Margarita Grilled Chicken

Margarita Grilled Chicken is a flavourful tender chicken recipe that is tangy, zesty, and slightly sweet. This easy grilled chicken recipe is perfect for a weeknight meal or for gatherings. 

The sun is shining and the grass is turning green again. It’s time for days spent outside, whether completing tasks or just sitting back and soaking it all in. Oh how I love this time of year.

After a long winter, it’s also nice to fire up that barbecue again. I’m eager to make old favourites like BBQ Breakfast Scrambler and Chicken Fajita Foil Packs.

Yet I also need some new yet simple BBQ recipes in my rotation. I really want to make the most of the summer months and that includes cooking outdoors.

If my cooking ability was listed according method, ‘BBQ’ would be lower on that list for sure. Since I only use it for such a short time of the year, my skills are beginner and seem to stay that way.

It’s alright that grilling isn’t my expertise, there is no shame in that. Just know that when it comes to grilling recipes on this space – you will only get easy bbq recipes that literally anyone can have success with.

The Best Chili’s Margarita Grilled Chicken

Margarita Grilled Chicken is a copycat recipe from Chili’s restaurant. This popular chicken recipe from their menu has all the flavors of margarita yet without the alcohol so the whole family can enjoy it.

Combining succulent chicken breast with a delightful blend of tangy lime, there will be slight notes of aromatic cilantro and a hint of tequila. This is the most flavorful grilled chicken recipe.

Winning points for ease and flavour, this restaurant-inspired chicken dish can easily be made at home and for a fraction of the price.

Serve alongside your favourite sides and/or topped with pico de gallo with Queso Dip, chili’s margarita chicken also doubles as a great leftover recipe.

The next day use it for Margarita Chicken Tacos using corn tortillas, or Air Fryer Chicken Taquitos with flour tortillas!

If you are a fan of our Sweet Chili Lime Chicken, you are going to love this delicious recipe. They have some similar flavors yet the sweetness aspect is distinctly different.

What you’ll Love about this Recipe:


TASTE – This margarita chicken recipe offers a delightful combination of flavors that are tangy, zesty, and slightly sweet. The lime juice and zest provide a refreshing citrusy flavor, while the margarita mix and tequila add a subtle sweetness. 

TEXTURE – juicy and tender, with a slightly caramelized exterior from grilling. The marinade helps to keep the chicken moist.

EASY GRILLED RECIPE – This is a great recipe which is perfect for backyard barbecues, family dinner, or for parties.

Plus, it’s an excellent option for those following a low-carb diet since this dish doesn’t require any breading or heavy sauces.

This recipe is a healthier alternative to traditional BBQ dishes like burgers and hot dogs.

It’s leaner than most red meats but still packed full of protein – making it an ideal meal choice for anyone looking to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Ingredients and Notes

Here are the simple ingredients required to make this grilled chicken recipe. As always, check out the printable recipe card at the end of this post.

Chicken – I used boneless skinless chicken breasts for this recipe.

Margarita Chicken Marinade – The marinade mixture is made of fresh cilantro, black pepper, salt, cloves of garlic, margarita mix, tequila, lime juice, lime zest, honey, and olive oil.

Topping – Options for topping are fresh cilantro and lime wedges. I love to also top with our homemade pico de gallo. You can also top with salsa if you wish.

What Is Pico de Gallo?

Pico is a classic Mexican tomato dip, and one of my favourite foods ever. It’s basically like a chunky salsa with fresh ingredients. It contains equal parts of chopped tomatoes and onion; and jalapeno, cilantro and lime juice. It’s also very easy to make your own Homemade Pico de Gallo!

How to Make Margarita Grilled Chicken

  1. Finely chopped the cilantro and garlic cloves.
  2. In a large bowl (or plastic bag), combine the chopped cilantro, black pepper, salt, garlic, margarita mix, tequila, lime juice, lime zest, honey, and olive oil. Blend until all the ingredients of the marinade are combined.
  3. Place the chicken breasts in the bowl ensuring they are evenly coated. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and marinate in the refrigerator for a minimum of 1 hour, but ideally, let it marinate overnight for more flavors.
  4. Preheat your grill to medium-high heat. Lightly oiled it to prevent sticking.


  5. Place the chicken breasts on the preheated grill and cook for about 8 minutes per side or until the internal temperature reaches 165°F when read with a meat thermometer. 
  6. Once cooked, transfer the chicken to a clean plate and let it rest for a few minutes to allow the juices to redistribute.
  7. Garnish this copycat chili’s margarita chicken with additional fresh cilantro and lime wedges, along with your favourite side dishes.

TIP: Add some pico de gallo to the top of the chicken if you’d like. It adds a great flavour to the chicken.

No Grill? No Problem! 

