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This Tex-Mex Grilled Chicken has all those classic restaurant flavors made right at home. To me, this is the perfect way to marinate and grill chicken and I know it will soon be yours too.
As a Texan, I have enjoyed lots of delicious grilled chicken from so many Tex-Mex restaurants over the years, and each always tastes better than the next. Whether served in tacos, lettuce cups, or over greens, the chicken is always bursting with flavor. Because of the classic flavor and how versatile the chicken can be when served, I decided to make my own rendition at home.
To start, I pound the chicken to not only get it to be a uniform thickness but also to begin to tenderize the chicken. Next, I marinate the chicken with a variety of dried spices as well as olive oil, garlic, and tamari. You may wonder why tamari, but it adds a delicious umami bite that brings all of the flavors together. Trust me on this! While you can marinate this for just two hours, you could choose to marinate overnight for even more tender and flavorful chicken.
To further flavor the chicken, I chose to grill the chicken, poblanos, and onion over a charcoal grill instead of a gas grill. Utilizing Mesquite Wood Chips in a charcoal grill just amplifies the flavor so beautifully, so if you have this option I highly recommend it, but a gas grill works perfectly fine as well. If you need help with starting your charcoal grill, you can find more information here.
After your chicken and veggies are grilled, the options are endless on how you can serve. I love setting up a taco bar with all kinds of toppings, like sour cream, cheese, and salsa verde, so everyone can have a build-your-own moment, but the chicken and veggies are also great in bowls over rice, in lettuce cups, or over a bed of romaine for a fresh salad.
No matter how you serve this Tex-Mex Grilled Chicken, I know you will love it and turn to it often for a classic recipe!
Tex-Mex Grilled Chicken
For the Chicken:
- 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- ¼ cup tamari soy sauce, or coconut aminos
- 4 garlic cloves minced
- 1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne
- Mesquite Wood Chunks I use Cowboy Brand
For the Grilled Veggies:
- 2 poblano peppers
- 1 jalapeno
- 1 large white onion sliced into ½-inch rounds
Optional for Serving:
- Flour tortillas
- Shredded cheese
- Sour cream
- Salsa verde
- 1 lime cut into wedges
Marinate the Chicken:
- Place the chicken breasts on a cutting board and cover with parchment paper or plastic wrap. Using a meat mallet or the bottom of a heavy skillet, pound the chicken until it is a uniform ½-inch thickness. Pat dry with paper towels.
- In a large food storage container, whisk together the olive oil, tamari, garlic, salt, chili powder, garlic powder, oregano, cumin, paprika and cayenne until well combined. Add the chicken and toss until well coated in the marinade. Cover and let marinade in the fridge for at least 2 hours, or up to overnight.
Prep the Grill:
- Start your charcoal grill. (If you’re new to grilling, here is how I start my Charcoal Grill).
- Once your charcoal is lit and in the grill, place about 8 Mesquite wood chunks directly on the ready charcoal. Cover and let grill preheat over medium-high heat and allow the mesquite wood to start smoking (about 400F). Oil the grill grates (to do this, dip a wadded paper towel in a little oil and, using tongs, wipe the oil evenly over the grate. Be careful not to use too much oil, because that's a sure fire way to start a good flare-up—a little goes a long way here.)
Cook the Chicken and Veggies:
- Add the chicken, poblano peppers, and jalapeno to the center of grill then add the onion slices on the side of the grill so that they are not directly over the flame. Cook the chicken over the heat for 4-5 minutes per side, until grill marks appear and the chicken is cooked through. The poblano, jalapeno peppers, and onion should take about 3-4 minutes per side. The lid should be closed throughout the cooking process.
- Transfer the chicken and veggies to a cutting board and let rest for 5-8 minutes before slicing and serving. Slice the chicken, poblanos, and jalapeno and add to a platter with the grilled onions.
- Serve with desired garnishes to build tacos, bowls, or even over salads!
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.
Food Photography and Styling by Eat Love Eats.