Skip to content

King Ranch Chicken Shells

Image of the prepared King Ranch Chicken Shells recipe
  • prep time: 55 min
  • total time: 2 hr 40 min
  • serves: 12 people

Mini puff pastry tarts are filled with a spicy chicken mixture and topped with melted cheese to make this outrageously good appetizer.   


cost per recipe: $7.69

  • 6 ounces skinless, boneless chicken breast halves(about 1 breast half)
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 pinch ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 small onion, diced (about 1/4 cup)
  • 1/4 cup diced seeded anaheim pepperor New Mexico chile pepper
  • 1/4 cup seeded diced red bell pepper
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon light chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 cup Swanson® Chicken Broth or Chicken Stock
  • 1/3 cup reduced fat (2%) milk
  • 1 plum tomato, diced (about 1/2 cup)
  • 2 tablespoons sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantroleaves
  • 1/2 of a 17.3-ounce package Pepperidge Farm® Puff Pastry Sheets(1 sheet), thawed
  • 1/2 cup shredded Cheddar and pepper Jack cheese blend


  • Step 1

    Drizzle the chicken with 1 tablespoon lime juice and season with the black pepper.

  • Step 2

    Heat the oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat.  Add the chicken and cook for 15 minutes or until well browned on both sides and cooked through.  Remove the chicken from the skillet.  Finely chop the chicken.

  • Step 3

    Heat the butter in the skillet over medium heat.  Add the onion, chile pepper and red pepper and cook until the vegetables are tender, stirring occasionally.  Stir in the garlic, flour, chili powder and cumin.  Cook and stir for 2 minutes.

  • Step 4

    Reduce the heat to low.  Stir the chicken and broth in the skillet and cook for 2 minutes.  Stir in the milk and tomato and cook until the mixture boils and thickens.  Stir in the remaining lime juice, the sour cream and cilantro.  Season with additional black pepper.  Remove the skillet from the heat.

  • Step 5

    Heat the oven to 400°F.

  • Step 6

    Unfold the pastry sheet on a lightly floured surface.  Roll the pastry sheet into a 10x12-inch rectangle.  Cut into 24 (2 x 2 1/2-inch) rectangles.  Press the rectangles into 24 (1 3/4-inch) mini muffin-pan cups.

  • Step 7

    Bake for 15 minutes or until the pastries are golden brown.  Using the back of a spoon, press down the centers of the hot pastries to make an indentation.  Let the pastries cool in the pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes.

  • Step 8

    Spoon about 1 tablespoon chicken mixture into each pastry.  Top each with 1 teaspoon cheese.

  • Step 9

    Bake for 5 minutes or until the cheese is melted.  Let the pastries cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes.  Sprinkle with additional chopped fresh cilantro, if desired.


Sort By:
  • Tastes awesome

    Michele F.
    December 18, 2013

    this recipe is the best for making a lot! OK, so i cheated and used canned chicken breast meat i had on hand and doubled the recipe for Sunday football party. Even a double batch was gone in minutes

Recently Viewed

Made With

Calories 156
Total Fat 10 g
Sat. Fat 5.2 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 22 mg
Sodium 153 mg
Total Carb 9 g
Dietary Fiber 0 g
Sugar 1 g
Added Sugars 0 g
Protein 5 g
Vitamin D 1 %DV
Calcium 4 %DV
Iron 3 %DV
Potassium 2 %DV
Calories 156
Total Fat 10 g
Sat. Fat 5.2 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 22 mg
Sodium 146 mg
Total Carb 9 g
Dietary Fiber 0 g
Sugar 0 g
Added Sugars 0 g
Protein 6 g
Vitamin D 1 %DV
Calcium 5 %DV
Iron 3 %DV
Potassium 2 %DV

This nutritional information refers to each serving of the entire recipe and not just the products used as ingredients.