Gluten Free Margarita Glazed Chicken Recipe

by Carol Kicinski on February 28, 2016

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Gluten Free Margarita Glazed Chicken Recipe

I like Margarita Chicken. Notice I said like not love.

Typically, margarita chicken is made with boneless, skinless chicken breasts, marinated in some lime juice, spices, and tequila, then grilled. And as I said, I like it well enough but I thought it could be better.

First of all, boneless, skinless chicken breasts lack flavor. So the first change was to use chicken thighs instead. And to keep the skin on and bone in – way more flavor!

Secondly, the lime juice and tequila for the typical recipe is nice, but has sort of a one-flavor note to it – tang but no sweet. A good margarita is a balance of tangy and sweet. So I solved that problem by adding agave. Tequila is made with agave, so it is the perfect sweetener. I used Wholesome! organic blue agave in this recipe – I like the deep, rich sweetness it adds. Also, it always bothers me to throw away the marinade – after all, it’s got perfectly good tequila in there! In this recipe, the marinade does double duty – it acts as a marinade and then as a glaze. Since the marinade cooks, it is perfectly safe to consume after the raw chicken has bathed in it.

Finally, the grilling. I like food cooked on the grill but even here in Florida it’s kind of cold outside. I wanted my chicken to be roasted. Roasting adds a deep, rich flavor and has the added benefit of beautifully glazing the chicken.

So here is my updated and, in my humble opinion, upgraded version of a Gluten Free Margarita Glazed Chicken Recipe.

I hope you enjoy it!


Gluten Free Margarita Glazed Chicken Recipe


¼ cup Wholesome! organic blue agave
¼ cup tequila
¼ cup (from 2 large limes) fresh lime juice
4 garlic cloves, minced or grated
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 ½ teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons kosher or fine sea salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
8 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
Lime wedges, for serving


In a large mixing bowl, combine the agave, tequila, lime juice, garlic, chili powder, cumin, salt, and pepper. Add the chicken thighs, stir to coat, and let marinate for 30 minutes at room temperature or covered with plastic wrap in the refrigerator for up to 2 hours. If marinated in the refrigerator, let the chicken sit at room temperature for about 10 minutes before cooking.

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet very well with heavy duty foil.

Place the chicken on the prepared baking sheet skin side down. Pour the marinade over. Bake for 15 minutes or until the fat starts to render from the chicken. Turn the thighs over and bake for another 10 – 15 minutes or until deeply browned, and the juices run clear when the thighs are pricked with a knife (165 degrees on an instant-read thermometer).

Serve with lime wedges.


This Gluten Free Margarita Glazed Chicken Recipe Serves 8

The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely the blog owner’s. This blog accepts free manufacturers’ samples and forms of cash advertising, sponsorship, paid insertions or other forms of compensation. Affiliate links may be included in this post.

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Categories:    Main Dishes

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Jen February 28, 2016 at 7:12 pm

This is a favourite dish of mine, too—thanks for sharing your take on it!


Jeanette July 24, 2017 at 5:23 pm

What kind of tequila do you purchase that is considered gluten free?


Carol Kicinski August 24, 2017 at 2:40 pm

Hi Jeanette,
Tequila is made from the agave plant, so for the most part all tequila should be gluten-free (check labels and make sure it’s not mixed with some other flavorings, etc.). Patron is a good choice. Hope this helps!


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