Sweet and Spicy Grilled Chicken

sweet spicy grilled chicken platter

What is summer without grilling? And what’s better than sweet and spicy grilled food on a summer’s day? This recipe for sweet and spicy grilled chicken gets it’s sweetness from honey and its spice from cayenne pepper – so you can easily control how much heat you want.  It’s a quick and easy marinade to make and the chicken only needs 15 minutes of marinating time.

sweet spicy grilled chicken marinade

The marinade is also used as a glaze for the grilled chicken.  It’s made with honey, lime juice, mustard, ketchup. EVOO, ginger, garlic and cayenne pepper.  This recipe makes about 2/3 cup of the marinade for which half is used to marinate the chicken and the rest is used as a glaze after the chicken has been cooked.  The lime juice in the marinade gives it an extra twang. Be sure not to marinade the chicken too long as it will break down the protein in way that leaves the chicken rubbery, even on the grill. About 15 minutes of marinating time is sufficient to flavor the chicken. This recipe makes enough for 2 pounds of chicken, but it can easily be doubled.

sweet spicy grilled chicken on grill

Cayenne pepper provides the spice and this recipe calls for a lot of it – a half-tablespoon.  If you prefer less heat use a teaspoon and if you prefer just a hint of heat, use a half-teaspoon. Grilled pineapple is a great accompaniment to this chicken, especially when made with the full amount of spice. For a great summer picnic, see the sweet and spicy grilled chicken sandwich balanced with grilled pineapple and sweet basil leaves.

sweet spicy grilled chicken plate

Sweet and Spicy Grilled Chicken


2 lbs chicken boneless skinless breasts – sliced lengthwise into 1/4″ thickness

For the marinade and glazing sauce:

2 tablespoons EVOO

Juice of one lime or 3 tablespoons of lime juice

3 tablespoons honey

1 tablespoon ketchup

1 teaspoon mustard

1 tablespoon of grated ginger

2 garlic cloves grated

1/2 tablespoon cayenne pepper (if you prefer less heat then use 1 teaspoon or a half a teaspoon)

Grilled pineapple (optional garnish)

Slice chicken breasts lengthwise into 3/8″ thickness. Mix all ingredients of the marinade together.  It’ll make about 2/3 cup.  Marinate chicken in half of the marinade (1/3 cup) for 15 minutes, reserve remaining marinade.   Grill chicken on medium-high heat for 7-8 minutes on each side.  Brush cooked chicken with remaining unused marinade.  Serve with grilled pineapple as a garnish.

Serves 4-6

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