Sweet Heat Marinated Grilled Chicken Breast

October 18, 2018

My Sweet Heat Marinated Grilled Chicken Breasts are so incredibly juicy and flavorful. The marinade is just the right mix of sweet and heat with a little kick from classic TABASCO®. This post is sponsored by TABASCO®.

Grilled Chicken Breast


The key to the best grilled chicken breast (in my opinion) is a good marinade. Chicken is such a versatile piece of meat and so mildly flavored, it really takes on all of the notes from this sweet heat marinade. I think every good marinade has to have a balance of flavors to ensure it doesn’t overwhelm the meat itself and delivers the best results when the chicken hits the grill. The tangy and spicy kick from the TABASCO® sauce is the perfect foil to the sweet brown sugar.

Marinades are also great for leaner cuts like chicken breasts because they really help impart additional moisture. Several versions of this marinade were tested with a few different marinating times to find the optimum levels of flavor and moisture. The perfect amount of time for the chicken to stay in the marinade is between 12-18 hours. I like to start my chicken in the marinade before I go to bed and when I’m ready to cook dinner the next day, that chicken is perfectly seasoned.

grilled chicken breast marinade


-This recipe does have sugar and it can caramelize quickly and burn over high heat. I recommend using two-zone heat on on your grill. This means that half of your grill has high, direct heat, and the other half has either no or very low heat. Grill the chicken on the indirect side until it is nearly finished cooking, then transfer to the direct heat side to get that nice caramelized color and flavor.

-Use an internal thermometer to track the temperature of your meat. Don’t try to guess by cutting open your chicken while it’s still on the grill. You will lose those tasty juices and the color of your chicken isn’t always the safest indicator of doneness. Make sure your chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.

-Let your chicken rest. After removing your cooked chicken from the grill, place it on a plate and let it sit for 5-10 minutes before slicing and serving. This will help keep your chicken juicy.

Marinated Grilled Chicken Breast Recipe

Sweet Heat Marinated Grilled Chicken Breast Recipe

sweet heat marinated grilled chicken breast
Print Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Sweet Heat Marinated Grilled Chicken Breast

Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Marinating Time12 hrs
Total Time30 mins
Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Marinated Grilled Chicken Breast
Servings: 4 people
Author: Susie Bulloch (heygrillhey.com)


  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts

For the Marinade:

  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup olive oil or other cooking oil
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/3 cup soy sauce
  • 4 cloves minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons TABASCO Sauce
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes


  • In a large zip top bag or other container, combine all ingredients for the marinade.
  • Submerge the chicken breasts in the marinade and refrigerate for at least 12 hours or up to 18 hours for more flavor.
  • Preheat your grill to medium high heat (450 degrees F) for two zone cooking.
  • Remove the chicken breasts from the marinade and allow any excess to drip off.
  • Grill the chicken on the indirect side of the grill, flipping over after about 5-6 minutes, until the internal temperature reads 155 degrees F with an internal thermometer.
  • Move the chicken over to the direct heat side of the grill and sear for 1-2 minutes on each side until the internal temperature reads 165 degrees F.
  • Remove the chicken to a serving platter and tent with foil. Let rest for 5-6 minutes before slicing and serving.


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2 thoughts on “Sweet Heat Marinated Grilled Chicken Breast

  1. Made this recipe for dinner tonight and it was a winner. My wife really loved it and so did I. One of the things I noticed was that the olive oil congealed quite a bit while the chicken was marinating in the refrigerator so I may try another oil next time. What was really great about the flavor profile is that it begins with the sweetness from the honey & brown sugar and finishes with the heat from the Tabasco and red pepper flakes. I’ve even thought about possibly using the same marinade for cubed chicken pieces and stir frying them. Thanks for the great recipe!

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