Paleo Chicken Skewers, Hawaiian-Style (Whole30)

These Hawaiian-Style Paleo Chicken Skewers are full of big, bold flavor!

Marinated chicken is grilled with peppers, cherry tomatoes and pineapple for a sweet and savory main dish.

Plus they’re naturally gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free and Whole30 friendly.

grilled chicken skewers with peppers, cherry tomatoes and pineapple on a long white platter

(As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Some of the links on this page may be affiliate links. If you purchase a product through an affiliate link, I’ll automatically receive a small commission at no additional cost to you.)

Paleo Chicken Skewers

Hawaiian-style chicken skewers often have a sauce/marinade made with soy sauce, brown sugar and other ingredients not included in a Paleo lifestyle.

So I wanted to create a version that’s gluten-free and soy-free.

And not only is it refined sugar-free, it doesn’t contain any sweeteners at all. I found I could still get a sticky, savory glaze without adding honey, maple syrup, etc.

So chicken is marinated with coconut aminos, a soy sauce alternative made with reduced coconut sap that contains no soy or wheat flour (which is often found in soy sauce).

Adding rice wine vinegar, sesame oil, garlic powder and ginger powder add a lot of flavor without much effort.

I like to add green peppers, cherry tomatoes and chunks of pineapple to the skewers, but you can add whatever veggies you like (see below for variations).

These are great with either chicken breasts or chicken thighs – go with whichever one you have on hand or prefer.

Also, I’ve made this on an outdoor gas grill and stovetop grill pan. Either way works great.

 

What you need for Paleo Chicken Skewers

Ingredients:

Equipment:

a hand holding up a Hawaiian skewer with chicken, peppers, cherry tomatoes and pineapple

How to make Hawaiian-Style Paleo Chicken Skewers

First, in a resealable bag or container, whisk the coconut aminos, rice wine vinegar, salt, sesame oil, garlic powder and ginger powder.

Reserve 1/4 cup of the marinade and set aside to use later.

Cut the chicken into approx. 1″ cubes and add to the marinade, tossing to coat evenly.

Marinate the chicken for an hour or up to 36 hours in the fridge, tossing the chicken at least once halfway through to make sure it marinates evenly.

Bring the chicken to room temperature before cooking.

If using bamboo skewers, soak them in water for 30 minutes, then dry. This will prevent them from burning on the grill.

Heat a gas grill or grill pan to medium-high heat.

Grease the grill grates or grill pan with avocado oil.

De-seed and chop the pepper into roughly 1″ pieces.

Trim off the top and bottom of the pineapple. Then standing it up on one flat end, use your knife to slice down the sides of the pineapple to remove the brown outer layer.

Then cut down through the pineapple flesh, keeping your knife blade to the side of the core. You should end up with long slabs and spears of pineapple.

Discard the top, bottom, peel and core.

Cut the pineapple into cubes slightly smaller than 1″ (if they’re the same size as everything else, they tend to actually be too big in comparison).

You should need about 2 cups of pineapple. If you have more than that, keep any extra separate. You don’t want to contaminate it with the raw chicken juices.

Thread the chicken, peppers, tomatoes and pineapple onto your skewers (I like to do it in that order), repeating until the skewer is almost full.

Repeat this until all your skewers are used up.

If you run out of some ingredients before others, just keep making skewers with the ingredients you do have.

Discard any remaining marinade.

Place the skewers on the grill (and cover them) or grill pan and let them grill (don’t move them!) for about 3-5 minutes per side, until they have char marks on the bottom. (We’re intentionally slightly undercooking them so we can finish cooking them with the glaze at the end).

Rotate each skewer 180° and grill the other side for about another 3-5 minutes.

While they grill, n a small mixing bowl whisk the arrowroot into the reserved 1/4 cup marinade.

Brush the skewer with the arrowroot/marinade mixture and let it cook for another minute or so.

Flip the skewers one last time, brush with more marinade and grill for another minute or so.

Remove the skewers from the heat, sprinkle with the sesame seeds and enjoy!

A white bowl with a salad made from chicken, peppers, cherry tomatoes and pineapple that's been grilled as skewers

What to serve with Paleo Chicken Skewers

I like to remove the chicken and vegetables from the skewers and serve them over cauliflower rice, sweet potato rice or parsnip rice.

For another low carb option, they’d also be good on top greens like spinach or lettuce. I like to dress my greens with a little extra virgin olive oil, lime juice or rice wine vinegar, salt and pepper.

These paleo grilled chicken skewers are also a good opportunity to grill more vegetables to serve on the side, such as cabbage, zucchini, summer squash, eggplant or carrots.

 

Make ahead/storage

You can make the marinade up to 1 week advance and store it in the fridge.

Once you add the chicken to the marinade, you can immediately store it in an airtight bag or container in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Thaw overnight in the fridge. Once thawed, it can sit in the fridge for up to 24 hours.

To store leftovers, remove the chicken and veggies from the skewers and store in the fridge for up to 5 days.

Leftovers can be heated in a saucepan or skillet over low heat, or in the microwave.

