Savory Hawaiian BBQ Chicken Skewers (Grill Your Way To Paradise)

Aloha, my dear friends!

When I first take a vacation in Hawaii with my family, I fell in love with the unforgettable flavors of Hawaiian BBQ Chicken Skewers in an instant. 

The tender chicken, tangy barbecue sauce, and tropical influences created a dish that left a lasting impression. (a delicious memory)

That’s why today, I’m thrilled to share my own take on this beloved family meal prep recipe.

Allowing you to embark on a culinary journey to the stunning islands of Hawaii, all from the comfort of your own kitchen.

Hawaiian BBQ chicken skewers bring together the best of both worlds – the smoky deliciousness of barbecued chicken and the vibrant flavors of Hawaiian cuisine. 

As you grill these mouthwatering skewers, close your eyes and let yourself be transported to sandy beaches.

Swaying palm trees, and the warm aloha spirit that defines Hawaiian culture. 

Whether you’re planning a weekend cookout or looking to add some excitement to your healthy meal prep for the week, these skewers are the perfect choice.

So, let’s dive right in and uncover the secrets to recreating the magic of Hawaiian BBQ chicken skewers in your own home. 

From marinating the chicken to assembling the skewers and achieving that perfect grill, I’ll be your guide through each step of the process. 

Prepare to amaze your loved ones with this delightful dish that captures the very essence of Hawaiian cuisine. 

Let’s get started and infuse your kitchens with the flavors of Hawaii!

What is the history behind Hawaiian BBQ Chicken Skewers?

The history of this delicious Hawaiian recipe is as vibrant as the flavors they embody. 

Inspired by the ancient Polynesians’ cooking techniques, this dish has evolved over time. 

The imu cooking style, using an underground pit and banana leaves, infused the meat with smoky goodness. 

With the arrival of Portuguese immigrants, the concept of marinating in a sweet and tangy barbecue sauce took hold. 

This fusion of flavors became the foundation of Hawaiian BBQ sauce. 

The irresistible combination of juicy grilled chicken and tantalizing sauce made Hawaiian BBQ chicken skewers a beloved dish. 

Today, it’s an iconic part of Hawaiian cuisine, enjoyed at gatherings and local restaurants across the islands.

Hawaiian BBQ Chicken Skewers

Recipe by TealnotesCourse: MainCuisine: HawaiianDifficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time






  • 1.5 lbs (680g) boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces

  • 1/2 cup pineapple juice

  • 1/4 cup soy sauce

  • 2 tablespoons ketchup

  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1 teaspoon grated ginger

  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder

  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

  • Pineapple chunks, bell peppers, and red onions for skewering

  • Fresh cilantro, for garnish (optional)


  • In a bowl, combine pineapple juice, soy sauce, ketchup, brown sugar, minced garlic, grated ginger, onion powder, and black pepper.

    Continuously mix the ingredients until they are thoroughly blended and the sugar has completely melted.
  • Place the chicken pieces in a resealable plastic bag or a shallow dish.

    Ensure that every piece of chicken is thoroughly covered after pouring the marinade over it.

    Seal the bag or cover the dish, and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, allowing the flavors to meld together.
  • Meanwhile, soak wooden skewers in water for about 30 minutes to prevent them from burning during grilling.
  • Preheat your grill to medium-high heat.
  • Alternate the marinated chicken, pineapple chunks, bell peppers, and red onions when threading them onto the skewers in a sequential manner.
  • Place the skewers on the preheated grill and cook for about 6-8 minutes per side.

    Or until the chicken is cooked through and nicely charred, basting occasionally with the remaining marinade.
  • After grilling, take the skewers off the grill and allow them to rest for a brief period. Garnish with fresh cilantro, if desired.
  • Serve the Hawaiian BBQ Chicken Skewers hot and enjoy.

Indulge in the exquisite tropical tastes of these Hawaiian BBQ chicken skewers alongside your beloved family.

And immerse yourself in the essence of the magnificent Hawaiian islands!

Whether you’re organizing a vibrant summer cookout, arranging a memorable family reunion.

Or seeking a delectable Hawaiian experience to prepare for your loved ones.

These delightful Hawaiian BBQ Chicken Skewers are here to take you on a culinary adventure. 

What Goes Well with Hawaiian BBQ Chicken Skewers?

When it comes to enjoying some lip-smacking Hawaiian BBQ chicken skewers.

