Spicy beer marinade for chicken uses a few pantry staples and spices and makes a super flavorful marinade for grilling! Great for giving a boost of flavor to grilled chicken!
I am just back from a week-long vacation with my family that was pretty much the best one ever! ❤️
It was my family, my parents and my brother and his family, all gathered together on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, on the Chesapeake Bay.
We rented a house on the water and had fun at the pool, on the swings, boating, bike riding, kayaking, paddle boarding, fishing, crabbing, tubing, exploring by the beach, watching fireworks, making s'mores at the fire pit and so much more!
My own little family also started the trip in Washington, D.C., visiting friends and making a quick trip to the mall to take M and J to the Air & Space Museum.
On the way home a week later, we opted for the scenic route and detoured to Luray Caverns in Virginia, which was a fun treat!
Basically, ALL the fun was had and it's a little bittersweet to be home. 😔
And while I’m really not feeling work this week, I’m gonna try to get back into the groove and get us back on track.
I’m also trying to continue with all the summer vibes - meaning lots of time in the sunshine, at the pool and by the grill. 🌞💦🙌
Earlier this summer I brought you a coconut lime grilled chicken marinade, a recipe from my aunt.
And today I’ve got this spicy beer marinade for chicken that I’ve played with over the years and tweaked until we had it just like we like it!
It’s spicy and herby and gives a rich flavor to the chicken. 👍
(You might also like this adobo grilled chicken, which is great when you don't have time for a marinade.)
OK, let’s get cooking.
Now, I’ve got some notes and substitutions coming up on how to make this beer marinated chicken. Just tryin’ to be helpful.
If you want to jump on down to the recipe, simply scroll right on through the rest of the text. The recipe card is near the bottom of the page, above the comments section.
Notes on spicy beer marinade for chicken:
- I tend to use parsley in this marinade but cilantro would work great, too.
- You can adjust the amount of cayenne pepper to adjust the level of heat.
- I snag whatever type of pale ale or mellow beer my husband has in the fridge. You can use any light beer you like or you could try a porter for a deeper flavor. Experiment! (A local brewery here has a Jalapeño Ale that I want to try with this!)
- Don’t want to use alcohol? I’ve read that you can substitute ginger ale.
I typically use boneless, skinless chicken breasts on the grill (or sometimes boneless, skinless chicken thighs). Both are great with this marinade. It would also be delicious for wings or drumsticks for a party!
Also, while I’ve never used this marinade with pork or red meat, you could certainly try it.
As for sides, this grilled chicken would go great with some sweet potato fries or spicy sweet potato rounds, some easy corn on the cob and a simple spinach salad. Or just make up some classic spaghetti salad and you’re all set!
And of course, you’ll need a nice, cold beer. 🍺
Tips about how to marinate the chicken:
- You’ll want to marinate your chicken for a minimum of 30 minutes. I think 1-2 hours is a good goal to get the maximum amount of flavor. And if you want to put this together in the morning, before work, that’s fine too.
- I highly recommend you reserve about ¼ cup of the marinade to baste on while the chicken is cooking and to drizzle over at the end. It really helps bring home the flavors and keep it extra juicy and tasty!
(Just be careful to separate it out before you add the chicken to avoid cross contamination.)
- This recipe makes enough for about 2 pounds of chicken. Adjust as needed.
Wishing you happy summer days and happy grilling nights!
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper (see notes)
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 3 tablespoons onion, chopped
- ½ cup chopped fresh parsley
- 12 oz. beer (see notes)
- 2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs
- Combine all of the marinade ingredients in a large bowl (or plastic bag), making sure to pour the beer slowly, until combined.
- Remove ¼ cup of the marinade to use later for basting and keep covered, separately.
- Add chicken to the bowl or bag, turn to coat, then refrigerate and marinate the chicken for 1-2 hours and up to 5-6 hours. (If you’re pressed for time, just make sure to do a minimum of 30 minutes.)
- Preheat grill to medium heat and brush with oil.
- Add marinated chicken to grill.
- Cook over medium heat for 5-7 minutes per side, until cooked through. (Timing will depend on which cut of chicken you use and its thickness.) Baste with reserved marinade while grilling.
- Remove the chicken from the grill and let rest for 5-10 minutes before slicing.
You can adjust the amount of cayenne pepper to adjust the level of heat in this marinade.
I use whatever type of pale ale or light beer my husband has in the fridge. You can use any light beer you like or you could try a porter for a deeper flavor. Don’t want to use alcohol? I’ve read that you can substitute ginger ale.
You can substitute cilantro for the parsley if you prefer.
You could also use this marinade for chicken wings or drumsticks.
This recipe makes enough for about 2 pounds of chicken. Adjust as needed.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 308Total Fat: 13gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 117mgSodium: 382mgCarbohydrates: 3gFiber: 0gSugar: 0gProtein: 40g