Monday, May 27, 2013

Grilled Chicken Fajitas

Memorial Day is the unofficial start of outdoor grilling season, a time-honored cooking method that I, alas, rarely get to partake in. I love living in the city, but one of the few drawbacks of high-rise life is that you can't have an outdoor grill since, you know, it's a fire hazard.

However, I actually do have a Weber charcoal grill, it's just someplace else--my mother's beach house in Oregon, 2,900 miles from here. So when we go visit her, I try to make good use of the grill and one of my favorite dishes is Grilled Chicken Fajitas--something I've made since I was in high school.

As grilled dishes go, this is pretty easy: marinate the chicken and cook it over hot coals. If you have a grill pan, you can also grill the vegetables over the coals (if you don't, you can cook them separately in a large frying pan on the stove).

Grilled Chicken Fajitas
Inspired by Chicken Fajitas, The New Basics Cookbook, Julee Rosso & Sheila Lukins

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 limes, juiced
2 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. ground cumin
Salt and fresh-ground black pepper
1 1/2 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 sweet onion, sliced into thick rings
1 green bell pepper, cored and seeded
8 flour tortillas (fajita size, about 6-8 inches diameter)

1. Combine olive oil, lime juice, oregano, cumin, salt and pepper in a shallow bowl. Add chicken breasts and turn to coat. Marinate in the refrigerator for up to 2 hours while you prepare the coals for grilling.

2. Prepare hot coals for grilling (I recommend using charcoal and a paper or electric starter, not gas or lighter fuel).

3. Flatten the bell pepper and brush the onion slices and pepper with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.

4. Remove chicken from marinade and grill over hot coals until cooked through, about 3-5 minutes on each side, turning halfway through. Remove and allow to rest about 5 minutes. Slice across the grain of the meat into long strips about 1/2-inch wide.

5. Place a grill pan on the grate over the hot coals. Cook the onion and bell pepper in the pan until softened and brown around the edges, about 7-9 minutes. Slice into strips.

6. Serve the fajitas on flour tortillas, with garnishes such as guacamole, tomato salsa, sour cream and shredded cheese.


  1. Oh my. Now I wish I was standing with you in the driveway of your mom's Oregon house while you grill these. Or better yet, I wish I was eating these at your mom's dining room table.

  2. Me too! We'll get our chance later this year.