“Pad Thai” Grilled Chicken

I picked up some tamarind paste from the grocery store this week and I thought it would taste really good on some grilled chicken. THEN I thought… you know what else uses tamarind? Pad Thai! And thus, pad thai chicken was born. This recipe is as easy as finding tamarind paste. Once you have the tangy elixir, you simply mix together a quick marinade (which is just pad thai sauce), let your chicken rest, and then grill em up. Don’t have a grill? The broiler works equally well.

Tip: tamarind is a common ingredient in southeast asian, mexican, indian, pakistani, middle eastern, and african cuisine. Chances are if you have a local market in your area, you can find it.

Serves 4

  • 8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 2 tbsp tamarind paste
  • 2 tbsp oyster sauce 
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp shrimp paste (optional, but good)
  • 1 tsp chili flakes 
  • 2 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • ⅛ cup canola oil
  • ⅓ cup peanuts, finely chopped
  • Pinch of brown sugar
  • Sliced scallions and lime wedges for topping 

  1. Mix together the tamarind, oyster sauce, sugar, shrimp paste, chili flakes, fish sauce, garlic powder, and oil. 
  2. Pour the marinade over the chicken, mix to coat, and place in the fridge. Let chicken marinade for at least 1 hour, ideally 3-4. 

3. When you are ready to start cooking, heat a small pan over medium low heat. Add the crushed peanuts and stir until toasted. Add a pinch of brown sugar and stir until combined. Remove from heat. 

4. Cook your chicken either on the grill or in the broiler, see specific instructions below.

5. Top with peanuts, scallions, lime wedges, and enjoy 🙂

Grill instructions

  1. Preheat the grill.
  2. Cook the chicken for 5-7 minutes each side, or more. Until internal reaches about 160-165. Let rest for 5 minutes. 

Broiler instructions

  1. Preheat the broiler and move an oven rack to the highest setting. 
  2. Place marinated chicken on a lined baking sheet. 
  3. Broil for 7-10 minutes, or until the internal temperature reached 160-165.