Pollo Tropical Chicken Recipe (Easy Copycat)

Pollo Tropical Chicken Recipe (Easy Copycat)

If you love Pollo Tropical, you’ll love this easy copycat recipe.

It’s just like the chicken from your favorite Caribbean restaurant, but much cheaper to make at home! Plus, it’s a perfect weeknight meal that the whole family will enjoy.

This dish is perfect for an evening dinner or special occasion.

The best part? It’s a copycat recipe, so you can enjoy the flavors of your favorite restaurant right at home!

What is the Pollo Tropical Chicken?

Pollo Tropical Chicken

The Pollo Tropical chicken is a juicy and flavorful chicken marinated in a blend of spices, citrus, and olive oil.

The chicken is then grilled to perfection, giving it an incredibly delicious and slightly charred flavor.

The famous restaurant Pollo Tropical chicken recipe is a great option for anyone looking for a tasty and healthy meal.

The chicken is high in protein and low in fat, making it a nutritious option for any meal.

So whether you are looking for a quick and easy meal or a delicious and healthy option for your next family dinner, the Pollo Tropical chicken is sure to please.

It’s possible to make this recipe at home?

Yes! This recipe is easy to follow and can be made in just a few simple steps.

The first step is to marinate the chicken in spices, citrus juices, and olive oil. Once the chicken has been marinated, it is then grilled to perfection.

The great thing about this recipe is that it can be easily adapted to your liking.

How long does it take?

The marinade only takes a few minutes to throw together, and then you just need to let the chicken marinate for a few hours (or overnight, if you have the time).

Then, when you’re ready to cook, the entire process will take less than 30 minutes.

What ingredients do I need for this recipe?

Lime juice

To make this Pollo Tropical chicken recipe, you will need:

Lime juice: It’s not a copycat recipe without lime juice! This will give the chicken that authentic Pollo Tropical flavor.

Garlic powder: This will add a nice depth of flavor to the chicken.

Cumin: Cumin is an essential ingredient in many Latin American dishes. It will give the chicken a slightly smoky flavor.

Oregano: This herb gives the chicken a nice Mediterranean flavor.

Salt and black pepper: To taste.

Chicken breasts or thighs: You can use either chicken breasts or thighs for this recipe. I prefer chicken thighs because they are more moist and flavorful, but chicken breasts will also work.

What else do I need?

In addition to the ingredients listed above, you will need:

A grill or an oven: If you’re grilling the chicken, you will need a grill. If you’re baking the chicken, you will need an oven.

Rice and beans: To complete the meal, serve the chicken with rice and beans. You can make your rice and beans, or you can use store-bought.

Pollo Tropical Chicken Recipe (Easy Copycat)

Pollo Tropical Chicken Recipe

This Pollo Tropical chicken recipe is an easy copycat of the restaurant's classic. It's perfect for a quick, easy weeknight meal and can be made with chicken breasts or thighs. The chicken is mixed with lime juice, garlic, cumin, and oregano, then grilled or baked until cooked through.
4 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Marination Time: 2 hrs
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 4 Servings


  • 2 pounds Chicken breasts or thighs
  • 1/2 cup Lime juice
  • 1 tbsp Garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon Cumin
  • 1 teaspoon Oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon Black pepper


  • Whisk together lime juice, garlic powder, cumin, oregano, salt, and pepper in a small bowl.
  • Place chicken in a large resealable bag or container, and pour in the marinade.
  • Marinate for at least 2 hours, up to overnight.
  • Preheat the grill to medium-high heat.
  • Grill chicken for 5-7 minutes per side or until cooked through.
  • Alternately, preheat the oven to 400 degrees F and bake the chicken for 20-25 minutes.
  • Serve with rice and beans.
  • Enjoy!
Keyword Pollo Tropical Chicken Copycat Recipe
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Can I use any part of the chicken?

This recipe works best with chicken breasts or thighs, but you can use any part of the chicken you like.

Keep in mind that cooking times will vary depending on the size and thickness of the chicken pieces.

What if I don’t have a grill?

No problem! This recipe can easily be adapted for cooking in the oven. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F and bake the chicken for 20-25 minutes.

Can I make this recipe ahead of time?

Absolutely! The chicken will taste even better if you allow it to marinate for a few hours or overnight.

Place the chicken in a resealable bag or container, and pour in the marinade. Make sure to refrigerate the chicken until you’re ready to cook it.

Can I use frozen chicken?

Yes, you can use frozen chicken for this recipe. However, keep in mind that it will take longer to cook since the chicken will need to thaw first.

Therefore, we recommend allowing the chicken to thaw overnight in the refrigerator before proceeding with the recipe.

Additionally, you may need to adjust the cooking time slightly since frozen chicken can sometimes release more moisture than fresh chicken.

Can I add or replace some ingredients?

Yes, feel free to experiment with the ingredients in this recipe.

For example, you could try using different types of citrus juice (such as orange or grapefruit) or a different type of dried herb (such as thyme or rosemary).

In addition, you could add other spices to the marinade, such as paprika or chili powder. Just have fun with it and see what you come up with!

Tips and tricks for a better recipe

Marinated chicken

If you want a more intense flavor, consider using chicken thighs instead of breasts. They will have more fat content and absorb more of the marinade.

  • For an even quicker version of this recipe, you can use a store-bought rotisserie chicken. Simply remove the skin and shred the meat before adding it to the lime juice mixture.
  • Don’t have time to marinate? No problem! Season the chicken with the spices listed in the recipe, and cook as directed.
  • Feel free to adjust the lime juice and spices used in this recipe to suit your taste preferences.
  • This dish can be served as is or over a bed of rice or beans.
  • Top with your favorite salsa or guacamole for an extra flavor.
  • For a complete meal, serve with a side of sautéed veggies, such as peppers and onions.
  • This recipe can easily be doubled or tripled if you’re feeding a large crowd.
  • Leftover chicken can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
  • This recipe can also be made in the Instant Pot! Simply combine all the ingredients in the pot, and set it to cook on high pressure for 15 minutes.
  • Can’t find chicken breasts or thighs? You can also use boneless, skinless chicken tenders in this recipe. Just be sure to reduce the cooking time accordingly.

Try adding cayenne pepper to the marinade mixture if you like your food with a kick.

For a tropical twist, try using pineapple juice instead of lime juice.

Final Words

And there you have it! You can make a copycat and easy recipe for Pollo tropical chicken at home.

Be sure to try it out, and let us know how it goes in the comments below.

We hope you enjoy it! Grilled lime chicken. Be sure to try this one the next time you’re looking for an easy and delicious chicken recipe.

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