This easy chicken fajitas recipe is the perfect weeknight dish that cooks in just 20 minutes. Stack it up with your favorite fixings, and watch it disappear quickly!
Tender, perfectly seasoned chicken strips tossed with caramelized onions and tender-crisp bell peppers nestled in soft tortillas. This quick and easy fajitas recipe using chicken breast is healthier and even more delicious than any you can buy at Mexican restaurants! We have so much fun picking our own fixings and customizing our own fajita at the table; it has become one of our weeknight regulars.
Why We Love This Recipe
- Making fajitas at home cannot be easier! All you need to do is marinade and sear the chicken, saute the veggies, toss them together and serve.
- This recipe uses easy-to-find, better-for-you ingredients like chicken breast, veggies, spices, and extra virgin olive oil. A low-fat, high-protein chicken recipe that your whole family can enjoy.
- Marinating the chicken makes it super flavorful and tender! That extra 30 minutes can mean the difference between an ordinary home-cooked meal to a restaurant-quality dish!
- No grill needed! This fajita recipe uses a skillet, so you do not have to spend extra time firing up the grill.
You do not need anything fancy to make this chicken fajita recipe! If you love making Mexican dishes as much as I do, you’d probably have all the basics covered! If not, a quick trip to your local grocery store will get you everything you need.
Here’s the list of what you’ll need and possible substitutions:
- Chicken breasts -- Buy boneless and skinless chicken breasts to reduce your prep time. You can also use chicken thighs if that is what you have.
- Vegetables -- I used a large yellow onion and bell peppers in varied colors to make the dish look even more appetizing.
- Spices -- We use a homemade fajita seasoning with ground cumin and chili powder give the chicken fajitas authentic Mexican flavors! Feel free to use a store-bought fajita seasoning mix.
- Tortillas -- I typically prefer flour tortillas, but you can also use corn tortillas as a gluten-free option. However, you may need to double up as it tends to fall apart.
- Lime -- You need both the zest and the juice. Using this in the marinade adds a tangy flavor, while its acidity helps tenderize the meat and make it super juicy.
- Garlic -- Adds a savory punch!
- Salt and pepper -- To taste.
- Fixings -- Use whatever you like! I serve mine with lime wedges, salsa or pico de gallo, sliced avocado, sour cream, thinly sliced iceberg lettuce, shredded cheddar or Monterey jack cheese, or crumbled queso fresco and Mexican hot sauce.
- Cilantro -- For garnishing.
To make this dish, you will need a knife, a ziplock bag, a small mixing bowl, and a skillet. You can use any large skillet, but I prefer my trusty cast iron skillet.
How to Make Chicken Fajitas in a Skillet
You’ll be pleasantly surprised by how straightforward and simple this recipe is! Scroll to the end of this post for a full detailed recipe card. The general steps are as follows:
- Prep the Chicken. Trim the breasts and slice them in half horizontally if they are too thick. (Do not flatten with a mallet, as this affects the resulting texture.)
- Season. Season each side with salt, pepper, and lime zest and place them in a ziplock bag.
- Marinate. Whisk lime juice, 2 tablespoons EVOO, cumin, garlic, and chili powder, and pour the mixture into the bag. Seal the bag and massage it to evenly coat the meat. Marinate for 30 minutes at room temperature or 8 hours in the fridge.
- Sear. Using a large skillet, heat EVOO over medium high heat. Sear the marinated chicken for 4 to 5 minutes on each side.
- Rest. Stack them on a cutting board to let them rest for 5 minutes.
- Saute the veggies. While waiting, add more EVOO in the same skillet, then saute the onions and bell peppers for about 5 minutes. Toss frequently and season with salt and pepper.
- Assemble. Slice the chicken in strips, then add them back into the skillet. Drizzle with fresh lime juice and toss them all together.
- Serve. Place the skillet on the table and serve it with tortillas and fixings. Enjoy!
- It is easier to zest the lime before juicing it.
- I find it easier to use a ziplock bag when marinating so I do not have to get my hands dirty to massage the meat and I have fewer dishes to wash.
- Do not skip the resting part. This allows the juices to redistribute and doesn’t run out when you slice them.
- Don’t marinate longer than 8 hours as the acid from the lime juice can start breaking down the chicken.
