Last updated on February 20th, 2019 at 11:06 pm
Tequila Lime Chicken is a quick and easy grilled chicken recipe everyone loves! Chicken breast marinates in lime juice, tequila, cilantro and spices resulting in tender and juicy grilled chicken!
Tequila Lime chicken is one of those grilled chicken recipes I make over and over again! It is great served with pasta, over salads and makes the tastiest chicken tacos and chicken burritos. You can also serve this easy chicken recipe with a side of rice, beans and this tasty Creamy Cilantro Lime Coleslaw.
This flavorful grilled chicken recipe is made in very little time and produces incredibly juicy and plump chicken grilled to perfection! You can actually have this healthy meal ready on your table in about 30 minutes!
The Chicken Marinade
The simple Tequila Lime chicken marinade has a few ingredients and it’s very easy to prepare. If you worry about the alcohol in the tequila, you don’t have to. The alcohol burns off while grilling the chicken leaving only some of the “margarita” flavor.
Confessions of a Lazy Chef: I make this recipe 2 ways depending on the ingredients I have at home and my level of laziness at the time. My original recipe calls for tequila, lime juice, sugar, garlic, cilantro and spices. When I feel like I need a shortcut, I buy a bottle of margarita (with tequila already mixed in) and add the garlic, cilantro and spices. Quick, easy and no lime squeezing at all!
Helpful Tip: I am a big fan of Costco’s Kirkland Margarita Wine. The price is reasonable and besides making a killer cocktail, it makes this chicken marinade incredibly easy to make.
How To Make Tequila Lime Chicken
- Mix the chicken marinade ingredients. I like to add everything into a ziploc bag for easy cleanup.
- If your chicken breasts are thick in some areas and thin in others, you can pound them with a meat mallet to even them out.
- Marinate the chicken for as little as 15 minutes or overnight. The longer you marinate, the better.
- Heat up a grill to medium-high heat. Grilling the chicken at medium-high heat seals in the juices while also giving a nice charred exterior.
- Remove the chicken from the marinade and grill for about 5 to 8 minutes per side. The exact timing will vary depending on the thickness and the type of chicken.
- If the chicken get stuck on the grill grates, don’t force it off. That usually means the chicken is not ready to be flipped or be removed yet.
- After removing the chicken breast from the grill, rest for about 5 to 10 minutes before serving.
Safe Temperature for Boneless Chicken Breast
- The safe internal temperature for chicken is 165 degrees Fahrenheit. The best way to check is by using an instant-read thermometer.
Notes and Tips for Making Tequila Lime Chicken
- Resting the chicken before serving it, allows for carryover cooking. Carryover cooking simply means that the heat will continue to move (from the surface to the interior of the meat) and the temperature will increase about 5 to 10 degrees after you remove the meat from the heat source, in this case the grill. For perfectly juicy and tender grilled chicken breast, you can remove the chicken from the grill when an instant read thermometer, inserted in the thickest part of the breast reads 160 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Tent the chicken with aluminum foil while resting.
- If your chicken is getting too charred but is not cooked through, you can always finish the cooking in a pre-heated 300 degrees Fahrenheit.oven. Just place the chicken in an oven safe dish and cover it with foil to keep it moist. Bake it until cooked through.
- Serve this Tequila Lime Chicken with:
Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad
Baked Beans with Bacon
Mexican Three Bean Salad
Mexican Green Chile Rice Casserole
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Tequila Lime Chicken
- 6 chicken breast halves, boneless and skinless
- Salt and pepper to taste
- To prepare the marinade, combine the lime juice, tequila, sugar, chopped garlic, chopped cilantro, ground cumin, salt, pepper and olive oil in a zip top bag or large bowl. Check the notes if using pre-made margarita.
- Season the chicken with salt and pepper to taste. Add the chicken to the marinade.
- Marinate for 15 minutes or overnight in the refrigerator.
- Heat up a grill to medium high. Remove the chicken from the marinade and grill turning once for about 5-6 minutes per side or until cooked through.
- Remove from the grill to a plate, cover with foil and let it rest for about 5 to 10 minutes. Serve
- If using bottled Margarita with tequila, omit the first 3 ingredients.
- Cook the chicken until it reaches an internal temperature of 160 to 165 degrees Fahrenheit. Allow the chicken to rest for 5 to 10 minutes before consuming. This resting period will increase the temperature by 5 to 10 degrees due to carryover cooking.
- The safe internal temperature for chicken is 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on the brands of ingredients used
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