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3 chicken thigh skewers on cutting board
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4.64 from 183 votes

Spicy Honey Lime Chicken

The combination of honey (or maple syrup), soy sauce, sriracha, lime, garlic and ginger in this spicy honey lime chicken recipe is wicked. Delicious hot, room temp or cold.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Marinating time30 mins
Total Time50 mins
Course: Appetizer, Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings (change as needed): 5
Author: Cheryl

Ingredients

  • 2 ½ pounds (1.13kg) boneless skinless thighs, trimmed and cut into 2 inch/5.1cm pieces, Note 1 chicken tenders or boneless breasts are fine too
  • Garnish: 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro or parsley; lime wedges

Honey Lime chicken marinade (and glaze), Note 2

  • 3 tablespoon soy sauce low sodium is good if you have
  • 6 tablespoon honey or maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon lime zest from one lime
  • 3 tablespoon fresh lime juice from 1 ½ to 2 limes
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced or grated (or ½ teaspoon garlic powder)
  • 1 ½ tablespoon grated fresh ginger (about 1 ½ inch of fresh ginger)
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 ½ tablespoon Sriracha sauce for pretty spicy (use more or less to taste)
  • 1 ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon cornstarch (to thicken to glaze consistency) Optional

Instructions

  • MAKE MARINADE/SAUCE: Whisk all marinade ingredients together in a small bowl. Or blend them in a food processor.
  • MARINATE CHICKEN: Pour half the marinade (about ½ cup) into a sealed zipper bag or container and add chicken. Marinate for 30 minutes at room temperature or 6-12 hours in fridge. Tip: if marinating overnight, I leave out lime juice and increase zest so it doesn't 'cook' the chicken.
    Glaze: The reserved ½ cup marinade will be used for glazing/basting. (Optional but suggested: Mix ½ teaspoon cornstarch into reserved marinade and microwave for 1 minute to make a glaze-like consistency. I do this). Set aside.
  • PREPARE GRILL: Scrape grill and spray grill with oil (or dip paper towel in oil and rub on grill). Heat grill to medium-high heat. If using wood skewers, soak them for 30 minutes beforehand to avoid burning. Note 3.
  • GRILL CHICKEN SKEWERS: Skewer marinated chicken pieces onto skewers and pat dry (important). Discard the marinade used for marinating. Lightly spray chicken with oil to further avoid sticking. Grill on all sides until chicken cooks to a golden brown (you'll need to turn chicken a couple of times), for 9-12 minutes in total (depending on thickness and how tightly packed the skewers are), basting once or twice with the honey lime glaze. Instant thermometer will read 160F/71C. Rest chicken, loosely covered for 5 minutes.
  • SERVE: If you have any leftover sauce, drizzle it on the chicken or warm it in microwave for 30 seconds and pass it around. Sprinkle chicken with cilantro or parsley and serve with lime wedges if desired. Serve hot or at room temperature.

Notes

  1. Chicken options:
    • I prefer thighs because they are juicier and less likely to dry out when cooked. In this recipe, however, breasts work really well too when marinated.
    • Instead of skewered chicken, you can also cook regular bone-in or boneless chicken (but make extra marinade for bone-in)
    • Kosher chicken is juicier and has a little extra flavor because it is already brined. 
  2. Marinade/glaze: If you are using bone in chicken, I suggest doubling the marinade/glaze. In fact, you might also want to double it (or do 1 ½ times the amounts) to use as a dipping sauce or to soak into a side of rice or quinoa. 
  3. No grill? Instead, chicken can be broiled in the oven, turning once, for 9-12 minutes, brushing with the glaze.
  4. Make Ahead: The recipe can be made ahead for a crowd and served at room temperature or cold. Or warmed briefly in the microwave for a minute or two. Don't overdo it or the chicken will dry out and toughen.
Nutritional information estimates include boneless chicken breasts. Thighs would have more calories and fat. 
Calories: 373kcal | Carbohydrates: 23g | Protein: 50g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 145mg | Sodium: 1553mg | Potassium: 904mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 21g | Vitamin A: 68IU | Vitamin C: 9mg | Calcium: 18mg | Iron: 1mg