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❤️ Why you'll love it
- Great meal for busy weeknights
- Freezes perfectly either before or after cooking
- The easiest of easy chicken recipes—your older kids and teens can learn to make it!
Requiring just a handful of ingredients and very little prep work, this easy salsa chicken recipe is just as enjoyable to make as it is to eat. Sweet and tangy salsa-based sauce perfectly coats the juicy chicken, creating a Southwest-style supper the whole family will happily devour!
This is an overview of the ingredients. You'll find the full measurements and instructions in the green recipe card (printable) at the bottom of the page.
This is an overview of the instructions. Full instructions are in the green recipe card at the bottom of the page.
- Lay the boneless chicken breasts in a greased casserole dish.
- Mix the remaining ingredients together and pour over the chicken. Bake.
See, this easy recipe isn't called Texas "two-step" salsa chicken for nothing!
It's not an easy weeknight dinner unless storage is simple, too. Thankfully, leftover chicken can be kept in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to three days.
You can also freeze the leftover salsa chicken for up to three months. Let it thaw in the refrigerator, first, or pop it straight in the microwave for a delicious meal with only one or two minutes of prep.
I love this baked salsa chicken recipe because it's made with simple ingredients that most home cooks usually have in their pantries—yay for no extra trips to the grocery store! However, here are some ways to switch things up if you need to:
- Feel free to use chicken thighs or bone-in chicken if you prefer. Cook time might vary a bit, so just make sure the internal temperature comes to 165 degrees F on a meat thermometer.
- For a delicious smoky flavor, grill the chicken ahead of time. Add the sauce, then bake for 10-15 minutes or until it's warmed through.
- Tired of chicken? This recipe is delicious with pork chops, too!
- Alter the flavor of this yummy dish by using your favorite type of salsa. I like spicy (of course) but you can use mild salsa, chunky salsa, or even a super-secret homemade fresh salsa recipe.
- Melted cheese makes everything better. Sprinkle your favorite Mexican cheese blend or some pepper jack cheese over top of the chicken breasts for the last few minutes of baking, or until the cheese melts.
- Love herbs? Garnish with fresh cilantro or green onions for extra flavor.
💭 Things to know
Expert Tip: Prep salsa chicken ahead of time and store it in freezer-safe or vacuum sealer food storage bags. You can refrigerate it uncooked for two days, or freeze it for up to three months. When you're ready to cook, just thaw, dump, and go—enjoy a delicious meal in no time at all!
- Try to slice all of your chicken breast pieces to a somewhat even thickness. This will help them cook at the same rate so that each bite is deliciously juicy and tender!
- If you don't have olive oil, vegetable oil and non-stick cooking spray work the same way to grease the baking dish.
- Leftover salsa chicken is super yummy chopped up and served in burrito bowls! Load up on black beans, corn, white rice, and sauteed bell peppers to make your meal stretch. And, don't forget sour cream!
- Or, serve the chicken with tortilla chips or in soft flour tortillas. Yum.
- If you're looking to make a complete meal quickly, serve salsa chicken with Minute rice, a can of beans, or a frozen bag of chopped peppers!
Well, you can, but I don't recommend it. Crockpot salsa chicken (cooked on low for eight hours) is okay, but the sauce gets really watery. Since this is already such an easy meal to prep ahead of time and freeze, the crockpot just doesn't do it justice.
I haven't tried this recipe with salsa verde since it can taste a bit more acidic than traditional red salsa. If you want to experiment, I'd recommend taste-testing a bit of the sauce before pouring it over the chicken. If it's too tart, add a little more sugar, stir, and test again until you like it.
I think salsa chicken is best over a heaping spoonful of Spanish or Mexican rice—that way, you can soak up the delicious salsa-y sauce.
For best results, cooked chicken breasts need to rest for five to ten minutes off of the heat without being cut. Otherwise, the juices won't have time to redistribute and they'll leak out all over, creating dry chicken. That's why it's always recommended to use a meat thermometer—which is more accurate than the cut-and-peek test, anyway.
📚 Related recipes
- Not only is Doritos Chicken Casserole super easy to throw together for a crowd, but everyone goes crazy for a dinner featuring their favorite chip!
- Smothered Chicken is a timeless Southern favorite—and for good reason! It's satisfying, hearty, and comes together in just 30 minutes.
- If you like spicy and smoky, you'll go crazy for this Deviled Chicken recipe. Each piece is buttery and crispy without any fussy frying!
🍽️ Serve with...
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You'll need the following items to make this recipe successfully.
- 13"x9" baking dish (glass or ceramic is best)
📞 The last word
Once you've made this you've got to try the Baked French Onion Chicken!!
If you click on the number of servings in the recipe card you can adjust the measurements up or down for the exact number of servings you need. Don't forget that you can click on "add to collection" to save it to your own, private recipe box!
If you love this recipe please give it 5 stars! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Texas Two Step Salsa Chicken
- 4 chicken breasts, boneless, skinless
- 1 ½ cups salsa
- 3 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon spicy mustard
- Preheat the oven to 375F
- Cut chicken breasts in half horizontally to make 2 pieces each
- Rub a baking pan with olive oil.
- Lay the 8 pieces of chicken breast in the pan.
- Mix the picante, brown sugar, and spicy mustard together until smooth.
- Pour over the chicken.
- Bake 20 minutes until it reaches a temp of 160F.
- Let sit on the counter for five to ten minutes so that the juices settle and the temperature continues to rise to 165F.
- Salsa chicken freezes well. I like to add the ingredients in meal sized portions to bags and vacuum seal them to use for later. I leave the chicken uncooked - then it's just a thaw, dump, and go!
- Make this even easier! Grill the chicken ahead of time and bake for just 10 -15 minutes or until warmed through. The grilling gives it a nice smoky flavor.
- I've made this recipe with pork chops, too. Delicious!
- I think it's best served with rice.
- Leftovers are delicious in warm, soft tortillas!
- You can put it together up to 2 days ahead of time.
- It will be fine tightly covered in the fridge for up to 3 days.
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First published March 13, 2015. Last updated November 25, 2022 for better readability and user experience.