Yes, you can shred chicken with mixer! And I’m going to teach you how. However, before we dive into the techniques and methods, let’s talk about why it’s so important to shred your chicken before cooking or freezing it. Mixing meat with a mixer can be messy and difficult, but you shouldn’t have to do it by hand. Fortunately, our new Shred Chicken With Mixer attachment from KitchenAid is the solution to your problems!
HOW TO SHRED CHICKEN
Unsure how to go about shredding chicken? Never fear. Preparing this versatile staple is easy once you know a few tricks.
From the ever-popular chicken enchiladas to BBQ chicken sandwiches, shredded chicken pops up as an ingredient in countless recipes. With these simple techniques, you’ll have it ready in a flash.
1PAN POACHING YOUR CHICKEN
Whatever you choose to make, it’s important that you use fully cooked meat as raw chicken doesn’t shred well. Any cooking method will work, but I prefer pan-simmered boneless chicken breasts or thighs. Start by browning the chicken in a couple tablespoons of oil over medium heat. Pour hot water into your pan and let the chicken simmer for 8-12 minutes, or until it’s cooked through.
2SHREDDING CHICKEN WITH A FORK
This is the most common technique for shredding chicken because it’s so quick and easy. Simply hold one fork still in the center of your chicken and use a second fork to pull the shreds apart.
3SHREDDING CHICKEN WITH A STANDING MIXER
Place your boneless chicken in the bowl of your standing mixer and snap your paddle attachments into place. Turn the mixer on at low speed and leave it for 2-3 minutes, or until the chicken is fully shredded.
4SHREDDING CHICKEN WITH A HAND MIXER
Working with two chicken breasts or thighs at a time, use your hands to tear apart your meat. Place the pieces into a deep mixing bowl and press the beaters of your mixer into the meat. Turn the mixer on a low speed and let the paddles work through the chicken until it’s fully shredded. Repeat with remaining boneless chicken breasts or thighs.
HOW TO MAKE SHREDDED CHICKEN
An easy, fast and flavorful shredded chicken recipe that’s incredibly versatile. It’s my favorite method because it keeps the chicken moist, shreds in seconds and infuses more flavor than other methods, such as boiled or poached chicken.
Shredded chicken (also known as pulled chicken) is one of those recipe basics that everyone should learn to master. It’s used in many recipes, from salads to appetizers to main dishes – yet those recipes usually never tell you how to make it. They just tell you you need 3 cups of shredded chicken.
Of course, you could easily buy a rotisserie chicken at the supermarket (or make one yourself) and shred that chicken with two forks. But there’s really no need when I show you how incredibly easy it is to make shredded chicken at home.
THE BEST CHICKEN TO USE
You can use boneless skinless chicken breast or boneless skinless chicken thighs. The thighs are naturally more moist but either one works. You just don’t want skin or bones for this method, given how we’ll shred the chicken.
HOW TO MAKE SHREDDED CHICKEN
After testing several methods including boiling, poaching, slow cooker/Crockpot and Instant Pot, this stovetop method is my favorite. And here’s why – it’s far more flavorful (as you’re searing one side), it’s moist (as you do a half poach/steam), and it shreds in seconds (yes, seconds). So let’s break it down.
SAUTÉ THE CHICKEN
You’ll start by drizzling a little olive oil into a sauté pan over medium heat. Add the chicken and sprinkle salt and pepper generously on the top side. Let this cook for 5 minutes (it should be slightly golden), then use tongs to flip the chicken over.
COVER AND POACH
Once the chicken is flipped over, add 3/4 cup of chicken broth to the pan and cover with a lid. This will keep the chicken moist while cooking it fast. Cook the chicken for another 7-10 minutes. Chicken thighs will require a little more time than chicken breasts. You can also use an instant read thermometer to ensure your chicken is cooked through (to 165 degrees Fahrenheit).
HOW TO SHRED CHICKEN – 2 WAYS
Once your chicken is cooked, there are two ways you can shred the chicken. My favorite method is to use a stand mixer as it’s extremely fast and easy. But you could also use two forks if you don’t own a stand mixer.
