This Pollo Asado recipe is a fantastic and authentic version of the classic grilled chicken commonly found in Puerto Rico, Cuba and other parts of the Caribbean. A bold citrus marinade keeps the chicken juicy and makes it super flavorful!
When I think of summer grilling at it’s finest, pollo asado is where it’s at for me. Classic flavors like garlic and citrus combine to make the juiciest and more tender chicken you’ll ever eat. This recipe is so simple yet so flavorful (and it’s easy on the wallet too). So if you’re ready to put a Latin twist on your standard grilled chicken recipe, try my recipe for citrus-marinated Latin grilled chicken.
What Ingredients Do You Need To Make Pollo Asado?
What makes pollo asado stand out is the delicious spices and herbs we use. Puerto Rican recipes in general are known for its spices and bold flavors. There’s nothing shy about Latin cooking, and this recipe is no exception. My citrus marinade packs a punch with classic Latin spices like Sazon, garlic powder, oregano and cumin. We round out those flavors by using orange and lime juice, and blend everything together with a bit of oil.
What are the Best Cuts of Chicken To Use for Pollo Asado?
The best cuts for pollo asado are:
- Bone-in Breasts
- Split Whole Chickens
I personally love using dark meat for several reasons. For one, it’s super authentic, plus dark meat tends to bold up well to grilling because it’s much harder to overcook on the grill. Also, dark meat can stand up better to bold flavors and acidic marinades. Chicken breast tends to be overcook quickly on the grill, if you aren’t super careful.
What Can I Serve With Pollo Asado?
In Puerto Rico, pollo asado (and most other proteins) are served with rice beans, plantains, and some avocado or simple green salad. Here are some of my favorite Puerto Rican recipes to serve with your citrus marinated grilled chicken.
- Arroz Con Gandules (Puerto Rican Rice with Pigeon Peas)
- Arroz Amarillo (Spanish Yellow Rice)
- Habichuelas Guisadas (Puerto Rican Stewed Beans)
- Tostones (Fried Plantains) with Mayoketchup
- Avocado, Tomato & Watercress Salad
- Tropical Guava Barbecue Sauce
- Coconut Cream Cheese Flan
What’s your favorite recipe to make on the grill? Comment below!
Pollo Asado (Citrus Marinated Grilled Chicken)
- 4 lbs chicken legs, thighs, and/or breasts I prefer bone in, skin on
- 1/4 cup neutral oil, such as corn oil
- 2/3 cup orange juice 2-3 fresh oranges
- Juice of 1-2 limes
- 3 teaspoons Sazon seasoning with Coriander and Annatto
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon granulated garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon granulated onion powder
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
Combine the oil, citrus juices and spices in a bowl or measuring cup. Stir to combine.
Place the chicken into a zip top bag or glass container, then pour the marinade all over the chicken. Be sure to thoroughly coat the chicken with the marinade. Cover and place the chicken in the fridge to marinate for a minimum of 4 hours, up to 8 hours.
Preheat a grill to medium low heat. Cook the chicken for 30 minutes, turning frequently. Make sure not to walk away, skin-on chicken can flare up quickly!
Cook the chicken until a thermometer reads 165°F in the center. Serve hot.
Acidic marinades can change the texture of meat if you marinate it for too long, so don’t overdue the marinade. If you’re using white meat chicken, err on the side of caution and only marinate for 4 hours max.
Can’t find sazon seasoning? Make your own with my homemade recipe!