 

Substitutions and variations

  • You can use whatever vegetables you like to grill, such as red or yellow onion, zucchini, summer squash, eggplant, different colors of bell peppers, etc.
  • I use Coconut Secrets coconut aminos. If you use another brand, you might have to adjust the amount of salt in the marinade due to differences in the amount of sodium.
  • Instead of rice wine vinegar, you can use lime juice.
  • Instead of garlic powder, you can use 1-2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced.
  • Instead of ginger powder, you can use 1 teaspoon of peeled, grated fresh ginger.
  • You can use store-bought cubed pineapple.

 

Other recipes you might like:

  1. Paleo Teriyaki Chicken
  2. Tequila Pineapple Shrimp Skewers
  3. Chinese-Style Ribs in the Instant Pot/Slow Cooker
  4. Chinese-Style Roasted Carrots and Asparagus

 

grilled chicken skewers with peppers, cherry tomatoes and pineapple on a long white platter
Print Recipe
5 from 5 votes

Paleo Chicken Skewers, Hawaiian-Style (Whole30)

These Hawaiian-Style Grilled Chicken Skewers have big, bold flavor. Chicken is marinated and then grilled with vegetables for a fun and easy main dish that can be made on an outdoor grill or stovetop grill pan. Plus they're gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free, Paleo and Whole30 friendly!
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time12 mins
Total Time42 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American, Hawaiian
Keyword: chicken kabobs, chicken skewers, hawaiian chicken, paleo kabobs, paleo skewers, whole30 kabobs
Servings: 4 people
Author: Don Baiocchi

Ingredients

  • cup coconut aminos
  • ¼ cup unseasoned rice wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon ginger powder
  • 1-1½ pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs
  • avocado oil
  • 1 large green bell pepper
  • 1 medium pineapple
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes
  • ½ teaspoon arrowroot flour/starch
  • ½ teaspoon toasted sesame seeds

Instructions

  • In a resealable bag or container, whisk the coconut aminos, rice wine vinegar, salt, sesame oil, garlic powder and ginger powder.
  • Reserve ¼ cup of the marinade and set aside to use later.
  • Cut the chicken into approx. 1" cubes and add to the marinade, tossing to coat evenly. Marinate the chicken for an hour or up to 36 hours in the fridge, tossing the chicken at least once halfway through to make sure it marinates evenly.
  • Bring the chicken to room temperature before cooking.
  • Heat a gas grill or grill pan to medium-high heat. Grease the grill grates or grill pan with avocado oil.
  • De-seed and chop the pepper into roughly 1" pieces.
  • Trim off the top and bottom of the pineapple. Then standing it up on one flat end, use your knife to slice down the sides of the pineapple to remove the brown outer layer. Then cut down through the pineapple flesh, keeping your knife blade to the side of the core. You should end up with long slabs and spears of pineapple. Discard the top, bottom, peel and core.
  • Cut the pineapple into cubes slightly smaller than 1" (if they're the same size as everything else, they tend to actually be too big in comparison).
    You should need about 2 cups of pineapple. If you have more than that, keep any extra separate. You don't want to contaminate it with the raw chicken juices.
  • Thread the chicken, peppers, tomatoes and pineapple onto your skewers (see notes), repeating until the skewer is almost full. Repeat this until all your skewers are used up. Discard any remaining marinade.
  • Place the skewers on the grill (and cover them) or grill pan and let them grill (don't move them!) for about 3-5 minutes per side, until they have char marks on the bottom. (We're intentionally slightly undercooking them so we can finish cooking them with the glaze at the end).
  • Rotate each skewer 180° and grill the other side for about another 3-5 minutes.
  • While they grill, in a small mixing bowl, whisk the arrowroot into the reserved ¼ cup marinade.
  • Brush the skewer with the arrowroot/marinade mixture and let it cook for another minute or so.
  • Flip the skewers one last time, brush with more marinade and grill for another minute or so.
  • Remove the skewers from the heat, sprinkle with the sesame seeds and enjoy!

Notes

Note: cooking time does not include marinating time.
If using bamboo skewers, soak them in water for 30 minutes, then dry. This will prevent them from burning on the grill.
Make ahead/storage
You can make the marinade up to 1 week advance and store it in the fridge.
Once you add the chicken to the marinade, you can immediately store it in an airtight bag or container in the freezer for up to 3 months.
Thaw overnight in the fridge. Once thawed, it can sit in the fridge for up to 24 hours.
To store leftovers, remove the chicken and veggies from the skewers and store in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Leftovers can be heated in a saucepan or skillet over low heat, or in the microwave.
Substitutions and variations
  • You can use whatever vegetables you like to grill, such as red or yellow onion, zucchini, summer squash, eggplant, different colors of bell peppers, etc.
  • I use Coconut Secrets coconut aminos. If you use another brand, you might have to adjust the amount of salt in the marinade due to differences in sodium amounts.
  • Instead of rice wine vinegar, you can use lime juice.
  • Instead of garlic powder, you can use 1-2 large garlic cloves, peeled and minced.
  • Instead of ginger powder, you can use 1 teaspoon of peeled, grated fresh ginger.
  • You can use store-bought cubed pineapple.

 

FOR MORE RECIPES, INSPIRATION AND GENERALLY GOOD STUFF, JOIN ME ON:

Instagram,

Facebook,

TikTok

AND Pinterest!




9 thoughts on “Paleo Chicken Skewers, Hawaiian-Style (Whole30)”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating




This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.