Easy Peri Peri Chicken Recipe – Bone-in chicken pieces are marinated in spicy South African Peri Peri sauce and baked for a deliciously bold and flavorful dish!
Why We Adore This Simple Chicken Recipe
Peri Peri chicken is a popular healthy roasted chicken dish in South Africa. It’s made with bone-in chicken breasts marinated in a spicy Peri-peri sauce and roasted in the oven.
The true origins make this dish a Portuguese-African fusion, as Portuguese traders introduced the spicy bird’s eye chilies to this part of Africa. The flavor would seem like an exotic version of baked buffalo chicken to the American palette.
To make this quick Peri Peri chicken recipe for a midweek dinner in under an hour, I start with store-bought Peri Peri sauce and marinate it overnight. I also boost the flavor with lemon juice and a blend of vibrant seasonings.
This recipe is a favorite of my daughter, who spent most of last year in South Africa. You will not be disappointed if you give it a try!
Ingredients You Need
Peri Peri sauce – medium or hot Lemon juice – freshly squeezed is the best Chicken – your favorite bone-in pieces with the skin on
Garlic powder, smoked paprika, dried basil (or oregano), and salt is the spices.
Note: While you can buy African bird’s eye chilies in bulk and make your own Peri Peri sauce, I’ve recently discovered bottled Peri Peri sauce in almost every grocery store in town. The most common variety is Nando’s Peri Peri sauce, a product of the famous South African restaurant chain.
How to Make Peri Peri Chicken
In a baking dish, place the bone-in chicken pieces. Pat the chicken pieces dry and liberally season with salt.
Combine the Peri Peri sauce, lemon juice, garlic powder, smoked paprika, and dried basil in a small mixing bowl.
Mix well for an evenly blended marinade.
12 cup Peri Peri sauce, to be poured over the chicken pieces Move the chicken around the pan to coat it completely.
Save the remaining Peri Peri sauce for later use.
Then chill for at least one hour, but up to 24 hours.
Preheat the oven to 400 °F when you’re ready to cook. Place the chicken pieces, skin side up, on a large rimmed baking sheet, separating them so they do not touch.
Brush the tops of the chicken with the remaining Peri Peri sauce from the baking dish.
Cook for 20 minutes in the oven. Brush the tops of the chicken with the remaining Peri Peri sauce.
Cook for another 20 minutes, or until the thickest pieces are thoroughly cooked.
Recipe Tips and Variations
Piri Piri sauce is meant to be spicy, and the medium level is sufficient for most people. Only purchase the hot variety if you can stand the heat!
Whole fryer chicken pieces are used. Feel free to use different bone-in chicken pieces, such as just wings, drumsticks, or chicken thighs.
Reduce the cooking time from 40 minutes to 20-25 minutes if using boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs.
Grill the marinated Peri Peri chicken to achieve a deep, smoky charred flavor. Preheat the grill to medium heat and cook the chicken pieces for about 15 minutes on each side, or until a meat thermometer reads 165°F. (For boneless grilled chicken, cook for 5 minutes on each side.)
Marinate the chicken pieces in advance.
Peri Peri chicken is most commonly served with fries in South Africa.
However, you can serve it with any side dish you want! Here are a few suggestions to get you started:
- grilled corn on the cob
- Potatoes Mashed
- Vegetables Grilled
- Low carb Cauliflower Rice or fluffy white rice
Frequently Asked Questions
WHAT EXACTLY IS PERI PERI CHICKEN?
The South African spelling of the dish’s original Portuguese name, Piri Piri, is Peri Peri. Both versions translate to pepper-pepper, a nod to the dish’s bold spices and heat.
HOW LONG CAN YOU MARINATE THE CHICKEN?
Marinade the chicken pieces in the Peri Peri sauce for at least 1 hour. You can marinate for up to 24 hours, but not more.
WHAT IS THE RIGHT INTERNAL TEMPERATURE OF COOKED CHICKEN?
The poultry meat needs to register at 165°F when checked with a meat thermometer.
HOW LONG DO LEFTOVERS LAST?
Cooked chicken can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. Allow to cool completely before transferring to an airtight container and storing in the refrigerator. To keep the skin crisp, reheat in a 350°F oven for about 10-15 minutes, or until warmed through. Alternatively, reheat in an air fryer!
Looking for more quick and easy chicken recipes? Make certain to also try:
- Roasted Chicken With Garlic And Lemo
- Easy Hamburger Patty Recipe
- Seafood Gumbo From New Orleans
- Simple Banana Cake Recipe
- Fresh Strawberry Pie Recipe
Simple Peri Peri Chicken Recipe
In this easy recipe, bone-in pieces of chicken are marinated in spicy South African Peri Peri sauce and oven baked for a deliciously bold and flavorful dish!
- Place the bone-in chicken pieces in a baking dish. Pat the chicken pieces dry and sprinkle them liberally with salt.
- In a small mixing bowl, combine the Peri Peri sauce, lemon juice, garlic powder, smoked paprika, and dried basil. Mix well.
- Portion out ½ cup of Peri Peri sauce to pour over the chicken pieces. Move the chicken around the pan to make sure it is well coated. Then cover and chill for at least one hour, but up to 24 hours. Reserve the rest of the Peri Peri sauce for later use.
- When ready to cook, preheat the oven to 400°F. Move the chicken pieces to a large rimmed baking sheet, skin side up, separating them so they do not touch.
- Use a basting brush to brush any remaining Peri Peri sauce, from the dish, over the tops of the chicken.
- Roast in the oven for 20 minutes. Then brush the tops of the chicken again with the reserved Peri Peri sauce.
- Roast again for 20 minutes, or until the thickest pieces are cooked through.
- Peri Peri sauce is meant to be spicy, and the medium level is sufficient for most people. Only purchase the hot variety if you can stand the heat!
- Peri peri chicken is most commonly served with fries in South Africa. However, you can serve it with any side dish you want… Coleslaw, corn on the cob, mashed potatoes, grilled vegetables, and other side dishes