Sambal Chicken Skewers

Dust off the grill and make these Sambal Chicken Skewers. Made with sambal oelek, sriracha & sweetened with brown sugar. Check out the recipe at !

Sambal Chicken Skewers!!,

Someone asked me if I’ve made plans for the Summer and all I could say was that I’m gonna do a lot of grilling. I definitely have my priorities straight.

Sambal Chicken Skewers || shutterbean

Last week we had a beautiful week of a weather so I dusted off our grill…with a cocktail and flip flops.  I know, I know! I’m annoying. I am sorry that you’re in cold weather on the east coast. I really hope that we get the rain we need. I digress…

Sambal Chicken Skewers || shutterbean

In a quest for a simple grilled recipe, I found this winner in my stack of ripped out pages from magazines. This will definitely be a staple in our Summer 2015 Rotation. I imagine we’ll do a version with pork tenderloin or steak. Nothing like sweet/spicy/crispy chicken pulled right off a skewer. I made these beauties with a spicy coconut noodle dish that I’ll be sharing on Wednesday.  Stay tuned!

And we’re off!  Before you get started, you’ll need to soak some Bamboo Skewers.

Or you can invest in some  Stainless Steel Skewers.  I think I need to get some!

Sambal Chicken Skewers 2

First we make our marinade. It’s a beautiful balance of flavors.
Sambal Chicken Skewers || shutterbean

I mixed it all right in the measuring cup.

Sambal Chicken Skewers || shutterbean

>We pour it over the chicken and let it marinate for a bit.  Get your grill going.

Sambal Chicken Skewers || shutterbeanWaiting…

Sambal Chicken Skewers || shutterbean
We poke the chicken on the skewers.

Sambal Chicken Skewers || shutterbean

And we take the marinade and heat it over the stove to reduce it.

We’re going to use it to baste the chicken while on the grill!

Sambal Chicken Skewers || shutterbean

Chicken goes on the grill.

Sambal Chicken Skewers || shutterbean

Baste/turn. Grill.

Sambal Chicken Skewers || shutterbean

Sambal Chicken Skewers || shutterbean

And we’re done.

Sambal Chicken Skewers || shutterbean
I mean…

Sambal Chicken Skewers || shutterbean

A little chopped cilantro for garnish.

Sambal Chicken Skewers || shutterbean

Another photo for good measure.

>Sambal Chicken Skewers || shutterbean

A perfect weeknight night dinner if you ask me!

Sambal Chicken Skewers

serves 4-5

recipe slightly adapted from Bon Appetit Magazine

  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup unseasoned rice vinegar
  • 1/3 cup sambal oelek
  • 1/4 cup fish sauce
  • 1/4 cup sriracha
  • 2 teaspoons finely grated peeled ginger
  • 2 lbs. skinless, boneless chicken thighs (cut into 1 1/2 inch pieces)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped cilantro, for serving
Soak 10 bamboo skewers in water for at least an hour.
Prepare grill for medium-high heat. Whisk brown sugar, vinegar, samba oelek, fish sauce, sriracha and grated ginger in a large bowl. Add chicken and toss to coat. Let chicken sit in marinade for about 10 minutes. Thread 4-5 pieces of chicken onto each skewer.
Transfer marinade to a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until marinade has reduced to 1 cup, 7-10 minutes.
Grill chicken, turning and basting often with the marinade, until cooked through. About 8-10 minutes. Add chopped cilantro to grilled chicken and serve.

    These skewers are the! I am so craving them right now!

  • Bri | Bites of Bri

    I love the flavors in these awesome skewers! Have you seen the FireWire skewers? I love them! Nothing ever gets stuck and they’re able to be laid in whatever direction or length since they’re flexible.

  • Kelly

    I must try these!!

  • Linda | Brunch with Joy

    I grew up eating sambal and chicken skewers is a favorite at our home. Yummm!

  • Laura

    Maybe my bacteria-fearful husband has mislead me, but Ive been under the impression it’s no bueno to use the marinade as a basting sauce bc the raw meat may have left contaminants or blood in it. Does simmering the marinade get rid of all that? these look so good and I’d love to try them!

    • Tracy

      When you reduce it, I believe it boils off the bacteria. If you’re fearful, then I would suggest making another batch of sauce!

      • laura

        thanks! good advice!

        • Angela

          you could probably even split the sauce from the beginning. I just used half of it and marinated them in a ziplock back and did the other half for basting.

  • Ashley

    How did you know that I have chicken thighs thawing in my fridge and had no clue how to cook them tonight!?! So glad you posted this today and can’t wait to have it for dinner.

  • Jessica H.

    I miss flip flops, the smell of food on the grill and hanging on the deck with a drink. But I’ll drool over these skewers in the meantime. They look awesome!

