Grilled Sticky Sweet Chicken Skewers are just that- sticky and deliciously sweet! Cubed chicken breast, tossed in a ginger-garlic sauce and then threaded onto skewers and grilled. The sauce caramelizes while on the grill, so you get the char plus the sweet glaze — which is an amazing flavor-punch to your tastebuds.
So these were delicious.
Bet you didn’t expect me to say that, did ya? I positively love when meat or seafood is grilled and then slathered in a sauce so that when it touches the grill, it caramelizes into a sticky delicious mess. I’m talking about having to lick your fingers clean kind of sticky.
I made these grilled sticky sweet chicken skewers for dinner on Tuesday afternoon because I knew we would be home late and I am adamant about not stopping anywhere for carryout.
Since these reheat beautifully, it was a no brainer. I served them with coconut rice, roasted broccoli and extra sauce on the side.
To Make The Sticky Sweet Sauce You Will Need:
- brown sugar
- tamari (or use low-sodium soy sauce)
- rice vinegar
- toasted sesame oil
- red pepper flakes
If using wooden skewers then soak them for 20 minutes to an hour so they don’t burn up too quickly.
In a medium bowl, measure and add 3/4 cup ketchup (store-bought or homemade), 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1/2 cup of low-sodium tamari, 2 tablespoons rice vinegar, 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil and 3/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes – or more or less to taste.
Mix well until all the ingredients are thoroughly combined and the sauce is thick.
Add 1-1/2 tablespoons of olive oil to a skillet and sauté 1/3 cup finely chopped shallot until tender. Then add in 2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger and 4 large cloves of garlic that have been minced.
Cook for an additional 2 minutes before pouring in the sauce. Simmer on low for 8 to 10 minutes.
YUM! and it smells amazing too!
Cool the sauce completely before using. I pour it into a smaller bowl and set that into a larger bowl filled with ice. Stir the sauce occasionally to release steam until cooled– this way it takes about 30 minutes to cool.
Once the sauce has cooled, toss 1/2 cup of it with the chicken.
Reserve 1/2 cup for brushing on the chicken when on the grill. The remaining sauce can be saved and then served with the grilled chicken skewers.
Clean your grill grates, spray or wipe with oil before reheating to about 400 degrees. Meanwhile, thread the chicken onto skewers.
If using wooden skewers soak for at least 20 minutes to an hour.
Once the grill has preheated, place the skewers onto the grates.
Cover and cook for 5 to 7 minutes. Use tongs to turn the skewers over.
Then baste the chicken skewers with more of the sauce.
Again, cover and cook for 4 to 5 minutes or until the chicken is fully cooked. Turn and brush one more time before taking the skewers off of the grill.
The smoky char mixed with the sweet sauce is indescribable!
These skewers went fast! In the past I’ve served them with rice, salad, grilled corn or roasted broccoli– but really you can do anything you’d like.
Enjoy! And if you give this Grilled Sticky Sweet Chicken Skewers recipe a try, let me know! Snap a photo and tag me on twitter or instagram!
Grilled Sticky Sweet Chicken Skewers
- 3/4 cup ketchup, homemade or store-bought
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup low-sodium tamari, or low-sodium soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
- 3/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes, more or less to taste
- 1½ tablespoons olive oil
- 1/3 cup finely chopped shallot
- 4 cloves garlic
- 2 tablespoons ginger paste
- 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breast halves
- Combine ketchup, sugar, tamari, vinegar, sesame oil and red pepper flakes.
- Heat a 10-inch skillet on medium-low, add olive oil and shallots and sauté until tender. Add garlic and ginger and cook for 1 minute before pouring in the sauce. Simmer for 8 to 10 minutes then transfer to a dish to cool completely. (see notes)
- Once the sauce has cooled, pour 1/2 to 3/4 cup over the chicken and toss to coat. Reserve 1/2 cup for brushing and the remaining sauce can be served on the side.
- Grease grill grates with olive oil before preheating to 400°.
- Thread the chicken onto skewers (soak wood skewers for 20 minutes prior to using) and place on the grill, cover and cook for 5-7 minutes.
- Use tongs to turn the chicken skewers, brush with sauce. Cover and continue to cook for 5 to 7 more minutes. Turn, brush again with more sauce and remove to a platter to serve.
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Would this recipe work for the stovetop as well?
Yes a grill pan can be used. I would also use the broiler at the end so the sauce gets caramelized and sticky!
Made it for a group gathering & it was a huge hit. I did add to the recipe, 1/4 cup of bourbon & 1 Tsp of Cayenne Pepper to spice it up further! It did a great job of caramelizing on the chicken when cooked on the grill.
Awesome! Love your additions to the recipe!
⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ This was the best sauce!!(I added a tablespoon of oyster sauce, but probably didn’t need to) I marinated chicken & shrimp for kabobs. I will definitely be making this sauce again and adding it to my rice noodle bowls. Thank you for posting!
Thank you, Kimmi!
You said these reheat beautifully, but you didn’t say how you reheated them. Can you tell me your secret?
Is there any way to make these in the oven………..BBQ on the fritz! Thanks.
How long do you marinate them for?
Made this yesterday and it is one of the nicest chicken skewer recipes I have ever made! I made it on a grill pan and cooked the chicken over varying medium to medium-high heat and the sauce caramelised beautifully! It was so delicious and sticky, plus an easy recipe to follow. I will definitely make again!
Can I marinate this overnight?