Best Grilled Lemongrass Chicken

Grilled Thai lemongrass chicken with som tam salad
D.Schmidt for
  • Total: 30 mins
  • Prep: 15 mins
  • Cook: 15 mins
  • Yield: Servings 2 to 4

Grilled chicken never tasted so good! This lemongrass grilled chicken blows other recipes out of the water. Plus it's super simple to make. Just toss a few ingredients into your food processor, marinate, and grill. In Thailand, they would more likely to use a pestle and mortar for this process, but the results are just as good with our more high-tech equipment. At our home, we like ours medium-spicy, hence the 2 chillies in the ingredients list, but feel free to adjust this according to your own spice-o-meter. (Try not to skimp too much though - the chilies make it extra good!)

The longer the chicken marinates the better. Try to let it sit covered in the refrigerator for at 2 hours or up to 6. Serve it up with rice or over salad. There's no need for a side sauce -- it's that flavorful!


  • 4-6 chicken thighs, skin on or off
  • 2 stalks lemongrass
  • 1/4 cup onion, finely chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • juice of 1/2 lime
  • 2 fresh red chilies, minced, OR up to 1/2 tsp chili flakes, to taste
  • 3 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2+1/2 tbsp brown sugar

Steps to Make It

  1. For the best results, use a food processor for this recipe. First cut off the bulb end of each lemongrass stalk, then slice up the rest. Toss out the upper stem. Pulse to create a fragrant, watery-like paste.

  2. Open up the chicken thighs and lay flat, preferably in a flat, baking-type dish. Pour the paste over chicken, turning the pieces to get each one saturated. Use a spoon to spoon the herbs onto the tops of the chicken. Cover and marinate for preferably 2 hours or up to 6.

  3. Brush a got grill with a little vegetable oil, then grill chicken to well done.

  4. Plate up the chicken with a nice portion of Thai jasmine rice or a side salad, and you're good to go. Enjoy!