Depending on the weather, it might not be an ideal time to use the grill. The good news is, you can still make this easy recipe! To do so, make this recipe as it states yet bake at 350º F for about 25 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through. Or use a heavy skillet on the stovetop, yet make sure to add oil to prevent sticking.

What to Serve with Margarita Grilled Chicken

Margarita grilled chicken is a delicious and flavorful dish that pairs perfectly with a variety of side dishes. Here are some ideas for what to serve with margarita grilled chicken:

Grilled Vegetables: Grilling some fresh vegetables such as bell peppers, zucchini, onions, and corn on the cob alongside the margarita grilled chicken makes for a colorful and healthy meal. You can also try it with grilled pineapple as well.

Mexican Rice: A side of fluffy Mexican rice flavored with tomato sauce, garlic, and cumin is the perfect accompaniment to grilled margarita chicken.

Black Beans: A simple yet delicious side dish that complements the flavors of margarita grilled chicken well. You can season them with cumin, chili powder, or just plain salt and pepper.

Avocado Salad: A creamy avocado salad made with diced avocado, tomatoes, red onion, cilantro, lime juice and olive oil is an excellent way to balance out the spicy flavors in the marinade.

Pico de Gallo: Nothing beats fresh Classic Pico de Gallo! It’s easy to make yet you can also buy this from the grocery store as well.

Guacamole & Chips: Margarita grilled chicken would go perfectly with some freshly made guacamole served alongside tortilla chips!

Roasted Sweet Potatoes: The sweetness from roasted sweet potatoes pairs nicely with the tangy flavor of margarita marinade making it a great option for those who want something sweet but not too heavy.

Variations and Substitutions

  • You can omit the tequila and add an extra tablespoon of lime juice for a similar tangy flavor.
  • Instead of using whole chicken breasts, cut the chicken into cubes and thread them onto skewers.
  • Make it spicy by adding chopped jalapeno, cayenne pepper or red pepper flakes to the marinade.
  • Change it up and experiment with different herbs and spices. Consider adding a pinch of cumin or smoked paprika to add more flavor.

Storage and Reheating

  • Store leftover chicken in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • Reheat using the microwave or in the oven for 10 minutes at 350°F.

Margarita grilled chicken recipe is a delicious and refreshing dish that is perfect for summer outdoor gatherings or cookouts.

The combination of lime, tequila, and honey create a unique and flavorful marinade that perfectly complements the smoky taste of grilled chicken.

This dish is easy to prepare and will impress your guests with its bright colors and bold flavor. So fire up your grill this summer and give this tasty recipe a try – you won’t be disappointed!

More Grilled Recipes

food, with Margarita Grilled Chicken

Margarita Grilled Chicken

Yield: 1
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 16 minutes
Additional Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 36 minutes

Margarita Grilled Chicken is a flavourful tender chicken recipe that is tangy, zesty, and slightly sweet. This easy grilled chicken recipe is perfect for a weeknight meal or for a summer cookout.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • ¼ cup margarita mix
  • 3 tablespoons Tequilla
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon lime zest
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts

Instructions

  1. Finely chopped the cilantro and garlic cloves
  2. In a large bowl, combine the chopped cilantro, black pepper, salt, garlic, margarita mix, tequila, lime juice, lime zest, honey, and olive oil. Blend until all the ingredients of the marinade are combined.
  3. Place the chicken breasts in the bowl ensuring they are evenly coated. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and marinate in the refrigerator for a minimum of 1 hour, but ideally, let it marinate overnight for more flavors 
  4. Preheat your grill to medium-high heat. Lightly oiled it to prevent sticking.
  5. Place the chicken breasts on the preheated grill and cook for about 8 minutes per side or until the internal temperature reaches 165°F. 
  6. Once cooked, transfer the chicken to a clean plate and let it rest for a few minutes to allow the juices to redistribute.
  7. Garnish with additional fresh cilantro and lime wedges. Top with pico de gallo, optional.

Notes

    STORAGE:

    • If you have leftovers, store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

    VARIATIONS:

    • You can omit the tequila and add an extra tablespoon of lime juice for a similar tangy flavor.
    • Make this spicier by adding chopped jalapeno, cayenne pepper or red pepper flakes to the marinade..
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 429Total Fat: 18gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 102mgSodium: 620mgCarbohydrates: 24gFiber: 0gSugar: 23gProtein: 38g

Did you make this recipe?

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Created by Tammi Roy

Tammi Roy is the founder of My Organized Chaos, a Canadian food and lifestyle blog. She lives in Alberta, Canada and is the mom of three beautiful teenage girls. Tammi’s passions are her family, creating and sharing delicious recipes, travelling and photography. Learn more about Tammi.

4 Comments

  1. My favourite chicken recipe for spring would be a tomato pesto marinade grilled chicken breast that’s topped with mozzarella on a bun. Yummy !

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