Spicy, tender, juicy chicken? Yes, please! Let us introduce you to your new favorite weeknight dinner with this Cilantro Lime Chicken Recipe. Made with an easy zhoug spice, it’s chock-full of flavor and cooks in less than 10 minutes. Serve it with roasted vegetables, parmesan potatoes, and all your favorite sides for a satisfying meal! 

Cilantro lime chicken on a plate with zhoug sauce, cilantro, and limes.
Make a big batch of spicy cilantro lime chicken to enjoy throughout the week.

Why You’ll Love This Cilantro Lime Chicken Recipe

We love to use chicken tenders to make family-friendly meals like our coconut chicken tenders and easy chicken shawarma. However, this cilantro lime chicken takes your standard chicken recipe up a notch with tons of flavor and bold spice! In addition, it’s: 

  • Made with just 4 ingredients
  • Marinated to lock in flavor and ensure a juicy texture
  • Cooked in a single pan for less than 10 minutes
  • Perfect for pairing with all your favorite sides
Overhead image of zhoug sauce in a food processor.
Keep extra zhoug sauce on hand for salads, sandwiches, and more.

Ingredients You’ll Need

We like to keep a jar of our zhoug sauce on hand for recipes like this cilantro lime chicken! As long as you have it, you probably have everything else you’ll need waiting for you on hand. 

  • Chicken Tenders – We like to use chicken tenders for minimal prep. However, sliced chicken breasts or chicken thighs work well, too. Just keep in mind that chicken thighs have more fat which results in a slightly different flavor. 
  • Zhoug Sauce – This yields all the bold spicy cilantro flavor we love about this recipe! 
  • Salt – Used to enhance the rest of the ingredients and prevent the chicken from drying out. 
  • Olive Oil – This coats the bottom of the skillet, allowing the chicken to cook and crisp up on the outside without sticking to the pan. 

What Does Lime Juice Do to Chicken? 

The lime juice in the zhoug sauce not only adds a vibrant, refreshing flavor to the cilantro chicken, but the acid also acts as a tenderizer. When left to marinade, it breaks down some of the tough fibers of the chicken, making it extra tender and juicy.

Spicy cilantro lime chicken marinading in zhoug sauce in a sealable bag.
Marinade your chicken overnight for the best results.

How to Make Cilantro Lime Chicken 

Chicken is a staple in our dinner lineup because it’s super versatile and easy to make! Infused with a zhoug marinade, this spicy cilantro lime chicken recipe cooks to juicy perfection in minutes. Here’s what to do: 

  1. Marinate. Add the chicken tenders, zhoug sauce, and salt to a large freezer bag. Toss to coat, making sure the chicken is completely covered. Then, place it in the fridge to marinade for at least 30 minutes or up to overnight. 
  2. Cook. Heat the olive oil in a pan over medium-high heat. Add the tenders, cooking on both sides until they reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit. 
  3. Rest and Serve. Set the chicken aside for 5 minutes to rest. Serve warm, and enjoy! 

Cooking Tips

  • Don’t Rush the Marinade. The longer your cilantro lime chicken has to marinate, the better it will taste! For the best results, we recommend letting it sit in the fridge overnight. 
  • Allow the Skillet Time to Heat. You want the skillet to be hot enough that water sizzles if flicked in. This helps cook the chicken quickly, preventing it from drying out. 
  • Use a Meat Thermometer. Don’t overcook your chicken! Instead, use a meat thermometer to monitor the internal temperature, and remove the chicken from the skillet as soon as it reaches  165 degrees Fahrenheit. 
Close up image of spicy cilantro lime chicken tenders.
Serve your cilantro lime chicken as a main dish, add to salads, use it in sandwiches, and more.

Serving Suggestions

There are endless ways to serve this spicy cilantro lime chicken recipe! For instance, some of our favorite options include: 

How to Store and Reheat

Go ahead and make a double or even triple batch of this cilantro lime chicken! It tends to disappear fast. However, if you do have leftovers, they store well, too.

Refrigerator: Let the chicken cool completely before transferring it to an airtight container, and store it in the fridge for up to 3-4 days

Freezer: Place your chicken in a freezer-safe container or sealable bag, and keep it frozen for up to 2 months

To Reheat: Let your cilantro chicken thaw in the fridge overnight. Then, warm it up in the microwave. Or, place it back on the skillet with a bit of oil until your desired temperature is reached. You could also just eat it cold! 

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03/13/2024 10:54 pm GMT

More Tasty Chicken Recipes

Want more ways to take your chicken game to the next level? Try these tried-and-true tasty recipes!

Close up image of a cilantro lime chicken tender.

Cilantro Lime Chicken Recipe

5 from 2 votes
Author: Food Dolls
Servings: 6 servings
Prep: 3 minutes
Marinade Time: 30 minutes
Let us introduce you to your new favorite weeknight dinner with this Cilantro Lime Chicken Recipe! Made with an easy zhoug spice, it’s loaded with flavor and cooked in less than 10 minutes.


  • 1 ½ pounds chicken tenders
  • 1/3 cup zough sauce
  • Salt to taste
  • Olive oil to coat the pan


  • In a large freezer bag, add the chicken tenders, zhoug sauce, and salt. Toss to combine and coat the chicken. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or ideally up to overnight.
  • Heat the olive oil in a non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken tenders, and cook for 3-4 minutes on one side. Flip them over, and continue to cook for 3-4 minutes or until an internal temperature of 165˚ F is reached.
  • Rest 5 minutes, and serve!
  • Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3-4 days.


1 Freezer Bag

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Serving: 1serving | Calories: 161kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 73mg | Sodium: 1508mg | Potassium: 420mg | Vitamin A: 34IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 6mg | Iron: 0.4mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Like this recipe?Please leave a comment!
A piece of cilantro lime chicken being dipped in zhoug sauce.
Serve your chicken with extra zhoug sauce for even more flavor!

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Meet Alia & Radwa

Welcome to Food Dolls! We’re so glad you found us. We are Alia and Radwa, sisters who want to share simple and easy recipes with you. We hope you find recipes here that you enjoy making as much as we do! Learn more about us!

5 from 2 votes (2 ratings without comment)

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