Cilantro Lime Marinated Grilled Chicken Thighs

I have been doing great on my diet for the past few months and have learned a few new recipes which are not only tasty, but also can be low in calories (depending on the side dishes they are served with).

One of our favorites around here is cilantro lime marinated grilled chicken.   It’s simple to make, has plenty of flavor, and chicken is full of protein while being low in calories.  Since it’s a marinade and doesn’t have a lot of “evil” ingredients, it only adds about 18 calories.

I buy a bag of limes a couple of times a year and then juice them and freeze the juice into ice cubes.    When I need a little bit of lime, like for this recipe, I just grab a couple of those ice cubes.     You could use bottled lime juice too, but it might taste slightly different than fresh lime.

We like to serve it with brown rice, corn, and black beans.  Sometimes we grill a couple of red peppers and tomatoes and add it to the mix.


Chicken Lime Cilantro Recipe:

  • 1 package of chicken thighs (approximately 16 ounces)  (we buy the Costco organic Chicken Thighs which come in a pre-sealed package)

Into a measuring cup, place the following:

  • 1/2 chopped onion
  • 3 lime ice cubes (melted) (approximately 3 ounces)
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon crushed garlic (depending on how much you like garlic) (I use 1/2 tsp).
  • 2 sprinkles of onion powder (it’s not very much.  If you measured it, it would be about a tip of a spoon worth)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried  cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Ground Pepper  (I have a pepper grinder and I use about 10 grinds)

Rinse and dry the chicken thighs and put them into a large ziplock bag (Or similar sealable plastic bag).

Mix up the measuring cup full of marinade and pour into the bag with the chicken.

Seal the bag and move the chicken around in the marinade to coat it well.

Place in the refrigerator for 4-6 hours.   Then take it out of the marinade and grill the chicken until cooked through.

According to, the nutrition profile for this meal looks like this:

Cilantro Lime Marinade (1/2 oz), 1 serving(s)  – 18 calories
Seeds of Change – Brown & Red Rice w/ Chia and Kale , 3 ounce  – 143 calories
Kirkland – Canned Corn (Drained), 4 fluid ounce  – 90 calories
Iberia – Canned Black Beans, 2 fluid ounce – 50 calories
Chicken – Chicken Thighs, Boneless, Skinless, 4.4 oz (112g) – 145 calories

Calories: 446

Carbs: 59

Fat: 10

Protein: 34

Sodium: 690

Sugar: 7