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Spicy Chicken Rellenos with Tequila Lime Sauce

Spicy Chicken Rellenos with Tequila Lime Sauce

  • Prep Time: 1 hour
  • Total Time: 1 1/2 hours
  • Yield: 4 servings


  • 1 cup (1/2 pound) boneless, skinless chicken breast or thighs, diced
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons Emeril's Southwest Seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon minced shallots
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup grated Jalapeno Jack or Pepper Jack cheese
  • 3 tablespoons bread crumbs
  • 1 cup masa harina
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 large egg whites, beaten to stiff peaks
  • One 12-ounce beer
  • Tequila Lime Sauce
  • 4 medium to large poblano peppers with their stems, roasted and peeled, slit up one side and seeded
  • 6 cups vegetable oil
  • 4 cilantro sprigs
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt plus more for seasoning


  • Season the chicken with 1 tablespoon Southwest Seasoning.

  • Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over high heat. When the oil is hot, add the seasoned chicken and stir-fry for about 1 minute. Add the shallots, garlic, and cilantro and saute for 1 minute. Stir in the cream and the cheese, stir well, and turn off the heat. Stir in the bread crumbs, turn the mixture into a bowl, and allow to cool for 15 minutes. Makes about 1 1/2 cups.

  • Combine the masa harina, 1/2 cup of the all-purpose flour, 1 1/2 tablespoons Southwest Seasoning and the salt in a bowl. Whisk in the beer.  Then Fold in the egg whites until smooth.

  • Prepare the Tequila Lime Sauce, remove from the heat and cover to keep warm.

  • Spoon a generous 1/4 cup of the filling into each pepper through the slit in its side. Dip each filled pepper in the batter, then dredge in the seasoned flour.

    Heat the oil in a large pot to 375 degrees and fry the rellenos until golden brown, for about 3 to 4 minutes, turning as needed Drain on paper towels.

  • To serve, spoon 3 tablespoons of Tequila Lime Sauce onto each of 4 plates. Top each pool of sauce with a relleno and garnish with a cilantro sprig.

  • Note: Masa harina is flour made from corn that has been cooked and soaked in lime water. Traditionally used for corn tortillas, it is available in Spanish markets and supermarkets. If you canít get fresh poblanos, substitute New Mexican Green, Cubanelles, or Anaheim chile peppers.