This chicken smells so good while it is grilling on the BBQ! If you like lime margarita cocktails, then you’ll enjoy making and eating this refreshing and aromatic chicken with an easy-to-assemble citrus avocado salad.

I use white tequila, but if you only have gold tequila, this will work fine in the marinade. Although alcohol evaporates in cooking, I love how you can still taste the tequila together with the tangy lime, fresh coriander and garlic. The chillis are optional, but if you like spice, then throw them in.

As chicken is the star of this dish, I recommend using the best chicken breast (organic if possible) you can buy for that added flavour. If you prefer using thigh fillets, they barbecue just as well, but may not look as attractive as the breast meat when fanned across the plate.

The salad dressing is similar to a standard vinaigrette, except lime juice is used instead of lemon. Made to be served with the salad, it also tastes great drizzled on top of the cooked chicken.

To get a clean diagonal cut across the cooked chicken, remember to allow the chicken to rest covered for at least 5 minutes, before slicing and plating up.

Besides eating this recipe warm, it also makes a fantastic salad to serve at large gatherings by mixing the cold chicken with the citrus avocado salad. Have the salad dressing on the side to pour at the time of serving.

Tequila BBQ Chicken with citrus avocado salad


  • 5 chicken breasts, with or without skin

For the chicken marinade:

  • 80ml tequila
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Juice and zest of 2 limes
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 fresh red chilli, chopped finely (optional)
  • 1 fresh green chilli, chopped finely (optional)
  • A handful of fresh coriander leaves, chopped finely
  • Lime wedges, to serve
  • Salt & pepper, to taste

For the salad dressing:

  • 1 ½ tablespoons sherry vinegar
  • 50ml extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoons runny honey
  • Juice of 1/4 a lime
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper

For the citrus avocado salad:

  • 1 small cucumber, thinly sliced
  • 1 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 ruby red grapefruit, peeled and segmented
  • 1 orange, peeled and segmented
  • 2 ripe avocadoes, sliced thickly
  • 60g fresh rocket/arugula leaves
  • A handful of fresh coriander leaves
Step-by-Step Instructions:

  1. Mix the chicken marinade ingredients together in a glass or ceramic bowl large enough to hold 5 chicken breasts.

2. Add the chicken and prick with a fork several times. This will thoroughly infuse and marinate the chicken meat.

3. Cover and chill for at least 3 hours, or overnight.

4. Before cooking the chicken, prepare the salad dressing by mixing all the salad dressing ingredients together in a small bowl or jug. Set aside.

5. Slice the cucumber and red onion.  Peel and segment the grapefruit and orange. Using a citrus “grapefruit” knife will make this step easier to remove the fruit from the peel.

6. Arrange the fresh rocket on a large platter and place the sliced vegetables and citrus segments on top of the rocket leaves. Set aside.

7. Bring the chicken to room temperature 20 minutes before cooking.

8. Preheat the skillet/grill plate on the BBQ to medium-high heat and brush it with some oil.

9. Remove the chicken from the marinade and grill each side for 7 minutes. Only turn the chicken over once the chicken has “released” itself naturally from the grill. Do not over-cook the chicken or it will end up being tough.

10. Season with salt and pepper and cover the chicken with foil to rest for 5 minutes before slicing it on the diagonal.

11. In the meantime, slice the avocado and add them to the citrus salad. Add some lime or lemon juice on top of the avocado pieces to prevent them for going brown.

12. Place the sliced chicken next to the salad. Drizzle the salad with the dressing.

13. Sprinkle fresh coriander leaves over the salad and chicken and serve with lime wedges. Serve warm immediately or cover and chill.

  • Serves 5 – 6
  • Keeps for 2 days
  • Can be eaten warm or cold
  • Unsuitable to freeze


  • The chicken can also be cooked indoors on a stove-top skillet/grill plate. Use the ridged side to give those attractive chargrilled stripes.
  • The chicken can be substituted with either prawns or halloumi but reduce the marinating time to a maximum of one hour.