This is a recipe that I found on Kraft’s website years ago, back in our college days. And we’ve been making it ever since. I almost felt like I should wait and post this during deer season since it’s made an appearance annually for at least the last 4 years – probably longer than that. And sometimes I forget about it for months at a time until deer season rolls around again. It’s so easy to make that I make this in a kitchen with no running water using disposable aluminum pans.
Chicken breasts topped with picante sauce (I like it better because it’s thinner than the salsa Kraft calls for), sour cream, chips, and cheese. Nacho chicken bake. The name really does say it all.
Here’s what you need:
I like to start by pounding the chicken to an even thickness but not super thin. Then cut some shallow slices across the top of the chicken breast. This will help the toppings to not run right off. While I will sometimes skip the pounding step at deer camp due to not having running water – sometimes I’ll use cling wrap to keep things clean – other times I do this step at home, freeze the chicken and bring it to deer camp pre-sliced. Whatever I do, I never skip the slicing. Or scoring – that’s probably a better word since we aren’t cutting all the way through.
Place chicken on a foil lined baking sheet or disposable aluminum pan.
Top with picante sauce and spread evenly. I don’t measure – I add whatever looks good to me.
Dot the chicken with sour cream and then use the back of a spoon to gently spread.
Crush a handful of chips in your hand and sprinkle on top of the chicken breasts. I do one handful per chicken breast but the size of my hand influences this a lot – put down as many chips as makes you happy.
Bake at 400 degrees for about 15-20 minutes. 15 if you pound the chicken; 20 if you don’t.
Top with shredded Mexican cheese blend.
Return to the oven for about 10 minutes until the cheese is melted and the chicken registers 165 degrees on an instant read thermometer.
I like to serve this with Mexican Spoonbread. Confession, when I’m at deer camp I use a mix for this where you just add butter, a can of cream corn and some water. But even so, sometimes I think that Derek and my dad request this meal as much for the spoonbread as they do for the chicken. Either way they always walk away as members of the clean-plate club when I serve this meal.
- 1 chicken breast per person
- Picante sauce
- Sour cream
- Tortilla chips (use lime or jalapeno flavored chips for an extra flavor boost)
- Shredded Mexican cheese blend
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees and a line a baking dish or baking sheet with aluminum foil.
- Pound chicken lightly until it’s an even thickness. Score the top with 4-5 shallow slits.
- Top with picante. Add dots of sour cream and gently spread with a spoon without knocking all the picante off. Crush tortilla chips in your hand and sprinkle on chicken.
- Bake for 15 minutes (20 if you skip pounding the chicken). Top chicken with cheese.
- Bake an additional 10 minutes until cheese is melted and chicken is cooked through (registers 165 degrees).