What’s a summer BBQ without grilled chicken kabobs?

With a sauce inspired by our favorite huli huli chicken recipe, these kabobs have chicken, pineapple, and vegetables with hints of ginger, soy, and brown sugar.

Perfect for a backyard BBQ or any weeknight dinner, these kabobs add a touch of tropical with every bite.

plated Hawaiian Chicken Kabobs

Ingredients & Variations

CHICKEN: Boneless skinless chicken thighs or chicken breasts are great in this recipe. Chunks of beef or shrimp can be used in this recipe, but cook them separately from the vegetables since they’ll cook at different rates.

VEGETABLES: Bell peppers, red onions, and pineapple chunks are sweet and colorful, but why not try whole mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, or thick zucchini rounds? Potatoes and carrots should be par-cooked prior to adding to kabobs, however.

MARINADE: The marinade makes the meal! These Hawaiian-inspired chicken Kabobs use a sauce very loosely based on Huli Huli chicken, which is a Hawaiian specialty created by Ernie Morgado in the 1950s. While this recipe isn’t cooked in the style of Huli Huli chicken, which is chicken that is turned on the grill or a spit, it is flavor packed and delicious.

garlic , ginger , peppers , onion , chicken , pineapple juice , soy sauce , onion , pineapple , oil , ketchup , siracha and brown sugar with labels to make Hawaiian Chicken Kabobs

How to Make Hawaiian Chicken Kabobs

  1. Prepare marinade per the recipe below & marinate chicken for up to 4 hours.
  2. Add prepared vegetables to a large bowl & toss with 3 tablespoons of marinade.
  3. Thread chicken and vegetables onto skewers.
  4. Grill Hawaiian chicken kabobs until cooked through, brushing them with remaining marinade and rotating as needed.

PRO TIP: Always discard leftover marinade that has come in contact with raw meat to avoid harmful bacteria that may have developed.

veggies for Hawaiian Kabobs

In the Oven:

Baked Hawaiian chicken kabobs come out perfectly in the oven, too!

  1. Prepare chicken kabobs up to Step 3 and bake them in the oven set to 375°F for 12-16 minutes, basting and turning them over halfway through.
  2. Broil them for about 2 minutes for an extra char-grilled exterior.
brushing sauce on Hawaiian Kabobs before cooking

Tips for Juicy Kabobs 

  • Soak wooden skewers in water for at least 30 minutes to prevent them from splintering or burning.
  • For uniform cooking, cut chicken and veggies into equal sizes.
  • Leave a small amount of space between each piece on the skewer. This allows heat to circulate evenly and helps everything cook at the same rate.
  • Chicken kabobs cook quickly; use a meat thermometer to ensure they reach 165°F without overcooking.
  • For the best results, pull them off the grill a few degrees early since they will continue to cook as they rest.
Hawaiian Kabobs closeup

Storing Leftovers

  • For best results, separate the leftover chicken and vegetables and store in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • Chop up leftovers and serve them over rice or in a chicken and noodle stir fry.
  • Hawaiian chicken kabobs freeze beautifully! Scoop portions into zippered bags and freeze for up to 1 month. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight before reheating on the stove or in the microwave.

More Grilled Chicken Favorites

Did you make these Hawaiian Chicken Kabobs? Leave us a rating and a comment below!

grilled Hawaiian Chicken Kabobs
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Hawaiian Chicken Kabobs

Grilled Hawaiian chicken kabobs have tender chicken, colorful veggies, and tangy sauce. It's the perfect summer meal!
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Marinating Time 30 minutes
Total Time 52 minutes
Servings 8 skewers

Equipment

Wood Skewers on white background
Wooden Skewers soaked, or metal skewers
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Ingredients  

  • 1 ½ pounds boneless chicken breasts cut into 1" cubes
  • 1 red bell pepper diced into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 orange bell pepper diced into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 cup pineapple diced into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 green bell pepper diced into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 red onion diced into bite-sized pieces

Marinade

  • cup ketchup
  • cup soy sauce
  • cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup pineapple juice
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon ginger root minced
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 teaspoon Sriracha

Instructions 

  • Combine all marinade ingredients in a small bowl or freezer bag. Set aside ½ cup of the mixture for the vegetables.
  • Add the chicken to the remaining marinade, ensuring it is well-coated and allow it to marinate for at least 30 minutes or for up to 4 hours.
  • Preheat the grill to medium-high (400°F).
  • In a large bowl, combine the diced bell peppers, pineapple, and onions and toss with 3 tablespoons of the reserved marinade.
  • Thread the chicken and vegetables onto skewers.
  • Grill for 12 to 16 minutes or until cooked through, turning the skewers frequently. Brush the skewers with the remaining marinade while cooking.

