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Thai Chicken Satay with Peanut Chili Sauce

Two skewers of charred, grilled chicken, yellow rice with cucumber, tomato and orange bell pepper slices, on a round white plate along with a tan sauce in a square white ramekin and all garnished with lime wedges, red Thai chilies and cilantro.

Hold onto your hat because it is way more popular than I had expected. It was listed at 14th on the World’s 50 Best Foods List compiled by CNN through a Facebook poll of over 35,000 votes in September of 2011. Chicken Satay (or Sate, Satai, Satti) beat fried chicken, potato chips, fish and chips, fajitas and so many other delicious foods. Not gonna lie, I like chicken satay better than any of the previously mentioned foods. 

Close up of two skewers of charred, grilled chicken, yellow rice with cucumber, tomato and orange bell pepper slices.

Is Chicken Satay Easy to Make at Home?

Yes. 100% yes. It’s very easy and can be cooked on an indoor grill, outdoor grill, or even the oven. I mostly make my Chicken Satay Recipe on my indoor grill because I eat it all year long and sometimes it’s too cold to grill outdoors. With minimal prep and a cooking time of only 10-15 minutes, it’s a great meal to make at home. 

Should You Use Chicken Thighs or Chicken Breasts? 

Either will work, but chicken thighs are always going to have to most flavor and stay juicy as they are much harder to overcook than chicken breasts. Cook both and decide for yourself. You can thank me later when you become a thigh lover (if you’re not already)

Two skewers of charred, grilled chicken, yellow rice with cucumber, tomato and orange bell pepper slices, on a round white plate along with a tan sauce in a square white ramekin and all garnished with lime wedges, red Thai chilies and cilantro. There's a nutcracker in the foreground who looks like a chef.

Tip: 

If using wooden skewers, you’ll need to soak them in water for a minimum of 30 minutes before putting them on a grill to prevent them from burning. I like to use metal skewers because I don’t need to soak them, I never have to wonder if I ran out of skewers, and I don’t have to buy them over and over. Less waste, less money, less time, less worry. Also, square or flat skewers are better than round because the meat won’t spin around the skewer as you’re trying to flip it. 

Two skewers of charred, grilled chicken, yellow rice with cucumber, tomato and orange bell pepper slices, on a round white plate along with a tan sauce in a square white ramekin and all garnished with lime wedges, red Thai chilies and cilantro.

Chicken Satay Marinade

Stacey Mincoff
Thai Chicken Satay & Peanut Chili Sauce is one of the World’s 50 Best Foods and easy to make at home as delicious as a meal or an appetizer.
Total Time 1 hr
Course Appetizer, Main Course
Cuisine Asian
Servings 8 Skewers
Calories 872 kcal

Equipment

  • indoor or outdoor grill

Ingredients
  

  • 1 1/2 Pounds Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs (or two breasts, cut into bite size pieces)(750g)

Chicken Satay Marinade

  • 5.6 Ounces 165ml Can of Unsweetened Coconut Milk (or 1/2 of 13.66 Ounce/403ml can, reserving other half for peanut chili sauce)
  • 2 1/2 Teaspoons Minced Garlic (2-3 large cloves)
  • 1 Tablespoon Soy Sauce
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Cumin (ground)
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Coriander (ground)
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Dried Ginger (ground)

Thai Peanut Chili Sauce

  • 1/3 Cup Peanut Butter
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Soy Sauce
  • 1 Teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes more if you want it spicier
  • 5.6 oz/165ml Can of Unsweetened Coconut Milk (or 1/2 of 13.66 Ounce/403ml can reserved from above marinade)
  • 1 Tablespoon Dark Brown Sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon Fish Sauce
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Coriander (ground)
  • 2 Tablespoons Lime Juice (about one lime)
  • Salt or soy sauce to taste

Garnish

  • 1 English Cucumber
  • Lime Wedges
  • Cilantro
  • Red Thai Chiles (optional – careful, they are HOT)

