cilantro lime chicken

Grilled Cilantro Lime Chicken

How to Grill Cilantro Lime Chicken

  • Whisk together the Mexican chicken marinade and pour 3/4 of it over the chicken thighs, reserving some for serving.
  • Seal the chicken in a zip-top freezer bag and set in the fridge to marinate for at least 30 minutes.
  • Prepare clean grill grates to minimize sticking and preheat the grill at 400-450°F.
  • Arrange the chicken on the hot grill grates and cook for 4-6 minutes with the lid closed. If the chicken sticks to the grill grate, let it cook a minute more before trying to flip. Cook on the second side for another 4-5 minutes. Baste with some of the reserved marinade, flip, and cook for 1-2 minutes more. Repeat on the other side side. The chicken is done when the internal temp is 160°F and the juices run clear. Let the chicken rest a few minutes for the temp to raise to 165°F and the juices to settle before serving.
  • Drizzle with additional reserved marinade just before serving, and garnish with cilantro and lime wedges.

This grilled cilantro lime chicken recipe delivers lots of flavors thanks to a quick marinade, and with just 7 ingredients and 3 simple steps, it’s easy enough to cook any night of the week.

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American, Mexican
Keyword: grilled chicken
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Marinating Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Calories: 281kcal


  • 3 pounds of skinless chicken thighs
  • 4 limes, zested and juiced
  • 1 cup roughly chopped cilantro leaves and stems
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • extra cilantro, for garnish


  • Trim any fat from the chicken thighs and place in a large freezer bag. To the bowl of a food processor, add the lime juice, lime zest, cilantro, olive oil, honey, cumin, salt, and pepper and whiz to combine, about 30 seconds. Reserve 1/3 cup of the marinade and pour the rest into the bag with the chicken. Refrigerate for 30 minutes up to overnight.
  • Prepare a grill on medium-high at 450°F, leaving one side of the grill on low or off. Grill the chicken for 5-6 minutes per side, basting each side the last time it’s turned. Once each side has seared, if the chicken pieces seem to be getting too charred, move the chicken pieces to the cooler side of the grill to cook.
  • To redistribute the juices, let the chicken sit for 5 minutes before serving. Serve with lime wedges and additional cilantro and drizzle the rest of the reserved marinade before serving.


Serving: 1g | Calories: 281kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 27g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 129mg | Sodium: 356mg | Potassium: 380mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 162IU | Vitamin C: 8mg | Calcium: 28mg | Iron: 2mg