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Cowboy Chicken

Zesty, hearty, and so easy to make.

A quick chicken breast dinner sometimes gets the reputation of being boring, but this Cowboy Chicken doesn’t deserve such unkind words! This easy but zesty baked chicken dish is absolutely packed with deliciousness. It takes boneless skinless chicken breasts and tops them with a hearty blanket of beans, peppers, tomatoes, chiles, and plenty of cheese… What I’m saying is your tastebuds will find it anything but boring.

Since we’re really trying to pack the flavor in here, you’re going to season the chicken itself with a mixture of chili powder, oregano, and cumin (and salt and pepper, of course) before you top it with anything else.

But it’s topped with a lot. There’s black beans and black-eyed peas, fire-roasted tomatoes and corn, bell pepper, onion, green chiles… (still going!) garlic, olive oil, lime juice, and more cumin, chili powder, and oregano all mixed in that topping.

The chicken bakes under it until it’s just about cooked through and then it gets a little sprinkle of Monterey Jack before heading back in the oven to get all melty.

So you get moist, tender chicken, yes, but it’s met with a vibrant bounty of zesty veggies and beans (and some ooey-gooey cheese for good measure). It’s the kind of quick protein solution that you barely have to think about, but everyone is always super happy to sit down to. And while it’s technically just a chicken dish, it’s hearty enough that anyone – cowboy or not – could make a whole meal of it.

Cowboy Chicken

Serves 4; 5 minutes prep, 50 minutes cook time

Ingredients
  • 2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 cup canned black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup canned black eyed peas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup canned fire-roasted tomatoes, drained
  • 1/2 cup corn kernels
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1/4 cup yellow onion, diced
  • 1 (4 oz) can green chiles, drained
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup Monterey Jack cheese, grated
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • Fresh cilantro, chopped, for serving
Preparation
  1. Preheat oven to 375°F.
  2. Arrange chicken in a baking dish and season with salt and pepper and half of the cumin, chili powder, and oregano.
  3. In a bowl, mix together the black beans, black eyed peas, tomatoes, corn, onion, bell pepper, garlic, olive oil, lime juice, and remaining cumin, chili powder, and oregano.
  4. Spread bean mixture over chicken and bake until chicken is cooked through, about 45 minutes.
  5. Arrange cheese over the top and return to oven until cheese has melted, about 5 minutes.
  6. Top with fresh cilantro and serve. Enjoy!

Recipe adapted from Easy Family Recipes.