The latest and greatest chicken recipe to grace your dinner tables. In the summer you can usually find Tony and I making all of our dinners on the grill. We love to pair his famous grilled brussels sprouts with juicy burgers, salmon, and deliciously marinated chicken.

I made this incredible jalapeño cilantro chicken one night to pair with our favorite sides and it turned out even more amazing than I expected. The marinade is the perfect balance of spicy, creamy and fresh, and it makes the chicken incredibly juicy and flavorful.

The chicken is great for pairing with salads, dipping in homemade sauces, adding to tacos and enchiladas, and more. I included tons of different ways that you can serve it, but be sure to let me know your favorite way to enjoy it in the comments!

jalapeño cilantro chicken on a platter

The formula for a perfect chicken marinade

Every chicken marinade needs 3 components to give you perfectly juicy, flavorful chicken every time:

  • Fat: from oil or even full fat yogurt or buttermilk
  • Acid: from vinegar or citrus fruit
  • Plenty of seasonings: like spices and fresh or dried herbs

As you’ll see, this jalapeño cilantro chicken marinade has all of these components, plus some great flavor add-ins. Get even more tips & marinades here!

ingredients for a jalapeño cilantro chicken marinade in a blender

Ingredients in this jalapeño cilantro chicken

You’re going to LOVE the flavors in this jalapeño cilantro chicken recipe. It has the perfect amount of spice, sweetness & fresh flavor, making it extremely versatile to use in tons of different recipes. Here’s what you’ll need to make it:

  • Chicken: feel free use to boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs in this recipe.
  • Produce: you’ll need cilantro, garlic, lime juice and jalapeño in the marinade to give it the perfect amount of freshness and spice.
  • Yogurt: a little greek yogurt makes the marinade super creamy.
  • Oil: we’re using olive oil or avocado oil for the fat component of the marinade.
  • Sweetener: we’ll cut the spice and acidity with a little sweetness from brown sugar, coconut sugar, honey or maple syrup.
  • Seasonings: finish off your marinade with plenty of salt and pepper.

mixing a jalapeño cilantro yogurt marinde in a blender cup

How to make a jalapeño cilantro chicken marinade

This jalapeño cilantro yogurt marinade couldn’t be easier to make! You’ll simply:

  1. Add all of the marinade ingredients to a blender or a food processor and blend it until smooth.
  2. Add your chicken to a bowl, large bag or baking dish, then pour the marinade over the chicken and stir to coat it.
  3. Let the chicken marinate for 15 minutes to an hour before grilling or baking it!

marinating jalapeño cilantro chicken in a bowl

Bake or grill your jalapeño cilantro chicken

  • To bake: you’ll want to bake your chicken on a parchment-lined baking sheet or in a baking dish at 400 degrees F for 20-30 minutes until the internal temp reads 165 degrees F. Get all of my tips for baking perfect chicken here!
  • To grill: we love grilled jalapeño cilantro chicken! You’ll grill your chicken at 400 degrees F for about 6-8 minutes on each side. Check out this guide to grilling perfectly juicy chicken every time.

grilled jalapeño cilantro chicken on a platter

Delicious ways to serve this chicken

You can always keep it simple by serving the juicy jalapeño cilantro chicken as is with your favorite salad or side dish!

Storing tips

You can actually store the jalapeño cilantro chicken in the marinade before cooking, or store the fully cooked chicken:

  • Before cooking: store the chicken and the marinade together in an airtight container or bag in the refrigerator one day ahead of time. Then cook as directed the next day.
  • After cooking: make sure the cooked chicken has cooled completely, then store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.

jalapeño cilantro chicken on a platter with limes

More amazing chicken recipes

Get all of my delicious chicken recipes here!

I hope you love this jalapeño cilantro chicken recipe! If you make it be sure to leave a comment and a rating so I know how you liked it. Enjoy, xo!

Grilled Jalapeño Cilantro Chicken

grilled jalapeño cilantro chicken on a platter

Flavorful grilled jalapeño cilantro chicken made with an easy, spicy jalapeño cilantro yogurt marinade. Use this incredible marinade in baked or grilled chicken recipes to keep your chicken juicy and delicious! Serve this chicken with your fav sides and sauces for the perfect simple weeknight dinner.


  • For the chicken:
  • 1
    boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs
  • Spicy jalapeno cilantro yogurt marinade:
  • 1/2
    fresh chopped cilantro (a big handful)
  • ¼
    plain greek yogurt
  • 1
    olive oil or avocado oil
  • 1
    lime juice
  • 1
    brown sugar, coconut sugar, honey or pure maple syrup
  • 1
  • 1
    small jalapeno (do not seed if you want it spicy)
  • 1/4
    salt, plus more to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper


  1. Make the marinade: add ingredients to a blender or food processor and blend/process until well combined and smooth.

  2. In a large bowl, baking dish or large reusable bag (such as a stasher bag), add chicken and pour the marinade over; stir well to coat the chicken in the marinade. Cover and place in the fridge for 15-30 minutes or up to 1 hour. Grill or bake chicken however you’d like and discard excess marinade.

  3. To grill chicken: Preheat the grill to 400 degrees. Once preheated, place your chicken on your grill, and close the lid. It’s important to keep the lid of your grill closed while your chicken is cooking so that no heat escapes. Cook your chicken on the grill for 6-8 minutes on one side. After 6-8 minutes open your grill lid and flip your chicken with tongs. A great tip is to only flip your chicken breast once so that it stays nice and juicy (and creates delicious grill marks!). Cook your chicken breast for 6-8 minutes more. Cook time will vary a bit depending on the size of your chicken and what type of cut, so be sure to check the internal temperature in the thickest part of the chicken breast using a meat thermometer. When the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F, your chicken is done and can be transferred to a clean plate or cutting board. Immediately cover chicken with foil to seal in the juices and allow it to rest for 5-10 minutes before cutting into it. This will help you achieve that juicy, chicken breast you’re looking for!

  4. To bake your chicken: preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Place chicken on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink and internal temperature reads 165 degrees F.

Recipe Notes

See the full post for dipping ideas and delicious ways to serve this chicken!


Servings: 4 servings

Serving size: 1 serving (based on 4)

Calories: 187kcal

Fat: 7.3g

Saturated fat: 1.5g

Carbohydrates: 1.9g

Fiber: 0.1g

Sugar: 1.6g

Protein: 27g

Recipe by: Monique Volz // Ambitious Kitchen | Photography by: Eat Love Eats


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *