Quick easy and delicious Vietnamese inspired grilled lemongrass chicken thighs, served with an optional Vietnamese cucumber salad.
Why you’ll love this lemongrass chicken!
- Boneless chicken thighs are always moist and flavourful.
- Together with the optional cucumber salad, this is a great Summer meal.
- This lemongrass chicken is super delicious and incredibly easy!
Ingredients and Substitutions
Chicken – I’ve opted for boneless, skinless chicken thighs, which are always moist and flavourful. Boneless chicken breasts are an option, but I would butterfly them, for easy grilling and less chance of drying out.
Lemongrass – I love to use the lemongrass in the tubes for this recipe. Of course, you can use lemongrass stalks. You’ll need to peel them back until you get to the white part and then scrape that out to use.
How to grill the chicken
Grill pan in the oven – this is my go-to grilling method when it’s not good weather for BBQing. Simply pre-heat the grill pan in a 450F oven and then add the chicken to the pan. Cook in the 450F oven, for about 20-25 minutes, flipping over halfway through cooking.
No grill pan? You can use a cast iron skillet for the same results, but without the grill marks.
BBQ grill – preheat the BBQ to about 450F. Place the chicken on the upper rack of the BBQ and close the lid. Cook for 8-10 minutes per side, or until cooked through. You can finish on the main rack to crisp it up more, if needed.
If you’d like to use the leftover marinade to baste the chicken while it cooks, you need to boil it briefly before using. Simply pop into a saucepan or use the microwave to bring it to a boil, then use to marinate the chicken while it cooks, for extra flavourful chicken.
What to serve with lemongrass chicken
I’ve included an easy and delicious Vietnamese inspired cucumber salad recipe, which is the perfect accompaniment for lemongrass chicken.
Any green vegetable or Asian inspired salad would be a nice side for this chicken, as would a bit of fragrant rice.
Get the Recipe: Grilled Lemongrass Chicken Thighs
- 6-8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
Lemongrass Chicken Marinade:
- 3 Tablespoons lemongrass paste, or scraped from white part of stalks
- 3 Tablespoons fish sauce
- 2 Tablespoons soy sauce, low sodium recommended
- 2 Tablespoons lime juice
- 2 Tablespoons light brown sugar
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 teaspoons ginger paste, or 1 tsp fresh ginger minced
- 1 teaspoon Sambal Oelek, optional
Vietnamese Cucumber Salad (optional):
- 1/2 large English cucumber, sliced in half lengthwise and sliced into half moon shape
- 3 Tablespoons rice vinegar
- 2 Tablespoons mirin, or 2 tsp of honey
- 2 Tablespoons honey
- 2 teaspoons vegetable oil
- 2 teaspoons sesame oil
- 1/2 teaspoon Asian chili garlic sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Pinch Red pepper flakes
- For the chicken: unfold the chicken thighs and press to flatten. Place in a bowl or a plastic zipper bag.
- Mix together the lemongrass chicken marinade ingredients. Pour into bowl or bag and toss to coat well. Cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour and up to 8 hours to marinate.
- *If you'd like to use the leftover marinade to baste the chicken, transfer to a small saucepan and bring to a boil before using. You can also microwave it until boiling, then use it to baste the chicken while it cooks.
- For oven grilling: Place a grill pan (or cast iron skillet, if you don't have a grill pan) into the oven and preheat the oven with the pan inside to 450F. Once preheated, remove the pan, spray with cooking spray and place chicken onto the hot pan. Return to the oven and cook for 20-25 minutes, flipping the chicken half-way through cooking. Cook until chicken is golden in colour and registers 165F internal temperature.
- For BBQ grilling: preheat BBQ to about 450F. Place chicken onto the top rack, then close the lid. Cook for about 8 minutes, then flip over. Close the lid again and cook another 5-8 minutes, or until chicken is cooked to 165F internal temperature. You can finish the chicken on the man grill rack if it needs a bit more colour.
- For the optional cucumber salad: combine all the salad ingredients in a medium bowl. Toss to coat well, then cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour or up to 8 hours.
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Hi! I’m Jennifer, a home cook schooled by trial and error and almost 40 years of getting dinner on the table! I love to share my favourite recipes, both old and new, together with lots of tips and tricks to hopefully help make your home cooking enjoyable, stress free, rewarding and of course, delicious!