Tequila-Lime Chicken Tacos

Tequila-lime chicken tacos are an easy weeknight fix, whether for Taco Tuesday on a chaotic weeknight or a leisurely weekend in the backyard. Essentially just marinated grilled chicken and a spiked mayonnaise sauce.

Wood bowl with tequila-lime chicken tacos, charred limes, radishes, sour cream

These grilled chicken tacos get a little tipsy after being doused with tequila then take a cold shower in the form of a mayonnaise sauce spiked with cilantro and chile and a squeeze of lime. Olé! Originally published June 15, 2004.Renee Schettler Rossi

Tequila-Lime Chicken Tacos

  • Quick Glance
  • Quick Glance
  • 25 M
  • 40 M
  • Serves 4 or more
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  • For the marinade
  • For the sauce


Make the marinade
At least 1 hour ahead, or up to the night before you plan to grill prepare the marinade: Combine the ingredients in a small bowl. Place the chicken breasts in a zippered plastic bag and pour in the marinade. Seal the bag, and toss back and forth to coat the chicken evenly. Refrigerate.
Up to 1 hour ahead, place the lime sections on a plate, sprinkle them with the tequila, and rub lightly with oil. Let sit at room temperature.
Make the sauce
In a small bowl, stir together the ingredients. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
Prepare the tacos
When you’re ready to grill the chicken, drain it and discard the marinade. Let the chicken sit, uncovered, at room temperature for about 20 minutes.
Fire up the grill, bringing the heat to medium (4 to 5 seconds with the hand test).
Grill the chicken uncovered for 6 to 8 minutes total. Turn onto each side twice, rotating the breasts each time to get crisscross grill marks. The chicken is done when it is white throughout but still juicy. Grill the limes alongside the chicken, turning them from time to time so that they soften and develop a bit of char. Remove them as they are ready. Warm the tortillas on the edge of the grill, then wrap in a dish towel or foil to keep warm.
Working quickly pull the chicken into thin shreds and pile it on a platter. Surround with the limes, and set the bowl of sauce on the platter or alongside. Place the wrapped tortillas in a basket. Serve immediately, encouraging diners to fill and fold the tortillas, drizzle with sauce, squeeze on some of the warm tequila-spiked lime juice, and enjoy.
Print RecipeBuy the Chicken on the Grill cookbook

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Recipe Testers Reviews

This recipe has a nice tang of citrus and, when mixed with the sauce on the taco, it’s a very pleasing taste on the palate. I started marinating my chicken the night before because I wanted the flavors to penetrate throughout the chicken. I also used green chile powder instead of the jalapeños. The one thing I’d do differently next time is to heat the corn tortillas in the microwave. When cooked on the grill they tended to be dry and hard to roll. We microwaved the rest and wrapped them in plastic wrap, and they were very soft, moist, and perfect for rolling. The combination of chicken, sauce, tortilla, and a squeeze of lime will leave you wanting more.


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