Poaching chicken is a very simple and healthful method to cooking chicken. The meat is moist and tender, and by adding aromatics to the poaching liquid, the chicken can take on some additional flavor.
Poached chicken is great for chicken salads, shredded BBQ chicken, as a topper for salads, in a wrap…the list goes on.
The secret to successfully poaching chicken is to first bring the water with the aromatics to a boil, then reduce the temperature so the water is kept at a bare simmer. At that point, add the chicken and poach until cooked through.
Simple Poached Chicken
1 celery rib
1/2 large yellow onion
4 sprigs of thyme
1 tsp whole peppercorns
1 tsp sea salt
3 boneless skinless chicken breasts
Heat enough water to cover the chicken breasts, bring to a boil. Add the carrots, celery, onion, thyme, peppercorns, and salt, and reduce the heat until the liquid is at a simmer. Add the chicken breasts; be sure they are completely submerged.
Poach until the internal temperature reaches 160 F (or 165 if you feel more comfortable, though the chicken will cook a bit more after it’s removed from the broth). Allow to sit for 10 minutes before shredding or dicing.
Strain the broth and reserve for another use.