Pairing them with the right side dishes and accompaniments can truly elevate your dining experience. 

So, let’s dive right into the sea of flavors and discover some fantastic options that will make your taste buds tango with joy!

Fluffy Rice or Quinoa Fried Rice

Imagine sinking your teeth into tender, succulent chicken skewers, perfectly cooked to juicy perfection, and nestled atop a fluffy bed of rice or quinoa fried rice.

Not only will this option satisfy your hunger, but it will also provide a balanced and satisfying meal that will leave you feeling oh-so-happy.

Vibrant Salads or Slaws

Salad coleslaw on a bowl on top of a gray surface

Craving a burst of refreshing flavors? Serve your Hawaiian BBQ Chicken Skewers with Mediterranean salad or a zesty slaw!

The vibrant crunch of fresh greens and the tangy dressing creates a delightful contrast to the smoky goodness of the chicken. 

Smoky Grilled Vegetables

Different kinds of grilled vegetables on top of a dark surface

Who can resist the allure of lightly seasoned and grilled veggies? (Not me)

Picture perfectly grilled zucchini, bell peppers, and asparagus, their smoky char adding an extra layer of deliciousness to your chicken skewers. 

These grilled goodies complement the skewers perfectly and add a touch of healthy indulgence to the lunch or dinner of your busy family.

Tropical Fruit Skewers

Want to add a burst of tropical paradise to your Hawaiian BBQ chicken skewers?

Thread chunks of luscious pineapple, succulent mango, and refreshing watermelon onto skewers for a burst of juicy sweetness.

The combination of savory chicken and vibrant fruits will transport you to a beachside retreat with every bite.

It’s the perfect addition to your meal prep for your family.

(Who needs a plane ticket when you have these delightful fruit skewers?)

Hawaiian-Inspired Sauces or Dips

Fresh pineapple salsa on a pineapple

Elevate your Hawaiian BBQ chicken skewers with homemade teriyaki sauce, sweet chili sauce, or creamy pineapple salsa. 

These tantalizing sauces and dips add an extra layer of depth and tang to each bite,

(It’s a flavor carnival in your mouth!)

These tantalizing options are perfect for spicing up your intimate dinner for two.

Experiment with these suggestions to create a combination that suits your taste buds. 

And enjoy the incredible flavors of Hawaiian BBQ chicken skewers alongside these delightful accompaniments!

Additional tips and tricks to enhance Your Hawaiian BBQ Chicken Skewers Experience

Hawaiian BBQ Chicken Skewers on top of a grill

To ensure that your Hawaiian BBQ chicken skewers turn out perfectly juicy and flavorful.

Here are some additional tips and tricks to enhance your cooking experience:

  • Soaking Skewers Before Grilling: You don’t want our skewers to turn into burnt offerings, right? That’s where this nifty trick comes in.

    Before you thread your marinated chicken and other delightful ingredients onto the skewers, soak those wooden skewers in water for about 30 minutes.

    This prevents them from going up in flames on the grill and ensures that your skewers cook evenly, without any unwanted charred taste.

    (It’s a simple step that makes a world of difference!)
  • Flavorful Marinating Techniques: Here’s the secret to achieving mind-blowing flavor.

    Let your chicken marinate in the tantalizing embrace of Hawaiian BBQ sauce.

    For optimal taste, give your chicken at least 2 hours to soak up all those sweet and tangy flavors.

    But if you’re feeling adventurous and want to kick it up a notch, let it marinate overnight in a meal prep container and place it inside the refrigerator.

    The longer the chicken luxuriates in that saucy goodness, the more intense and scrumptious the final result will be. 
  • Prevent Overcooking of Chicken Skewers: I’ve already experienced the tragedy of dry and rubbery chicken, and I don’t want that for your fabulous skewers.

    So, pay attention to this golden rule: grill the skewers just until they are perfectly cooked through.

    The cooking time may vary depending on your grill’s heat and the size of your chicken pieces.

    But a general guideline is to grill them for about 6-8 minutes per side.

    To be extra sure, use a meat thermometer to check that the internal temperature reaches a safe and juicy 170°F (76°C).

    (No more bland and overcooked chicken on your watch!)

Now armed with these culinary wizardry tricks.

You’re well-equipped to create the most succulent and flavorful Hawaiian BBQ chicken skewers that will dazzle your family and friends. 

Now, get creative and mix and match these suggestions to create a combination that suits your unique taste buds. 

