy tortilla with chicken, and pile on salad ingredients such as lettuce, onions, shredded cabbage, tomatoes, cucumbers. Or leave the crispy tortilla out, and top your tostada salad with tortilla chips.


This chicken filling tastes even better the next day! Make a double batch of the chicken and serve it throughout the week on salads, quesadillas, tacos, nachos, burrito bowls.

Are Chicken Tostadas Healthy?

Tostadas are typically made with deep-fried corn tortillas that are layered with toppings such as seasoned shredded meat, lettuce, refried beans, and salsa, so not so healthy for you.

I changed things up a bit.

Instead, these tostadas are made with baked, not fried corn tortillas. They are layered with spicy Mexican shredded chicken that’s seasoned in a mixture of brewed coffee, dark chocolate, and Mexican spices. They are lower in fat and added ingredients, but not flavor.

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shredded chicken with lettuce on top of a tortilla

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chicken tostadas on a plate

Slow Cooked Chicken Tostadas

Chicken Slow is cooked in a mixture of coffee, chocolate, and Mexican flavors. It's gluten-free and healthy!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 4 hours
Total Time: 4 hours 10 minutes

Click on serving size to scale this recipe

Course: Dinner Recipes
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: Chicken Tostadas, Easy Chicken tostadas, slow cooked chicken tostadas
Servings: 4
Calories: 456kcal
Author: Anne
Scale this Recipe 4


  • 1/2 cup brewed coffee
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup fresh squeezed orange juice
  • 1/4 cup diced tomatoes
  • 2 cloves chopped garlic
  • 2 teaspoons chipotle chili powder
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 4 corn tortillas

Suggested toppings:

  • sliced avocado
  • freshly squeezed lime juice
  • salsa
  • shredded lettuce
  • shredded cabbage
  • tomatoes
  • queso fresco


  • Place the coffee, cocoa powder, orange juice, tomatoes, chili powder, and garlic into a slow cooker and whisk everything together.
  • Add the chicken and turn it in the sauce making sure that it is coated in the sauce.
  • Cook on low for 4 hours.
  • Once the chicken is cooked, use  two forks shred the chicken.
  • Reduce the heat on the slow cooker to warm.
  • Place the tortillas in a preheated oven 375 and bake until crispy – about 5 to 8 minutes
  • Top the tortillas with meat, and your favorite toppings


Swap out the boneless chicken breasts with boneless chicken thighs or boneless pork ribs, loin or shoulder.
Store leftover chicken in an airtight container   in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. 


Serving: 1/4 pound of chicken | Calories: 456kcal | Carbohydrates: 25g | Protein: 45g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 11g | Cholesterol: 117mg | Sodium: 455mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 5g

Nutrition information provided is an estimate and can vary based on cooking methods and ingredients used

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