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Whole 30/Paleo Chicken Tacos with Chipotle Lime Cashew Sauce

Chicken tacos served in Romaine lettuce wraps, topped with pico de gallo, avocados and a spicy chipotle lime cashew sauce.

Course Main Course
Cuisine Mexican
Keyword easy dinner recipe, kid-friendly recipes, Whole30 recipe
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 3 hours 30 minutes
Servings 4
Author Linda Spiker


Allow 3 hours soaking time for cashews

The Chipotle Cashew Sauce:

  • 2 cups simmering water for soaking cashews
  • 1 cup raw cashews
  • 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 large clove garlic
  • 1 chipotle chili pepper in adobo sauce two if you like things really spicy!
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1/2 cup water divided

Pico De Gallo: if making fresh (otherwise use store bought)

  • 2 medium tomatoes diced
  • ½ of one medium white onion diced, see how here
  • ¼ of one green bell pepper diced
  • ½ -1 tsp serrano chilis finely chopped see how here
  • 2 T fresh cilantro chopped
  • Juice of half a lime
  • sea salt to taste

The Tacos:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 cup yellow onion chopped
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground chicken I like to use a combination of dark and white meat
  • 1 teaspoon powdered garlic
  • 1 teaspoon chipotle chili powder
  • sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 2 ripe avocados sliced
  • 8 cilantro sprigs
  • 8 romaine lettuce leaves rinsed and patted dry
  • 2 limes quartered for squeezing


The Cashew Sauce:

  1. Bring water to simmer in small pan, turn off heat and add raw cashews to pot, allow to sit at least three hours
  2. Place peeled clove of garlic in food processor or blender and process until minced
  3. Strain cashews and discard cooking water
  4. Add soaked cashews, lime juice, olive oil, 1/4 cup water, sea salt, and 1 pepper in adobo sauce (two if you like things really spicy!)
  5. Process for one minute, if needed add more water to thin dip
  6. When dip is the consistency you want, and nice and smooth, stop processing. Taste and decide if it needs more sea salt or chipotle, then make adjustments accordingly.

The Pico de Gallo:

  1. See instructions linked above for handling a hot chili pepper.Combine all ingredients except Serrano chili. Add chili 1/2 teaspoon at a time, mixing and tasting in between additions. When the heat is right, cover and refrigerate till serving. (I like 1 1/2 tsp)

The Tacos:

  1. Place a large frying pan on medium heat. Drizzle olive oil into pan. When oil is hot but not smoking add onions and ground chicken to pan.
  2. Use a spatula to break up meat and stir frequently while cooking.
  3. Sprinkle chicken with chili powder, garlic powder, sea salt and pepper.
  4. While meat cooks, slice avocados, prepare lettuce and tear off cilantro springs.
  5. When meat is done (8-10 minutes) fill lettuce wraps with chicken, top with pico de gallo, avocado, chipotle cashew sauce and sprigs of cilantro. Squeeze with a little lime and enjoy!