This Chicken Satay recipe is gluten-free version of the popular Southeast Asian street food. The tweaks are so subtle, you'd never know it was any different from the original!
Note: This recipe was first posted on my original blog, Celebration Generation, on Apr 6, 2017. It was transferred over to this blog - existing comments and all - on 9/17/2021, and updated on 1/26/2023.
The soy sauce included in both marinade and peanut sauce recipe renders restaurant satay inedible to most with gluten issues.
It's such a small thing, yet ends up meaning that most restaurant-made satay is off limits.
So, if you’ve got to make it at home, best start with an amazing recipe!
This easy chicken satay recipe is one of the recipes from Beyond Flour 2.
“The chicken stays nice, tender, and juicy from this marinade, and the dipping sauce is perfect for it - It compliments the chicken so well, and is amazing on its own - I feel like I could just take a spoon and eat it by itself. I could live on this.” - my husband’s view on it.
I like to serve the sauce hot, but it can also be served cool if you like - you’ll just want to thin it with a little extra chicken stock, as it thickens when cold.
This easy recipe works as both a main dish or the perfect appetizer, and it’s one of my go-to recipes when I host my DIY sushi parties.
When served as a main course, you’ll want some sort of rice - Jasmine rice or coconut rice - and maybe even a simple cucumber salad.
Whether a snack/appetizer or a main, this is a great recipe - let’s get to it!
The list of ingredients may look long - between the chicken marinade and the peanut dipping sauce - but they’re generally simple ingredients that you’re likely to already have on hand.
Also? There’s a LOT of crossover between the marinade ingredients, and the satay sauce ingredients.
A few notes for you:
You can make this with either chicken breast meat or chicken thighs - personally, prefer using white meat.
Whichever way you go, just be sure to use boneless skinless chicken.
I use coconut milk in both the marinated meat and the Thai peanut sauce / dipping sauce - and by “coconut milk”, I mean the traditional, canned stuff you can find in the Asian food aisle.
The tetra pack stuff you find in the milk aisle isn’t the same, and won’t work the same.
Brown sugar is used to sweeten both the marinade and the spicy peanut sauce. I measure it packed.
Alternately, you can use palm sugar if you have it - it’s what’s traditional.
It was just hard to find, when I was developing this recipe!
Lime juice is also used in both parts of this recipe. Freshly squeezed lime juice is best, but bottled will work fine as well.
Personally, I don’t tend to have it on hand, so I use Calamansi juice, which is basically a Filipino lime juice.
I use it in place of lemon juice or lime juice in basically everything, as I’m addicted to the stuff. It’s citrus, but also tastes tropical somehow.
Soy sauce factors into both aspects of the recipe, and it’s also what generally renders satay chicken to be NOT gluten free - dark soy sauce is traditional, but made with wheat.
If you need GF chicken satay, be sure to use a gluten free, be sure to use a gluten free soy sauce, tamari, or coconut aminos.
(These days I use coconut aminos, personally!)
I use creamy peanut butter, as I don’t find chunky peanut butter dip to be pleasant at all.
That said, I’ll sometimes serve chicken satay skewers with chopped peanuts for garnish.
Natural peanut butter works fine, just stir it well before measuring, if there’s any separation.
Rounding out this recipe, you will need:
Crushed Pepper Flakes
Olive Oil or Sesame Oil
Salt & Pepper
... I just don’t have anything to add, here. Pretty straightforward!
In addition to the chicken and marinade ingredients, you’ll need some skewers.
I prefer to use Bamboo Skewers/ wood skewers.
If you use metal skewers, I recommend sliding the chicken off the skewers before serving.
How to Make Chicken Satay
The full recipe is in the recipe card at the end of this post, here is the visual walk through.
Marinate the Chicken
Cut chicken breasts into relatively uniform strips, about 1.5″ across. Place chicken strips in a bowl for marinating (Ideally and airtight container with a lid), set aside.
Note: Alternately, you can marinate the chicken in a plastic baggie, as I did this time - and probably half he times I make this!
Whisk together all marinade ingredients except salt and pepper, taste. Season with salt and pepper to your liking.
Pour marinade over chicken strips, gently turning to coat well. Cover and refrigerate for at least 5 hours.
In a small saucepan, combine peanut butter with remaining sauce ingredients. Bring just to a boil over medium-high heat, turn heat down, and simmer for 5 minutes.
Remove from heat. Chill if desired - this can be served warm, room temperature, or cold, we tend to serve it warm.
Assembly and Cooking
Soak wooden skewers in hot water for 30 minutes, before threading with chicken pieces.
I like to arrange the threaded skewers on a baking sheet, for easy handling.
Keep a close eye on it, to avoid overcooking. The sauce is fantastic, but will only go so far to cover overcooked, dry chicken!
Serve chicken skewers hot, with dipping sauce, coconut rice, and/or a simple cucumber salad.
More Gluten-Free International Recipes
Looking for more recipes with an international flair? I’ve got you covered...
Gluten Free Banana Nutella Ebelskivers
Gluten-Free Beef Stroganoff
Gluten Free Beet Gnocchi
Gluten-Free Chicken Pakora
Gluten Free Chicken Satay
Gluten Free Lemon Mascarpone Ebelskivers
Gluten-Free Mango Shrimp Spring Rolls
Gluten Free Mixed Vegetable Pakora
Gluten-Free Paneer Pakora
Gluten Free Paska
Gluten-Free Pasta Salad
Gluten Free Perogies
Gluten Free Ramen Recipe
Gluten-Free Samosa Recipe
Gluten Free Sopaipillas Pasadas
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Gluten-Free Chicken Satay with Spicy Peanut Dipping Sauce
- 2 lbs Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts
- 2 Cup Coconut Milk
- 2 tablespoon Olive Oil
- 1 tablespoon Gluten-Free Soy Sauce
- 1 tablespoon Lime Juice
- 1 tablespoon Light Brown Sugar Packed
- 2 Garlic Cloves Pressed or minced
- 1 teaspoon Curry Powder
- 1 Cup Coconut Milk
- ½ Cup Peanut Butter
- ½ Cup Chicken Stock
- 1 tablespoon Lime Juice
- 2 tablespoon Light Brown Sugar Packed
- 2 teaspoon Curry Powder
- 2 teaspoon Gluten-Free Soy Sauce
- 1 teaspoon Fish Sauce
- 1 teaspoon Crushed Pepper Flakes
- 1 Garlic Clove Pressed or Minced
- Cut chicken breasts into relatively uniform strips, about 1.5″ across. Place in a bowl for marinating (Ideally with a lid), set aside.
- Whisk together all marinade ingredients except salt and pepper, taste. Season with salt and pepper to your liking.
- Pour marinade over chicken strips, gently turning to coat well. Cover and refrigerate for at least 5 hours.
- In a medium saucepan, whisk together all sauce ingredients. Bring just to a boil, turn heat down, and simmer for 5 minutes.
- Remove from heat. Chill if desired - can be served warm or cold, we tend to serve it warm.
Assembly and Cooking
- Soak wooden skewers in hot water for 30 minutes, before threading with chicken strips.
- Spray grill with nonstick spray, grill until cooked through- juices should run clear.
- Serve hot, with dipping sauce