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Peri Peri Chicken Drumsticks

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Boy do we have a treat for you today!! This Peri Peri chicken is next level savory. The flavors are out of this world, and we cannot wait for you to try this East African dish!

What is peri peri chicken

Peri peri chicken is a delicious chicken dish named for its fiery sauce. Peri peri is a rich and spicy chili sauce that is used to marinate chicken. Traditionally, the peri peri sauce is made with African bird’s eye chili, a spicy pepper native to the Eastern African coastline.

The first peri peri recipe came about in Mozambique, a country bordering the Indian Ocean. As the dish became more popular, it spread to various regions of Africa.

Some regions use the African bird’s eye chili that grows in Mozambique, but other use local peppers of a similar spice level. We personally use jalapeño and fresno peppers! We find that the combo of jalapeño and fresno peppers offers the perfect amount of heat without being overly spicy.

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Peri Peri Chicken0442

How did peri peri chicken get its name?

The name for this flavorful chicken recipe has a pretty simple origin story! The African bird’s-eye chili historically used for the chicken marinade is called piri-piri in Portuguese, the native language of Mozambique.

How to make Peri Peri chicken

  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Make the peri peri sauce:
    1. Add the roasted red bell pepper, garlic cloves, tomato, fresno pepper, red onion, and jalapeño pepper to a food processor.
    2. Squeeze lemon juice in the food processor, then pour in apple cider vinegar, olive oil and honey.
    3. Next, add in the oregano, paprika, pepper and cumin.
    4. Pulse until you have a saucy marinate
  3. Sprinkle salt and pepper on the chicken drumsticks
  4. Pour the marinade over the drumsticks.
  5. Bake the marinated chicken drumsticks in the oven at 400 degrees for 45 minutes. Broil for an additional 5 minutes to get the skin nice and crispy!
  6. Serve hot!

How to store Peri Peri chicken

Peri peri chicken is so delicious it is doubtful that you will have any leftover. But if you do, it is super easy to store! Just pack the extra chicken in an airtight container. It will last in the fridge for 3-5 days.

If you have kids who like a little spice, we have a trick for you! We pull any leftover chicken off of the bone and store it in shreds / strips. This makes preparing lunch boxes so easy!!

Other fantastic chicken recipes to make this week

We love a solid chicken dinner in our home! It is so easy to cook, and our kids love it. Here are some other chicken recipes that we make regularly:

  • Our Crispy Baked Chicken Nuggets are the most nostalgic treat. The best part is that they are way healthier than the fast food version!
  • One of our most popular recipes is our Marry Me Chicken. It is the creamiest chicken recipe, and the flavors are out of this world!! If you like how rich our peri peri chicken is, then you will love marry me chicken!
  • If you couldn’t tell, we like easy recipe you can prep and bake in the oven. Our Bruschetta Baked Chicken is exactly that! The tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, basil and balsamic are just *chefs kiss*
  • Our Instant Pot Chicken Fajita is another yummy chicken recipe that is super hands off. It is a weeknight staple in our homes!!

Peri Peri Chicken Drumsticks

Food Dolls
Easy Peri Peri Chicken with a fiery kick and bold flavors!
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
Total Time 55 mins
Course dinner, lunch
Cuisine african, east african
Servings 4
Calories 408 kcal


  • 4-5 lbs chicken drumsticks (about 12 drumsticks)
  • 8 oz jarred roasted red peppers
  • 1/2 medium tomato
  • 8 cloves peeled garlic
  • 1 large fresno peppers
  • 1 squeeze lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 tbsp paprika
  • 2 tsp kosher salt, plus more for chicken (to taste)
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper (to taste)
  • 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 red onions
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp honey


  • Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
  • Make the peri peri sauce: Add the roasted red bell pepper, tomato, garlic cloves, fresno pepper, red onion, and jalapeño pepper to a food processor. Squeeze lemon juice then pour in apple cider vinegar, olive oil and honey. Next, add in the oregano, paprika, pepper and cumin. Pulse until you have a saucy marinate.
  • in a 13x9 baking dish arrange your drumsticks. Sprinkle salt and pepper
  • Pour the marinade over the drumsticks. Give it a mix to make sure everything is coated in the marinade. Cover and refrigerate overnight or for at least 30 minutes. (The longer it marinates, the better!)
  • Bake the marinated chicken drumsticks in the oven for 45 minutes. Broil for an additional 5 minutes to get the skin nice and crispy! (keep an eye on it so it does not burn!)


Serving: 8g | Calories: 408kcal | Carbohydrates: 10g | Protein: 28g | Fat: 29g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 16g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 140mg | Sodium: 2101mg | Potassium: 534mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 545IU | Vitamin C: 44mg | Calcium: 82mg | Iron: 3mg
Keyword baked chicken, peri peri, peri peri chicken, peri peri marinade, spicy chicken
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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Recipe Rating


  1. Is there anyway to make it less spicy? I would like to try Peri Peri chicken, but can only handle a mild spice level.

  2. 5 stars
    Really enjoyed this recipe! I took some of the marinade off the chicken for baking and cooked it a bit for a sauce at the end. Leftovers will be amazing!

  3. 5 stars
    So much flavor! We didn’t have any Fresno so we just did double jalapeño and added a smidge of chipotle. I do recommend pulling the chicken out and broiling on all sides to crisp up. Super flavorful and my 4 year old loved helping. She loves trying other cuisines. Total hit!

  4. 3 stars
    This recipe was just okay for us. You’d expect it to be more flavorful with all those good veggies but it was a bit bland. It also did not crisp up like the picture implies; we ended up peeling all the gooey skin off, chopping the chicken off the bones, and mixing it with a different sauce as to not waste food. There’s also a tomato in the photos but not in the ingredients. We added one assuming the photo was correct but who knows.

    1. Oh no! Sorry to hear that this recipe was not a winner. The tomato is updated on the blog, sorry about that! Next time – try broiling the chicken for a couple minutes to crisp up the skin! Thanks for giving this recipe a try! xo, Alia & Radwa

      1. Thanks so much! We will have to try again with the broiling trick. Looking forward to trying your recently posted apple cinnamon roll casserole soon too!