This meal…oh, this meal.  It is of the happy accident variety.  Well, less “accident” and more “I stopped one day short on my meal planning and am suddenly scrounging to create something resembling dinner.”  Waiting until the last possible moment to start dinner and searching through the freezer and pantry…  If only all my in-a-pinch experiments turned out this well.

I prefer to use a mixture of chicken breasts and chicken thighs for the meat to ensure plenty of flavor and moisture, but you can use all of one or the other if you like.  The marinade is a simple one with chipotle, lime juice and a few other spices but if you are spice-averse, don’t worry…the spices provide flavor here but no real heat.  The slightly sweet, slightly tangy avocado cream sauce is a wonderful compliment to the smoky flavor of the chicken, not to mention good enough to eat with a spoon, or tortilla chips if you have some.


For the chicken: 
Juice of 2 limes
½ cup of vegetable or canola oil
1 tsp. kosher salt
¾ tsp. chili powder
¾ tsp. paprika
½ tsp. cumin
¼ tsp. cayenne pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp. brown sugar
1 chipotle in adobo, seeded and minced
2 lbs. chicken breasts and/or thighs, cut into 1½-2 inch pieces
Minced fresh cilantro, for serving

For the avocado cream sauce: 
1 avocado, split and pitted
½ cup low-fat greek yogurt
1 clove garlic, minced
Juice of 1 lime
Salt and pepper, to taste


  • 01

    In a medium bowl or a baking dish/pie plate, combine the lime juice, oil, spices, garlic, brown sugar, and chipotle.  Whisk together to combine.  Add the chicken pieces to the marinade and mix well to ensure that they are all coated and mostly submerged.  Cover, refrigerate, and let marinate for 30-60 minutes.

  • 02

    Meanwhile, heat a grill to medium-high and oil the grates.  When the chicken is done marinating, thread the pieces onto skewers for grilling.  (If using wooden skewers, be sure to soak them first to prevent charring/burning.)  Dispose of the excess marinade.  Place the kabobs on the grill and let cook, turning once or twice, until all sides are slightly browned and the internal temperature registers 160˚ F on an instant-read thermometer.  Remove to a plate and let rest 5-10 minutes.  Sprinkle with minced fresh cilantro, if desired.

  • 03

    To make the sauce, combine the avocado, yogurt, garlic and lime juice in the bowl of a food processor or a blender.  Process until smooth.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.  Serve alongside the kabobs for dipping.
  • Rayna W.

    I love some delicious, easy marinades! This looks delicious!

  • HalfBakedHarvest

    All my favorite flavors! Perfect summer meal right here! YUM!

  • grandbabycakes

    These kabobs looks so flavorful. I want to put these on the grill!

  • Avocado cream sauce? Say whaaaaaa? Adding this one to the menu soon.

  • Beth

    Looks great! And I’m pretty sure I could eat that sauce with a spoon too. :)

  • Erin @ The Spiffy Cookie

    Definitely a winner with that sauce. And I happen to have a can of chipotles in adobo just waiting to be made into this!

  • Shobelyn Dayrit

    I am going to try it tomorrow

  • ajung08

    Oh my goodness. That looks amazingly good. I can’t wait to try this!

  • Caroline L.

    I always love green sauces, it turns out :) This looks like a perfect summer meal – so excited to be eating something like this while out on the back patio!

  • Denise Wesely

    I wonder how this would taste with pork tenderloin cubes instead of chicken. No chick in house, but plenty of pork tenderloin.

  • Karen

    Yum. Yum! I made this tonight and even my kids ate the chicken! I have to admit, they may have been bribed with the prospect of homemade cotton candy, but to have my picky 4-year-old eat all her chicken is a huge success. Since the kids didn’t like the sauce, I’ll add jalapeno next time. I love having a new chicken recipe in the rotation. Thanks!

  • Lauren

    Made these tonight… amazing! I seriously don’t think my life would be the same without your blog. You have helped shape my experience with cooking and inspired me to make more from scratch. Thank you for what you do! :)

  • annieseats

    Aww, this is my favorite kind of comment. I’m so glad you enjoyed it, and that you’ve been inspired here. That makes me so, so happy!

  • Vicki Bensinger

    What a nice dish to serve for dinner. The avocados are so good right now and your avocado cream looks creamy and delicious. I look forward to trying this recipe. I might even make it tomorrow night especially since I just purchased some nice ripe avocados.

  • Laura Campbell

    I love the idea of that gorgeous avocado yoghurt sauce! Spicy, creamy deliciousness. Great recipe Annie!

