These grilled Mexican chicken breasts are juicy and tender. Using an easy and quick Mexican chicken marinade made with garlic, lime, and cumin, the chicken turns out really flavorful but not spicy, making it kid-friendly. The chicken is great on its own or enjoy it in fajitas, tacos, or a burrito bowl. Also included are step-by-step pictures and directions, as well as tips to keep chicken breasts from drying out!
If you’re struggling with dry chicken breast, listen up because this recipe is going to give you super juicy, super delicious grilled chicken.
I get it, chicken breasts can be hard to get right.
But I have been grilling chicken for years and know the tricks of the trade.
And I’m going to teach them to you.
So if you’re wanting a juicy grilled chicken breast with a super simple and quick marinade, this is it.
Be sure and read through the post to get all the info you need – I promise there are no stories about my family or what I like to do on the weekends. Just helpful info to make sure your chicken turns out well.
Grab the following ingredients
(Note: the full ingredients list, including measurements, is provided in the recipe card at the bottom of this post.)
- Chicken breasts – this recipe calls for 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, which is roughly one pound total.
- Lime juice – I like to use fresh lime juice from 1 or 2 limes, but you can also use bottled lime juice.
- Garlic cloves – I use medium-sized cloves in this recipe. If you’ve got really small or really large ones, you should adjust the amount you use up or down, respectively.
- Coconut aminos – not to be confused with liquid aminos or soy aminos, coconut aminos are essentially nectar (or sap) from a coconut tree.
- Oil – use a high heat oil here. I like to use avocado oil.
- Spices – you’ll need ground cumin and ground coriander. Make sure they haven’t gone stale as they will be less flavorful if they have.
- Kosher salt – this recipe uses Diamond Crystal kosher salt. If you’re using a different brand or type, check out the salt conversion chart in this post to convert to how much you’ll need to use.
How to keep chicken breasts from drying out
The answer is very simple:
Don’t let the internal temperature go past 165 degrees F.
Once a chicken breast gets above this temperature, it’s going to start getting dry.
The only way to know the internal temperature of your grilled chicken breast is to use a meat thermometer – and you want one that will take temperature quickly and accurately so you’re not holding your hand over the hot grill forever trying to get an accurate reading. (Trust me on that – ouch!)
The one I always recommended is the Thermapen by Thermoworks. We have had one for years and absolutely love it – we actually own two now.
That’s all you really need to know, but if you’ve never used a meat thermometer when grilling consider checking out this post I wrote on how to use a meat thermometer for grilling.
How to grill Mexican chicken breasts
(Note: please see the recipe card at the end of this post for the complete written instructions.)
This recipe has several steps, but don’t let the directions overwhelm you! Here are the basic steps:
- Flatten the chicken.
- Marinate the chicken.
- Make a glaze.
- Grill the chicken
Below are pictures showing you exactly how to make these grilled chicken breasts and I’ve written out each step in detail in the recipe card to ensure your success.
Flatten the chicken
Typically breasts are thin at one end and thicker at another. To keep your breasts from drying out it’s best to flatten them so they’re the same thickness.
Marinate the chicken
Next up is making the Mexican chicken breast marinade and covering the meat with it.
Make a glaze
You’ll reserve part of the marinade to make a glaze, which is part of what makes the chicken so flavorful.
Grill the chicken
Then the last step is to get the chicken on the grill!
Wondering what to serve with grilled chicken?
There are lots of great sides that go with grilled chicken breasts! Some options are:
- Grilled veggies are a great start, like these grilled bell peppers.
- Fruit would be fun with this chicken – try some grilled pineapple!
- If carbs are your thing, this corn tomato avocado salad would be really good.
To see more options, check out this list of side dishes for grilled chicken!
If you like this Mexican chicken breasts recipe, then please leave a 5-star rating and let me know how it went in the comments below!
Juicy Grilled Mexican Chicken Breasts
- 1 Measuring cup
- 1 mason jar (optional)
- 1 Ziploc plastic bag gallon sized
- 1 Cutting Board
- 1 Pair of tongs
- 1 Small saucepan
- 1 Small whisk
- 1 Basting brush
- Place the raw chicken boneless skinless breasts on top of a cutting board and cover them with a piece of plastic wrap – this helps keep any juices from splattering. Use a meat mallet or rolling pin to pound on the thicker portion of each chicken breast. You want forceful blows that can help thin the chicken out. Once each breast is about the same thickness (roughly one-third to one-half an inch), you can stop.
- Measure out the marinade ingredients and place them into a measuring cup or medium bowl. Use a small whisk to mix until thoroughly combined. Set the marinade aside.
- Place the flattened raw chicken breasts in a sealable plastic bag. Pour ⅔ of the marinade in, then press the air out of the plastic bag with your hands as best you can. Seal the bag then use your hands to gently squish everything together and help cover the chicken with the marinade. Place the marinating chicken in the fridge for 40 minutes. Reserve the rest of the marinade for later – it can be kept on the counter.
- After the 40 minutes are up, remove the bag with the chicken breasts from the fridge and place it on the counter to warm slightly for 20 minutes.
- While the chicken finishes warming slightly, turn the reserved marinade into a glaze. Set the saucepan with the marinade in it on the stove and turn the burner to high heat. Let the marinade come to a boil, reduce the heat to medium-low, and let it cook at a low boil for at least 5 minutes while stirring it often with a small whisk to prevent burning. It should be reducing and thickening slightly. Remove it from the burner when done and set aside.
- Once the glaze is made it’s time to preheat your grill. Turn your grill on to a medium heat and let it get to a temperature of around 375 to 400 degrees F. After it’s reached temperature, use a pair of tongs to remove each chicken breast from the bag and place them on the grill grates. Close the lid and let the breasts cook for 5 minutes. You can discard the bag the chicken was in.
- When the chicken breasts have cooked for 5 minutes on the grill, open the lid and flip them over with a pair of tongs. Take a basting brush and spread the glaze on the surface of each chicken breast. You may not use all the glaze and that’s fine. Close the lid and let them cook another 3 to 8 minutes, depending on the thickness of the breasts, until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F.
- Once they are done cooking, open the grill lid and use tongs to remove the meat from the grill. Set the chicken breasts on a platter or cutting board and let rest for 5 to 10 minutes then slice and serve! You can also brush on a little additional of the reserved marinade if desired.