Homestyle Green Chile Chicken
Homestyle Green Chile Chicken is a delicious homestyle Mexican meal —A tender chicken thigh, topped with a creamy, spicy sauce and served with rice and beans. You’ll feel like you’re sitting at a local Mexican restaurant.
Yay! It’s Hatch chile season! It’s one of the seasonal foods I get excited most for —it’s right alongside berries and pumpkin. But I think almost everyone loves pumpkin season. Hatch chiles on the other hand, I’m not sure, but I can’t be the only one super excited for a chile pepper to be in season.
When it’s hatch chile season a few of the local grocery stores here on the west coast bring in giant bins full of them. Hatch chiles, also known as the New Mexican chile, are grown in the Hatch Valley in and around Hatch, New Mexico. Hence, the name the pepper was given.
If you haven’t had fresh Hatch chiles they’re a larger green pepper that’s fleshier than most peppers, and they’re perfect for canning. So while many people may not have eaten a fresh Hatch chile I bet most of you have a small can of diced green chiles in your pantry. Canned chiles are used a a variety of recipes because they’re usually mild but add a bit of spicy sweetness and a hint of smokiness to a dish.
Now, you can understand why I get so excited about Hatch chile season — if something is tasty in a can, it must be even better fresh.
I like to roast Hatch chiles and freeze them in small baggies to save for later. Or I make a batch of enchilada sauce, or like in the case this year — homemade Green Chile Chicken.
The recipe I use for Homestyle Green Chile Chicken my mom and my grandma have made for years. They originally developed it from Foster Farms. The original recipe calls for canned green chiles but I like to use fresh if I can, since they’re just so flavorful.
I also double the recipe, as I like the extra sauce to use for wet burritos or even enchiladas later in the week.
Additionally, the original recipe called for a whole chicken. My mom found a whole chicken difficult to work with so she opted to use bone-in chicken thighs instead. So, I’ve followed in her footsteps.
The first step calls for seasoning the chicken and then browning it. What I like to do is season the chicken under the skin and a little on top. Then I brown it in batches.
(Overcrowding a pan never helps the browning process.)
When the chicken cools slightly I remove the skin. Now this may sound weird. You may be asking yourself, “why would she go through this extra step?” Well, I tell you, it’s not because I like the extra work! Browning the chicken with the skin on will give your Homestyle Green Chili Chicken sauce more flavor.
I then remove the skin, because when you cook the chicken in the sauce with the skin on it ends up being soft and to me pretty unappetizing. So, I ended up removing it and tossing it anyway. It’s much easier to remove the skin when it’s still crispy from the browning process.
After the chicken finishes cooking, remove and thicken the sauce. I mix a little flour with some of the sauce and then pour it back in the pan. This process, called tempering, prevents the flour from lumping in the sauce. I suggested about 3 tablespoons of flour but use at your own discretion. If the sauce doesn’t thicken or you feel it’s too greasy, add more flour. Just don’t forget to temper it!
I like to serve Homestyle Green Chile Chicken with some cilantro lime rice (my favorite is Jasmine rice) and beans. You could also use riced cauliflower. I’m a sauce girl so I always top my rice and beans with a little sauce too.
One final note…
Hatch chiles are not typically very spicy but every now and again you’ll get some spicy peppers. You can always taste the peppers before adding them to the dish to ensure they spiciness is to your liking. But, sometimes it’s hard to tell.
Last week, when I made this Homestyle Green Chile Chicken, the dish ended up a little too spicy for my kids. And I could definitely see where they were coming from. The peppers in the batch were a bit spicer than usual.
So, what do you do if you have a large batch of spicy sauce and you don’t want to eat it all yourself?
Answer: Tame the sauce and turn it into a different meal.
Homestyle Green Chile Chicken is a delicious meal, full of flavor. The sauce itself is really the star of the meal. So, when my little ones found the sauce too spicy, there was no way I was wasting it. It’s just too tasty! So, I got creative.
So, I decided to make enchiladas. I started by making a white sauce. I melted two tablespoons unsalted butter with two tablespoons flour and whisked until it combined. Then I added about 3/4 cup of my Homestyle Green Chile Chicken sauce and whisked it in. Finally, I slowly whisked in a cup of whole milk and a cup of chicken stock. I cooked it over medium heat to let it thicken a bit and tasted it. If I think it can use more flavor or spice I add more Homestyle Green Chile Chicken Sauce. If I think it can use some taming, I add sour cream.
It works perfectly!
The remainder of the sauce I froze (in labeled snack sized baggies) for a later meal. The reason I make so much sauce with Homestyle Green Chile Chicken is basically to save for later. If you’re going through all the effort to make this delicious sauce, my theory is — make a lot, and you’ll be happy later. 🙂
The kids loved their enchiladas. With young kids I always opt for enchilada casserole as opposed to individual enchiladas. I layer the casserole with homemade black beans, jack cheese, some super tasty carnitas shredded chicken I make, and more cheese and sauce. Yum!
Cooking is always a creative process. There’s always opportunities to stretch you creativity. It can be a bit intimidating at first, but it’ll end up being your favorite part of cooking.
While we all make delicious meals, every now and then, everyone has flops. Before getting upset and stressed out, and definitely before throwing the food out, see if there’s an opportunity to turn it into something delicious. You may be surprised!
I hope you all enjoy Homestyle Green Chile Chicken. It’s a tasty, homestyle meal, that makes you feel all warm inside. It may take a bit to cook, but I always like to snack on some chips and homemade salsa while I’m waiting. 🙂
Fresh garden tomatoes … one of the other best things about summer.
If you love fresh roasted chiles like I do, check out my Green Enchilada Sauce. It’s so much better than canned!
Here are links to some of the products I love:
This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small compensation if you click and purchase a product. Thank you so much for visiting my site and for your support of Because Food Is Love.