Chicken thighs marinated in a savory mix of garlic, cilantro, soy & spices then roasted to perfection & served with a creamy Peruvian green sauce! It’s juicy, full of flavor & makes the best chicken dinner!
I’ll be honest, I still have no clue how this recipe “came to be” in our family’s repertoire of dinners.😂 It just kinda showed up one day and we’ve been making it ever since – but I’m so glad it did! Garlic and citrus marinated chicken thighs are roasted and paired with a creamy zesty green sauce! It’s juicy, citrusy, full of bold flavors and incredibly easy to make! You’re going to love this Peruvian chicken dinner!
What is Peruvian Chicken?
Peruvian chicken, or Pollo a las Brasas, is a type of rotisserie chicken dinner originating in Peru. It’s traditionally made by roasting a whole chicken that’s been marinated in lots of spices and is always served with a spicy Peruvian green sauce called Aji Verde. The sauce is usually a mixture of cilantro, aji amarillo, huacatay and cheese that make it rich, creamy and the perfect compliment to your roasted chicken!
How is mine different? The biggest difference is this recipe doesn’t include amarillo paste or aji amarillo. (Aji amarillo is a type of Peruvian chili pepper.) Since it’s a little difficult to find these ingredients where we live, we’ve had to supplement. Instead, we’ve replaced them with jalapeño and cilantro to mimick the the chili pepper flavor and still get some heat.
Ingredients For Peruvian Chicken
- Chicken thighs: Use boneless skinless chicken thighs for fast and easy cooking. (Bone-in chicken thighs can be used instead but you’ll need to adjust your cooking time. See the “Let’s Talk Chicken” section below.)
- Soy sauce: I recommend using low sodium soy sauce for this recipe. (It adds just the right amount of salt without being overly salty.)
- Cilantro: Use the leaves and stems for maximum flavor! (The stems have all the flavor!😉)
- Garlic: You’ll need 6 cloves of garlic for your chicken marinade!
- White vinegar: 3 tablespoons of white vinegar go into the marinade to make it zippy, tangy and delicious!
- Olive oil: You’ll need 1½ tablespoons of oil for your marinade.
- Spices: Cumin, paprika, dried oregano and a touch of cayenne are needed to spice up your chicken!
How To Make Roasted Peruvian Chicken
1. Prepare your marinade. Add your marinade ingredients to a food processor and blend them together until smooth.
2. Marinate your chicken. Then place your chicken thighs in a large bowl or plastic bag and pour your marinade over the top. Cover the bowl or seal the bag and let the chicken marinate for 30 minutes to overnight.
3. Make your Peruvian green sauce. While your chicken marinates, add your sour cream, jalapeño, garlic, cilantro, lime juice, red wine vinegar, olive oil, cotija cheese, salt and pepper to a food processor and blend until smooth. Keep your sauce stored in the refrigerator until you’re ready to serve.
4. Bake. Once your chicken is done marinating, preheat your oven to 400 degrees and spray a large baking dish with cooking spray. Then place your chicken thighs in the pan and pour your remaining marinade over the top. Bake the chicken for 20-22 minutes or until it reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees.
5. Serve! Serve your chicken thighs immediately with your green sauce and enjoy!
This Peruvian roasted chicken will become a family favorite meal in no time!
Let’s Talk Chicken!
This recipe isn’t just for boneless skinless chicken thighs! You can make it with a variety of chicken cuts too! (The only difference is in your baking time.)
- Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs: Bake for 400 degrees for 20-22 minutes depending on the size.
- Bone-In Chicken Thighs: Bake at 400 degrees for 35-45 minutes depending on the size.
- Boneless Chicken Breasts: Bake at 400 degees for 20-22 minutes depending on the size.
- Chicken Drumsticks: Bake at 400 degrees for 35-45 minutes depending on the size.
- What does Peruvian chicken taste like? One word: Delicious!😉 The chicken itself is heavy on soy and cumin flavors then balanced out with vinegar and freshness from the cilantro. When paired with your jalapeno cilantro green sauce, it becomes an explosion of flavors that are spicy, creamy, tangy and everything in between!
- Can I prep any ingredients in advance? Yes! The green sauce and marinade can both be made 1 day beforehand. Keep both mixtures stored in the refrigerator in separate containers until you’re ready to use them.
- How long should I marinate my Peruvian chicken for? I recommend marinating your chicken for at least 30 minutes to overnight. (The longer your chicken marinates, the more flavorful it will be!)
- How do I reheat my leftover chicken? The best way to reheat your Peruvian chicken is in the oven. Place your chicken thighs in an oven safe dish and pour in enough water to just cover the bottom of the pan. Then cover the pan with aluminum foil and place it in the oven at 350 degrees for 8-15 minutes or until the it reaches your desired temperature.
Why you’ll love this Peruvian chicken recipe!
- Bold flavors! Lots of garlic, citrus, cilantro & spices! This chicken dinner is perfect for those who love big bold spicy flavors!
- So easy to make! Just blend, marinate & bake! Because the mariande and sauce can easily be made beforehand, whipping up this chicken dinner takes no time at all!
- Not your average baked chicken recipe! No boring chicken dinner over here! This recipe goes hard on flavor with a creamy dipping sauce that’s fun & zesty!
Need it gluten free? Use tamari or liquid aminos in place of soy sauce in the marinade!
Need it dairy free? Use dairy free sour cream and your favorite dairy free shredded parmesan in the green sauce! (The marinade is already dairy free!😉) Our favorite dairy free parmesan is from Trader Joe’s.
