This Cuban Mojo Chicken is infused with a flavorful Mojo marinade made with citrus, garlic and spices, then oven roasted until golden brown, juicy and tender! This mouthwatering Mojo Chicken is perfect for dinner any day of the week and also fabulous for company!
I absolutely love the mouthwatering flavors of perfectly roasted, juicy and tender Mojo Chicken. This easy to make Cuban chicken delivers lots of flavor and it is always gets rave reviews.
What is Mojo?
Cuban Mojo Sauce (aka Cuban marinade) is made from sour oranges, garlic, oregano, cumin, cilantro and olive oil. It is incredibly simple to make and very flavorful. It can be used as a marinade and also served as a sauce – I love double duty recipes! Pour it over fried plantains (tostones) or fries for a super flavorful treat.
Sour oranges are very hard to find in the states so I try to replicate their flavor by mixing fresh orange juice with fresh lime juice. Fresh citrus is a must for a good Cuban Mojo.
How To Make Cuban Mojo Chicken
- Mix all the marinade ingredients together. I like to use melted butter instead of olive oil for this recipe because I think butter imparts amazing flavor to the chicken. You can use olive oil, if you prefer.
- Marinating the chicken is key for bold flavors. I try to marinate a minimum of 4 hours or overnight. The longer the better!
- Place the chicken in a roasting pan. Tie the legs together with kitchen string and tuck the wing tips under the body of the chicken. Roast the chicken at 425 degrees Fahrenheit for about 1 hour and 15 minutes or until the chicken juices run clear and the temperature in the thickest part of the thigh reaches 165 degrees. Timing will depend on the size of your chicken.
- After removing from the oven, tent the Cuban style roasted chicken with aluminum foil and let it rest for 10 minutes before carving.
Roasted Chicken Internal Temperature
- The safe internal temperature for a roasted chicken is 165 degrees Fahrenheit – you should check by inserting an instant-read thermometer into the thickest part of the thigh. If you don’t have one handy, you can calculate 15 minutes of cooking time per pound of chicken but, nothing is safer than properly checking with an instant-read thermometer.
Mojo Chicken Recipe Tips
- The longer you marinate the chicken, the more flavorful your roasted chicken will be. 4 hours is good, 6 hours is great, 8 hours is best.
- I have received many questions regarding store bought Mojo seasoning like Badia Mojo marinade and Goya Mojo Criollo. Unfortunately, I have not tried Badia or Goya marinades. Making homemade Mojo marinade is quite simple and the fresh ingredients really makes this Cuban recipe taste very authentic.
- This Mojo criollo marinade can be used to marinate lamb, pork, turkey, chicken breasts, chicken legs, chicken thighs, chicken wings and veggies like Portobello mushrooms..
- Cuban Baked Chicken is amazing but if you prefer, you can grill the chicken instead of baking it.
- I love frugality but not as much as I love “easy clean ups” – I always splurge by buying jumbo size zip top bags. They are perfect for marinating whole chickens and big pieces of meat.
If you love Cuban food, check out these tasty Cuban recipes:
- Ropa Vieja Recipe
- Picadillo Recipe
- Cuban Flan
- Guava Cream Cheese Cuban Pastries (Pastelitos de Guayaba)
Serve this delicious Cuban chicken with some of our favorite side dishes:
- Charro Beans
- Oven Roasted Sweet Potatoes
- Creamy Cilantro Lime Coleslaw
- Cold Lentil Salad with Butternut Squash
- Extra Creamy Easy Scallop Potatoes
Need more easy recipes? We always do!
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Cuban Mojo Chicken
- 1 (5 to 6 pound) roasting chicken
- Salt and ground black pepper to taste
Cuban Mojo Marinade
- Zest of 1 orange
- Zest of 1 lime
- 1/2 cup orange juice, freshly squeezed
- 1/4 cup lime juice, freshly squeezed
- 4 tablespoons butter, melted OR 1/4 cup olive oil
- 8 cloves garlic, chopped finely
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro (lightly packed)
- Orange and lime slices for garnish (optional)
- Remove the chicken giblets. They can be discarded or saved for other preparations like stocks or gravies. Rinse the chicken inside and out and remove any excess fat. Pat dry with paper towels and season lightly with salt and pepper (the marinade has salt and pepper as well but a whole chicken needs quite a bit of seasoning).
- In a small bowl, mix all the Cuban Mojo marinade ingredients. Place the chicken in a large bowl and pour the marinade over the chicken. Cover with plastic wrap and marinate for 4 hours or overnight.
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Arrange a rack in the lower third part of the oven.
- Remove the chicken from the marinade and place in a large roasting pan. Tie the legs together with kitchen string and tuck the wing tips under the body of the chicken.
- Bake the chicken for 1 hour. If the breast is getting too golden, tent a piece of aluminum foil over the breast. Bake for an additional 15 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees in the thickest part of the thigh.
- Remove from the oven and tent with aluminum foil. Let the chicken rest for 10 minutes before carving. Garnish with lemon and lime slices (optional)
- Cooking times will vary depending on the size of the chicken.
- If you use butter for the marinade instead of olive oil, the butter will solidify a little bit while marinating in the refrigerator. This is OK – I don’t stress over it!
- I buy jumbo zip top bags to marinate whole chickens and big cuts of meat. This makes cleaning up a lot easier. Just throw away the bag!