Grilled Southwestern Tequila Chicken

Wednesday, August 29, 2012
This tequila Southwestern-style chicken is just bursting with flavor and perfect for kicking off the summer.

Whether you use bone-in or boneless chicken, this marinade will be your favorite along with any guests who happen to be a taste tester.

Our recipe consists of fresh ingredients that will not soon be forgotten and pretty addicting.

Served with our favorite No Mayo Pasta Salad and Italian Style Potato Salad you have the perfect picnic side dishes to accompany your delicious skewers.

The best part about this recipe, we have 3 cooking methods grilled, air fry, or baked there is no right or wrong cooking method so you can choose.

Grilling being our first choice especially for kabobs, the thicker pieces and bone-in take a bit longer, and seriously it's hard to wait for these to be cooked.

Just scroll to the recipe card below for recipes, both our marinade recipes and full instructions, and let's get our grill on.

tequila grilled chicken Southwestern style

Why Marinade?

Marinades soften leaner meats that tend to be dry and make tougher cuts tastier.

Marinating is also similar to brining, so this is an effective way to introduce extra moisture into meat that can get too dry when cooked, as well as making what you marinate more tender.

Overnight is recommended for the best results in flavor enhancement.

kabobs southwestern marinated in tequila

Recipes We Love

Southwestern Chicken Chili

Southwestern Potato Salad

Southwestern Tequila Chicken

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Grilled Southwestern Tequila Chicken

Grilled Southwestern Tequila Chicken

Yield: 6
Author: Claudia Lamascolo
Prep time: 6 MinCook time: 28 MinTotal time: 34 Min
This is a delicious Southwestern Style Chicken easy to make and bursting with Southwest flavors!


  • 2 (1 ounce) packages cilantro leaves
  • 5 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1 shallot, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 serrano pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 tablespoon toasted almonds
  • dash cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup tequila
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 6 chicken legs or 8 thighs, any kind of boneless meats or seafood around 1 pound 
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Fresh cilantro sprigs, for garnish
  • Lime wedges, for garnish


  1. Combine the first 10 ingredients in a blender or food processor and puree until smooth, stopping to scrape down the sides as needed. 
  2. Place the chicken pieces in a baking dish or zip-top plastic bag and pour the marinade over the chicken. 
  3. Marinate overnight, turning occasionally to coat or at least 4 hours.
  4. Heat the grill medium-high.
  5. Remove chicken from marinade, discard leftover marinade. Make sure the chicken is dry by using some clean paper towels to blot any moisture. 
  6. Season the chicken pieces with additional salt and pepper to taste on both sides. 
  7. Place the chicken on the grill ( bake or fry until juices run clear) and cook for 10 minutes on the first side. 
  8. Turn and cook an additional 10 minutes or till juices run clear. Turn chicken, (as needed to keep from burning and to get nicely formed grill marks until chicken is cooked through and tender) about 30 minutes total for thighs and legs and 40 minutes for chicken leg quarters. 
  9. Remove chicken from the grill and let stand for 5 minutes before serving. 
  10. Garnish chicken with fresh cilantro sprigs and drizzle with squeezed fresh lime wedges before serving.
  11. Note: I have used this marinade on chicken breasts and added it to a slow cooker amazing over rice or pasta!

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Southwestern Chicken, Chicken Tequila, Chicken grilled, Southwestern food recipes
southwestern recipes, chicken recipes, grilled recipes
Southwestern, Southwest, Aztec, Arizona style
Created using The Recipes Generator

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Southerwestern Bean Filling


  1. This grilled chicken looks really tasty :) Bye, have a great day

  2. That definitely does look like a fantastic chicken recipe. I'm loving the toasted almonds with the tequila. What a combination.

  3. Hi Claudia, this grilled chicken look delicious and finger licking good. Thanks for the recipe.

    Have a great week ahead, regards.

  4. Ooh, I love this combination of flavors! Your chicken must taste incredible with this marinade~

  5. Wonderful, Claudia - flavors of summer. Sounds like you had a fabulous vacation. :)

  6. Dear Claudia, That looks good. I can smell that delicious bar-b-que from here. Blessings dearest. Catherine xo

  7. This is mouth-watering! Hope the storm hasn't hit you too bad!

  8. Claudia,
    What could be better than the tequila and lime on grilled chicken?
    Love the combination of flavors. Can't wait to try this one.

  9. This is a marinade worth pinning! I don't eat anything with feathers, but this could marinate any meat, right? :)


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