These Grilled Chicken Kabobs make a delicious and easy dinner any night of the week. Made with chicken breast that has been seasoned with a homemade jerk marinade and then threaded with fresh pineapple and grilled for a perfectly sweet and spicy Chicken Kabob recipe.
Grilled Chicken Kabobs have a reputation for being boring or dried out.
But my recipe for Chicken Kabobs is ANYTHING but boring.
Chicken is brought to life with the jerk seasoning marinade I learned to make from an authentic Jamaican Chef while vacationing in Jamaica with my husband years ago.
I decided that after 30 years of cooking in Jamaica, this guy knew a thing or two and I should most certainly take his advice!!
The chef taught me that the best technique for Jerk Chicken was to throw fresh ingredients into the blender and create a thick paste to serve as the marinade, and while today’s recipe is for chicken, you can use this Jerk Marinade on any type of Chicken, Fish, Meat, or Vegetables.
- Habanero Peppers: You can replace the habenaro pepper with a jalapeno pepper for a milder jerk seasoning.
- Maple Syrup: You need a bit of sweetness to balance the flavors. But feel to use honey, agave, or brown sugar in place of the maple syrup. Granulated sugar is not a good option for this recipe.
- Oil: To keep this Jerk Seasoning, Paleo, use coconut oil or avocado oil in the marinade. If you aren’t paleo, feel free to use canola oil.
- Lime Juice: Be sure to use FRESH limes, not bottled lime juice.
- Ginger: Use peeled fresh ginger root, NOT dried ground ginger. If you have leftover ginger, peel it and pop it in a freezer-safe bag in the freezer and pull out to grate from frozen ginger. See my tips on how to freeze ginger and more here.
- Spices: Allspice, oregano, and nutmeg are used to add flavor to this marinade. Garlic cloves are used in place of dried garlic for maximum flavor.
- Chicken: Use boneless, skinless chicken breasts of thighs, cut into 1-inch cubes.
How to Make Jerk Chicken Kabobs
- Prepare marinade by placing all ingredients into the blender or food processor and blend until fully processed.
- Cube up chicken breast or chicken thighs into 1-inch cubes.
- Place in gallon-sized storage bag and pour jerk marinade over chicken and toss to coat chicken in marinade.
- Leave in the marinade for at least 30 minutes or up to 4 hours. Do not leave in longer than 4 hours or the acid will break the meat down.
- While the chicken is marinating, soak wooden skewers in water for at least 30 minutes so that your skewers will not burn when grilling. Alternatively, you can use metal skewers.
- Remove chicken from marinade and discard marinade.
- Thread marinated chicken and pineapple on wooden skewers in an alternating pattern.
- Preheat grill to medium-high heat and grill kabobs for about 12 minutes total, turning every 3-4 minutes.
You make like to serve Chicken Kabobs with
No go ahead, transport yourself to the Islands, and experience a bit of “No Worries”, as they say in Jamaica, as you dig into this easy dinner.
Grilled Jerk Chicken Kabobs with Pineapple
- 1/4 cup avocado oil or melted coconut oil or canola oil if not paleo
- juice of 1 lime
- 1 inch piece of ginger peeled and thinly sliced
- 2 habaneros or jalapeno peppers cut into large chunks, unseeded (for more authentic jerk--use habeneros--I just happened to have jalapenos)
- 3 garlic cloves peeled
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup or honey or agave
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon dried allspice
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts cut into 1" chunks
- 1/2 fresh pineapple peeled, cored and diced into 1" wedges
- 4 metal skewers or wooden skewers that have been soaked in water or 30 minutes.
- Blend together everything but the chicken and the pineapple, until smooth.
- Pour the marinade over the chicken and let sit in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes and up to 4 hours.
- Heat grill or charcoal to medium-high temperature.
- Thread the chicken unto skewer, alternating with pieces of fresh pineapple.
- Grill chicken for 6 minutes per side.