Zesty lime and ancho chili marinated chicken hit the club with bell peppers and onions on a blue tortilla chip dance floor. Keep reading for our groovy chicken fajita nacho recipe.Jump to Recipe
WTF are Chicken Fajita Nachos?
Don’t overthink it, its as simple as it sounds. We’re marinating our chicken in lime juice and spices and cooking it on a super hot skillet alongside onions and bell peppers the same way you would for normal fajitas. Only difference is we’re serving it on a bed of tortilla chips instead of warm tortillas.
Yeah yeah, duh right. Well you still gotta make sure everything is cooked and seasoned properly. We’ll also top it with a fun smoky, spicy chipotle sauce and some fun garnishes to really make these chicken fajita nachos pop off. So let’s get after it!
Table of Contents: Chicken Fajita Nachos
Table of contents
- WTF are Chicken Fajita Nachos?
- Chicken Fajita Nachos
- What you’ll need to make Chicken Fajita Nachos
- Chicken Fajita Nachos Ingredients
- How to Make Chicken Fajita Nachos
- Fajita Nacho Variations
- Leftover Chicken Fajita Nachos
- More Fajita Recipes
Chicken Fajita Nachos
What you’ll need to make Chicken Fajita Nachos
To make this chicken fajita nacho recipe, you’ll need a few things to help you make sure they are super tender, evenly cooked, and super freaking tasty. You could boil your chicken and buy a store bought marinade, but if that’s what you wanna do you might as well go to chili’s.
- Cast Iron Skillet: You can’t have chicken fajita nachos without that sizzling hot cast iron skillet.
- Parchment Paper & Mallet: You’ll need to smash your chicken breasts into uniform even fillets so they cook evenly. If you don’t have mallet you can use a pestle or your cast iron skillet to pound the breasts.
- Time: At least 4-6 hours to marinate your chicken (Ideally 12 – overnight).
- Juice Squeezer: You’ll need a couple Tbsp’s of fresh lime juice for the marinade. Jarred lime juice is acceptable.
Chicken Fajita Nachos Ingredients
Here’s a list of everything you’ll need to make this Chicken Fajita Nachos recipe. You should be able to find most of this stuff and any supermarket.
- Chicken Breasts: Two chicken breasts around half a pound each makes for two very generous servings of chicken fajita nachos.
- Limes: You’ll need lime juice and zest for the marinade; as well as some lime wedges for a finishing squeeze and garnish.
- Cheese: We like to make ours with shredded pepperjack and some crumbled cotija cheese. But you could also just use a good Mexican cheese blend, or even some of that disgusting liquid cheese that comes in a jar.
- Olive Oil: For the marinade and sautéed the veggies.
- Spices: Ancho Chili Powder, Salt, Ground Coriander, Ground Cumin, Oregano, and White Pepper.
- Chipotle Peppers in Adobo Sauce: Powerfully little can of flavor. Use it for the marinade as well as the spicy chipotle sauce.
- Bell Peppers: Get colorful, pick out some red, green, and yellow or orange bell peppers. Don’t be afraid to brighten up this fun fajitas chicken recipe.
- Onions: We like a red onion for our fajita nachos. More color!
- Jalapeno Peppers: Take em or leave em, but we like some spice in our life!
- Tortilla Chips: Sticking with the colorful theme here, we like to lay our chicken fajitas onto a bed of blue tortilla chips. Rounds, tri-color, or restaurant style work great as well. Just make sure it’s a sturdy chip.
- Garnishes: Pickled Jalapeños, Fresh Cilantro, Raw Onion, Avocado, and Spicy Southwest Chipotle Crema.
How to Make Chicken Fajita Nachos
Follow these step by step instructions to make this chicken fajita nachos recipe. You should be able to make this recipe day of, if you marinate your chicken in time. Start it in the morning or before you go to bed.
Step 1: Pound Chicken Breasts
Place the chicken breasts on a plastic cutting board and cover them with a piece of parchment paper. Use a mallet or something heavy to pound both sides until the breasts are even in thickness. Then use a fork to poke holes all over both sides of the breasts.
Step 2: Marinate Chicken Breasts
Make the marinade. In a mixing bowl whisk together the olive oil, lime juice, lime zest, ancho chili powder, salt, ground coriander, ground cumin, oregano, white pepper, and the chipotle peppers in adobo sauce.
Pour the marinade into a heavy duty zip lock bag or air tight container, add the chicken to the bag, seal, and give a good shake to incorporate the sauce over the entire chicken breasts. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours and up to overnight.
Step 3: Prep the Plating
Heat oven to 275F degrees. Line a sheet pan with a thick layer of tortialla chips. Sprinkle a good layer of cheese over that and toss it into the oven to melt the cheese.
While the oven is getting our cheese nice and gooey, prep the garnishes. Chop and stem the cilantro, mince some raw onion, slice avocado, and make sure you have your Spicy Southwest Chipotle Sauce made. Click the link for the recipe, or use store bought salsa, or simply a dollop of sour cream.
Step 4: Saute’ Chicken
Take out your marinated chicken and set it on the counter to come up to room temperature. While you wait, slice your bell peppers and onion into long strips and jalapeño peppers into rings.
Heat 2 Tbsp olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Remove the chicken from the marinade and add the chicken breasts to the skillet. Sear both sides 2-3 minutes. Then turn heat down to medium, pour 2/3 of the marinade in with the chicken, stir, cover, and cook for 10-12 minutes or until an internal terminator reads 160-165.
Reserve the marinade. Let breasts rest on a clean cutting board before slicing.
Step 5: Saute’ Veggies
In another skillet heat a tablespoon of olive oil over medium high heat. Add onion slices and cook for 3-4 minutes. Then add the jalapeños and bell pepper slices, and cook for another 3-4 minutes until they start to soften and become translucent.
Turn the heat down to medium and stir in a pinch of salt, cumin, and the rest of the marinade. Stir frequently and cook until the veggies have caramelized. The marinade should hug the veggies.
Step 6: Garnish & Serve
Pull the tray of chips and cheese out of the oven and scatter the meat, veggies, evenly across the chips. Drizzle the Southwest Chipotle Sauce over the entire tray and finish with a generous handful of cilantro and raw onions.
Fajita Nacho Variations
- Protein: Feel free to mix it up. Swap out the protein for shrimp, flank steak, rockfish, or ribeye. You fancy pants, you.
- Cheese: It is chicken fajita NACHOS, so there has to be cheese, but what kind is up to you. We like to make ours with shredded pepperjack and some crumbled cotija cheese. But you could also just use a good Mexican cheese blend, or even some of that disgusting liquid cheese that comes in a jar.
- Tortilla Chips: We like the blue corn tortilla chips because they are sturdy and colorful. But you can use whatever tortilla chip you like for your fajita nachos.
- Garnishes: Theres no rule that says you have to top your fajita nachos with cilantro, onions, and avocado. Add diced tomatoes, iceberg lettuce, taco bell sauce packets, guacamole, black olives, what eveeer.
Leftover Chicken Fajita Nachos
If you served your chicken fajitas nachos with the sizzling iron skillet and separate chip tray, you can easily store the meat and veggies in an air tight container in the fridge for 3-4 days.
The cheesy chips however… well, they just never store and reheat well. Try your best to force your friends or family to eat them all. Threaten to never cook for them again if you have to.