Chicken is flavored with a simple Caribbean chicken marinade, then grilled to perfection before being topped with pineapple salsa. This Pineapple Salsa Chicken is easy to make and delicious meal for summertime!
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Creating This Caribbean Chicken Recipe
I posted about this pineapple chicken with rice back in September when we had a Tropical Garden Party for Madeline’s first birthday.
I wasn’t able to get a picture of it, and half the pictures of the food didn’t turn out because we were too busy having fun!
With all the nice weather we’ve been lucky enough to have, I was able to make it again recently and thought I’d re-post with some pictures. This pineapple salsa chicken really is one of my favorite grill meals.
Tools Needed for This Recipe
Here are some tools that are helpful when preparing this Caribbean Chicken recipe:
- Gas Grill: This is the grill we use and we love it! If you don’t have a gas or charcoal grill, you can cook the marinated chicken on a hot grill pan over medium-high heat.
- Knife Block Set: If you don’t own good quality knives, you’re making your life harder. I use these knives every time I cook, they’re great.
- Citrus Juicer: Makes juicing limes so much easier.
- Meat Thermometer: To check the chicken’s doneness.
- Microplane Grater: For zesting the orange.
Ingredients for Pineapple Salsa Chicken
To make the pineapple salsa and the Caribbean chicken, you’ll need the following ingredients:
For the Caribbean Chicken Marinade:
- Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts
- Pineapple Juice
- Soy Sauce
- Lime Juice
- Fresh Ginger
- Brown Sugar
For the Fresh Pineapple Salsa:
- Fresh Pineapple
- Red Bell Pepper
- Jalapeno Pepper
- Fresh Cilantro
- Green Onions
- Orange Juice
- Shredded Coconut
For the Coconut Rice:
- White Rice, preferably Jasmine or Basmati
- Coconut Milk
I’ve also given the exact ingredients needed to make the coconut rice in the recipe card below! Otherwise, you can serve the chicken with plain jasmine rice.
For the complete ingredient list and detailed instructions, scroll to the bottom of this post for the FREE printable recipe card.
Can I Use a Different Meat in this Recipe?
I haven’t tried it, but you could probably use chicken thighs, pork tenderloin, or maybe some fish or shrimp. If you wanted to experiment with beef, I would suggest skirt steak or flank steak, but I’m not sure how the flavors would work with beef.
How to Make Pineapple Salsa Chicken
Below is just a brief overview of how the Caribbean pineapple chicken with rice is made:
- To prepare the pineapple salsa recipe: In a small bowl, combine the pineapple tidbits, red bell pepper, green onions, orange juice, and shredded coconut. Set aside in the refrigerator.
- Make the Caribbean chicken marinade: Combine the marinade ingredients in a bowl. Add juices drained from pineapple.
- Place the chicken breasts in a nonmetal bowl or Ziploc bag. Pour the Caribbean chicken marinade over top and marinate at least 6 hours.
- Grill the chicken: Drain the chicken and dispose of marinade. Grill the chicken, over medium heat, until the temperature reaches 160 degrees F.
- Slice chicken at a diagonal, scoop pineapple salsa on top of the chicken. Serve alongside coconut rice.
TIP: Don’t waste any part of that fresh pineapple! This post shares how to cut a pineapple six different ways, as well as ideas for using the pineapple top and tough skin.
The above is simply a quick summary of this recipe. Check out the full recipe in the free printable recipe card at the bottom of this post for all the detailed instructions.
Tips for Making this Caribbean Chicken with Pineapple Salsa
Want this recipe to turn out perfectly? Here are my best pro-tips to keep in mind when preparing it:
Prepping this Caribbean Grilled Chicken:
- If the chicken is significantly thicker on one end than the other, using a meat mallet is the perfect way to even the meat out a bit so the chicken cooks more evenly.
- Marinate the raw chicken at least 4 hours, or overnight for maximum flavor.
Cooking the Marinated Chicken:
- Heat grill in advance. You want the grill nice and hot before you put the flavorful chicken on.
- Pat the chicken dry and then lightly brush with avocado oil before grilling. You’ll get better grill marks if the chicken isn’t wet from the marinade.
- Use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature of the chicken. The chicken is done when the internal temperature of the thickest portion reaches 165 degrees F.
Serving the Grilled Chicken:
- Let the cooked chicken rest at room temperature for 5 minutes before slicing.
- Cut the chicken against the grain and at a diagonal. Cutting against the grain provides more tender bites of chicken. Cutting it at a diagonal makes a pretty presentation.
Can This Recipe for Pineapple Salsa Chicken Be Made in Advance?
Once the chicken has been grilled, this Caribbean chicken dish is best eaten immediately. However, leftovers taste great on salads. But you can easily make a few of the elements ahead of time:
Whisk together the marinade and let the chicken sit in it for up to 24 hours. The rice and pineapple salsa can also be prepared up to a day in advance. You’ll just need to reheat the rice. The pineapple salsa can be served straight out of the refrigerator.
How to Serve this Grilled Chicken with Pineapple Salsa
There are tons of different ways you can serve this recipe for pineapple salsa chicken. Here are a few of our suggestions:
- Serve as written: slice the grilled chicken and serve atop the coconut rice with a spoonful of the pineapple salsa.
- Vegetarian: The pineapple salsa is so yummy, and good on the coconut rice alone if you are vegetarian. If you’d like added protein, substitute the rice for coconut quinoa and/or add some black beans.
- Grain-free: serve the sliced grilled chicken and the pineapple salsa atop a bed of salad greens if you prefer not to eat rice.