Instructions
 

  • Slice chicken into strips or bite size pieces.
  • Mix together all the marinade ingredients.
  • Add chicken to this, coating each piece and refrigerate for 30 minutes. If using wood skewers, soak them in water for 30 minutes before assembly.
  • Meanwhile, in a small sauce pan, stir all the peanut dipping sauce ingredients together except lime juice and heat on medium until thickened a bit (about 10-15 minutes).
  • Remove from heat and stir in the lime juice. May thin sauce additionally with water if needed.
  • Place chicken on skewers. If cut into strips, weave the skewers in and out of strips from one end to another, or place skewers through the center of the bite size pieces.
  • While rice is cooking, chicken is marinating and wood skewers (if using) are soaking, cut up your garnish and have it ready.
  • Heat grill (indoor or outdoor) on high. Brush grates with a little bit of oil and cook skewers for about 10 minutes (flipping halfway through) until juices are clear, or until internal temp reads 165°F.
  • Serve with Thai Peanut Chili Sauce, Thai Yellow Rice. Garnish with cucumber slices, limes wedges, cilantro and additional Thai red chilies (optional)

Notes

You may also top or add chopped peanuts to the sauce and/or plate. I don’t do this because my husband likes it better without the additional peanut pieces.

Nutrition

Calories: 872kcalCarbohydrates: 23gProtein: 27gFat: 81gSaturated Fat: 65gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3gMonounsaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 81mgSodium: 499mgPotassium: 1153mgFiber: 8gSugar: 13gVitamin A: 139IUVitamin C: 11mgCalcium: 73mgIron: 6mg
Keyword Appetizer, Asian, Chicken Satay, Grill, Main, summer
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Step-by-Step Instructions

Slice chicken into strips or bite size pieces.

Boneless, skinless chicken thighs being cut into strip on a white plastic cutting board. There's a nutcracker who looks like a chef in the foreground.

Mix together all the marinade ingredients.

Add chicken to this, coating each piece and refrigerate for 30 minutes. If using wood skewers, soak them in water for 30 minutes before assembly.

chicken thigh pieces in a glass bowl with a tab marinade and a wooden spatula. There's a nutcracker in the foreground who looks like a chef.

Meanwhile, in a small sauce pan, stir all the peanut dipping sauce ingredients together except lime juice and heat on medium until thickened a bit (about 10-15 minutes).

creamy tan sauce in a small sauce pan being stirred with a wooden spatula with a red rubber tip.

While rice is cooking, chicken is marinating and wood skewers (if using) are soaking, cut up your garnish and have it ready.

Cherry tomatoes cut in half on a wood cutting board with a chef knife and two small round white bowls filled with cucumber slices and cilantro. There's a nutcracker in the backround who looks like a chef.
Cucumber slices on a wood cutting board, along with a vegetable peeler and a chef knife.
Lime wedges on a wood cutting board.
Five small round white bowls with separate ingredients (orange bell peppers, cilantro, chopped green onions, red cherry tomato haves and sliced cucumbers) on a granite counter top. There's also a copper measuring cup filled with frozen green peas.

Heat grill (indoor or outdoor) on high. Brush grates with a little bit of oil and cook skewers for about 10 minutes (flipping halfway through) until juices are clear, or until internal temp reads 165°F.

Charred chicken skewers on an indoor grill.
White woman with red hair wearing a white apron and holding up a glass of red wine while she's grilling chicken skewers on an outdoor grill. There's a pool and a gazebo in the background.
Always make sure the chef has a cocktail while she’s grilling.
Eight chicken skewers, four spit short bok choys cooking on an outdoor grill.
Another side dish option is grilled short choy or baby bok choy.

Serve with Thai Peanut Chili Sauce, Thai Yellow Rice. Garnish with cucumber slices, limes wedges, cilantro and additional Thai red chilies (optional)

Close up of two skewers of charred, grilled chicken, yellow rice with cucumber, tomato and orange bell pepper slices.


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