  • Jamie Stone

    Love this! Just might have to throw these on the grill this weekend!

  • nessa

    Everything about this is screaming “Eat me”!

  • Gina Wolff DaMetz

    I have to agree with Lauren! The yummy things that come out of my kitchen have usually originated from this blog!! Annie’s Eats is my go to source for recipes! My husband has had to live away from home while beginning a new job for a year now, and he gets home tomorrow, so I have decided to make these wonderful looking kabobs for dinner! Thank you, Annie!

  • Kendra

    Oh, my! This looks to die for! Do you think leaving the chicken in the marinade overnight instead of just 30-60 minutes would be ok?

  • Moira

    Now I know just what to do with the chicken thighs sitting in my freezer!

  • annieseats

    No, the acid in the citrus juice will over-tenderize the meat and it can become mushy. 30-60 minutes is best.

  • annieseats

    I love to hear this. Thank you so much!

  • Angela

    This looks amazing. I love your blog. Not only is the food beautiful, it is delicious.

  • Amy

    I made this the same night that you posted it because I was super excited that I already had the ingredients. It turned out amazing! My boyfriend immediately said that I should make it again some time. It also inspired me to take all of the dry ingredients in the marinade and use as a dry rub on fish the following night to use up the rest of the avocado cream sauce. That’s what I love about your blog, that I get more ideas than just the ones you post. Inspired. Thanks Annie!

  • Chelsea Wagenaar

    I made this last night and the chicken was SO delicious! My husband loved it too, and probably would have poured the avocado cream sauce on his breakfast this morning if he could have. I was thinking the marinade would probably also be delicious on regular grilled chicken breasts, too, not just kabobs (though kabobs are more fun!). I’ll definitely be making this again. Thank you so much! I read your blog every day.

  • The avocado sauce is similar to one we use for fried asparagus so I have to try this.

  • Jennifer

    This looks great. Do you have the nutritional values on your recipes? I didn’t see it so wasn’t sure if I was just missing it.

  • Nonsense

    This was so delicious, I made it twice this weekend! Once as written (with mushroom/pepper/onion kabobs on the side), and the second time I doubled the marinade and put half over some sliced red potatoes and onions and the other half over sliced (but not “kabobbed”) chicken and cooked both in seperate foil packets. Divine both times.

  • Liz N.

    Oh my goodness, this looks so good! We just had our belongings shipped a few days ago and the first thing I wanted unpacked was our grill! I can’t wait to make this recipe this week! I’ve missed your blog so much these past couple of weeks due to work/unpacking/moving to a new city. Knowing your blog is there and ready for me to pick up reading is so comforting to me!

  • Brooke Rodgers

    My goodness, this was quite possibly the best chicken I’ve ever eaten!! Seriously. Loved it that much! Yours is the only food blog where I’ve liked every.single.thing I’ve made. Thanks for being reliable. And AMAZE-BALLS! :)

  • annieseats

    Aw, thank you! This makes me so happy :)

  • Jenn V

    I used this with chicken wings on the grill and it was excellent! Seriously cannot wait to make this again!

  • Lori Russo

    I made this twice too and yes pork loin cubes are outrageous made this way.

  • KittyGlitter

    Made this last night and it is AMAZING!

  • MelissaDawg

    i have chipotle tabasco sauce – how much would replace the chipotle pepper in adobe sauce?

  • annieseats

    That’s not really a valid substitute in this situation. For best results, I would recommend buying the ingredient called for.

  • Emma Hicks

    OMG this look so good I am drooling

  • Kelly

    Made this tonight and it was delicious! Thanks!!

  • Jess

    This was AMAZING! I made this with lime cilantro rice and side salad. My picky 6 year old devoured it! Thank you for a great recipe!

  • Lauren

    Oh Annie, you’ve done it again!
    I’m pretty skilled in burning things on the grill, so I put my chicken sticks in the oven with veggie sticks. They were still amazing. My dinner date, who loves avocados too much, wanted to eat the sauce off the spoon. I even put the sauce in my scrambled eggs this morning!
    This is why you’re my only recipe source. Thank you!

  • annieseats

    Wonderful! So glad they were a hit :) Thanks for letting me know.

  • Marlene Mullowney

    Made these for dinner tonight, what a perfect and delish recipe!

  • So good! This recipe has made the summer menu rotation. The Avo cream sauce is delicious. I also like to serve your cilantro lime rice with this recipe.

  • Kathleen A Kreiman

    Sounds delicious!