- As an appetizer: this pineapple salsa is good enough to eat on its own as an appetizer with tortilla chips!
How to Store Leftover Pineapple Salsa Chicken
Leftover chicken, pineapple salsa, and rice should be stored in the refrigerator I recommend storing the rice, salsa, and the Caribbean chicken in separate airtight containers. The delicious pineapple salsa will last about 3-5 days and the chicken will last for 5 days.
More Grilled Chicken Recipes:
Grilled Honey Mustard Chicken has great flavors! It features chicken tenderloins that are marinated in a sweet and savory honey mustard sauce with sprigs of fresh rosemary and lemon juice, then quickly cooked on a hot grill.
In this Chicken Skewers recipe, chicken tenderloins are marinated in a summery basil kumquat vinaigrette and grilled, then served alongside grilled purple cauliflower steaks for a simple, yet delicious dinner.
Grilled Lime Cilantro Chicken Walking Tacos feature grilled lime cilantro chicken and pineapple. These walking tacos taste fresh and light!
We love these Grilled Chicken Drumsticks that are basted with Mango Habenero BBQ Sauce. A delicious addition to any summer potluck!
Buffalo Chicken Cobb Salad is a great recipe featuring o buffalo grilled chicken, celery, blue cheese and blue cheese dressing paired with classic ingredients like lettuce, egg, and avocado.
Don’t see what you’re looking for here? You can always head over to check out the recipe index to look for more recipes.
Try this Easy Pineapple Salsa Chicken Recipe!
Next time you’re looking for a summery grilled chicken recipe, give this pineapple salsa chicken a try! Did you think it was the perfect summertime meal? Leave a comment below and give it a review for others to see what you thought of this grilled chicken with pineapple salsa.
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Caribbean Pineapple Salsa Chicken with Coconut Rice
Chicken is flavored with a simple Caribbean chicken marinade, then grilled to perfection before being topped with pineapple salsa. This Pineapple Salsa Chicken is easy to make and so delicious!
For the Caribbean Chicken
- 4 Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts
- 1 cup Soy Sauce
- 1/2 cup Lime Juice
- 1/2 cup Pineapple Juice
- 2 teaspoons grated Fresh Ginger
- 4 tablespoons Brown Sugar
- 3 tablespoons Honey
For the Fresh Pineapple Salsa
- 20 oz Fresh Pineapple, cut into bite sized cubes
- 1/2 of a Red Bell Pepper, diced
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped Fresh Cilantro
- 1/2 of a large Jalapeno, seeds removed and minced
- 1 bunch Green Onions, thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons Orange Juice
- 2 teaspoons Orange Zest
- 1/3 cup Shredded Coconut
For the Coconut Rice
- 2 cups Jasmine or Basmati Rice
- 2 cups Coconut Milk
- 1 3/4 cups Water
- 1/2 teaspoon Salt
Make the Pineapple Salsa Recipe:
- In a small bowl, combine pineapple, red bell pepper, cilantro, jalapeno, green onion, orange juice, orange zest, and shredded coconut.
- Set aside in the refrigerator and let chill.
Make the Caribbean Chicken:
- Combine soy sauce lime juice, pineapple juice, fresh ginger, brown sugar, and honey.
- Place chicken breasts in a nonmetal bowl or Ziploc bag. Pour marinade over chicken and marinate at least 6 hours or up to 24 hours, turning chicken pieces occasionally.
- Drain chicken, dispose of marinade.
- Grill the chicken, over medium heat, 8 minutes on each side, or until temperature reaches 165 degrees F.
- Wrap grilled chicken loosely in foil to rest for 5-10 minutes.
- Slice chicken at a diagonal, scoop pineapple salsa on top. Serve alongside coconut rice.
Make the Coconut Rice:
- Place rice, coconut milk, water, and salt in the pot.
- Place pot on the stove over medium to high heat. Stir well.
- Continue to stir occasionally until the coconut milk and water come to a boil.
- Once the coconut-water mixture has begun to gently bubble, stop stirring and turn down the heat to low. Place lid on the pot.
- Cook for 20 minutes, or until the rice has absorbed all (or nearly all) of the coconut-water.
- Remove the rice from the heat. Keep the lid on the rice and and allow it to rest 10 minutes, or until you are ready to eat.
- When ready to serve, remove the lid and “fluff” rice with a fork.
As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Nutrition InformationYield 4 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 1030Total Fat 8gSaturated Fat 3gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 3gCholesterol 102mgSodium 3668mgCarbohydrates 208gFiber 18gSugar 160gProtein 50g
GoodLifeEats.com offers recipe nutritional information as a courtesy and is an estimate only. This information comes from online calculators. Although GoodLifeEats.com makes every effort to provide accurate information, these figures are only estimates.
Photography: photos taken in this post are by Rachael from Set the Table.
Carol Schantz, Maryland
Tuesday 13th of July 2010
I had this for lunch today-wow! Just like all the recipes from you, this one is outstanding too! Thank you!
Saturday 11th of April 2009
Oh my! This is so delicious! My new favorite recipe. We had bad weather the day we fixed it so we grilled inside on the George Forman. I can't wait to try it on the grill. There were only 3 of us so we had leftover salsa. I ate it for lunch on a turkey roll-up. That was yummy too!CheriPlum
Thursday 19th of March 2009
That looks amazing.
Thursday 19th of March 2009
I love pineapple salsa, it is so fresh and delish! I like to serve it with fish!
Thursday 19th of March 2009
That looks so yummy and I love coconut rice!