Nacho Cheese Tortilla Chicken

Crunchy Tortilla Chicken with Nacho Cheese Sauce

Just when I thought I had run out of ideas for chicken, clear out of the wild blue this smacked me in the face.

One second my mind was completely blank and the next it was picturing chicken with all the charm of hot, cheesy nachos.

Making them is sooooo easy! There’s no dipping and dunking and dredging and dirtying up fifty million bowls. You set the chicken right in the pan, coat it with mayonnaise, the glue, then pat on crushed-up white corn tortilla chips. Rather than grinding them up into fine crumbs I crush them by hand into chunky, little pieces and mix them with a little bit of panko crumbs.

While the chicken is busy baking it’s way to crunchy and golden brown, you get to work on the sauce. Can I say easy again?

Cheddar and Monterey jack cheese is tossed with a little cornstarch, the thickener, and heated up with evaporated milk and the optional jalapenos for a zesty kick. That’s all. A little bit of whisking gets you to the silkiest, creamiest cheese sauce you will ever taste. A sauce you can use over and over again for making tried and true nachos and more.

All that’s left is to put two and two together. Ladle the hot, spicy sauce over the crunchy, succulent chicken and eat your little heart out.

Nachos in chicken form. Destined to be a favorite. I don’t know why I didn’t think of it sooner.


Tortilla Crusted Chicken with Nacho Cheese Sauce
Nacho Cheese Tortilla Chicken

Rating: 51

Yield: 4 servings

Nacho Cheese Tortilla Chicken

Baked tortilla-crusted chicken with all the charm of hot, cheesy nachos!


4 (about 1 + 1/2 pounds) boneless, skinless chicken breasts (like Bell & Evans)
1/3 cup mayonnaise (like Hellmann's)
1 heaping cup crushed white corn tortillas (like Santitas )
1/3 cup Japanese panko crumbs (I used whole wheat)
Cheese Sauce:
1 cup fresh shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 cup fresh shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1 tablespoon corn starch
1 (12-ounce) can evaporated milk
1 tablespoon chopped fresh or jarred jalapenos, optional


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet or roasting pan with parchment paper or foil and spray with non-stick spray.
  2. Place the chicken breasts in the pan so they're not touching. Brush the mayonnaise over the top and sides of each one.
  3. Mix the tortilla chips and panko together then spoon them over the chicken breasts, patting them on with your hands.
  4. Bake 25 - 40 minutes, depending on their size, until internal temperature on a meat thermometer registers 165 - 174 degrees F.
  5. Meanwhile, after 10 - 15 minutes have passed, make the sauce:
  6. Toss the cheese and cornstarch together in a medium bowl until the cheese is well coated then place it in a medium saucepan over medium heat.
  7. Add 1 cup of the milk and whisk often until the cheese is completely melted and the sauce starts to thicken.
  8. Add the jalapenos, if using. Turn heat down to low to keep warm until the chicken is done. If the sauce thickens too much, you can slowly stir in more of the milk to thin it out and turn the heat up to warm it through.
  9. To serve, generously ladle the warm sauce over the chicken and top with a few sliced jalapenos.


Cheese sauce adapted from Serious Eats

Tortilla chicken adapted from Hellmann's

Copyright ©2014 Cinnamon Spice and Everything Nice by Reeni Pisano All Rights Reserved

Tortilla Crusted Chicken with Nacho Cheese Sauce
Nacho Cheese Tortilla Chicken

Subscribe Here

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner



  1. BeadedTail says

    You run out of ideas? Never! And this is proof of that! Yum!

    Moon, hope you’re enjoying a sunpuddle filled week! Purrs, Angel & Isabella

  2. Wendy says

    Delicious! I have used Reeni’s mayonnaise trick to “glue” on breading and it works like a charm with no mayonnaise flavor in the finished product! This idea for nacho chicken is awesome, Reeni ! I love cooking your out of the blue ideas! :) Leaving out the Panko would make this a great gluten free breeding too.

    • Reeni says

      Thanks Wendy! I love that mayonnaise trick and that’s a good idea for a gluten-free breading! You could just do all tortilla chips. :-)

  3. zerrin says

    I was about to give a break to chicken dishes as they’ve become ordinary and somewhat boring to us. This one will make a perfect change for us! Love that cheese sauce and I can even have it as it is.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>