Salsa Verde Chicken Bake

Busy day? Bake boneless, skinless chicken breasts in tomatillo salsa verde sauce. Topped with oozy melted jack cheese, it’s an easy one-pot dinner.

Salsa Verde Chicken Bake
Elise Bauer

You just line a baking dish with chicken breasts, pour over plenty of salsa verde, bake, sprinkle with some cheese, bake some more, and presto wham-o you're there. Serve over rice to absorb the sauce.

This recipe is so easy, it's surprising how good it is!

Chicken breast with salsa verde
Sally Vargas, Elise Bauer, and Garrett McCord

Use Jarred or Homemade Salsa Verde

If it's not the season for fresh tomatillos to make the salsa verde from scratch, it is easily available jarred (look for it in the salsa section, or Mexican food section, of your grocery store). Thankfully with our ginormous tomatillo harvest this summer, we have plenty home canned in the pantry.

Many thanks to my dear friend Bruce, who came up with this recipe and urged me to give it a try. It's perfect for a midweek meal. Enjoy!

Salsa Verde baked with chicken and cheese
Elise Bauer

Try It With Chicken Thighs or Tenders

Try this with chicken tenders, which will bake up more quickly. Or, use skinless chicken thighs, which will take a little longer to bake but have even more flavor. (Chicken should reach 165 ºF on a meat thermometer.)

Salsa Verde Chicken in the Slow Cooker

Try this tip from commenter Nichole: Add the chicken and salsa verde to a slow cooker and cook on low for 3 to 4 hours. Shred the chicken, place it back in the crock, cover with cheese, and cook for 15 to 20 minutes more. She serves it over rice and says it's "delicious!"

Use Rotisserie Chicken for a Shortcut

Here's a shortcut tip from commenter Emily: Use cooked rotisserie chicken breast. Put a little salsa verde at the bottom of a casserole dish, place the chicken breasts on top, and top with the remaining salsa verde. Top with cheese. Bake at 350ºF for about 20 minutes, or the chicken reaches 155 ºF, on the middle rack. Move the dish to the top rack for 10 more minutes to brown the cheese, making sure the chicken has reached 165 ºF.

Since the chicken is already cooked, we suggest covering the dish with foil for the first 20 minutes of this shortcut so it doesn't dry out.

More Easy Southwestern Dinner Recipes!

From the Editors Of Simply Recipes

Salsa Verde Chicken Bake

Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 35 mins
Servings 4 servings

While the chicken is cooking, prepare some rice or quinoa to serve with the chicken. The recipe produces a lot of sauce which will go well with the sides.

You could easily make this with boneless, skinless chicken thighs as well. You may need to cook them just a few minutes longer than the breasts.


  • 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts

  • 1 (15-ounce) jar (1 3/4 cups) tomatillo salsa verde

  • 4 ounces Monterey jack and/or pepper jack cheese, grated (1 1/4 cups)

  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro, optional


  1. Preheat the oven:

    Preheat the oven to 350°F.

  2. Cut the chicken breasts and place them in the dish:

    Cut the chicken breasts into halves.

    Line a 1 1/2- to 2-quart casserole baking dish with the chicken pieces. Try to cover the bottom as completely as you can with the chicken.

    chicken breast for salsa verde and cheese chicken bake
    Elise Bauer
  3. Cover with the salsa verde:

    Cover completely. There should be no exposed chicken or it will dry out.

    how to make salsa verde chicken
    Elise Bauer
  4. Bake the chicken:

    Bake the chicken for 25 to 30 minutes. If you have a meat thermometer, use it. The chicken should be removed from the oven when the internal temperature of the breast meat reaches 150°F.

    Simple Tip!

    Worried about taking the chicken out at 150°F? No problem — it goes right back into the oven to finish baking in the next step.

  5. Increase the heat, top with cheese, and return to oven:

    Increase the oven heat to 400°F. Sprinkle the cheese over the chicken, and return to the oven for another 5 to 10 minutes, enough time for the cheese to melt and the sauce to get bubbly.

    Monterey Jack cheese salsa verde chicken
    Elise Bauer
    cheesy baked salsa verde chicken
    Elise Bauer
  6. Serve:

    Remove from oven. Serve immediately. Spoon over cooked rice or quinoa. Sprinkle with chopped fresh cilantro. Serve with tortilla chips for crunch if you would like.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
426 Calories
16g Fat
7g Carbs
61g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 426
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 16g 20%
Saturated Fat 7g 36%
Cholesterol 170mg 57%
Sodium 926mg 40%
Total Carbohydrate 7g 2%
Dietary Fiber 2g 7%
Total Sugars 4g
Protein 61g
Vitamin C 13mg 65%
Calcium 246mg 19%
Iron 3mg 15%
Potassium 730mg 16%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.