Secret Recipe for Indonesian Grilled Sambal Chicken

This spicy flavorful Indonesian-style, Sambal Chicken is juicy and delicious!  Serve it with Thai Crunch Salad, or Asian Slaw and top with fresh mint, scallions optional Peanut Chili Crunch (Seroendeng)!

Here is a delicious recipe for Indonesian Style, Grilled Sambal Chicken-  full of great flavor with a little bit of heat, and so juicy and tender. Fast and simple to make, it comes together in less than 30 minutes – and lately, it’s been on our plates a lot around here! It’s a little addicting! The flavorful marinade would taste great with tofu or fish too!

I love this best served over Thai Crunch Salad, a healthy vegan, GF salad made with shredded cabbage and summer vegetables, mint,  basil, scallions and a light peanut dressing.

The combination of spicy, sweet, salty, tangy Grilled Sambal Chicken, paired with the cool crunchy Thai Peanut Salad is so delicious!   Whether it’s tossed into salad, folded into tacos, served over rice or with a bowl of grilled veggies, it’s very versatile recipe I think you will love.


The Sambal chicken can be quickly be grilled in whole pieces, or if you have more time, cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces, then skewer.


Sambal Oelek is an Indonesian-style red chile paste is available at most grocery stores and it’s the secret to this great flavor.  It’s moderately spicy, not overly, just perfectly, with a subtle sweetness.

I will often double the recipe because the refrigerated leftover chicken keeps really well and tastes incredibly good, cold….perfect for quick lunches or to-go meals.

Be sure to use boneless, skinless thigh meat, to ensure the juiciest chicken possible. I’ve also used this flavorful marinade on tofu, then grilled it with great results –just make sure to grease the grill extra well first, and use a metal spatula to flip.

If serving the chicken on its own, without the Thai Vegetable Crunch Salad, you could garnish it with fresh mint leaves, scallions and crushed roasted peanuts.

If serving with the Thai Vegetable Crunch Salad, simply slice and place over top or plate with the skewers.


Reduce the leftover marinade and use it to baste the chicken while it’s grilling. This keeps the chicken juicy while adding and building flavor.

Grill over medium-high heat, getting both sides deeply seared. Turn heat down to low, and cover until cooked through. You can also place this in a warm oven until cooked through.


A flavorful Grilled Indonesian Style, Sambal Chicken that is easy and delicious!  Serve with Asian Slaw or Thai Crunch Salad!


  • 2 – 2 ½ lbs Chicken (boneless, skinless chicken thighs)
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1 ½ tablespoon sliced fresh ginger
  • ¼ cup sriracha sauce
  • ¼ cup fish sauce
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup rice wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil or peanut oil
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce or Bragg’s liquid Amino
  • ¼ cup Sambal Olek ( garlic chili paste) plus 1 -2 tablespoons more for extra spicy.
  • 8–10 Pre-soaked Skewers (optional)

Garnish Options: crushed roasted Peanuts, fresh mint leaves, sliced scallions

Serve with Thai Crunch Salad or Asian Slaw.


  1. Cut chicken into bite-size pieces (to skewer) or leave whole and place them in a gallon zip lock bag or bowl.
  2. Place the rest of the ingredients, except Sambal Oelek (or red chili paste) in a blender, and blend until smooth. Stir in the Sambal Oelek chili paste, to combine. Pour marinade over the chicken and marinate for 15 minutes or overnight.
  3. Pre-heat the grill to med-high.
  4. Skewer chicken (or leave whole)
  5. Pour the leftover marinade into a small pot, bring to a simmer, and simmer on low for 5-10 mins, until thickened and reduced. You will use it to baste the chicken.
  6. Place chicken on a hot, preheated, greased grill. Cover. Cook 5 minutes or longer until deep grill marks appear. Turn over, baste, cover. Once you’ve got a good sear on both sides, and both sides are basted, turn heat to low, or move to upper rack and continue cooking through ( or finish in  375 oven).
  7. Serve with Thai Crunch Salad, or the Asian Slaw garnish with fresh mint, scallions and crushed roasted peanuts, or try this Peanut Chili Crunch (Seroendeng)!


Of course, you can use chicken breast, just cook a little less so it doesn’t get overcooked or dry.

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