More chicken recipes you might like:
- Apple & Brie Stuffed Chicken Breast
- Lemon Oregano Chicken with Avocado Greek Salsa
- Cilantro Lime Chicken Wings
- Guacamole Chicken Salad
[Made one of my recipes? Make sure to tag my Instagram @kalefornia_kravings & leave a review in the comments. I love seeing what you create!]
Roasted Peruvian Chicken with Green Sauce
- 1½-2 lbs. chicken thighs (boneless & skinless)
- ½ cup soy sauce
- ¾ cup cilantro, roughly chopped (leaves & stems are ok)
- 6 garlic cloves
- 3 Tbsp white vinegar
- 1½ Tbsp olive oil
- 1½ tsp paprika
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- ¾ tsp dried oregano
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
- 1 batch Peruvian green sauce (See notes section)
- Add your soy sauce, cilantro, garlic, white vinegar, oil, cumin, paprika, oregano and cayenne to a food processor and blend until smooth. Then set it aside.
- Next clean your chicken thighs and place them in a large plastic bag or bowl and pour your marinade over the top. Seal the bag or cover the bowl and let your chicken marinate for 30 minutes to overnight.
- Once the chicken is done marinating, preheat your oven to 400 degrees and spray a 9×13 pan with cooking spray.
- Then place your chicken thighs in the prepared pan and pour the marinade from the bowl over the top. Place the pan in the oven and bake for 20-22 minutes or until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees.
- Serve immediately with your Peruvian green sauce.
It was sooo hood! My husband and I just absolutely loved this recipe. Will defined become a staple for us. Perfect balance of flavors. Thank you so much!
Hi there! I’m so glad you enjoyed the recipe! That makes me so happy! 🙂
Just made this dish & it’s delicious. My Caucasian sista cooks with seasoning & this is bursting with flavor. Best of all it was easy to make. This will be a staple at my home. Excellent!!
Oh yayy! That makes me SO HAPPY!😊 I’m so glad you enjoyed it!
I’m actually currently making this right now! First time. Recipe was easy to follow and the kitchen smells very good. I can’t wait to taste it. Thank you for the recipe! I found you from Pinterest 🥰
Hi Michelle! Yayy that makes me so happy! Let me know how it turns out! 🙂
I just made this for dinner tonight after I marinaded the chicken thighs overnight. I did not have cayenne pepper I just keep forgetting to grab some when I am out. It was very good but I am wondering why mine looked more like balsamic vinegar and not like your photos. Was it just the cayenne that made it red in color? My son said it tasted like chipotle so win for me! I am not used to using thighs I prefer breasts so maybe I will use them next time. Everything else I followed exactly and it was very good!
Hi Abby! The paprika also gives it it’s red color. Did you happen to leave that out too? And this would definitely work with chicken breasts! I’m glad you still enjoyed the recipe! 🙂
I have made this dish twice now and wow, it’s absolutely amazing! It’s like eating in a really good restaurant, cannot get enough of it! Thank you so much for sharingl the recipe 🤗
Yayyy that makes me so happy! I’m so glad you enjoy the recipe! 🙂
Hi Caitlin! This looks delicious. I am wondering what type of side dishes you recommend serving alongside the chicken. Thank you!
Hi Sophia! Thank you so much! We ususally serve some type of veggie (like broccoli or asparagus) with roasted potatoes or corn. It’s so good with so many things! I hope this helps! 🙂
the flavor of both the chicken and the sauce is spectacular—if i had the talent for it, i would write a song.
Omg Jess – thank you so much! That’s so sweet of you!😊 I’m so glad you enjoyed it!
Just for clarification, are you pouring the marinade the chicken has been sitting in over the raw chicken to bake? Or, are you reserving some of the marinade to pour over the chicken before baking?
Hi there! You’ll be pouring the marinade the chicken was sitting in over the raw chicken when you put it in the pan. Thanks for checking! I’ll see if I can reword that a little bit better in the recipe. I hope this helps! 🙂
I’m making this right now! Chicken has been marinating for an hour and a half and I’m about to pop it in the oven! Can’t wait! I’ll update once it’s done 😋
Hi Stephanie! Yayy, I hope you love it! 🙂
I can’t wait to try these!!
Yayy! Let me know if you do! 🙂
I would really like to make these on the grill. Do you have any suggestions for that? Should I hate with the marinade since I can’t cook the chicken in it? Thanks!!
Hi there! Great question! I would suggest boiling the marinade on high for 5 minutes to make a “basting sauce”. Then you can brush the sauce over your chicken every few minutes while it cooks. I hope this helps! 🙂
My husband has declared this one of his top 3 favorite meals I’ve made! Amazing!!
Aww yayy that makes me so happy!😊😊 I’m SO GLAD you enjoyed it!
Can I marinade the chicken overnight and while I’m at work to make for dinner when I get home?
Hi Nancy! Yes asbolutely! We’ve done that before and it was delicious! 🙂
This recipe was a breeze to make. Used tamari in lieu of soy sauce for the marinade. Holy smokes! What an amazing dinner. Will be putting this one in the regular rotation. Husband declared this the best chicken he has ever had. Can’t wait to have the left over sauce with egg scramble tomorrow.
Thank you so much for making cooking & eating fun and delicious!
Aww Rachel! You just made my day! I’m so happy it was a hit! 🙂 (BTW I love your idea to use the sauce on scrambled eggs, that sounds so good!)
Have you ever cooked them in the airfryer? Does it work? Or is the marinade too wet?
Hi there! I personally haven’t tried cooking them in the air fryer yet but I imagine it would still work. I would suggest shaking off any excess marinade before placing them in the air fryer basket. I hope this helps!