Tex-Mex Chicken Starter Recipe

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"I developed this seasoned chicken mixture to reduce meal preparation time," writes Nancy Pease of Lafayette Hill, Pennsylvania. "It's handy to keep in the freezer for a head start on three different meals. No one realizes they come from the same beginnings,"
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 10 min. + marinating Cook: 15 min. + cooling
MAKES:12 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 10 min. + marinating Cook: 15 min. + cooling
MAKES: 12 servings


  • 1/2 cup lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 3 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons each garlic powder, ground cumin, dried coriander and dried oregano
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, optional
  • 3 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch strips
  • 3 medium onions, halved and sliced into rings
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced

Nutritional Facts

1/2 cup: 231 calories, 12g fat (2g saturated fat), 63mg cholesterol, 224mg sodium, 6g carbohydrate (3g sugars, 2g fiber), 24g protein.


  1. In a large resealable plastic bag, combine lemon juice, oil and seasonings. Add chicken. Seal bag and turn to coat; refrigerate for 1 hour.
  2. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, bring chicken and marinade to a boil in batches. Reduce heat; cook and stir for 6 minutes or until juices run clear. Remove chicken with tongs to a large bowl.
  3. In the drippings, saute onions and garlic until onions are crisp-tender. Pour over chicken and mix well. Cool for 30 minutes.
  4. Divide mixture among three freezer containers; cover and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw before using. Yield: 6 cups.
Originally published as Tex-Mex Chicken Starter in Quick Cooking July/August 2001, p44

Light-Bodied White Wine

Enjoy this recipe with a light-bodied white wine such as Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio.

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Cheri Beck User ID: 174358 103346
Reviewed Aug. 11, 2014

"My family loves this over Fiesta rice - afraid it never makes it into freezer containers!"

cray68 User ID: 5393939 32335
Reviewed Jan. 22, 2011

"This is a delicious and easy preparation for chicken. If I don't have time to squeeze fresh lemons, I use 1 cup frozen lemonade concentrate instead of the 1/2 cup lemon juice."

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