Chicken with Tamarind, Apricots and Chipotle Sauce

Chicken with Tamarind, Apricots and Chipotle Sauce

Pollo con Salsa de Tamarindo, Chabacano y Chipotle

Recipe Yield

8 servings

Cooking time

1 hour 25 minutes

Rate this recipe

3.67 from 6 votes


  • 4 chicken quarters or 8 chicken pieces of your choice with skin and bones
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon kosher or coarse sea salt or to taste, plus more to season chicken
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste to season chicken
  • 4 cups water
  • 1/2 pound dried apricots roughly chopped (about 3/4 cup)
  • 2 tablespoons apricot preserves
  • 3/4 cup homemade Latin-style tamarind syrup or store bought
  • 2 tablespoons sauce from chipotles in adobo or more to taste

To Prepare

  • Thoroughly rinse chicken pieces with cold water and pat dry. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  • In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-low heat. Add the chicken pieces skin side down in one layer, and slowly brown the chicken pieces for 40 minutes. Flip them over, once they have crisped and created a crust, halfway through. This is not a quick sear or browning, this is low heat cooking for a good 40 minutes.
  • Pour water over the chicken, raise the heat to medium-high to bring to a simmer. Incorporate apricots, apricot preserve, Latin-style tamarind syrup, chipotle sauce, and 1 teaspoon salt, stir, and keep it at a medium simmer for 35 minutes until the sauce has thickened to a thick syrup consistency and can coat the back of a wooden spoon. You may need to reduce the heat.
  • Taste for salt and heat and adjust to your liking.


26comments inChicken with Tamarind, Apricots and Chipotle Sauce

  1. Nancy

    Mar 26

    Hi! Excited to try this for Passover! I could only find tamarind puree. Will that work??

    1. Pati Jinich

      Apr 11

      I hope you used it Nancy and it came out well, let me know what you think?

      1. Beth

        Mar 10

        Pati- If using Tamarind Concentrate, how much to use for this recipe?

        1. Pati Jinich

          Mar 13

          The same 3/4 of a cup Beth 😉

  2. Ana Millsaps

    Nov 27

    Thank You for all your wonderful recipes, my family has enjoyed all the ones I’ve cooked especially the meatballs in guajillo sauce. I’m going to try this tamarindo with chabacanos tomorrow since I have all the ingredients already. I am ordeing your book right now.
    Stay safe!

    1. Pati Jinich

      Dec 02

      So happy you liked the Albondigas Ana and hopefully you will love the chicken as well 😉 Tell me what you think about the book!

  3. Ilona

    Nov 22

    Thank you! Could I marinate & instead stick it in the oven?

    1. Pati Jinich

      Nov 22

      I don’t see why not Ilona, but what I would do is make the sauce, cook the chicken, marinate and then roast in the oven. Enjoy!

  4. Ekaterina Amador

    Aug 31

    this is the first of your recipes that I made. It is absolutely one of my favorites. I made the Tamarindo paste from scratch. I served with Cuban style tostones! Delish!

    1. Pati Jinich

      Sep 05

      Yummy, gracias Ekaterina!

  5. George

    Aug 26

    This looks delicious! 1/2c of oil PLUS the chicken fat? 75 minutes total cooking time seems like a lot for parts, but I guess it’s really low heat? Thanks for the recipe – I love your show, and your recipes always turn out great!

    1. Pati Jinich

      Aug 26

      Gracias George!

  6. Jennifer

    Aug 25

    Pati…another recipe that I can’t wait to make. I’ve made 5 of your recipes already. And this one….when I saw it I almost ate my phone. I love your food. And btw…I always hoped that I would run into you when I was in Bethesda. I lived in Tenleytown.

    1. Pati Jinich

      Aug 26

      Thanks for you kind words Jennifer!

  7. Diana Fernandez

    Aug 25

    I love your recipes, your cooking techniques and your enthusiasm, which by the way is infectious!

    As I said before I live in the mountains in Northern New Mexico! We cook New Mexican and Spanish food here in the Peñasco area. Use and eat a lot of New Mexico Hatch Green Chile, the best around; Colorado has nothing on our Green Chile!!!

    I pinned this recipe on Pinterest, because I follow you too on Pinterest! I have tried and tried to pin the tamarind sauce but it won’t let me; so disappointed! I did, however, order your cookbook “Pati’s Mexican Table” but haven’t received it yet. Would this tamarind sauce recipe be in this particular cookbook? Sure hope so!

    Well better go now and it is a pleasure to be able to speak with you, even if only through this venue!

    Stay safe throughout this pandemic and take care!
    Your Fan,
    Diana Fernandez

    1. Pati Jinich

      Aug 26

      Hey Diana, thanks for the kind words 😉 The recipe for the tamarind sauce is in fact in the Pati’s Mexican Table Book, yay! You guys take care and stay safe as well.

      1. Diana Fernandez

        Aug 26

        Can’t wait till tomorrow, that’s when they say I will get your cookbook!!!!😉🤓

        1. Pati Jinich

          Sep 06

          Yay! Did you get it Diana? Have you tried any of the recipes yet? 😉

  8. Jasmine

    Jul 01

    Hola Pati! Do you think i can use sub honey for the apricot preserves? We’re moving soon and I dont need another open barely used jar of preserves. Would I substitute 1:1?

    1. Pati Jinich

      Jul 18

      You can use honey, but the preserves give a nice balance of flavor, Jasmine. If you do use honey, use less. And good luck with your move!

  9. Amber

    May 14

    Truly one of the best things I’ve ever eaten! Everyone loved it, even the kids. I will make this over and over.

    1. Pati Jinich

      May 15

      SO happy to hear this, Amber.

  10. Jane F

    Apr 30

    Oops! I bought tamarind concentrate. It is a dark smooth paste. Do I use 3/4 cup? Is this different than tamarind syrup.

    1. Pati

      May 04

      Oh no problem! All you have to do is strain it, and dilute it with water. Here’s some more information:

  11. Carol P

    Apr 23

    I just made this and we loved it! Thanks for sharing. What do you recommend for the rest of the meal with this dish?

    1. Pati

      Apr 28

      Rice with Toasted pasta goes great with this chicken:…or you can use regular rice.

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