Taco Stuffed Chicken Breast

By Rena Awada |

One of the most flavorful ways to prepare chicken is to stuff it. This Southwest-Inspired Taco Stuffed Chicken Breast is seasoned and filled with cheese, black beans, corn, tomatoes, and cilantro. An incredibly delicious and nutritious meal that the whole family will enjoy!

We absolutely love how tender, juicy, and tasty this Taco Stuffed Chicken Breast cooks up! If you love Mexican flavors, you are in for an amazing dinner when you try this easy pan-fried and stovetop stuffed chicken breast recipe.

top view of stuffed chicken breast in a black skillet

If you prefer cooking over the stovetop rather than baking in the oven, you’ll love this cheesy stuffed chicken recipe! The stuffing is Southwest inspired, made with our favorite taco ingredients – cheese, black beans, corn, cherry tomatoes, and fresh cilantro. Enjoy this quick and easy-to-make chicken recipe any day of the week. It’s sure to find a place in your normal menu rotation!

Why you’ll love this stuffed chicken breast recipe

  • Simple and easy to make: It is really easy to make this stuffed chicken breast. All you have to do is make the filling, stuff the chicken, and cook over your stovetop on a skillet.
  • Perfect for meal prep: These stuffed chicken breasts will last several days in the fridge and we love how the flavors develop in this recipe overnight. It tastes even better the next day and is perfect for a quick lunch.
  • Healthy and high protein: This dish is filled with nutrients from the veggies in the stuffing and uses chicken instead of tortillas and taco shells to hold the filling. It’s such a tasty way to add extra vegetables and protein into your diet!
Chicken stuffed with taco filling.

Ingredients needed

  • Chicken breasts: Use boneless, skinless chicken breasts. Chicken thighs are not recommended. Use medium to large size, so they are of decent size to be able to slice and stuff.
  • Taco seasoning, lime zest, and juice: To season the chicken, we’re marinating it in taco seasoning, lime zest, lime juice, and a bit of olive oil.
  • Olive oil: For marinating and cooking the chicken.
  • Shredded cheese: Pepper jack, cheddar, or mozzarella cheese are our favorite varieties for this recipe. Choose whichever you prefer!
  • Black beans: We use canned black beans in this recipe. Simply, drain and rinse them well.
  • Corn kernels: You can use fresh, frozen, or canned corn. We love fresh corn in the spring and summer months, but canned or frozen works too. If using canned corn, be sure to rinse and drain well.
  • Cherry tomatoes: Use chopped grape or cherry tomatoes to add just the right level of sweetness and tang.
  • Fresh cilantro: For freshness and flavor! Feel free to omit it if you don’t care for cilantro.
Ingredients divided out to make taco stuffed chicken breasts.

How to make this recipe

Marinate the chicken: Place the chicken breast in a ziplock bag together with the taco seasoning, lime juice, zest, and 1 tablespoon of oil. Mix thoroughly through the bag
to coat with the marinade. Refrigerate for 1 hour to overnight.

Adding chicken and marinade to a baggie.

Cut the chicken: Once ready to cook the chicken, remove it from the fridge and allow it to sit on the counter for 20 minutes to reach room temp. Cut the chicken breasts lengthways, not going all the way through, just to create pockets for the fillings.

Make the filling: In a medium bowl, combine the cheese, beans, corn, tomatoes, and cilantro.

Stirring filling in a large bowl.

Stuff the chicken: Stuff each chicken breast with the taco cheese mixture, and seal with a toothpick to prevent the filling from spilling.

Cook: Preheat the remaining tablespoon of oil in a large skillet over medium-low
heat. Cook the taco-stuffed chicken breasts for 6-8 minutes per side, or until
blackened and cooked through. The internal temperature should read 165ºF.

top view of 4 stuffed chicken breast on a black skillet

Tips for recipe success

  • Be careful when slicing the chicken breasts to create pockets. DO NOT slice all the way through.
  • Don’t overstuff the chicken. Make sure to evenly divide the taco mixture between all four chicken breasts to ensure that they’re not overfilled and thus prone to spilling out.
  • After stuffing the chicken breast, use a toothpick to secure it shut. This will help to prevent the filling from spilling out while cooking.
  • Since chicken breasts can vary in size, we recommend using a meat thermometer to make sure that the chicken breast is fully cooked; the temperature should read 165 degrees F.
top view of stuffed chicken breast in a black skillet

What to serve with this dish

Chicken breast stuffed with cheese, black beans and corn.

