Thai Coconut Grilled Chicken

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A deliciously light, Thai influenced tender and moist grilled chicken. You will love the light and healthy flavors infused in Thai Coconut Grilled Chicken. A naturally dairy-free and gluten-free meal!

I love quick marinades I can whip up that are easy and healthy for my family! Easy for a last minute simple dinner! This recipe is keto, Whole30, Paleo, Low Carb and plain ol’ delicious!

Like quick and easy marinades like this Thai Coconut Chicken? Try our family favorites: Copycat Chipotle Chicken, Coconut Lime Chicken and Best Flank Steak Marinade!

Plate of sliced thai coconut chicken breast.

Begin by pouring in a can of your favorite coconut milk, light or full fat, though I prefer the full fat (but this is what I had on hand), and toss in your rough chopped garlic.

chopped garlic on cutting board with lite coconut milk in background poured into glass mixing bowl.

Next add your brown sugar and salt.

Adding a touch of brown sugar to coconut milk .

Then add your freshly grated ginger, no need to peel the ginger, simply use a spoon and gently scrape off the “skin”. Then grate using a grater or microplane.

TIP: Freeze the leftover ginger root, removing and slicing off what you need for recipes or grating straight from frozen.

Using a spoon to scrape the ginger skin off of fresh ginger.

Next add your turmeric – I always feel like I’m mumbling when I say it. A wonderful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant! Plus your cumin, and coriander. I only had coriander seeds, so used a few and just placed in the coconut milk mixture.

Adding spices to coconut milk mixture

Next, if you have one, blend using an immersion blender, or place in regular blender and blend until combined.

Immersion blender blending coconut milk, spices and ginger and garlic.

Add fresh chopped cilantro and blend again for just a few pulses.

immersion blender mixing cilantro into coconut milk mixture.

Can I Freeze Coconut Milk Marinade?

YES! It might separate a teensy bit when thawing, but it does not impact the taste or flavors.

If freezing meals, be sure to write on the freezer baggie the name of the meal ahead of time, this marinade is easily split into two servings of about 1 cup each to cover approximately 8 chicken breasts.

Pour about 1 cup of marinade in baggie over 3-4 chicken breasts (or 6 boneless thighs or chicken tenders)

Pouring thai coconut marinade into large freezer baggie

Once in baggie(s), squeeze out excess air and lay flat in freezer to freeze. If using immediately, allow to sit in marinade for 2 – 24 hours in refrigerator.

If frozen, thaw in refrigerator overnight or on counter for 2 hours.

Preheat grill to medium-high heat. Brush grill with oil, remove chicken from marinade and place on grill.

Chicken breast that has been marinated in thai coconut marinade, sitting on hot grill.

Grilled Coconut Chicken

Grill chicken until cooked through about 6 minutes per side (depends on how thick the chicken is) for boneless chicken breasts, less time for chicken tenders (about 2-3 minutes per side) and a little more time (8-10 minutes) for chicken thighs.

Baste using leftover marinade, discard any unused marinade or simmer in small pan over medium heat for 10 minutes or more. Pour thickened sauce over sliced chicken.

Thai coconut chicken with grill marks and a little marinade poured over while on grill.

Remove from grill and allow to rest, covered about 5 minutes before serving. Serve whole or sliced.

This recipe was inspired by a similar recipe from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe.

Peruse all of my Freezer Friendly dinners here!

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Thai Coconut Grilled Chicken

Author: Kathleen | The Fresh Cooky © 2020
5 from 1 vote
A delicious and healthy Thai inspired coconut milk chicken marinade. Comes together quickly for an easy any-time meal. Freezer friendly, plus dairy and gluten free!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Freezer Meals, Main Dish
Cuisine Thai
Servings 6 -8 servings
Calories 348 kcal


  • 1 14 oz can coconut milk, light or full-fat, I prefer full
  • 5-6 cloves of garlic, rough chopped
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar, packed
  • 1 ½ teaspoons course, kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated fresh ginger
  • 1-2 teaspoons ground turmeric
  • 1 scant teaspoon cumin
  • ½ teaspoon ground coriander, or ¼ teaspoon whole coriander seeds
  • ¼ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1-2 pounds chicken breasts, tenders or thighs (boneless, skinless)


  • In a medium bowl whisk together the coconut milk, garlic, brown sugar, salt, ginger, turmeric, cumin, and coriander.
  • Using an immersion blender or regular blender, blend marinade ingredients for a few pulses.
  • Add cilantro and pulse again a couple of times.
  • Write the name of the item on the outside of a gallon sized freezer bag, place in stable container to pour in marinade.
  • Separate into two bags if desired with 4 chicken breasts per baggie.
  • Pour in half of the marinade (about 1 cup each).
  • Squeeze all air out of the baggie and seal.
  • If freezing, place flat in freezer until frozen completely.
  • If using immediately, allow to marinade for 2 – 24 hours before grilling. Refrigerate during marinating.
  • If frozen, when ready to use, remove from freezer and thaw in refrigerator overnight or on counter for 2 hours.
  • Heat grill to medium-high heat, brush with oil.
  • Remove from marinade and place on grill, cooking for about 6 minutes per side for breasts (2-3 for tenders, 10 minutes or so per side for thighs)
  • Basting using leftover marinade, discard any unused marinade or bring to simmer on stovetop for 10 minutes to kill any bacteria and serve over chicken.
  • If desired, squeeze a fresh lime and serve.

✱ Kathleen’s Tips


Serving: 1 Calories: 348 kcal Carbohydrates: 6 g Protein: 41 g Fat: 18 g Saturated Fat: 11 g Polyunsaturated Fat: 5 g Cholesterol: 119 mg Sodium: 558 mg Fiber: 1 g Sugar: 1 g

Nutrition Disclaimer

The Fresh Cooky is not a dietician or nutritionist, and any nutritional information shared is only an estimate. We recommend running the ingredients through an online nutritional calculator if you need to verify any information.

Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
Kathleen Pope, The Fresh Cooky.

About Kathleen Pope

Recipe Innovator | Food Photographer | Food Writer

Hi, I’m Kathleen Pope. Here at The Fresh Cooky you will find easy, mostly from-scratch, trusted recipes for all occasions. From speedy dinners to tasty desserts, with easy step-by-step instructions. I am here to help teach you how to make mouthwatering recipes without spending hours in the kitchen. Read more about Kathleen here.

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