We grill a lot every summer, but this summer has been nonstop grilling with the heat wave we’ve had! I can’t even bear to turn the stove on, and I even cringe just boiling water for coffee every morning. Luckily there’s pretty much nothing you can’t grill into a meal.
This recipe is nice and simple because the teriyaki sauce gets split to double as a marinade, and the rest is saved for the dressing – 2 for 1! It’s packed with veggies, but the star of the show for me is the grilled pineapple. I just can’t get over how awesome grilled pineapple tastes. We even grill it for dessert, and you can check it out over on my Cinnamon Glazed Grilled Pineapple recipe.
I like to marinate the chicken overnight when possible because it gives you a deeper teriyaki flavor. But sometimes when I haven’t planned ahead, I just marinate it for an hour or so. You will still get plenty of teriyaki flavor from the salad dressing.
You can cut the pineapple however is most convenient for you. The main thing to keep in mind is lots of surface area for grill marks, which equals more flavor. Also you don’t want the pieces to be so small they’ll fall through the grill slats, so slices are nice.
The pineapple always finishes before the chicken, so just remove it as it’s finished. I like to cook mine just long enough to get grill marks on both sides, and it’s slightly softened.
While everything grills, prepare the rest of the salad ingredients as well as the dressing.
Then once the everything is off the grill, pile it together and serve. It’s also worth noting, if I’m not worrying about presentation, I cut up the grilled chicken and pineapple up into bite sized pieces to make the salad easier to eat.
- 1 Tablespoon minced fresh ginger
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- ½ cup gluten free soy sauce, or coconut aminos
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- ¼ cup mirin, optional, see notes
- 1 pkg boneless skinless chicken thighs, 1½ pounds
- 10 - ½" slices fresh pineapple, 1½ pounds from 1 large pineapple
- 1 large head romaine, cut and washed, 14-16 cups
- ½ red onion, thinly sliced
- 1 small red bell pepper, thinly sliced
- 1 small orange bell pepper, thinly sliced
- ½ cup roughly chopped cilantro
- 1 ripe avocado, thinly sliced
- 1 Tablespoon sesame seeds
- ½ cup of the reserved teriyaki sauce
- 3 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
- ¼ cup avocado or olive oil
- Place all the ingredients for the teriyaki sauce into a medium sized saucepan, and bring the mixture to a boil. Lower the heat to maintain a simmer, and cook until the mixture is reduced and slightly syrupy, about 15-20 mintues. You will have about ¾ cup finished sauce. Cool the sauce completely in the refrigerator before using it as a marinade.
- Pour ¼ cup of the teriyaki sauce over the chicken thighs, and toss to thoroughly coat. Reserve the remaining ½ cup of the sauce for the salad dressing. Marinate the chicken 1 hour or overnight for a deeper flavor.
- When you're ready to cook the chicken, preheat the grill over medium heat until it reaches a steady temperature of 350ºF-400ºF. Place the marinated chicken and the sliced pineapple onto the grill. Cook the pineapple for 3-4 minutes per side or until grill marks appear, and the pineapple is slightly softened. Cook the chicken for about 8 minutes per side, or until no longer pink in the center. The time will vary depending on the size of your chicken thighs.
- While the chicken is grilling, prepare the salad ingredients, and place them all in a large serving bowl. Make the dressing by whisking/shaking in a jar the ingredients together until they're emulsified. If the dressing separates, shake it together again before serving.
- When the chicken and pineapple are done, remove them from the grill. Slice or cube up the chicken and serve it over the salad with the pineapple and teriyaki dressing.
If you have the teriyaki sauce made ahead, this recipe goes much faster.
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