Chipotles in adobo sauce are one of my go-to ingredients when I make a marinade or barbecue sauce. You can find chipotles in adobo in the international or Mexican section of your supermarket. I usually buy a few cans at a time, and I dove into my stash for this recipe.
Chipotles in adobo are a flavor bomb, packed with a soupy mix of whole smoked and dried jalapenos that are rehydrated and canned in a tangy, sweet tomato sauce. A little dollop adds smoky flavor and heat to robust marinades, sauces and stews. In this recipe, the chiles add essential flavor to the chicken marinade, which does double-duty as a basting sauce.
When using the chipotles, remember that the whole chiles have a good amount of heat, while the tomato sauce is milder and slightly sweet. So, spoon a balance of whole chiles with sauce in the food processor when making this recipe. Alternatively, separately process the entire can of chiles to get a smoother puree with a balance of heat and sweet.
Either way, you won’t use the entire can, so don’t throw out the leftovers! They can easily be stored for future use. Transfer to a glass container and refrigerate for up to one month, or freeze for up to six months. This way you’ll have your own stash for dipping into.
In this recipe, I cut the chicken into large chunks to expose more edges to the marinade and drive in flavor. I also like to accompany the salad with hummus, which is optional.