Sweet & Spicy Honey Sriracha Chicken Recipe
Grilled chicken is a staple in my household. So, rain or shine, summer or winter, you’ll find me firing up the grill to cook a delicious and healthy meal. Today, I want to share one of my all-time favorite variations of grilled chicken: Honey Sriracha Chicken.
This recipe combines the perfect balance of heat and sweetness, creating a mouthwatering combination that will leave you craving more. With the added bonus of a beautiful char from the sugars in the honey, this dish is a guaranteed hit. It’s quick and easy to make, taking just 5 minutes of prep time. So, let’s dive into the details and get ready to enjoy some seriously flavorful chicken!
Be sure to read to the end of the article if you want to learn about the different modifications you can make.
Honey Sriracha Chicken
- 1.5 lbs chicken boneless skinless breast or thigh
- 4 tbsp Sriracha see notes for options
- 2 tbsp honey
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tbsp lime juice
- 2 tbsp water
- 1 tsp chili powder or flakes see notes for options
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp salt
- In a small bowl, combine sriracha, honey, olive oil, lime juice, water, chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, and salt. Mix well to create the marinade.
- If you are using chicken breast, slice it in half width-wise so that the breasts are thinner and will cook faster.
- Place the chicken in a large resealable bag or a shallow dish. Pour the marinade over the chicken, ensuring that it is evenly coated. If using a bag, seal it tightly, removing as much air as possible. If using a dish, cover it with plastic wrap. Marinate the chicken in the refrigerator for at least 15 minutes, or overnight for maximum flavor.
- Preheat your grill to medium-high heat. If using a gas grill, preheat for 5-10 minutes. If using charcoal, wait until the coals are covered with white ash before placing the chicken on the grill. I aim for 400°F for my grill.
- Remove the chicken from the marinade, allowing any excess marinade to drip off.
- Place the chicken on the grill and close the lid. Cook for about 5-7 minutes per side, or until the internal temperature reaches 165°F (74°C). Turn the chicken only once to ensure even cooking.
- Once cooked, remove the chicken from the grill and let it rest for a few minutes to allow the juices to redistribute.
What to serve with honey sriracha chicken
When it comes to finding the perfect accompaniments for Honey Sriracha Chicken, the options are endless. The flavorful punch of the chicken pairs beautifully with a variety of side dishes, allowing you to create a well-rounded and satisfying meal. Here are a few suggestions to get your taste buds tingling:
- Rice, pasta, or potatoes: The bold flavors of the chicken make it an excellent companion to grains and starches. Serve it over a bed of fluffy white rice for a simple and comforting combination. Alternatively, chop the cooked chicken and toss it with your favorite pasta or enjoy it alongside baked or mashed potatoes for a heartier meal.
- Fresh salad: A crisp and vibrant salad is the way to go for a refreshing contrast. Consider a mixed greens salad with cherry tomatoes, cucumber slices, and a tangy vinaigrette. The coolness of the salad will complement the spiciness of the chicken, creating a harmonious balance of flavors.
- Grilled veggies: Take advantage of your grill and prepare some delicious grilled vegetables to serve alongside the Honey Sriracha Chicken. Zucchini, bell peppers, eggplant, and asparagus are just a few options that can be seasoned and grilled to perfection. The smoky char of the vegetables will add an extra layer of depth to the meal.
- Fresh garnishes: To add a burst of freshness and visual appeal, garnish your Honey Sriracha Chicken with some chopped fresh cilantro and green onions. These herbs provide a pop of color and a hint of brightness that complements the dish wonderfully.
I highly recommend marinating the chicken overnight or preparing it first thing in the morning for the ultimate flavor infusion. This extra time allows the chicken to absorb all the delicious flavors from the marinade, resulting in a more intense taste experience. However, even a quick 15-minute marinade will yield tasty results if you’re short on time.
And here’s a bonus tip: If you’re a fan of meal prepping, this recipe is perfect for that. You can easily cook this ahead of time and portion it out with rice and veggies for ready-to-eat meals.