- Two Forks: If using this method, place your cooked chicken breast on a plate or cutting board. Use two forks to separate the chicken meat and shred as you separate. Continue this process with each chicken breast.
- Stand Mixer: If you have a stand mixer, this is by far the fastest and easiest way to shred chicken. Place all of your chicken breasts in the bowl of stand mixer. Add the paddle attachment and make sure to lock the tilt head (if you have one) to prevent it from bouncing up. Turn your stand mixer on low and in 15 seconds you’ll have shredded chicken. Watch the video below to see how I do this.
The stand mixer method for shredding chicken is one of my favorite kitchen hacks. It saves your wrists from the tedious two fork method and takes a fraction of the time to shred your entire batch of chicken. It’s seriously mind-blowing.
If you like your chicken extra moist, you can also add a little bit of the liquid from the pan to the chicken and toss to combine.
HOW TO STORE IT
Shredded chicken is great for weekly meal prep. You can shred several chicken breasts on a Sunday, store them in a container and have healthy meals throughout the week. It will keep for 3-4 days in the fridge and up to 2 months in the freezer.
I frequently make a large batch, freeze it in small containers and then just thaw as needed. It makes my daily recipes a breeze.
How to Shred Chicken with a Stand Mixer
Shredding chicken with a stand mixer is convenient and quick. Cut your warm, cooked chicken into a few smaller pieces and drop it in the mixing bowl. Start at a low mixing speed, then ramp the speed up to a medium-high setting. Keep the mixer turning for about 60 seconds and voila, you’re done! If you don’t have access to a standing mixer, you can use a hand mixer to shred chicken in a similar way. If you’re shredding a piece of chicken with bones, you might want to try shredding with forks.
Method1Shredding Chicken With a Stand Mixer
- 1Prepare your chicken. Shredding the chicken with a mixer is only possible if it’s warm. There are many ways of preparing chicken for shredding. For instance, you could bake it in the oven at a temperature of 400 degrees Fahrenheit (204 Celsius) for about 30 to 40 minutes. If you don’t want to cook your chicken in the oven, try boiling it. Finally, you could pan-simmer your chicken on the range in oil.
- To boil the chicken, just drop the chicken into water and heat to boiling. Cover, reduce heat to low, and wait 90 minutes.
- To pan-simmer your chicken, just place it in oil at a medium-high temperature for one minute, flip it, and reduce the temperature to low. Cover and let it simmer about 10 minutes.
- No matter what method you choose, ensure you follow proper safety protocols. For instance, always use antibacterial soap to clean the cutting boards and other surfaces that may have come into contact with the raw chicken, and wash your hands thoroughly after preparing your chicken.
- Choose the right kind of chicken. Shredding chicken in a stand mixer requires that it is free of bones. Bone-free chicken breasts or thighs are the best option for shredding chicken in a stand mixer.
- 2Get the right mixer. Not all stand mixers are created equal. The overwhelming choice for best mixer to shred chicken is the KitchenAid stand mixer. While other stand mixers might be able to do the job, the KitchenAid seems to be the tried and true favorite.
- 3Cut the chicken pieces in half. While it isn’t absolutely necessary, the mixer will be able to shred the chicken more easily if it is in smaller pieces. Cutting the chicken breast or thigh in half is a good way to help the shredding process along without investing too much time into slicing and dicing the meat.
- 4Turn the mixer on. Place the warm chicken in the mixing bowl. Snap the paddle attachment into the mixing arm. Set the mixer to a low setting (setting number 2), then increase the speed to a medium-high setting (somewhere around number 4-6) once the chicken starts to break apart. Mix for about one minute, until all the chicken is finely shredded
Method2Using Your Shredded Chicken
- 1Freeze your shredded chicken. If you make a big batch, you can freeze it in a sealable container and thaw it out in batches as needed. By making a large batch of shredded chicken at once, you will save time and effort breaking out and setting up your mixer every time you want a meal with shredded chicken.
