How To Shred Chicken – Easy Shredded Chicken

There are few kitchen ingredients as versatile as good old shredded chicken. Just think about it! Shredded chicken is the key ingredient in countless of your favorite recipes – flavorful chicken enchiladas, cheesy chicken spaghetti, cool and creamy chicken salads, hearty party dips and who can forget all those delicious chicken soups and stews? But if you’ve ever spent time shredding chicken by hand, especially in large batches, you know it can be messy and time-consuming. The good news? It doesn’t have to be! Below we explain how you can shred chicken in four easy ways, from using your hands to using a few kitchen tools (which you probably already own).

The beauty of shredded chicken is that you can start with poultry prepared a variety of ways. Shred grilled chicken breasts to add a smoky flavor to tacos and salads. Drop a broken deep fryer into a pot of water to cook for easy shredded chicken that fits into a range of dishes. Just be sure to remove the bones as you shred them (and save them for stash)! Or you can shred roast chicken with lots of herbs to flavor your favorite pasta dishes. Heck, you can even grab a fried chicken from the grocery store! Ree Drummond loves this time-saving trick. So go ahead, cook your chicken and get to shredding; Soon you’ll be on your way to making all kinds of delicious chicken dishes!

chopped chicken in a bowl

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What’s the easiest way to shred chicken?

Everyone seems to have a different method of shredding chicken, but here are a few that work well!

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use your hands

Shredding chicken with your hands is a breeze. For small portions of chicken, this is relatively quick and easy. In addition, it does not require any special tools. Just make sure the chicken is cool enough before you start.

Take two forks

Grab two forks, place the chicken on a cutting board so you have plenty of room, and get to work. Use the forks to pull in opposite directions, letting the tines help shred the chicken into as large or as small pieces as you like. Since it’s more of a hands-on approach, you can also start with warmer chicken.

Try a hand mixer or stand mixer

While it might be a more nuanced approach, a blender works wonders for shredding chicken. You can use the whisk attachment with a hand mixer, but a paddle attachment works great with a stand mixer. This is a quick method that requires almost no effort. Just make sure to keep the mixer on low so that shredded chicken doesn’t fly through your kitchen.

The Pioneer Woman The Pioneer Woman Vintage Floral 10 Cup Stand Mixer

The Pioneer Woman Vintage Floral 10 Cup Stand Mixer

The Pioneer Woman The Pioneer Woman Vintage Floral 10 Cup Stand Mixer

Throw it in a food processor

If finely shredded chicken is your goal, the food processor is there to help. This is a great method for chicken salads that require tiny shreds and an even texture. Just give the chicken a few pulses until it’s the desired shred size, but beware: because the blades are so sharp, your chicken can go from perfectly shredded to downright mashed in seconds, so keep a close eye on it!

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Is it easier to shred hot or cold chicken?

Chicken shreds best when still slightly warm, but after cooking, allow the chicken to sit for at least 10 minutes before beginning. If you shred the chicken with your hands or with forks, you may have to wait a little longer for the chicken to be cool enough to handle. However, if you use a blender or food processor, you can shred the chicken immediately after it has rested.

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