Tacos and Tostadas/

Creamy Chicken and Greens with Roasted Poblano and Caramelized Onion

Pollo a la Crema con Quelites, Chile Poblano Asado y Cebolla Caramelizado
Servings: 8


  • 2fresh poblano chiles
  • 3tablespoons olive or vegetable oil, plus a little more if needed
  • 3medium boneless, skinless chicken breast halves OR about 1 1/4 pounds shredded rotisserie chicken
  • salt
  • 1medium white onion, sliced 1/4-inch thick
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
  • 5cups (lightly packed) coarsely chopped, stemmed greens (about 1 inch pieces is good)—you’ll need about 6 ounces spinach, 4 ½ ounces Swiss chard, 3 ounces wild lamb’s quarters (quelites)
  • 1cup chicken broth
  • A littlefresh thyme if you have it
  • 1cup Mexican crema, crème fraiche or heavy (whipping) cream
  • 8 warm corn tortillas


Roast the chiles. Roast the poblanos directly over an open flame or 4 inches below a broiler, turning regularly until blistered and blackened all over, about 5 minutes for a flame, about 10 minutes for the broiler. Cover with a kitchen towel and cool until handleable. Rub off the blackened skin, then pull out the stem and seed pod.  Briefly rinse to remove any stray seeds or bits of skin. Slice ¼ inch thick.

If using, brown the chicken. In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high. Generously sprinkle the chicken breasts with salt on both sides and lay them into the pan in a single layer. When browned underneath, about 4 minutes, flip them over and reduce the heat to medium. Cook on the other side until browned and medium-rare (a little slit in the thickest part will reveal a rosy interior), 5 or 6 minutes more. Transfer to a plate.

Finish the dish. To the skillet (still over medium heat), add the onion. If there isn’t enough oil to lightly coat the onion, add a little more. Cook, stirring regularly, until richly browned and sweet, 8 or 9 minutes.

Meanwhile, cut the chicken into ½-inch cubes.

Add the garlic to the skillet and cook 1 minute, then add the greens, broth and thyme (if you have it). Raise the temperature to medium high. Cook until the liquid is nearly gone and the greens are almost tender, about 5 minutes. Add the cream and cook until it is noticeably thicker (it’ll be a rich glaze) and the greens are fully tender, about 5 minutes more.

Taste and season the mixture in the skillet with salt, usually ¼ teaspoon. Stir in the chicken, let heat through for a minute to two, scoop into a serving bowl, and enjoy without hesitation.


    1. Hi Gloria-I would just add baby kale or another green that you prefer. Get creative, see what you like and add more of that! Good Luck!

  1. Hello Chef,
    Are pasillas and poblanos the same??? Every market I visit tells me they are the same and when I’ve googled it, it’s kind of a mixed reaction. But when I walk in to the store and ask for poblanos they never have any and say to use the pasillas because it’s the same thing. What do you say? Thanks for all you’ve done and continue to do.

    Thank you,
    Josh Mercado

    1. Hey Josh!
      The pasillas and poblanos are not the same chiles. My guess is that they are not trained on the difference between the chiles. You CAN substitute one for the other but they are not the same. What I would do if I were you is go to a Mexican grocery store and ask them there, they will know. Good Luck!

    1. Hi Morgan,
      I would add the poblanos when you add the greens to the skillet. They are already cooked so you just need to heat them up with the rest of the mixture. Good luck and let us know how it turns out!

  2. This was really good and comforting. Excellent for using up those huge clamshells of power greens. I would definitely recommend adding a squeeze of lemon or lime over your taco since the taco filling is so rich.

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