Frequently asked questions

What’s the best way to cut chicken breast for this recipe?

The technique for slicing chicken breasts open in order to stuff them is called butterflying. To do this: Place one hand on top of the chicken breast and with a sharp knife, carefully slice the chicken breast horizontally down the middle. Be careful not to cut all the way through. Open the chicken breast like a book, and stuff it with the taco filling.

What is the best way to seal the chicken breast?

The best and easiest way to ensure the stuffed chicken breast is closed is to use between 3-5 toothpicks. Pinch the two layers of chicken together and press the toothpick through to seal it. Alternatively, you can use dry spaghetti. Cut them smaller and use them like you would toothpicks. They need to be pretty sturdy, so thin angel hair spaghetti won’t work. Other items that would also work are thin chopsticks, cake testers, and bamboo skewers.

Can you cook breast with toothpicks?

Yes, you can cook the chicken breast along with the toothpick. Once your chicken is cooked, you simply remove them and throw it away.

Chicken stuffed with taco filling.

Storage recommendations

  • Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to about 5 days. 
  • To reheat, microwave for 60-90 seconds. To reheat in the oven, preheat the oven to 375F.  Wrap the stuffed chicken breast in foil, then place in the oven for about 8-10 minutes.

MORE STUFFED CHICKEN BREAST RECIPEs to try 

Taco stuffed chicken breast cooking in a large skillet.

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top view of 4 stuffed chicken breast on a black skillet

Taco Stuffed Chicken Breast

One of the most flavorful ways to prepare chicken is to stuff it. This Southwest-Inspired Taco Stuffed Chicken Breast is seasoned and filled with cheese, black beans, corn, tomatoes and cilantro. An incredibly delicious and nutritious meal that the whole family will enjoy!
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Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican, tex mex
Diet: Gluten Free
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Marinating time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 356kcal
Author: Rena

Ingredients

  • 4 medium skinless, boneless chicken breasts
  • 1 tbsp taco seasoning
  • 1 lime zest, and juice of
  • 2 tbsp olive oil divided
  • 1 cup shredded cheese (pepper jack, cheddar, or mozzarella)
  • 1/2 can black beans drained, rinsed, and pat dry with paper towels
  • 1/2 cup corn kernels fresh or frozen and thawed
  • 1/2 cup chopped cherry tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp chopped cilantro

Instructions

  • Place the chicken breast in a ziplock bag together with the taco seasoning, lime juice, zest, and 1 tablespoon of oil. Mix thoroughly through the bag to coat with the marinade. Refrigerate for 1 hour to overnight.
  • Once ready to cook the chicken, remove it from the fridge and allow it to sit on the counter for 20 minutes to reach room temp. Cut the chicken breasts lengthways, not going all the way through, just to create pockets for the fillings.
  • In a medium bowl, combine the cheese, beans, corn, tomatoes, and cilantro. Stuff each with the taco cheese mixture, and seal with a toothpick to prevent the filling from spilling.
  • Preheat the remaining tablespoon of oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Cook the taco-stuffed chicken breasts for 6-8 minutes per side, or until blackened and cooked through. The internal temperature should read 165F.

Notes

  • Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to about 5 days. 
  • To reheat, microwave for 60-90 seconds. To reheat in the oven, preheat the oven to 375F.  Wrap the stuffed chicken breast in foil, then place in the oven for about 8-10 minutes.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 356kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 34g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 8g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 99mg | Sodium: 396mg | Potassium: 639mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 401IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 207mg | Iron: 2mg
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side shot of taco stuffed chicken breast

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