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Sous Vide Red Chili Chicken (Adobado)

4 Servings

2 hours 30 minutes active

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Sous vide chicken stays incredibly moist and tender. We tried dry rubs, but cooking the meat with a flavorful sauce worked best. For our flavorful red chili sauce (adobado), we liked the earthy, fruity flavor of ancho chilies, but pasilla, guajillo and pulla chilies worked, too. For a milder heat, remove the seeds after stemming the chilies. Serve with rice or tortillas and sour cream. For an equally flavorful but simpler alternative, cook each chicken breast in ¼ cup coconut milk whisked with 2 teaspoons red curry paste.




Don’t fear the 145°F cooking temperature. Though it is well below what we are typically told to cook poultry to, J. Kenji Lopez-Alt of The Food Lab has shown one and a half hours at this temperature is quite safe. The chicken will look and taste fully cooked.

2 hours

30 minutes active


  • 2

    tablespoons grapeseed or other neutral oil

  • 2

    ounces whole dried ancho chilies, stemmed and seeded


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Aswathy T.

We just bought a sous vide and this is the first recipe we tried out. The texture of the chicken breast was amazing! So moist and soft, not stringy at all. Thanks!

Esther D.

If you use the simplified version with the coconut milk and curry paste, would you still stir in butter and lime juice at the end?

April D.

Esther - good question. You will definitely want to add the lime juice at the end, in order to give the chicken a nice pop of brightness at the end. The butter can be optional, since you will have a nice amount of creaminess from the coconut milk; I would recommend still using it, as butter helps to emulsify the sauce and make it silky smooth. If you take a taste without the butter and are happy with the texture and richness, however, you can skip it.

The Milk Street Team

Jarrod C.

How spicey is this?

Lynn C.

Hi Jarrod -

Ancho chiles are dried poblano peppers, which are relatively mild. They measure between 1,000 – 2,000 on the Scoville Scale. Compare that to a bell pepper, which has no heat and measures at zero and a jalapeño pepper which is about 5,000 and you can generally gauge how hot this will be. Hope that helps!

The Milk Street Team