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Spicy Grilled Chicken (A 21-Day-Fix-Friendly Recipe)

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Leah loves cooking healthy food and enjoys finding ways to spruce up traditional recipes. She is a follower of the 21-Day Fix.

The finished product with some grilled zucchini.

The finished product with some grilled zucchini.

Summer Is for Grilling

Nothing says summer like grilled food, at least for me. I'm not a huge fan of hot weather, and I'm even less of a fan of standing over a hot stove or oven in the summer months. So lately, I've been cooking everything on the grill—protein, veggies, and fruit. It keeps the meat juicy and adds a nice flavor to the veggies or fruit, as well as those lovely grill marks. It's an easy way to cook with as little effort as possible, which is my personal preference.

I had some gorgeous zucchini that a coworker had given me from her farm share. I'm definitely planning to get that next summer so I can make use of the wide array of local produce available in my neck of the woods (Long Island, New York). How exciting is that? Enjoying fresh, organic vegetables and fruits and supporting local farmers!

The secret ingredient—spicy glaze for the chicken.

The secret ingredient—spicy glaze for the chicken.

Spicy Glaze

This spicy glaze was simple to make and only took about a minute. It should be a beautiful deep red color and somewhat thick, similar to barbecue sauce. I put the grilled chicken right into the bowl and turned the thighs with some tongs to ensure that it was fully coated.

I'm kind of a wuss when it comes to spicy. While I love a bit of heat and a lot of flavor, I don't like food that makes me cry and sweat (ha)! If you like your food to be on the spicier side, you can always tweak the amount of chili powder used, or even sneak in some cayenne pepper to add more heat to the glaze.

Cook Time

Prep timeCook timeReady inYields

5 min

30 min

35 min

6 servings


  • 2 pounds chicken thighs, bone-in, skin on
  • 1 teaspoon Himalayan pink salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper, ground
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup hot sauce
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup


  1. Set grill to medium high.
  2. Wash the chicken thighs and sprinkle them with the salt and pepper. Grill the chicken for about 30 minutes, turning every 10 minutes.
  3. Mix the remaining ingredients to make the spicy glaze.
  4. Once the chicken is done, toss it in the glaze until the chicken is all coated. Enjoy!
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What Do You Think?

Ready for the grill.

Ready for the grill.

Health Benefits

This deceptively simple recipe has some ingredients that can benefit our overall health as well as ensuring that the meal is as tasty as possible.

  • Himalayan pink salt: This is not just beautifully colored; it has other qualities that make it ideal to use as a food seasoning. The sodium helps our body to maintain a balance of fluids (if consumed in moderation). It also contains a variety of minerals minus the refining or processing. These minerals include iron, magnesium, potassium, and calcium. If you don't have this, feel free to use sea salt or regular salt to season.
  • Garlic: This delicious seasoning adds so much flavor. I've always loved garlic, even before I knew about all the benefits it can have for my health. It contains varying amounts of vitamins and minerals and can make your immune system work more effectively. Garlic can also lower blood pressure and may even play a role in lowering cholesterol and reducing the risk of heart disease.
  • Chili powder: Not only does this spice have vitamins and minerals, it has the potential to play a role in the weight loss process.
  • Paprika: This beautifully bright spice adds vitamins and minerals along with the vibrant flavor. It pairs beautifully with chicken as well.
  • Hot sauce: the spicy flavor comes from capsaicin, which comes from spicy peppers. It has anti-inflammatory properties and may speed up your metabolism, which is great news for those of us (like myself) who are trying to reach and maintain a healthy weight.

Even if you aren't looking for the health benefits of these ingredients, I'm positive that the delicious flavors of this chicken will win you over. It doesn't hurt to improve our health while indulging our tastebuds, am I right?

21-Day Fix Container Counts

Container counts for one chicken thigh are as follows:

  • 1 red container

Seriously! That's it! I really can't get enough of this. I had 2 thighs, so I counted 2 reds. Don't forget to count containers for any sides you serve with this, including potatoes, corn, veggies, or fruit.

Suggested Sides

Since I follow the 21-Day Fix, I sometimes like to prepare a meal without using yellow containers (carbs). I wanted to make this meal with what I had on hand, but the options are limitless! Some sides you can serve this with are:

  • Zucchini. Any way you prepare this will complement the intense, spicy flavor of the chicken. I chose to grill it because I was already grilling, plus it saves time on clean up.
  • Asparagus. A super healthy vegetable (I know, kind of redundant) that can be cooked right on the grill with some Himalayan salt and a splash of lemon juice. If you don't keep kosher, a little grated parmesan is a nice touch. Just make sure to shave the bottoms (see instructions here: to keep the whole stalk tender and tasty.
  • Corn. Is there really a meal involving grilled food where corn isn't suitable? Yeah, I don't think so either.
  • Broccoli. I love broccoli, and it's super healthy. Full of fiber, this veggie will help you stay full for the night.
  • Green beans. Another personal favorite of mine. They have a bright, fresh flavor that goes well with most meals. I like to season mine with just a sprinkle of Himalayan salt and slivered almonds.
  • Potatoes. These versatile tubers can be served in about a zillion different ways. I tend to stick to the basics, serving them baked or mashed, but I am planning a spiral cut potato recipe.
  • Rice. This grain is another one that can be used in so many different kinds of recipes.
  • Pasta. I'm not Italian, but I'm always ready to include pasta with any meal. Next time I make this chicken, I'm planning to take it off the bone and serve with whole wheat pasta and some broccoli.

Basically any vegetable or carbohydrate source. There are no wrong sides to make with this chicken.

© 2018 Leah

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