Beer Braised Chicken Tacos with IPA Avocado Cream and Beer Corn Tortillas

Let’s be honest. In America we tend to celebrate Cinco de Mayo the same way we celebrate St. Patricks day: with friends, beer and an incomplete understanding of another nation’s holiday.

I might not be able to help you with that last one, but I can help facilitate the beer consumption. Tacos are a staple on the 5th of May; and making your own corn tortillas from scratch is easy, cheap, delicious and incredibly impressive. Adding beer just makes you a super hero.

This year, when someone asks you what Cinco de Mayo is all about, you can distract them with mouthwatering, beery tacos while you Google the answer from your iPhone.

Beer Braised Chicken Tacos with IPA Avocado Cream and Beer Corn Tortillas


For The Chicken:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • 12 ounces pale ale (A Mexican lager will also work)
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne
  • ½ teaspoon salt

For the Beer Tortillas:

  • 2 cups Masa Harina*
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/3 cup room temperature pale ale (A Mexican lager will also work)

For the Avocado Cream and Toppings:

  • 1 large ripe avocado
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • pinch cayenne
  • ¼ cup pale ale (A Mexican lager will also work)
  • 2 tablespoon Greek yogurt or sour cream
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ white onion, chopped
  • ½ cup cilantro, chopped


  1. Heat the olive oil in a pot over medium high heat. Add the chicken and cook on each side until browned. Pour in the beer and spices. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and allow to cook over a low simmer until chicken is cooked through, about 15 minutes.
  2. Remove from heat, use two forks to shred chicken. Allow chicken to sit in the liquid while you prepare the tortillas.
  3. In a large bowl, add the Masa and the salt, stir to combine.
  4. Add the beer and stir to combine. If the dough is too dry to hold together, add additional beer or water. If it is too wet, add more Masa.
  5. Form into balls a bit larger than golf balls.
  6. Prepare a tortillas press by wrapping in plastic wrap or covering with parchment paper (you can place tortilla ball between two sheets of parchment and use a rolling pin). Place one ball in the center.
  7. Press, rotate and press again until thin.
  8. Heat a griddle (or cast iron skillet) to a medium high heat (about 350 for electric griddles).
  9. Cook until slightly brown on the bottom (about 30 seconds to a minute) flip and cook on the other side. Don’t overcook.
  10. In a food processor or blender add the avocado, cayenne, chili powder, Greek yogurt (or sour cream), beer and salt. Process until smooth.
  11. Scoop the chicken into the tortillas, top with avocado cream, diced onions and cilantro.

*Note: Masa Harina is a flour made from corn that can usually be found in the Mexican food aisle of your grocery store.

Photo Credit: Jackie Dodd