Play with different combinations, explore new flavors, and embark on a culinary adventure that will leave you craving more. 

This delightful meal prep recipe for families brings the vibrant flavors of Hawaii to your table,

Creating a culinary experience that transports you to the tropical shores of the islands. 

As you savor each juicy and smoky bite, you’ll be reminded of the rich cultural heritage and diverse influences that shape Hawaiian cuisine.

Throughout this journey, you explored the history behind Hawaiian BBQ chicken skewers.

Tracing its roots back to the ancient Polynesians and the culinary fusion that followed. 

You discovered the evolution of this dish and its popularity in Hawaiian culture.

Where it has become a beloved favorite for gatherings, celebrations, and everyday meals.

With my fast and simple recipe, you can easily recreate these flavorful skewers in your own kitchen. 

The careful choice of chicken cuts, soaking the skewers, and the art of marinating all contribute to the succulence and taste of the final dish.

Remember the importance of preventing overcooking to preserve the chicken’s tenderness and juiciness.

But what truly completes the Hawaiian BBQ Chicken Skewers experience is the accompaniments. 

Whether you opt for fluffy rice, vibrant salads, grilled vegetables, tropical fruit skewers, or delectable sauces.

The combination of flavors will transport you to the idyllic beaches and warm hospitality of the Hawaiian islands.

So, gather your loved ones, fire up the grill, and let the enticing aroma of the Hawaiian BBQ chicken skewers fill the air. 

Share this delightful meal with your family and friends, creating lasting memories and moments of pure enjoyment.

Remember, aloha is not just a word, but a way of life in Hawaii—a spirit of love, respect, and hospitality. 

Embrace that spirit as you savor these flavors, and let it infuse every aspect of your cooking and sharing.

Mahalo for joining me on this culinary journey through Hawaiian BBQ chicken skewers.

And I hope it brings warmth, joy, and a taste of the Hawaiian islands into your home.

Don’t forget to share your experiences and spread the Hawaiian spirit with others! 


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How can you keep kebabs juicy?

To ensure juicy kebabs, it’s crucial to select the right ingredients and follow a few key steps. 

Start by using marbled cuts of meat or adding a small amount of fat to leaner cuts. Marinating the meat beforehand can also help retain moisture. 

Additionally, avoid overcooking the kebabs, as this can lead to dryness. 

Keeping a close eye on the grilling time and using a meat thermometer to check for doneness will help you achieve succulent, juicy kebabs.

What is the best method for preparing skewers?

Preparing skewers is an art form that involves thoughtful assembly and careful seasoning. 

Begin by selecting high-quality ingredients, such as tender meats and vibrant vegetables. 

To achieve consistent cooking, ensure that all the ingredients are cut into pieces of the same size.

Skewer them alternately, maintaining a balanced combination of flavors and colors. 

Finally, season the skewers with spices, herbs, or marinades that complement the ingredients. 

This meticulous approach will result in mouthwatering skewers bursting with flavor.

How should chicken skewers be served?

When it comes to serving chicken skewers, presentation is key. Arrange the cooked skewers on a platter, creating an inviting display. 

Garnish with fresh herbs or a sprinkle of sesame seeds for an extra touch. 

To enhance the dining experience, offer a selection of dipping sauces on the side, such as tzatziki, barbecue sauce, or a tangy yogurt-based dip. 

Serve the skewers alongside complementary sides, such as rice, salad, or grilled vegetables, for a well-rounded and satisfying meal.

What are other names for chicken skewers?

Chicken skewers are known by various names across different cuisines. 

In Middle Eastern cuisine, they are commonly called “shish kebabs,” while in Greek cuisine, they go by the name “souvlaki.” 

In Indian cuisine, chicken skewers are often referred to as “tandoori chicken tikka” or “chicken kebabs.” 

These different names reflect the cultural diversity and culinary traditions associated with these delightful grilled treats.

How do you properly assemble chicken skewers?

Assembling chicken skewers requires careful attention to achieve a harmonious blend of flavors. 

Begin by marinating the chicken pieces to infuse them with taste. 

Next, thread the marinated chicken onto skewers, making sure to evenly distribute the pieces and leave a small gap between them for even cooking. 

If you’re adding vegetables or fruits, alternate them with the chicken pieces to create an enticing combination. 

Take your time and assemble the skewers with precision to ensure a mouthwatering outcome.

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