Margarita Grilled Chicken

Prep Time
Cook Time
1h 15m
Ready In

"This couldn't be easier. A simple mix of fresh lime and orange juice, honey, tequila, and a little spice are just the perfect mix. Marinate a couple of hours and grill. Couldn't be easier. Serve either spicy black bean and cheese quesadillas, or Mexican rice on the side, and a tossed salad for a very quick dinner."

Original is 5 servings


  • Serving Size: 1 (301.3 g)
  • Calories 384.8
  • Total Fat - 31.4 g
  • Saturated Fat - 6.3 g
  • Cholesterol - 10.7 mg
  • Sodium - 273.8 mg
  • Total Carbohydrate - 23.1 g
  • Dietary Fiber - 3.9 g
  • Sugars - 14.6 g
  • Protein - 7.1 g
  • Calcium - 195.8 mg
  • Iron - 1.6 mg
  • Vitamin C - 45 mg
  • Thiamin - 0.1 mg

Step by Step Method

Step 1

Marinade ... Add all the ingredients to a small bowl and mix well. Pour 1/2 of the marinade into a large ziploc bag or bowl and mix well. Add the chicken and seal up the ziploc bag or cover the bowl with plastic wrap, refrigerate and marinate 1-3 hours; no longer - because the citrus can actually start to cook the chicken. Bone in / skin on can take up to 3 hours marinating time, but smaller boneless / skinless breasts, I prefer 1-2 hours. This recipe also works great with thighs. Reserve the extra marinade which will be used as a glaze as the chicken cooks.

Step 2

Grill ... Now, the grill is really the way to prepare this recipe. Outdoor is what I suggest, but an indoor grill pan will also work. Oven cooking for this recipe, will work, but you won't get that nice crust. Grill on each side, brushing the reserved marinade on often. Cook until the juices run clear. Cooking time will depend on the chicken and the method being used. About 7-10 minutes per side. Extra large breasts with the bone in may take longer.

Step 3

Serve ... These are so easy and quick to make. I make my black bean and cheese quesadillas right on the grill along side the chicken for an easy side dish. ENJOY!


No special items needed.

Editorial Notes

The ingredient tips, suggestions, variations, facts, questions and answers below are not edits to the original author's recipe. They are not meant to imply any change would improve the recipe. They're offered for convenience, alternative ideas, and points of interest. If you have any comments about them, please post in the Help & Ideas forum.

  • For best results, use fresh lime and orange juice for the marinade.
  • If you prefer a spicier dish, increase the cayenne pepper to 1/2 teaspoon.

  • Instead of olive oil, use avocado oil. Avocado oil has a higher smoke point than olive oil, meaning it won't burn as quickly on the grill and will help the chicken stay tender and juicy.
  • Instead of tequila, use white wine. White wine will add a slightly sweeter flavor to the marinade, while still providing the acidity needed to tenderize the chicken.

Tequila-Lime Grilled Chicken Replace the orange juice with more tequila and add an extra tablespoon of honey. Grill as directed, but brush with a mixture of tequila and lime juice during cooking.

Mango-Tequila Grilled Chicken Replace the orange juice with mango nectar and add an extra tablespoon of honey. Grill as directed, but brush with a mixture of tequila and lime juice during cooking. Before serving, top with fresh diced mangoes.

Mexican Street Corn: Mexican Street Corn is the perfect side dish to accompany Margarita Grilled Chicken. It is a delicious combination of sweet corn, creamy mayonnaise, and a zesty blend of spices. It is quick and easy to make, and adds a nice flavor to the meal.

Grilled Zucchini: Grilled Zucchini is a great accompaniment to Margarita Grilled Chicken and Mexican Street Corn. It is a healthy and flavorful side dish that is quick and easy to prepare. The zucchini is lightly seasoned with garlic, oregano, and olive oil, then grilled until it is tender and lightly charred. This dish adds a nice balance of flavor and texture to the meal.


Q: How long should I marinate the chicken?

A: For bone in/skin on chicken, marinate 1-3 hours. For boneless/skinless chicken, marinate 1-2 hours. Do not marinate for longer than 3 hours as the citrus can start to cook the chicken.

Q: What temperature should I cook the chicken?

A: Cook chicken to an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C). Use an instant-read thermometer to check the temperature.

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Fun facts:

Fun Fact 1: Margarita Grilled Chicken is a popular recipe in Mexico, where it is served with a side of Mexican rice. It is believed to have been created by the famous Mexican actress and singer Dolores del Rio in the 1930s.

Fun Fact 2: This recipe is said to have been inspired by the classic Margarita cocktail, which was first created in the 1940s by a bartender in Tijuana, Mexico. The original Margarita was made with tequila, lime juice, and orange liqueur.