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Easy Weeknight Grilled Adobo Chicken Thighs

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Easy Weeknight Grilled Adobo Chicken Thighs are a no-fail solution to get everyone around the dinner table. They’re juicy, tender, full of flavor and go with any of your favorite side dishes!

grilled adobo chicken and vegetable skewers

Grilled Adobo Chicken Thighs Make for Easy Weeknight Dinners

This is a recipe we make a couple times every month, and the one my son always suggests when I ask “What do you want for dinner this week?”

It starts with a simple seasoning made from pantry ingredients. Grilling will impart the best smoky flavor (in my humble opinion), but could also be made indoors on a grill pan, cast iron skillet or baked in the oven. 

Chicken thighs are really hard to screw up, and the flavors in this recipe make it a perfect protein for pairing with so. many. things!

grilled vegetables and chicken on a cutting board

What is Adobo?

Ok…this dish may or may not be what you think of when you hear adobo. In the Philippines, it’s both a method of cooking and flavoring food. It can also be a sauce or a blend of dry ingredients used in Spanish Caribbean and Latin American cuisine.

This recipe is derived from the Latin American dry spice rub, and is inspired by Wildtree’s Adobo Chicken recipe. Once up on a time, I used to rep for Wildtree and fell in love with their Organic Adobo Seasoning in particular. That was long ago, and when my personal stash of the spice rub began to run out, I decided to find a less expensive alternative.

There are commercially available adobo blends, with MSG and other unnecessary ingredients, as well as healthier, organic versions. I’ve tried some others, but the flavor isn’t quite the same as the Wildtree blend. I’ve been spoiled. 

Here’s the deal — my spice cabinet is already stocked with all the [organic] herbs and spices that go into this blend, so I made it my mission to come as close to my beloved spice as possible! (Spoiler…I think I hit the nail on the head!)

spices in a bowl

How To Make the Adobo Blend + Marinade

First, you’ll combine herbs and spices in a large bowl:

  • garlic powder
  • kosher salt
  • onion powder
  • black pepper
  • dried oregano
  • cayenne pepper

You can stop there and have a lovely all-purpose seasoning. But, you’re also going to add red wine vinegar, brown sugar and olive oil to create a marinade for the chicken.

Related video: watch how to make Adobo Chicken in this Instagram Reel!

vinegar and oil added to adobo spices

Next, add boneless, skinless chicken thighs and toss to make sure the chicken is covered in the marinade.

turning chicken in adobo marinade
marinated chicken thighs

You can grill the chicken right away (I’ve done it plenty of times and still get a nice flavorful result), but it is even better if you can let it sit for a couple hours, covered, in the fridge. Sometimes, I’ll even toss it all together the night before.

  • On the grill or indoor grill pan — cook for about 10 to 12 minutes over medium-high heat.
  • In the oven — roast for 15 to 25 minutes at 425°F.
  • In a skillet — sauté for 10 to 14 minutes over medium-high heat.

Cooking tips…

  • Flip the chicken over halfway through cooking times. 
  • Cooking ranges are given and vary based on the size of the chicken thighs.
  • The chicken is done when the thickest part of the meat registers 165°F with an instant read thermometer.
  • Always rest the chicken for about 5 minutes before serving.
grilled chicken on cutting board with vegetable skewers

FAQs for Grilled Adobo Chicken Thighs

Is this recipe freezer-friendly?

Heck yes! I do it all the time. Buy extra chicken thighs, especially when they are on sale. Double or triple the recipe and marinate the thighs, then transfer portions to a freezer-safe container. Thaw frozen chicken in the fridge overnight, then cook per the recipe instructions.

How do I serve adobo chicken?

Like I mentioned, it’s great with lots of things and really versatile…
• Grilled vegetables and Instant Pot Cilantro Lime Brown Rice are favorites of ours.
• Use those veggies and the chicken to create rice / burrito bowls.
• Chop up the chicken for fajitas, tacos or enchiladas.
• Throw them on a bun with avocado, lettuce and tomato.
• Use them instead of chicken breasts on this salad with grilled corn and avocado lime dressing.
• Add some chimichurri for a little extra zing.

Hey! Check Out These Other Recipes for the Grill…

sliced chicken thighs
easy weeknight grilled adobo chicken thighs

Easy Grilled Adobo Chicken Thighs

Sip + Sanity | Linda Feller
Easy Weeknight Grilled Adobo Chicken Thighs are a no-fail solution to get everyone around the dinner table. They’re juicy, tender, full of flavor and go with any of your favorite side dishes! (Inspired by Wildtree's Adobo Chicken recipe)
Prep time.5 minutes
Cook time.12 minutes
Custom time.2 hours
Total time.2 hours 17 minutes
Course.Main Course
Cuisine.Latin American
Number of servings.6
Calories per serving.234 kcal

Ingredients

  • teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¾ teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
  • teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil, or avocado oil
  • 2 pounds chicken thighs, boneless, skinless

Instructions

  • Combine all ingredients in a shallow bowl or ziptop bag. Marinate for at least 2 hours or overnight.

Grilling Instructions (preferred method)

  • Preheat an outdoor grill or grill pan over medium-high heat. Brush the grates or pan with oil. Grill the chicken for 10 to 12 minutes, flipping over half way through the cooking time.

Roasting Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 425°F. Cover a sheet pan with parchment or foil lightly coated with cooking spray. Roast the chicken for 15 to 25 minutes.

Sauteeing Instructions

  • Heat a small amount of oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Saute the chicken for 10 to 14 minutes, flipping over half way through the cooking time.

Video

Notes

  • Cooking ranges are given and vary based on the size of the chicken thighs.
  • The chicken is done when the thickest part of the meat registers 165°F. 
  • Always rest the chicken for about 5 minutes before serving.

Nutrition

Calories: 234kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 29g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 144mg | Sodium: 524mg | Potassium: 392mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 57IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 21mg | Iron: 1mg
Keywords.chicken, freezer-friendly, grill
Did You Make This Recipe?Be sure to share a comment below!

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11 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    I love that you use only organic ingredients – it makes such a difference to the food’s taste and our general health! I have to remember this word – Adobo – when I prepare the marinade for chicken!:) It always feels like I don’t have enough barbeques during the summer:))

  2. 5 stars
    Haha when I first saw Adobo in the title, I immediately thought of Filipino Adobo. This Latin American rub recipe on the chicken was still soooo delicious though and I’m glad I gave it a try for dinner.