- Remove the chicken in the amount you plan on using and let it thaw for a few hours before using.
- 2Make a slow-cooked shredded chicken. Dice a large onion into large chunks. Sprinkle four pounds of chicken with one tablespoon of garlic herbal seasoning, or to taste. Place the onion in the bottom of your slow cooker crock and put the chicken on top. Set the cooker to high for two to three hours, or to low for four to five hours. When the time is up, remove the chicken and serve your tender, flavorful shredded chicken with a side of steamed broccoli and rice.
- This recipe makes eight cups of shredded chicken.
- 3Try a shredded BBQ chicken sandwich. Mix one teaspoon soy sauce, one teaspoon Worcestershire sauce, ¾ teaspoons apple cider vinegar, ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes, ¼ teaspoon garlic powder, 1/8 teaspoon onion powder, 1/3 cup ketchup, and 1 teaspoon brown sugar together in a small mixing bowl.
- Transfer the sauce to a medium skillet and add eight ounces of shredded chicken. Heat on medium for three to four minutes, then reduce heat to the lowest setting. Cover for 50-55 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Toast some bread or sesame seed buns on a cast iron skillet. Slather the buns with mayonnaise and scoop the BBQ chicken onto it. Eat with a side of green beans and corn.
- Be careful not to overcook the chicken or it will dry out.
- 4Prepare shredded chicken tacos. Obtain some taco shells. You can use either hard or soft shell. Pour two teaspoons of vegetable oil in a small nonstick pan over medium heat. Add a tablespoon of minced onion. Sautee two minutes. Then add one pound of shredded chicken, one pinch of cumin, one pinch of chili powder, and ¼ cup of tomato sauce.
- Mix everything together and turn the heat up until the mixture boils.
- Then reduce the heat to low and let the mix simmer for about three minutes.
- Scoop some of the mix onto your taco shell. Top with cheese, mushrooms, cilantro, or diced bell peppers to taste.
Method3Having Backup Methods on Hand
- 1Tear the meat into small pieces.Unlike shredding chicken in a stand mixer, other methods of shredding chicken require giving the chicken a head start on getting shredded. Tear or cut the meat up into pieces no bigger than an inch on any side.
- Like shredding chicken with a stand mixer, other methods of shredding chicken require that they are free of bones.
- 2Shred the chicken with a fork.On a plate or in a bowl, pierce a piece of boneless chicken with two forks. Both forks should have their prongs facing in a downward curve. Press the prongs of one fork into the center of the chicken and apply a firm downward pressure. With another fork, pierce the chicken near the place where the prongs of the first fork penetrated. Then, pull the second fork away from the first in a straight line.
- Don’t simply remove it at the same angle you entered the chicken. Rather, pull straight away relative to the plane of the bowl or plate the chicken is on. By pulling the second fork away from the other fork, a significant portion of the chicken meat should come away with it.
- You might notice the meat is stringy and breaks into thin strips. This is normal.
- Pierce the chicken again with the second fork and continue to tear away chicken meat. When you’ve torn up most or all of one side of a piece of chicken, remove the first fork you’re using to anchor the chicken in place and pierce the new center of the piece of chicken you’re shredding.
- Continue in this way until all the chicken is shredded.
- 3Shred chicken with a hand mixer. Place your chicken pieces into a sturdy pyrex or glass mixing bowl. Most mixing bowls can accommodate up to two chicken breasts or thighs. Place the prongs of your mixer into the bowl. Turn the mixer on a low setting. Use one hand to grip the bowl and one hand to move the mixer around. Move the mixer around the bowl until the chicken is fully shredded (usually about 60 seconds or less).
- Keep the mixing paddles in the bowl while they’re moving, otherwise you’ll end up flinging chicken all over your kitchen.
- When your chicken is shredded, turn the mixer off and remove it from the bowl.
- If you have more than two pieces of chicken, shred them in batches. For instance, shred two piece of chicken, then remove them onto a plate or bowl. Then drop two more pieces of hand-torn chicken into the mixing bowl and shred again.