Easy Grilled Chili Cilantro Lime Chicken is salty, sweet, sour, and spicy and is great on salads, with rice, or in burritos and wraps!
This easy grilled chili lime chicken is just one of a whole bunch of healthy recipes I will be sharing with you in the upcoming weeks. It’s easy to make, healthy, spicy, and delicious.
The chicken is marinated in a lime, chili, and spice marinade then grilled to perfection. You can make the chicken on the stovetop in a pan or griddle or grill it outside on a grill. Either way, this chicken is simply incredible!
WHAT YOU WILL NEED TO MAKE CHILI CILANTRO LIME CHICKEN
This recipe is super simple and only requires a few fresh ingredients that you probably already have in your fridge and pantry.
- Chicken: Boneless skinless chicken breast is my favorite cut of meat to grill because it’s lean and healthy. This recipe also works for boneless skinless chicken thighs and just about any other cut of meat although the cooking time will vary.
- Lime: Because this is an essential ingredient in this dish, we HIGHLY recommend using freshly squeezed lime juice. Tip: you can easily replace the lime with lemon juice if desired!
- Lime zest: the lime zest really takes this chicken up a notch and adds a zesty punch of flavor that is to die for. If using lemons, simply replace the lime zest with lemon zest.
- Olive oil: Olive oil is great for grilling because it’s loaded with healthy monounsaturated fatty acids and antioxidants. It can also be replaced with avocado, or vegetable oil of choice if desired.
- Cilantro: cilantro is the hero of this dish and when combined with lime, is a marriage made in heaven. We know some people out there can no stand the taste of cilantro so if you’re on of those people, simply replace it with freshly chopped parsley, basil, or fresh herbs of choice.
- Garlic: garlic adds a pungent and spicy flavor that will mellow as it cooks and is delicious when charred!
- Brown Sugar: brown sugar will help balance the acidity of the lime juice and spice of the chili pepper. It can be easily replaced with honey, coconut sugar, or a low-carb sweetener if desired.
- Red chili flakes: Also known as crushed red pepper, red pepper flakes, or crushed pepper, this spicy pepper is the perfect way to spice up this dish and add texture!
HOW LONG TO MARINATE LIME CHICKEN?
The chicken can be used right away or marinated for 30 minutes or up to 24 hours. You don’t want to marinate it more than 24 hours because the lime juice will start to break down the chicken and make it mushy in texture (although the flavor will still be delicious!).
HOW TO MAKE CHILI CILANTRO LIME CHICKEN
This recipe is as easy as whisking all the marinade ingredients in a large bowl and marinating the chicken.
Next, grill the chicken until it’s dark and charred on the outside and the internal temperature reaches 165F. This can be done on an outdoor grill or on the stovetop in a grill pan or skillet.
Be sure to rest it for at least 5-10 minutes before slicing to lock in the juices.
I like to serve it on a salad and double the marinade and save half as a dressing for later. You can brush the remaining marinade on the chicken as it cooks and just after it’s done cooking for extra flavor!
This chili lime chicken also goes great on noodles, rice, or burritos!
Grilled Chili Cilantro Lime Chicken
- 4 medium chicken breasts boneless, skin-less (or thighs)
- 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
- zest of one lime or 1 tsp
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons fresh chopped cilantro
- 2 garlic cloves chopped finely
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon brown sugar or honey
- 1 teaspoon red chilli flakes adjust to taste
- ½ teaspoon ground Cumin
- Whisk the ingredients for the marinade in a small bowl. Place chicken in a large plastic bag or bowl and add the marinade to the chicken. Mix to combine. Seal bag or cover bowl with plastic bag and place in the fridge to marinate for 30 minutes or up to 24 hours.
- Pre-heat grill, pan or griddle to medium-high heat. Grill chicken fillets for 5 minutes on each side or until cooked through and the skin is golden and lightly charred. Rest for 5 minutes then slice and serve on salad, rice, noodles, or tortillas. Garnish with chopped cilantro and Enjoy!