Notes

  • Soak wooden skewers in water during preparation to keep them from burning or charring on the grill.
  • Cut meat and vegetables into uniform sizes for even cooking.
  • A meat thermometer should read 165°F when chicken is done. Remove from grill promptly.
5 from 115 votes

Nutrition Information

Calories: 188 | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 72mg | Sodium: 158mg | Potassium: 655mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 1085IU | Vitamin C: 68mg | Calcium: 22mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.

Course Chicken, Dinner, Entree, Main Course
Cuisine American
cooked Hawaiian Chicken Kabobs with a title
Hawaiian Chicken Kabobs with tangy bbq sauce and a title
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Holly Nilsson is the creator of Spend With Pennies, where she creates easy, comforting recipes made for real life. With a passion for nostalgic flavors and simplified techniques, Holly helps busy home cooks create delicious meals that always work. She is also the author of “Everyday Comfort,” which promises to inspire even more hearty, home-cooked meals.
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Comments

  1. Made these tonight. The marinade was so delicious I marinaded chunks of chicken tenderloins for 3 hours. Read reviews that stated to lessen that time just in case and the chicken was perfect. Very juicy. We loved them on the grill. I’m sure they would be just as great in the oven. Made with scalloped potatoes. Amazing dinner. Thank you! Too bad I can’t post a photo!! Restaurant quality!!5 stars

  2. Easy and tasty. I baked it all in the oven and the timing was perfect. The peppers were nicely cooked with a good texture. I used a bit less marinade. Thanks for another solid recipe.5 stars

  3. Very good made it for dinner w white rice &brocoli ♥️
    P.S. you have very good recipes I love to follow you
    From Canada 5 stars

  4. Made this tonight in the air fryer. It was good. Very good flavor. This only thing wrong from my perspective was the marinade made the chicken somewhat mushy. I only let it in the marinade for about an hour so I’m not sure what happened. The veggies were perfect. Any thoughts Holly?

    I used the rotisserie & metal skewers in 400 degrees for 10-15 min.

    Again the taste was delicious so I will try it again but marinate it less time or just brush it on as it cooks.4 stars

    1. Hi Darla, if your cubes of chicken were on the smaller size they won’t take as long to marinade so that could have been it. But reducing the marinating time will help with that!

  5. This really is the perfect summer dinner on the grill! Delicious marinade really made it moist and flavorful. It makes a colorful presentation too. I marinated for 3 1/2 hrs and served with coconut rice. I will definitely make this again. Leftovers were easy to take to work the next day in one dish. Everyone will love this.5 stars

  6. Love your recipes Holly! Could the chicken be marinated overnight? Having a crowd over and wanted to get it cooked in the morning and just serve warm later in the day.

    1. Absolutely, this can be marinated overnight. I recommend not marinating it for longer than 24 hours as the meat can become mushy. If you try it I would love to hear how it turns out!

  7. Made the kabobs last night on the grill and they turned out great. so yummy! Made your Easy Rice Pilaf as our side dish and it was very good also. Will make both again. Thank you!5 stars

  8. I’m confused when comments are referring to KC masterpiece rub. I don’t see any mention of it in the recipe.
    I’ve tried so many of your recipes and all have been very good

    1. Thank you! The original recipe used a product that has been discontinued so the recipe has been updated.

  9. I use chicken thigh fillets & marinade in ketchup, soy sauce, pineapple juice, vinegar, white sugar, garlic. I don’t like chicken breast or ginger. They turn out great on the bbq.

  10. Can’t wait to try this recipe which I’m going to try with both shrimp and chicken. I am a little confused though. Instructions Step 1 for sauce says 3/4 c pineapple juice with 1 pouch KC bbq sauce and dry rub.
    Then step 1 for skewers says 1 c pineapple juice and one pouch KC bbq sauce/dry rub.
    Do I need two packages of the KC sauce dry rub?
    Thanks!

    1. Hi Vicki, one package comes with 2 pouches. So we use one pouch to make the sauce and the second pouch to marinate the chicken. Hope that helps!

      1. I’m so confused. I know I’ve made this before and I called for kc masterpiece bbq rub but now I don’t see it in the list of ingredients. I see another reviewer also mentions it. did you change the recipe?

      2. The original recipe used a product that has been discontinued so the recipe has been updated.