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Sandra's Thai chicken satay skewers

Sandra's Thai chicken satay skewers (by way of Neiman Marcus!) are great with peanut sauce and cucumber salad.

My cousin Sandra deserves all the credit for bringing these amazing Thai chicken satay skewers into our lives. Neiman Marcus deserves credit, too, because the recipe originally appeared in one of their cookbooks, but to me, these will always be Sandra's skewers, because she introduced us to them.

The chicken in this recipe marinates in a bold mixture of fish sauce, soy sauce, and herbs. Most satay marinades feature coconut milk, which mutes the power of the herbs a bit, but this one does not. The only changes I made were to reduce the amount of brown sugar, and to substitute lemongrass paste for a stalk of fresh lemongrass. We like to serve the skewers with light and easy sliced cucumber salad, and with our favorite spicy peanut sauce for dipping (though the chicken has so much flavor that really you don't need the peanut sauce). I know you'll want to double or triple the recipe for your next party.

My cousin Sandra's Thai chicken satay skewers are our new favorite party food. Great for game-day appetizers.

Sandra's Thai chicken satay skewers

From the pantry you'll need: chicken breast, fish sauce, low-sodium soy sauce, brown sugar, sesame oil, fresh gingerroot, garlic, lime, jalapeño pepper, curry powder, cilantro.

Serves 6; can be multiplied.


1/2 cup fish sauce (I use Red Boat)
1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
3 Tbsp sesame oil
3 Tbsp firmly packed light brown sugar
1 Tbsp peeled and minced fresh ginger root OR 1 Tbsp ginger paste in a tube
1 Tbsp minced garlic
Zest of 3 limes
1 lemongrass stalk (tender inner bulb only), finely chopped OR 1 Tbsp lemongrass paste in a tube
2 Tbsp minced jalapeño pepper (include seeds for spicier dish)
1 Tbsp curry powder
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro stems
6 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut across the grain into 3/4-inch wide strips


In a large mixing bowl, whisk together all ingredients except the chicken. Stir in the chicken strips, making sure the marinade covers all of the pieces. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and refrigerate, stirring once or twice, for 4-8 hours.

Soak 8 long bamboo skewers in water for at least 2 hours, or use metal skewers.

When you're ready to cook, heat your grill. (You can cook indoors, under the broiler, instead.) Thread the chicken on the skewers, just as if you were sewing a hem. 

Cook for 4 minutes on the first side. Turn the skewers, and cook for 2-3 minutes more. 

Serve hot or at room temperature, with your favorite peanut sauce and/or cucumber salad on the side.

[Printer-friendly recipe.]

More chicken skewers:
Garlic chicken on skewers, from The Perfect Pantry
Chicken satay, from The Perfect Pantry
Moroccan spiced grilled chicken kabobs, from David Lebovitz
Honey Sriracha glazed chicken skewers, from RecipeTin Eats

Sandra's Thai chicken satay skewers are packed with flavor, great on the grill or cooked under the broiler.

Disclosure: The Perfect Pantry earns a few pennies on purchases made through the Amazon.com links in this post. Thank you for supporting this site when you start your shopping here.


Looks great and easy and I need new ways to make chicken interesting! Just added the ingredients to my shopping list.

Mary, if you use Red Boat fish sauce (gluten-free), this is a wonderful GF party dish.

This sounds so good. I would have to sub the brown sugar for some sweetener, which I know is not ideal for Thai food, but I bet it would still be good!

Made it and it's fabulous. Had some peanut sauce, made the cucumber salad too.

Kalyn, I cut the sugar from the original recipe, but i think you could substitute half sweetener.

Mary, delighted that you liked it!

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