- I like to cook the veggies in the same skillet as the chicken for added flavor. No need to completely clean the pan first; just wipe it down.
Frequently Asked Questions
What cheese is best for chicken fajitas?
If you want to keep it classic, use crumbled queso fresco. However, I also enjoy my fajitas with either cheddar or Monterey jack
Should I slice the chicken before or after cooking it?
Slice them into strips AFTER marinating and searing them. This will allow the juices to stay inside as it cooks. Also, remember to slice against the grain (meat pattern) to make them really soft and tender.
Can I use taco seasoning?
Absolutely! Fajita and taco seasonings are often used interchangeably. You can try my homemade taco seasoning if you like.
What vegetables can I use for fajitas?
Aside from onions and bell peppers, you can also use mushrooms, tomatoes, and jalapenos.
How to Serve Fajitas at Home
Just like how you cannot resist ordering a batch when a waiter passes you by carrying a sizzling fajita on a hot plate in a Mexican restaurant, this is best served straight off the stove while it is hot and sizzling!
I leave it on the table with the tortillas and fixings and let everyone assemble their own! Do not forget to serve with lime wedges for those who like an extra squeeze of tanginess on their fajitas!
Another great thing about this recipe is the leftovers are wonderful! Just toss it all on a sheet pan and quickly reheat in the oven. Sometimes we'll serve over rice the next day to mix it up. The microwave works, too!
More Mexican-Inspired Recipes
Try these too if you are in the mood for more Mexican-inspired dishes!
- Easy Mexican Corn Salad
- Mexican Black Beans
- Fresh Salsa Chopped Salad
- Pineapple Mango Salsa
Eat It, Rate It, Share It!
Made it and liked it? Leave a star rating, take a photo and tag me on social media @seededtable so I can share it!
Photography by Lindsay Evers.
Easy Chicken Fajitas
- Skillet , any large skillet but I love using my cast iron
- 1.5 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts , about 2 chicken breasts
- 1 teaspoon salt , more or less to taste
- ½ teaspoon black pepper , more or less to taste
- 1 large lime , zest and juice
- 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil , plus additional for skillet
- 1 garlic clove , minced
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon chili powder
- 1 large yellow onion , peeled and sliced into ¼ inch strips
- 3 bell peppers , varied colors (red, yellow, green), sliced into ¼ inch strips
For Serving (choose your favorites):
- 8 to 10 flour tortillas (7 to 8-inch size)
- lime wedges
- salsa or pico de gallo
- sliced avocado
- sour cream
- thinly sliced iceburg lettuce
- shredded cheese (cheddar or Monterey jack)
- crumbled queso fresco
- hot sauce
- Trim chicken breasts. If breasts are thick, use knife or scissors to slice in half horizontally for thinner breasts. (Do not flatten with a mallet as this affects the resulting texture.)
- Season each side of chicken breasts with salt, black pepper, and lime zest. Transfer to a ziplock bag.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the lime juice, 2 tablespoons EVOO, cumin, garlic, and chili powder. Pour marinade into the bag with the chicken. Seal bag and massage to evenly coat. Let marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes or in the refrigerator for up to 8 hours.
- Heat 2 teaspoons of EVOO in a large skillet (I use my cast iron skillet) over medium heat. Sear chicken breasts for about 4-5 minutes on each side. Stack on a cutting board and cover with foil; let rest for 5 minutes.
- Meanwhile, heat an additional teaspoon of oil in the same skillet. Sauté the onion and bell peppers for 4-5 minutes, tossing frequently. Add salt and pepper, to taste.
- Slice the chicken into strips. Add chicken back into the pan with the veggies and heat through. Squeeze in a splash of fresh lime juice and toss. Serve hot with tortillas and fixings.
- Zest the lime before juicing it.
- Do not marinate longer than 8 hours as the lime juice can start breaking down the chicken.
- Best served hot and sizzling.
- Serve at table all in skillet and let everyone assemble their own.
- Use any large skillet, but I prefer my trusty cast iron skillet.
- Serve with lime wedges for everyone to squeeze an extra splash on their fajitas
- Typically I prefer flour tortillas, but you can use corn. You may need to double up with corn as they tend to fall apart.
- Nutrition information is an estimate only and does not include tortillas and fixings.