Southwest Chicken Skillet Recipe

This southwest chicken skillet is a mix of ground chicken, rice, chopped peppers and onions, and taco seasoning, topped with a blend of Mexican cheeses, chopped tomatoes, fresh cilantro, and a drizzle of sour cream.

Southwest Chicken Skillet Recipe

Patty and I have been OBSESSING over our new southwest chicken skillet dish for the past few weeks. It’s basically a mix of ground chicken, rice, chopped peppers and onions, and taco seasoning. Everything is combined in a cast-iron skillet and topped with a blend of melted Mexican cheeses, chopped tomatoes, fresh cilantro, and a drizzle of creamy lime sauce.

It’s so good (a complete meal in a bowl), and really easy to make with minimal prep and only a handful of good whole ingredients. You will absolutely love it!

Ground Chicken (or Beef)

What I love about this recipe is how easily it comes together with ground chicken. The chicken essentially crumbles and blends with the rice and makes this a meaty and savory dish with lots of flavor.

Ground chicken is perfect because it requires no prep or chopping and can be tossed into the skillet and cooked in a few minutes. You can easily substitute with ground turkey or even ground beef as well.

Southwest Chicken Skillet Recipe

Taco Seasoning

I’ve made this recipe with my own blend of spices but I prefer to use a 1-ounce packet of premade taco mix for simplicity. Look for a packet of Old El Paso taco seasoning of your choice. Any level of heat works well. When using a lot of dry seasoning I add 1/2 a cup of water to help it mix together better. It also keeps the dish from being too dry.

If you want to make your own blend of spices, I like to mix equal parts cumin, paprika, chili powder, and garlic powder. A teaspoon of each is usually good. Don’t under season or it will be bland. The rice will soak up a lot of the spices.

What Peppers Are Best?

My go-to pepper for this recipe is poblano peppers. They’re very mildly spicy and have a lot of flavor in general. A sweeter version is cubanelle peppers. If you can’t find either, you can of course use red or green bell peppers.

Creamy Lime Sauce

My creamy lime sauce is actually a HelloFresh-inspired sauce. It’s essentially a watered-down sour cream that you can drizzle over the entire skillet. My special touch is fresh lime juice for a little extra zest. The trick is to slowly add water, a splash at a time, and stir well in between until the desired consistency is reached.

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Southwest Chicken Skillet Recipe
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Southwest Chicken Skillet Recipe

  • Author: Shawn Williams
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Cook Time: 15
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x
  • Category: Dinner
  • Cuisine: Mexican

Description

This southwest chicken skillet is a mix of ground chicken, rice, chopped peppers and onions, and taco seasoning, topped with a blend of Mexican cheeses, chopped tomatoes, fresh cilantro, and a drizzle of sour cream.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 pound ground chicken
  • 1 cup jasmine or brown rice (uncooked)
  • 1/23/4 cups Mexican blend cheese
  • 2 poblano, cubanelle, or bell peppers, cored and chopped
  • 2 roma tomatoes, diced
  • handful fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 lime
  • 1-ounce packet Old El Paso taco seasoning
  • 23 tablespoons sour cream
  • 12 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Instructions

  1. Cook rice according to instructions on the package.  I usually do 1 cup of jasmine rice to 2 cups of water. Bring to a boil, reduce to simmer, cover, and cook for 15 minutes. Set aside.
  2. Place tomatoes in a small bowl with coarsely chopped cilantro (stems are edible as FYI). Top with juice from half a lime and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Mix with a spoon and set aside.
  3. Combine sour cream, juice from the other half of lime, and 1-2 tablespoons of cool water. Stir until smooth and thin enough to drizzle. If too thick, add a little more water. Set aside.
  4. Heal oil over medium heat in a cast-iron skillet or oven-safe pan. Add peppers and onions and cook until just tender, about 5 minutes. Add ground chicken and season all over with salt and pepper. Use the tip of a spatula to break up the chicken into small chunks. Cook, tossing occasionally until chicken is fully cooked through and no longer pink, about 5-6 minutes.
  5. Add cooked rice and stir to incorporate. Add 1/2 cup of water and taco seasoning. Mix until everything is thoroughly mixed and evenly seasoned. If you need to add more water to help spread the seasoning, add 1/4 cup at a time.
  6. Top skillet with cheese and broil on high for 1-2 minutes or until cheese is melted. Remove from the oven, top with tomato/cilantro mix, and drizzle with creamy lime sauce. Serve immediately.

Notes

You can substitute ground chicken with ground turkey or ground beef.

If you want to make your own blend of spices, I like to mix equal parts cumin, paprika, chili powder, and garlic powder. A teaspoon of each is usually good. Don’t under season or it will be bland. The rice will soak up a lot of the spices.


Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1/4
  • Calories: 561
  • Sugar: 4.1g
  • Sodium: 543mg
  • Fat: 28g
  • Saturated Fat: 13.2
  • Carbohydrates: 46.2g
  • Fiber: 1.7g
  • Protein: 32.9
  • Cholesterol: 146mg

Keywords: mexican chicken and rice skillet, tex-mex, southwest skillet