  • Meg Bollenback

    Grilling would be lovely and I think we’re getting close to that time of year on the east coast…hallelujah. We did have flurries over the weekend, but nbd…it’s sunny now! Also, I have to say that I while I love to eat and often make Meatless Monday recipes, these skewers are an awesome detour from that theme today.

  • Heather

    You’ve been making all of my favourite Bon Appetit recipes lately! I’ve made these so many times and they’re amazing. Can’t wait to hear about those spicy coconut noodles!

  • Mary Frances

    Wow, these skewers sound amazing!! I’ll definitely be trying this recipe as the weather gets warmer. I bet it would go amazingly with my blood orange and avocado salad recipe! You can check it out here:

  • Kat

    I just came home from WF with chicken thighs meant for your amazing lemon chicken (the sauce! Can’t get enough of it) But I’m going to take the hint, put on my flip flops, have a cocktail, and make these instead. OMG they look good! Thanks for all the inspiration, on your site and in the podcast.

  • Liz @ Floating Kitchen

    Oh I can’t wait for grilling weather! Snow here today. Ack! These skewers look incredible. My mouth is seriously watering!

  • Adrianna

    Good gracious. I’m thinking I’m going to make this tonight bc I ate like everything this weekend and this is a good reset meal.

  • Eileen

    This sounds like the perfect recipe for grilling season! You have to love all that spice. 🙂

  • Ann

    This will be the recipe I make for my daughter and her friend who are coming to dinner on Thursday. I am very keen to make the spicy coconut noodle dish to accompany it, so please share it as early as you can on Wednesday, as I’m in Australia and it will be Thursday already when you post it!!! 🙂

  • Ashlyn

    My mouth is seriously watering right now! These look fantastic, I cannot wait to get back to grilling on a weekly basis. This is definitely going on my list of new summer recipes to try!

  • Gcroft

    Looks absolutely divine… what a time-efficient recipe for sambal! Thanks for sharing.

  • Anisah

    Sambel oelek is my fave too, since I’m an Indonesian 😀

  • Melisa

    These pictures are making my mouth water. They look sooo good! And it’s almost time to get the grill out in Chicago…

  • Abby

    These skewers look amazing, Tracy!! Yummmm!

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  • Sue

    I made this for dinner last night and my family loved it! It was a little spicy for my kids even though I dialed down the sambal and sriracha. Next time, I’ll have to reduce the spice a little more for them. Thanks for sharing!

  • Angela

    Made these the other night and it was SO good. I did end up cutting out the siracha because I’m a spice weenie, but put it out so people could add as they needed. Made with coconut rice and asian honey carrots and had a lovely meal. Will definitely make these again.

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  • Jess

    Any suggestions for Sambal substitutes? I can’t seem to find any in our stores 🙁

  • Anne

    These were incredible!

    My husband and I loved them, but our 12-year-old daughter didn’t even venture to try them…they’re pretty spicy. I will DEFINITELY be making them again…they’ll go on my BBQ list for sure.

    Thanks for the great recipe…love your website!

    Anne x

  • Christine

    I made these for dinner with your coconut noodles and they were fantastic! So spicy and flavorful. I just wish I had a grill because it took me a lifetime to scrub the grill pan, gah. Thanks for the wonderful pics!

  • Sycil

    Hi Tracy!

    I can’t wait to make this!! I plan on making this with your spicy coconut noodles. However, I don’t have a grill. Can you advise me on alternative ways to cook this?

    Thanks in advance! 🙂

    • Tracy

      you can do it in the broiler! Wrap the sticks in foil so they don’t catch fire 🙂

      • Sycil

        Sorry, 2 more questions…what heat setting (degrees) and for how long? Or will I just have to figure it out through experimentation/trial & error? I appreciate your reply!! 🙂 THANK YOU SO MUCH!

        • Tracy

          Broiler is 500F I believe.
          I would make sure it’s about 8-10 inches away from the broiler. I would try about 4-5 minutes per side.

  • Sandra

    These were sooooooo good! My husband hates chicken breasts and “boring chicken” so I’m always trying to find flavorful, juicy chicken thigh recipes. This was a hit! Thanks for the inspo!

  • Victoria

    I did this marinade tonight for shrimp to go with the rice noodle dish you paired with it. SOOOO good! A new staple in my dinner rotation! Served it with a little steamed bok choy and cool cucumber slices! Thanks for these ones!

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  • Alex

    I made these tonight and they were delicious! I don’t have a grill so I cooked them under the broiler. Not as much delectable char, but still pretty dang good. I love the spicy/sweet/funky combo of ingredients in the sauce, so so good!

  • Diana

    What can I use in Place of fish sauce?

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