Chili Lime Chicken
Sweet and spicy, this chili lime chicken recipe is sure to be a hit with most any family. Adjust the spice to your liking and grill it to perfection. Just add honey, garlic, sriracha and a few other ingredients to make the perfect marinade and glaze.
You are going to love this chicken recipe. It’s a little sweet, a little tangy and a little spicy. You can make it more or less spicy as you prefer. This just had the tiniest kick and even my one year old ate it with no problem.
I’ve been wanting to come up with a different sort of chicken recipe than I normally make. Voila! Ginger and lime are not flavors I cook with often. I’m guessing that’s because they aren’t flavors I grew up eating in savory dishes. Dessert yes, but dinner, no.
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- Soy sauce – I used the regular, but if all you have is low sodium, then add one teaspoon of salt.
- Lime juice – As I always say, use the juice of fresh limes. The bottled stuff just isn’t very good.
- Honey – Never give honey (cooked or raw) to a baby under one year old. If you want to share with your little one, you can substitute agave syrup or organic real maple syrup.
- Lime zest – the measurement on this isn’t super critical. Just use whatever size lime you have.
- Ginger – I personally think fresh ginger tastes better than dried, but it’s not something I keep on hand all the time. If you happen to have dried ground ginger, you can substitute that. Use about 1/2 tsp of the dried stuff.
- Garlic – depending on the size of your garlic cloves, you can adjust how many you use. Mine were pretty big, so I just used 3.
- Olive oil – Use any oil with a fairly high flash point. Coconut oil is fine for pan frying, but for grilling, I find it causes more flame-ups and scorched glaze. Avocado oil is a good option, too.
- Corn starch – You’ll ad 1/2 tsp when you’re mixing everything in the bowl. Once you separate some out to add to the chicken as a marinade, you’ll add the other 1/2 tsp to the rest so it will thicken a bit like a glaze.
- Sriracha – 1 tsp made this just barely spicy. Even my one year old ate it. You can definitely add some more and even a little chili powder to make this hotter.
- Chicken breast tenderloins – I like using the skinny little tenderloins when I’m grilling because they cook up so quickly and evenly. If you use whole chicken breasts, slice them in half horizontally or put them in a big ziplock bag and use the flat side of a meat tenderizer to flatten them out to an even thickness.
How to Make Chili Lime Chicken
This is a recipe you just can’t mess up, as long as you have some basic skills on how to use your grill.
Make the Marinade
Whisk the soy sauce, lime juice, honey, lime zest, ginger, garlic, olive oil, sriracha and 1/2 tsp of corn starch together in a small mixing bowl.
Marinate the Chicken
Place all the chicken into a gallon size ziplock bag. Roll the top of the bag down to help it stand open. Then, separate about half of the marinade mixture. Roughly half a cup or a little less. Pour that in with the chicken and set the other half of the mixture aside.
Close up the ziplock bag, squeezing out most of the air. Now mash the bag around until the chicken is fully coated in the marinade. Leave the chicken on the counter to marinade for 30 minutes. If you aren’t ready to cook the chicken yet, then let it marinate in the fridge for a few hours until you need it.
With the remaining mixture, add the other 1/2 teaspoon of corn starch and whisk it in thoroughly. Cover and refrigerate until you’re ready to cook the chicken.
Cook the Chicken
Lastly, fire up your grill on medium to high heat with the lid closed. I like to crank it all the way up, wait a few minutes, then open it up and scrape with a grill brush. It helps to soften up anything left on the grates so it can be cleaned off.
With the lid still open, turn the heat down to low and let things cool down just a minute. Then you can place your chicken on the grill. Try to leave yourself some room to move the chicken away from direct flame. For example, I have a 4-burner gas grill. I like to leave one burner off so there’s a cooler spot to set a few pieces if the grill is flaming up too much.
Let the tenderloins cook about 3 minutes on each side until they have nice dark grill marks, but aren’t burnt all over. Glaze both sides of the chicken a couple times as they cook. Work quickly because they really do cook fast.
Serving Suggestions for Chili Lime Chicken
- Cilantro – chop up some fresh cilantro to serve on top of the chicken as a tasty garnish
- Sriracha – extra hot sauce for dipping
- Lime wedges – serve with some lime wedges on the side so people can add a fresh squeeze of lime juice.
Sides that Pair Well
Chili Lime Chicken
- Charcoal or gas grill
- 2 lbs chicken breast tenderloins
- 3 tbsp lime juice
- 3 tbsp soy sauce
- 6 tbsp honey
- 1 tsp ginger
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp corn starch
- 3-4 garlic cloves - minced or pressed
- zest of one lime
- In a small mixing bowl, whisk together lime juice, soy sauce, honey, ginger, coconut oil, garlic, lime zest and 1/2 tsp of corn starch.
- Add chicken breast tenderloins to a gallon size ziplock bag.
- Separate about half a cup of the marinade mix and pour it into the ziplock bag.
- Seal the bag and squish it around to mix the marinade in with the chicken.
- Leave on the counter to marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes or 6-12 hours in the refrigerator.
- Grill on low heat for about 3 minutes on each side. Take care not to let the flames scorch the chicken.
- Serve hot or let cool and store covered in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
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