Chicken Satay

Another installment of food on a stick, thanks to inspiration from buddies Matt & Adam and their book titled…uh…On a Stick…which is always more fun to eat than food on a fork. Plus you get to play sword fight with the sticks after you eat (you do that too, right!???)

Grilled Chicken Satay is super easy to make – 1 bowl, 1 knife and 1 cutting board. Oh, and don’t forget the sticks too.

Instead of making a peanut dipping sauce, I decided to include the sauce flavor in the marinade and top with chopped peanuts. So imagine this: salty (peanut, soy sauce), sweet (brown sugar), garlicky and gingery, crunchy and a hit of tang (rice vinegar). You can also include a spoonful of hot chili sauce if you’d like.

How to make Chicken Satay

The ingredients for the chicken satay marinade are


If you’ve never used rice vinegar before, it’s one of my must-have pantry items for Asian foods. Look for “rice vinegar” on the label – it’s easy to confuse it with “rice wine,” but they are very different products. One is a tangy vinegar, and the other is cooking wine. 

There are two kinds of rice vinegar: regular and seasoned (or sweetened). You can use either in this recipe, but I prefer the regular, since we’re using brown sugar in the marinade. You’ll have to read the label carefully or just look for the color differences on the label. Mitsukan (a client of moi) uses BLUE for unsweetened or regular rice vinegar and RED for sweetened or seasoned.

And as for the peanut butter – chunky or smooth, it’s up to you! I’m a chunky gal myself. And I don’t mean the size of my thighs.

Start by slicing your chicken into long, thin strips. You can use either chicken breast or thighs (I prefer dark meat, but it’s totally up to you!). Try to get the chicken strips all similar in thickness (uh, actually thinness) so that they’ll cook evenly. See how thin I like to slice? 

If they’re not quite thin enough, smash ’em with your chef’s knife. Lay your chef’s knife flat on the chicken and use the heel of your hand to pound the strip flat.


Mix your marinade and let the chicken marinate from 30 minutes to overnight in the refrigerator. 

While the chicken is marinating, soak the bamboo skewers in water to prevent burning. If bamboo sticks burn, they’ll break. Then you’ll have food on a broken stick. 🙂

Just before you’re ready to cook the chicken satay, you’ll thread the strips on bamboo skewers just like this:

The chicken satay grills up really fast, so cook them right before you want to serve.

About 4 minutes each side over hot flames!

Top with chopped peanuts and serve!



Chicken Satay Recipe

Servings: 6 Prep Time: 15 minutes Cook Time: 10 minutes

Optional: Include a spoonful of your favorite Asian chili sauce (or even a few dashes of sriracha or Tabasco)


2 pounds boneless chicken breast or thigh
1-2 garlic cloves, finely minced
1 teaspoon finely grated fresh ginger
1 teaspoon rice vinegar, Mitsukan brand preferred
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 teaspoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon peanut butter
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
1/2 cup dry roasted peanuts, chopped
bamboo skewers, soaked in water


1. In a large bowl, combine the garlic, ginger, rice vinegar, soy sauce, brown sugar, peanut butter and sesame oil. Set the marinade aside.

2. Slice the chicken breasts into long, thin strips. Add the chicken strips to the marinade and mix well. Refrigerate 1 hour or for up to overnight.

3. When ready to cook, preheat the grill - high heat on one side and low heat on the other side. Thread the chicken strips onto the bamboo skewers, keeping the chicken as flat as you can so that they cook evenly. Grill the chicken skewers, starting on the high heat side for 4 minutes each side. The move the skewers to the low heat side, cover and finish cooking, about 1-3 minutes more, depending on the thickness of your chicken.

4. Serve with chopped roasted peanuts sprinkled on top.




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Comments 42

  1. Allyn

    These look so delicious, but sigh, my man is allergic to nuts.
    He’s also allergic to dairy. Good thing he’s an amazing cook. It (pretty much) makes up for all of my new dietary restrictions.
    I do have lots of fun with dairy alternatives though. Coconut milk is my BFF.

  2. Sherri M

    Love this. Made something similar a couple of weeks ago. Boys loved it, husband hated it. SIGH…. but if its Thai flavored, its mine!

  3. Karla

    I am having an “On a Stick” party in a week! I should make this…I’ll add it to my list. By the way, I love your cutting board.

  4. Carla @ Gluten Free Recipe Box

    Now this is my type of recipe! However, I don’t know where I put my skewers. I have purchased them twice and because I don’t keep them on hand normally I place them somewhere in my kitchen where I cannot find them. This has happened twice. I haven’t looked real hard for them thinking they’ll turn up eventually, but they don’t. That may give a clue…no matter, I’m hunting them down now. It’s grilling season and I just have to make these! Thanks for the kick in the pants! 🙂

  5. Kim in MD

    I love chicken satay! I like to serve them with peanut sauce…yum! I am going to make these for dinner tonight. Thanks, Jaden!

  6. love cooking

    I love satay. Always have it at hawker center. It always come with peanut sauce, raw cucumber and onions. Of course, also the “rice” called “ketupat”. 🙂

  7. Rezia

    Can I omit the soy sauce in the marinade? I love asian food but I’m allergic to soy. Love your blog by the way 😀

  8. Corina

    This is something I’ve been meaning to make for a long time. They look gorgeous and I love the healthy looking tomato salad on the side.

  9. Marilyn Jacobs

    Would it be possible to cook this in the broiler or oven? Would it be the same cooking time?

  10. Dani G.

    We’re having these with Thai dinner we’re making for our neighbors tonight. I’ll do the book review for you soon, too, Jaden! Thanks for all the good tips and recipes. Loved your driving post – we were just teaching teens to drive a pick-up. ARGGGGGGGH. I can so relate to these heart-stopping moments. LOL.

  11. Jeanette

    My kids love Chicken Satay, and anything on a stick is so fun to eat. Like how you incorporated the sauce ingredients in the marinade and topped these with chopped peanuts for crunch!

  12. Trish

    Made these for friends, and their four year old boy consumed a record amount of protein at one sitting (five).

    The nuts on top are a great touch, my friend said!

  13. James

    Hi Jayden, you should taste the original chicken satay in Indonesia.. It tastes exceptionally delicious!! 🙂


  15. Kate

    The flavours in this chicken satay are awesome. Sweet, salty, ginger, garlic and then I added a bit of chilli powder for some spiciness. I served it on a snack platter for my husband and his friends watching the football and it was a winner even if their team wasn’t.

  16. Zov

    One of my favorite things to make is satays. This recipe was delicious and my family loved the. The only I would do differently is to soak the wooden skewers I cold water for about 10-15minute so they don’t burn.

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  18. Shann

    My son is allergic to nuts too. He can eat soybutter and it tastes really good in this dish! It adds a nice “nutty” roasted flavor, without the nuts! 🙂

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  23. the greasy arabian dream


  24. Nudrat

    Can you recommend what other options for cooking besides a grill? Can you bake these in an oven? toaster oven? George Foreman grill? And if so, for how long? It’s about 118 degrees in AZ so we’re not much for grilling outside until it cools down a bit.

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