How To Make Fast & Flavorful Chicken Fajitas

updated Feb 4, 2020
How to Make Chicken Fajitas

One skillet, a few pantry ingredients, and you've got a sizzling pan of fajitas ready to eat.

Serves 4 to 6

Prep15 minutes

Cook12 minutes

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Credit: Joe Lingeman/Kitchn; Food Stylist: CC Buckley/Kitchn

Sizzling hot chicken fajitas are what dinner dreams are made of. Tender chicken, sweet bell peppers, and punchy onion mingle with spicy jalapeños and limes for a lively chicken dinner made out of strictly kitchen basics. These skillet fajitas are fantastic for a fast but flavorful weeknight dinner that everyone will love, and don’t require any special ingredients (or seasoning packets!).

Credit: Joe Lingeman/Kitchn; Food Stylist: CC Buckley/Kitchn

This Is the One Chicken Fajita Recipe Your Weeknight Needs

There are plenty of ways to cook chicken fajitas — in your slow cooker, on a sheet pan — but this skillet version is the quickest, most flavorful recipe for a weeknight fajita fix. You’ll need just a single pan to cook both the vegetables and the chicken, and a bit of thoughtful prep ensures everything cooks quickly without getting soggy.

Credit: Joe Lingeman/Kitchn; Food Stylist: CC Buckley/Kitchn

3 Key Steps for Faster, More Flavorful Fajitas

1. Slicing will save you cook time. When it comes to skillet fajitas, you want to cook everything hot and fast. You can avoid overcooking and drying out the chicken by slicing the peppers, onions, and chicken into 1/4-inch strips. For the chicken breast, cutting across the meat’s grain will make for more tender fajitas.

2. Use jalapeños, garlic, and lime juice for lots of flavor. No offense to seasoning packets, but you don’t need one for fajitas. Instead, use fresh jalapeño, lots of minced garlic, and a squeeze of lime juice to flavor these fajitas. Dried oregano and ground cumin also bring their unique combination of earthy, savory flavors to the chicken.

3. Cook the vegetables and chicken separately, then together. This recipe promises to be a one-pan dinner, but to ensure that the chicken’s juices don’t steam the vegetables — making them soggy — cook the vegetables first. Transfer them to a plate or cutting board, then cook the chicken in the same pan before bringing things together.

Serving Chicken Fajitas

Flour tortillas, sour cream, and maybe a little more lime juice is everything you need to finish these chicken fajitas, but feel free to serve over rice, on a salad, or even as a meal prep option for your work week lunch.

Credit: Joe Lingeman/Kitchn; Food Stylist: CC Buckley/Kitchn
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How to Make Chicken Fajitas

One skillet, a few pantry ingredients, and you've got a sizzling pan of fajitas ready to eat.

Prep time 15 minutes

Cook time 12 minutes

Serves 4 to 6


  • 2 tablespoons

    olive oil

  • 1

    large onion, thinly sliced

  • 1 teaspoon

    kosher salt, divided

  • 2 large

    medium red bell peppers, thinly sliced

  • 1

    medium jalapeño, thinly sliced

  • 1 1/2 pounds

    boneless, skinless chicken breasts, sliced into 1/4-inch thick strips

  • 4 cloves

    garlic, minced

  • 1 teaspoon

    dried oregano

  • 1 teaspoon

    ground cumin

  • 2 tablespoons

    freshly squeezed lime juice (from 2 limes)

For serving:

  • Tortillas, warmed

  • Sour cream

  • Lime wedges


  • Chef's knife and cutting board

  • Measuring spoons

  • Large skillet

  • Tongs


  1. Cook the onions. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in the largest skillet you have (at least 12 inches) over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add the onions and season with 1/4 teaspoon of the salt. Cook, tossing often with tongs to prevent burning, until they begin to soften and brown, about 3 minutes.

  2. Cook the peppers, jalapeño, and garlic until fragrant. Add the bell peppers, jalapeño, and garlic and season with 1/4 teaspoon of the salt. Cook, again tossing often, until starting to brown and the garlic is quite fragrant, about 3 minutes.

  3. Brown the chicken with the spices. Transfer the vegetables to a plate. Return the pan to medium-high heat (no need to clean) and add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil. Add the chicken and season with the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt, oregano, and cumin. Cook undisturbed until the chicken has some golden brown color, flipping halfway through, about 6 minutes total.

  4. Add the vegetables back to the pan and finish cooking. Return the vegetables to the pan and add the lime juice. Cook until the chicken is cooked through and the peppers are soft, about 2 minutes more.

  5. Serve the fajitas. Serve the chicken and vegetables in warmed tortillas with sour cream and extra lime wedges for squeezing.

Recipe Notes

Storage: Leftovers can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 4 days.