How to veganize this dish
If you have a vegetarian or vegan dinner guest, veganizing Honey Sriracha Chicken is a breeze. Here’s how you can make it vegan-friendly:
First, substitute the chicken with tofu or tempeh as your protein of choice. Both tofu and tempeh have the remarkable ability to absorb flavors, making them perfect for marinating. Cut them into cubes or slices to mimic the texture of chicken.
If your guest prefers not to eat honey, you can replace the honey with a vegan-friendly alternative like granulated sugar. You can use an equal amount of granulated sugar as a replacement in the marinade. This will still provide a touch of sweetness to balance out the spiciness of the Sriracha.
When it comes to the sriracha sauce, most brands are vegan, but it’s essential to double-check the ingredients to ensure they meet your dietary needs. Look out for animal-based ingredients or additives that might not align with a vegan lifestyle.
Follow the recipe instructions as usual, but marinate the tofu or tempeh in the modified marinade for at least 30 minutes or longer for a more intense flavor infusion. Then, grill or cook the tofu/tempeh according to your preference, ensuring it reaches the desired level of tenderness and develops a delicious char.
No grill? Make it in cast iron instead!
No grill? No problem! If you don’t have access to a grill, you can still enjoy the mouthwatering flavors of Honey Sriracha Chicken by using a cast iron skillet or grill pan instead. Here’s how you can make it indoors:
- Heat a cast iron skillet or grill pan over medium-high heat on your stovetop. It’s important to preheat the pan properly to ensure even cooking and a nice sear.
- Follow the recipe instructions for the marinade and preparation of the chicken, as mentioned earlier. Once the chicken is marinated, remove it from the marinade, allowing any excess to drip off.
- Lightly grease the hot skillet or grill pan with cooking oil to prevent sticking. Place the chicken in the pan and cook for approximately 5-7 minutes per side. The exact cooking time may vary depending on the thickness of the chicken. Ensure that the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 165°F (74°C) for safe consumption.
- Once cooked through, remove the chicken from the cast iron skillet or grill pan and let it rest for a few minutes to allow the juices to redistribute.
Can’t find Sriracha? Try these alternatives
Due to a drought in Mexico, there has been a shortage of red jalapeños, impacting the production of Huy Fong sriracha sauce and causing supply constraints since 2022.
However, fear not! There are several alternatives available that can be used in this recipe.
I’ve reviewed a handful of alternative Srirachas, and one option that I particularly enjoy is Trader Joe’s Sriracha sauce. Its flavor profile is similar to the traditional Sriracha and works well as a substitute.
Alternatively, you can use your favorite brand of Sriracha or any chili-garlic sauce you prefer. Feel free to explore different options and choose the one that suits your taste and spice preferences. Just ensure to adjust the quantity according to your desired level of spiciness.
How to adjust the spiciness of this dish
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Let’s face it — if you’re a spicy food lover, Sriracha may not pack enough heat for you. If you want to amp up the spiciness of this recipe, there are a few ways to do it. While increasing the quantity of Sriracha is one option, the real secret lies in playing with different types of chili powder.
You may have noticed that I deliberately kept the description of “chili powder or flakes” quite generic. That’s because you have the freedom to choose any chili powder you prefer, and the heat level can vary significantly between different types. So opt for a hotter chili powder if you seek a spicier kick.
For a regular weeknight meal with moderate heat, I recommend using ancho or cayenne chili powder. However, if you’re feeling adventurous and crave some serious heat, you can go for ghost chili pepper flakes (this is the kind that I keep stocked in my pantry!) Keep in mind that just a teaspoon of ghost chili pepper flakes might be incredibly hot, even for those who enjoy spice.
Feel free to experiment with different chili powders to find the perfect balance of spiciness that suits your taste buds. Remember, adjusting the heat level is a personal preference, so don’t be afraid to make it as mild or fiery as you desire. Enjoy the thrill of customizing the spiciness to create a truly satisfying culinary experience!