Monday, November 15, 2010

Cilantro Chicken

I really can’t get enough cilantro… I adore it. 
I hear that a percentage of people think cilantro tastes like soap, but thankfully, I am not one of those people.   Any kind of Mexican inspired food is always a hit with me, and my family too and I use cilantro like there is no tomorrow.  But, hey, if you don't like, this is probably not the chicken for you.  I suppose you could try this with parsley... I mean, if you really wanted to!  

This really is the perfect recipe for Costco Kirkland Brand frozen chicken breasts, but of course, fresh works too! I usually take out 3-4 frozen chicken breasts and put into a ziploc bag on Sunday nights... that way, the chicken breasts are nicely doing their part towards making meal time easier and thawing during my work week.

4-6 Chicken breasts
¼ cup lime juice
½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
1-2 Tbsp chopped garlic
1 Tbsp. Honey (you can omit this, sometimes I do!)
1 Tbsp. Cumin
1 Tbsp. Olive oil
½ tsp. Salt
Fresh Ground Pepper

Pound* the chicken to an even thickness about ½ inch and place in a ziploc bag or shallow baking pan. In a small bowl, mix all other ingredients and pour over chicken, turning pieces to coat.  Chill and let marinade for at least 30 minutes, but I prefer to let it marinate longer, even if you let it sit overnight.

Lay chicken on medium grill and cook turning once until no longer pink in the center. 4-6 minutes per side.

*You don't have to pound the chicken, but your chicken will take longer to grill and it could cook unevenly.  Being the lazy girl I am, I've done this recipe many times without pounding it, but you do need to watch it to make sure that you don't over cook it, or under cook it!
*When I do pound the chicken, I usually use a ziploc bag to protect it from splattering about.  Just use the ziploc bag that you used to defrost your chicken in... though I gotta tell you, you might not be able to use it again when you marinade it, if you are an especially enthusiastic smacker!

Side Dish Inspirations

I’m sure you can think of a million things to serve this with, but here are some ideas if you are feeling low on inspiration today:
  • Brown rice or Spanish Rice
  • Refried beans with melted cheese 
  • Green salad with black beans, corn and tomatoes… maybe slice that chicken onto the top and make it a main dish salad dinner or lunch.
  • Southwestern Edamame Salad, shown in picture
Round Two cooking… make more and use it for:

If you plan it right, you could make a double batch to have enough leftovers to make any of the following for another meal.  You could even slice up the leftovers and freeze them if you wanted!  Here’s some ideas:
  • Chicken Tortilla Soup
  • Chicken enchiladas
  • Southwestern submarine sandwiches

What else would this technique work on???

You could easily use this technique on any kind of chicken- breasts, tenderloins, thighs, drumsticks… whatever makes you happy, or seems to be the only kind that you have on hand right now! I have even used this on:
  • Frozen tilapia
  • Frozen Salmon
  • Pork tenderloin
  • Beef Flank Steak
  • Beef Tri-tips


  1. I've made this dish once before and loved it! We're having it again tonight along with the Southwest Edamame Salad

  2. Thanks MJ! I'm glad you like it, it's one of our favorites too!