When I think of my favorite summer foods, one of my go-to dinner option is this mouth-watering grilled chicken with mango salsa. I make it every summer. It's versatile. It's simple to prepare. The mango is a light option with that punch of sweetness to complement the char from the grill.
The mango salsa that keeps on giving
This dish doesn't need a side dish, though you can prepare one if you like. I reserve this recipe for those hot summer nights when I don't feel like turning on my oven. I also make it in the winter when I want it to feel like summer!
I used to live near several local fish markets and for a very brief time in the year, striped bass was available. Originally, I grilled the striped bass and served it with mango salsa. This was a true summer delight. Locally caught striped bass with homemade mango salsa. Yum. Striped bass is a thicker meatier fish and if you have access to it - please grill it and serve with this mango salsa. You'll thank me later.
Mangoes and avocados have a lot in common
Now that I don't live near fresh fish markets, I shifted to making grilled chicken and it is fantastic. However, there is a very delicate timing to preparing this dish. And it's because of the mangoes. Much like avocados, they are a pain in the butt when it comes to finding suitable ones for your cooking needs. If they're too soft, it will be a mess when you're cutting and the presentation will suffer. If they're too hard, they are not ripe enough and your salsa will be sour. Also, why are mangoes and tomatoes spelled with an "oes," but not avocados?? I did try to figure this out while writing this, but as usual, the internet is very opinionated about it and I decided to un-dip my toe from that pool of drama.
Nevertheless, I tend to only make this salsa if the mangoes are just right. It may take a couple of weeks of stopping by the mango display to find perfectly ripe mangoes, but it is worth it! Of course, you could just buy the unripe mangoes and keep them out on your counter a few days and wait for them to ripen. However, I seem to like the suspense of checking the mango display a couple of times a week. To each his or her own I suppose!
But seriously, this is a weeknight delight or weekend barbecue must-have! There's only a few ingredients and you can even make the mango salsa a day ahead. So get to that kitchen to prep and fire up the grill!
If you're looking for more chicken recipes, you could try another lighter option with my Rosemary Lemon Garlic Chicken Thighs. Or more decadent? Try my Chicken Piccata or Chicken Marsala for an easy stove-top, one-pan dinner!Print
Mouth Watering Grilled Chicken with Mango Salsa
- Prep Time: 30 minutes
- marinating time: two hours to overnight:
- Cook Time: 10 minutes
- Total Time: 40 minutes
- Yield: 6 portions 1x
If you’re looking for a light, refreshing meal – marinated grilled chicken with mango salsa fits the bill. The sweet pop of mango with the char of the chicken is deeelish!
- 3 boneless chicken breasts
For the chicken marinade
- 1 tablespoon of finely chopped rosemary
- ⅓ cup olive oil
- juice from one lemon
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
For the mango salsa
- 3-4 mangoes
- ¼ cup red onion, finely diced
- ¼ to ½ cup chopped cilantro or basil
- ¼ cup green poblano pepper, finely diced
- ¼ cup red pepper, finely diced
- Juice from one lime
- Make the marinade. Combine all marinade ingredients in a bowl and whisk together. Set aside while you cut the chicken.
- Take the three boneless chicken breasts and cut them in half, horizontally – my video shows this well. Since I’ve already salted the marinade I didn’t salt the chicken here. Put the chicken in the bowl with the marinade and stir to coat all the chicken with the marinade. I always fork the chicken a bit too to tenderize. I almost never have room in my refrigerator for a large bowl, so I transferred the chicken to a gallon-size Ziplock bag. Release any air from the bag, zip it closed and massage the chicken to make sure everything is coated in the marinade. Put in fridge and let marinate at least two hours. Overnight is good too.
- While chicken is marinating, prepare the mango salsa. Peel your mangoes with a peeler. I used three mangoes for this recipe and they were medium-to-large in size. Cut large chunks of mango around the core – which runs through the middle of the mango. Cut the large pieces into thick strips, then cut into cubes. Put in a large bowl. For the green poblano pepper and the red pepper do the same thing: cut into thin strips then dice into tiny pieces. For the red onion, cut into thin slices then also dice into tiny pieces. I used cilantro for mine, but you can use basil if you don’t like cilantro. Chop it fine. I like a lot so I used ½ cup, but you can use less if you prefer. Put everything in the bowl with the mangoes. Squeeze fresh lime juice right into the bowl. Give it a good mix making sure to combine all the ingredients well. You can make this a day ahead if you like and store in the refrigerator.
- Grill the chicken. Heat your grill to medium-high heat. I let my grill heat up with the lid closed for about 10 minutes before cooking. Grill the chicken for 4-5 minutes per side with the lid closed. Internal temperature should be 165 degrees before consuming.
- You can serve the chicken on one plate and the mango salsa on the side or put everything on a platter with mango salsa on top and a bowl on the side for anyone who wants extra (they will).
- There will probably be leftover mango salsa. It’s great for chips and salsa and if you’re making fish tacos or even pulled pork tacos. You can also just eat it on its own – which I’ve done many times!
- You don’t have to use cilantro if you don’t like cilantro. Basil is a great substitute.
- This is a versatile salsa. You can use this for fish tacos, pulled pork tacos, chips and salsa and to top a meatier fish like striped bass or halibut.
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