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Chicken Chilaquiles

Chicken Chilaquiles – Mexican-style comfort food at its finest! Tortilla chips are layered and baked with spicy tomato sauce, cheese, and shredded chicken for a quick and easy weeknight dinner.

Chilaquiles are a classic Mexican dish made with corn tortillas or old tortilla chips. It’s often served with eggs on top, but not always. I decided to turn this classic dish into a more substantial meal by adding chicken to the homemade sauce. By baking everything together as a casserole, it becomes an easy dinner that’s ready in a flash.

baked chicken chilaquiles in a skillet

So if you have the end of a bag of tortilla chips in your pantry, they’re perfect for this dish. Since they’ll soak up the sauce as it bakes, it’s okay if they’re not the freshest. If you prefer, you can also fry your own corn tortilla chips to use in this recipe. 

There’s something about baking tortilla chips with melty cheese and toppings in the oven that’s oh-so-comforting. For more comfort food options, my Barbecue Chicken Nachos are impossible not to love. They can be made for a party or a quick dinner. Finally, my Crockpot Fiesta Chicken doubles as a seriously good taco or burrito filling with minimal effort. 

Why This Recipe Works

  • Chicken Chilaquiles is a quick recipe that can be ready in under 30 minutes.
  • It’s a great way to use leftover corn tortillas, chips, and cooked chicken.
  • With only 10 main ingredients, it’s easy to throw together in a hurry.
  • Pantry and budget-friendly with basic and wholesome ingredients. 
  • An excellent way to feed a crowd on short notice.
looking down on a skillet with baked chicken chilaquiles

What You’ll Need

Be sure to scroll down to the recipe card to get the measurements and full instructions!

  • Tortilla Chips – Use fresh tortilla chips, old or slightly stale ones. Any brand will do. You can even fry your own for this recipe.
  • Chicken – I like pre-cooked and shredded chicken to help this recipe come together quickly. Feel free to use leftover chicken or roasted chicken as well. 
  • Cheddar Cheese – Tangy cheddar is a great topper for this recipe, or use a Mexican-style shredded cheese blend instead. 
  • Canned Whole Tomatoes – These will get pureed in the blender, so there is no need to buy diced tomatoes (but you can use them if it’s what you have on hand).
  • Jalapeño Pepper – To control the level of heat, remove the white pith and seeds from inside the jalapeño before chopping. 
  • Optional Toppings – Try avocado, diced tomatoes, sour cream, black olives, or cilantro to top the baked Chilaquiles. 
  • Low-Sodium Chicken Broth 
  • Garlic 
  • Olive Oil
adding chicken to simmering tomato sauce

How To Make Chicken Chilaquiles

  1. Make the sauce. In a blender, puree the tomatoes, jalapeño, chicken broth, garlic, and salt until smooth. 
  2. Cook the sauce. In a large skillet, heat the oil and add the onion. Cook until soft, then pour in the tomato sauce mixture. Bring to a boil and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until it thickens. 
  3. Add the chicken. Stir the shredded chicken into the sauce and heat it for 1-2 minutes until it’s hot. 
  4. Assemble the casserole. Spread out the tortilla chips in your casserole dish. Pour the tomato sauce over the chips, coating them fairly evenly. Top with the cheese.
  5. Bake. Bake for 10 minutes in a 350°F oven or until the cheese is melted. Serve with your favorite toppings. 
chilaquiles in skillet ready for the oven

Recipe Tips

  • Add toppings. Tasty options include a squeeze of fresh lime juice, chopped green or red onions, your favorite hot sauce, and crumbly Cotija cheese. 
  • Want spicier Chilaquiles? Add an extra jalapeño to the sauce mixture. You could also try spicy pepper jack cheese in place of cheddar cheese.
  • Don’t have time to make your own sauce, or don’t have a blender? No worries. You can use a can of your favorite enchilada sauce instead.

When To Serve Chilaquiles

Chilaquiles are traditionally served for breakfast or brunch. However, these chicken chilaquiles are hearty and make a perfect quick dinner, too.

Can I Make These Vegetarian

To make this recipe vegetarian, substitute seasoned tempeh, baked tofu, or faux chicken for the chicken. Whatever you substitute, just be sure it’s cooked before adding it to the sauce since the chilaquiles will only be in the oven for 10 minutes.

close up chicken chilaquiles in a skillet

How To Serve Chicken Chilaquiles

  • Skinny Margarita – Having chilaquiles for dinner? Serve them with these margaritas and imagine you’re on a leisurely Mexican vacation. 
  • Mexican Coleslaw – This slightly spicy side dish will add some extra crunch and freshness to your meal. 
  • Pico de Gallo – Just about any Mexican-style meal is delicious with pico de gallo, which is essentially a chunky, fresh salsa loaded with flavor. 
  • Mexican Chocolate Chip Cookies – Round out your meal with these divine little cookies that are enhanced with cinnamon and cayenne pepper.

How To Store

  • Refrigerate – Refrigerate leftover Chicken Chilaquiles in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. Warm them up in an oven-safe dish covered with foil, with the oven at 250°F.
  • Freeze – This dish isn’t freezer-friendly, but you could make the sauce ahead of time and freeze it in an airtight container, so it’s ready to use. Just thaw it out overnight in the fridge before using it.

More Mexican Dinner Recipes

Yield: 6

Chicken Chilaquiles

cropped close up chicken chilaquiles

Chicken Chilaquiles -A Mexican casserole with tortilla chips, and chicken baked in a spicy tomato sauce, and topped cheese.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes


  • 1 (28 ounce) can whole tomatoes
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 cup low sodium chicken broth
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/4 cup red onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cups chicken, cooked and shredded
  • 4 cups tortilla chips
  • 1 cup Cheddar Cheese, shredded

Toppings (optional)

  • Avocado, sliced
  • Tomatoes, diced
  • Sour Cream
  • Black Olives
  • Cilantro


  1. Preheat oven to 350º F.
  2. To a blender add tomatoes, jalapeno, chicken broth, garlic and salt. Puree until smooth. tomatoes, jalapeno and garlic in a blender
  3. In a large skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onion, and cook until soft.
  4. Pour in the tomato mixture. Bring to a boil and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until it starts to thicken.
  5. Add chicken, stirring to coat and heat for 1-2 minutes until warmed through. adding chicken to simmering tomato sauce
  6. Spread out the tortilla chips in a casserole dish or oven safe skillet. Pour tomato sauce mixture over the chips, making sure to cover them pretty evenly.
  7. Top with cheese. Bake for 10 minutes, or until cheese is melted.
  8. Serve topped with sliced avocado and other optional toppings.


Adapted from Cooking Light

Nutrition Information



Serving Size

5 -6

Amount Per Serving Calories 374Total Fat 25gSaturated Fat 7gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 15gCholesterol 62mgSodium 424mgCarbohydrates 22gFiber 4gSugar 2gProtein 19g

Nutrition Disclaimer: All information presented on this site is intended for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and any nutritional information shared on should only be used as a general guideline.

Did you make this recipe?

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Sunday 2nd of April 2023

A must make dish! It will be a hit in my house!

Beti | easyweeknightrecipes

Saturday 1st of April 2023

I love how easy and incredibly delicious this is!! It was amazing!

katerina @

Saturday 1st of April 2023

This sounds absolutely amazing! I love the flavors!


Friday 31st of March 2023

This is seriously comforting and so easy to make! Perfect for dinner any night of the week!


Thursday 30th of March 2023

This was hands down one of the best meals I have had in a very long time!

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