Tortilla Chip Crusted Chicken with Chipotle Sauce

Tortilla chip crusted chicken drizzled with a simple chipotle sauce and served with a crisp red pepper & avocado slaw. The chicken is crunchy on the outside, juicy on the inside, and flavored with a little smoky chipotle and sweet honey. Made even better with the zesty sauce. And the slaw is the perfect simple side to complete the meal!

finished Tortilla Chip Crusted Chicken on a plate

tortilla chip crusted chicken on a sheet pan out of the oven

tortilla chip crusted chicken – the details

I like to start this recipe by making the sauce. You want that rich, smoky chipotle flavor and the bright lime zest to infuse the mayonnaise with lots of flavor while you’re working on the rest of the dish. You can even make the sauce a few days in advance and store it in the fridge.

Next up, you’ll start the slaw on the stovetop by quickly sauteing sweet red bell peppers and onions until caramelized. They’ll get tossed with crisp cabbage, refreshing cucumber, creamy avocado, fresh cilantro, and then lots of lime and a little vinegar for tang.

red peppers and onions cooking in a skillet

red pepper slaw ingredients mixed in a bowl

While the slaw sits and the flavors meld together, you’ll get going on the chicken. It’s a standard dredging process, just with a few special touches – a few spices in the flour mix, milk and honey in the egg mix for tenderness and sweetness, and then instead of breadcrumbs, we’re using crushed tortilla chips for a salty, flavorful bite.

The key is to use a food processor to finely crush the tortilla chips so that they coat the chicken just like breadcrumbs would. After dredging, they’ll stick to the chicken and create a beautiful, crunchy crust.

chipotle-lime mayo ingredients in a bowl

finished Tortilla Chip Crusted Chicken on a plate

After a quick sear in hot oil, the chicken gets finished in the oven until cooked through and juicy. Then, it all gets plated up!

Drizzle the chipotle sauce over the chicken and serve plenty on the side so you can swoosh it up with every bite. Since the chicken and sauce have some heat, the slaw on the side is such a nice refreshing contrast. A little queso fresco over top adds the perfect finish.


Tortilla Chip Crusted Chicken with Chipotle Sauce

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tortilla chip crusted chicken with a creamy chipotle sauce and a side of red pepper & avocado slaw

servings: 4



Chipotle Sauce

  • 1 (11 oz) can chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp lime zest
  • 2 tsp fresh lime juice
  • 1 tbsp honey

Red Pepper & Avocado Slaw

  • olive oil
  • 2 small red bell peppers, cored + thinly sliced
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • kosher salt
  • ½ lb shredded green cabbage
  • ½ lb cucumber, diced
  • 2 avocados, cored + diced
  • ¼ cup fresh lime juice
  • 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • ¼ cup roughly chopped cilantro
  • 4 oz queso fresco, crumbled

Tortilla Chip Crusted Chicken

  • 4 chicken cutlets (approximately 1 ½ lbs)
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp chipotle powder
  • 1 tbsp granulated garlic
  • ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
  • 2 eggs
  • ¼ cup milk
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • ½ lb tortilla chips, pulsed in a food processor until fine crumbs
  • cooking oil


  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Let the chicken sit at room temperature.
  2. For the chipotle sauce, retrieve 2 chipotle peppers. Roughly chop them and add them to a mixing bowl, along with 4 tablespoons of the adobo sauce, the mayonnaise, lime zest, lime juice, and honey. Whisk to combine. Season with salt to taste. Refrigerate until ready to use.
  3. For the slaw, heat a 12” skillet over medium-high heat. Add enough olive oil to coat the bottom. Add the red peppers and onions. Season with a pinch of salt. Cook for about 10 minutes, stirring often. Reduce the heat to medium-low and continue to cook for 10 more minutes or so until caramelized and tender.
  4. Transfer the peppers and onions to a large bowl. Let cool slightly. Add the cabbage, cucumber, avocado, lime juice, vinegar, and cilantro. Toss to combine. Season with salt to taste and set aside.
  5. Meanwhile, for the chicken, set up 3 shallow bowls. Add the flour, chipotle powder, granulated garlic, cayenne pepper, and a good pinch of salt to the first. Mix well. Whisk the eggs, milk, and honey together in the second. Add the tortilla chips to the third.
  6. Dredge the chicken through the flour. Shake off any excess flour and then dredge through the egg. Lastly, dredge through the tortilla chips. Place the chicken on a sheet pan.
  7. Wipe out the skillet and return it to medium heat. Add enough oil to generously cover the bottom. Once hot, place 2 pieces of chicken into the pan. Cook for about 2 minutes per side, or until golden brown (adjust the heat as needed so the crust doesn’t burn). Transfer the chicken back to the sheet pan. Repeat with the remaining pieces. Transfer the chicken to the oven and bake for 8-10 minutes, or until cooked through.
  8. Serve the chicken with the chipotle sauce drizzled over top and the slaw alongside. Top the slaw with the queso fresco and any extra cilantro leaves.

finished Tortilla Chip Crusted Chicken on a plate

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