Delicious pineapple chicken kabobs made with a smoky chipotle marinade, juicy pineapple and bell peppers. They're easy to put together and perfect for summertime grilling!
Meet our new favourite meal, pineapple chicken kabobs! We've been all about grilling lately - it's just the best way to cook when it's warm outside. And even if you don't have an outdoor grill or want to fire up a charcoal barbecue (or if it's pouring outside), you can achieve a similar effect on a griddle pan indoors! Or if burgers are your thing, definitely get stuck into our Jalapeño Turkey Burgers.
These pineapple chicken kabobs are packed full of flavour and they're really easy to make too, requiring just a quick stint in the fridge to marinate! They're great to prepare ahead of time to keep things easier for when you are ready to cook - an all round crowd pleaser. If you're in the market for an alternative marinade, be sure to try our Pineapple Jalapeño Marinade.
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Why you'll love these kabobs
Here are some reasons you need to make these pineapple chicken kabobs:
Easy - as with most kabobs, these are very simple to create by simply preparing and marinating the chicken in advance. We love simple!
Smoky - the chicken is marinated in a lovely sticky, sweet and smoky marinade - we go double on the smokiness with chipotle and smoked paprika. Yum!
Versatile - mix it up with a variety of vegetables or change up the protein. These kabobs would work well with anything you fancy.
Juicy - this kabob is packed with juicy chicken, pineapple and veggies. You can't go wrong with that can you?
You'll only need a few simple ingredients for these chicken kabobs, here's what you need:
Apricot jam - yes you read that correctly, the base of the marinade is jam! Apricot jam adds a subtle sweetness and fruity tang which pairs so well with the other ingredients.
Chipotle paste (chipotles en adobo) - addictively smoky and spicy, don't skip this! We make our own chipotles en adobo and blend them up into a paste, but chipotle paste from the supermarket is great too! If you really can't get chipotle paste, you could substitute some tomato puree/paste but it won't be as good! You could also use chipotles en adodo from a can - finely chop or purée them before using.
Spices - we like to add a good pinch of cayenne pepper as the heat of the chipotle paste gets tempered by the sweetness of the jam, you can adjust according to taste. You'll also need a little cumin, onion and garlic powder.
How to make pineapple chicken kabobs
It's so simple to make incredible pineapple chicken kabobs here's how:
- Start by making your marinade. It's as easy as stirring all the ingredients together!
- Cut the chicken into large, even chunks and mix with the marinade, cover and place in the fridge for at least 30 minutes or overnight. Cut up all of the other kabob ingredients in to equal sized chunks.
- Thread the ingredients onto skewers. We like using metal ones as they don't burn on the grill; if you use bamboo ones, make sure to soak them in water before using. Alternate between chunks of marinated chicken, pineapple and bell pepper. Set aside on a plate until ready to cook.
- Preheat your grill. Get your grill on medium high heat, about 200C/400F. Alternatively, get a griddle pan over medium high heat. Cook the kebabs. Place the kebabs onto your grill and cook for 15-20 minutes, carefully turning every few minutes so that every side of the kebab touches the grill and gets nicely charred and the meat is cooked through - it should read 74C or 165F on a digital thermometer.
Follow these recipe tips to success for tasty grilled pineapple chicken kabobs:
Cut all of your ingredients evenly - we're going to be cooking these kebabs quickly over high heat so you want to make sure that everything is cut to the same size so that it all cooks through at the same time.
Marinate your meat - in order to get the juiciest and most flavourful kebabs, you need to give the marinade time to work its magic! We recommend at least 30 minutes but longer is better - even overnight!
Use a ripe pineapple - the sweeter the better! Give the base of your pineapple a sniff; if it smells of pineapple, you should be good!
Making kabobs - make sure to leave a small gap between each individual ingredient to ensure even cooking. Packing them tightly together will cause some parts to cook more slowly than others.
These are delicious served with rice, guacamole and a good sprinkling of finely diced red onion and chopped cilantro. Don't forget a good squeeze of lime juice!
Fire up your grill and preheat for 10 minutes at 200C/400F. Lightly brush the grates with oil on a folded piece of tissue and grill the kabobs for 15-20 minutes, turning every few minutes until they reach 74C/165F internal temperature.
If you love these chicken kabobs, you'll need to check out our other grilling recipes. Here's some suggestions to get you started:
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Pineapple Chicken Kabobs
- Kabob skewers
- 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast, (about 500g)
- 2 bell peppers, (red/yellow/orange)
- 1 small pineapple, cut into large chunks
For the marinade
- 3 tablespoons apricot jam
- 2 tablespoons chipotle paste, chipotles en adobo
- 4 tablespoons lime juice
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
- ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper, (optional)
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
- finely chopped cilantro , coriander leaves
- finely chopped red onion
- smashed avocado or guacamole
- lime wedges
- Stir together the apricot jam, chipotle paste, lime juice, olive oil, smoked paprika, cayenne pepper (if using), cumin, garlic powder, onion powder and salt until smooth.3 tablespoons apricot jam, 2 tablespoons chipotle paste, 4 tablespoons lime juice, 2 tablespoons olive oil, 2 teaspoons smoked paprika, ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper, 1 teaspoon cumin, 1 teaspoon garlic powder, ½ teaspoon onion powder, 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
- Cut the chicken into large, even chunks, about 1 ½ inch cubes. Cut the pineapple and bell peppers into similarly sized chunks.1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast, 2 bell peppers, 1 small pineapple
- In a large bowl, mix the chicken chunks with the marinade, cover and place in the fridge for at least 30 minutes or overnight.
- Thread alternate chunks of marinated chicken, pineapple and bell pepper onto metal or (soaked) bamboo skewers. Set aside on a plate until ready to cook.
- Get your grill on medium high heat, about 200C/400F. Alternatively, get a griddle pan over medium high heat.
- Place the kebabs onto your grill and cook for 15-20 minutes, carefully turning every few minutes so that every side of the kebab touches the grill and gets nicely charred and the meat is cooked through - it should read 74C or 165F on a digital thermometer when cooked.
- Serve garnished with finely chopped coriander and red onion, with smashed avocado on the side.finely chopped cilantro, finely chopped red onion, smashed avocado or guacamole, lime wedges
- Marinate the chicken for at least 30 minutes or preferably longer if you have time.
- You can use honey or maple syrup instead of apricot jam if you prefer. Just be careful as honey burns quickly.
Pineapple and chikcen - what a combination - plus that smokiness. The barbecue will never have been so honoured! Kebab heaven.