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Crispy Cheddar and Jalapeno Coated Chicken Breasts

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“These are some jazzed-up chicken breasts that my family loved. Be sure to really press in the breadcrumbs. It makes a big difference! From Fine Cooking Magazine.”
READY IN:
40mins
SERVES:
4
UNITS:
US

Ingredients Nutrition

Directions

  1. To make bread crumbs: Tear or cut 1/2 lb. firm, white, country style bread into 1-2" pieces. Put few handfuls into the bowl of a food processor, and pulse into coarse crumbs. Repeat until you have 4 cups of crumbs. Pour crumbs into mixing bowl and toss with 2 tablespoons olive oil or melted, unsalted butter.
  2. Heat large heavy skillet over medium heat. Add bread crumbs and cook, stirring, until crumbs start to color and crisp, about 5 minutes. Reduce heat to medium low and continue to cook, stirring, until crumbs dry out and have browned nicely, about 6 minutes. Cool before using.
  3. Heat the oven to 450 degrees. Put a flat rack on a large rimmed baking sheet lined with foil.
  4. With a meat pounder or a heavy skillet, lightly pound the chicken between two sheets of the plastic wrap to even out the thickness of the breasts.
  5. In a large bowl, mix the yogurt with half the thyme, the brown sugar, chili powder, garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Add the chicken and toss to coat well. You can proceed directly to coating the breasts with crumbs, or let them marinate in the fridge for up to 24 hours.
  6. Put the breadcrumbs in a large shallow dish and toss with the tortilla chips, cheddar cheese, jalapenos, and the remaining thyme.
  7. Working with one piece at a time, transfer the chicken to the dish of crumbs, scoop some crumbs on top, and press well so the breadcrumbs adhere to both sides. Transfer to the rack on th baking sheet.
  8. Bake the chicken until it's firm to the touch and registers 165 degrees on an instant-read thermometer, about 20 minutes.
  9. Serve immediately with the lime wedges for squeezing over the chicken.

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