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Huli Huli Chicken

Huli Huli Chicken is made with vegan chicken and lots of flavors from the huli huli marinade using pantry staples like ketchup, brown sugar, garlic. Everything comes together so easy and will always turn out so juicy, tender and delicious. Serve it up and you know it is a keeper that everyone can’t get enough of it.

Closeup on two filets of Huli Huli Chicken.

What does Huli Huli mean in Hawaiian?

Huli huli in Hawaiian means turn. It means it is a favorite, because it is a really simple dish that you only need to try once to know it will be a keeper that is super versatile.

Let me tell you the Huli Huli Sauce as the chicken marinade is just so, so good.

Best of all: you can use it for many other dishes as well. Among them vegetables, or if you enjoy meat and other poultry it will great for that as well. Also yummy for tofu, or tempeh.

Ingredients needed to make Huli Huli Chicken collected before preparation.

Reasons to make Huli Huli Chicken

All you need is a a few minutes of marinating and you are ready to go.

This is an easy recipe that comes fast – the best way to cook your Huli Huli Chicken and it is great alone. Or you can make a sandwich.

You will need only a couple of ingredients, but the result will impress you any time you make it. The sweet and savory flavors are really balanced like you know from my Sweet and Sour Chicken and the Sweet and Sour Cauliflower.

Side by side view of how the Huli Huli marinade is prepared in a glass jar.

What you need for this Huli Huli Chicken recipe

First of all: Chicken filets. I use vegan chicken but of course for this recipe you can use what ever floats your boat. After marinating, which as I mentioned goes really quick, you have a wonderful texture that is juicy, tender and simply delicious.

Huli Huli sauce as Chicken marinade

I keep it really simple and after testing I found out these are the ingredients that are meant for each other, so good: Ketchup, brown sugar, garlic, ginger, soy sauce, vinegar. In my gusto that is all that is needed for this Huli Huli marinade to let all the flavors develop and shine.

I also tested the marinade with pineapple juice it was great, but not indeed something I was looking for in the final result.

Step by step instructions on how to marinade the vegan chicken using a ziploc bag.

How to make Huli Huli Chicken

You will need a freezer bag or a bowl to marinate chicken.

Chicken marinade

Into a freezer bag or bowl combine brown sugar, ginger, vinegar, garlic, and season with salt and pepper.

If you use the bag, just mix the chicken with the marinade and close the bag. Shake until everything is properly covered. 

For the bowl version, mix the chicken with the marinate. For both methods, let it sit for approximately 15 minutes.

Double view of the marinating chicken filets in a bag, and after transferring them to a grill pan.

Cook chicken

Heat a bit of olive oil (about 1 tsp) in a grilling pan. 

Add in chicken (only chicken and not the marinade, reserve it) and cook it from both sides for around 5 minutes. The exact time will depend on the size of the chicken, so it may take longer or shorter.

Finally, give the remaining marinade over the chicken and cook for 3 minutes more, serve.

Side by side view of the Huli Huli Chicken being grilled in a pan.

Tips and tricks

Leftovers of Huli Huli Chicken are great for 3 days.

Keep in mind the cooking time can vary depending on the size and type of chicken you use. You can absolutely marinate your chicken longer up 24 hours and flavors will be even bolder.

I can vouch leftovers are great for sandwiches with Coleslaw on top.

Portion of a Huli Huli Chicken in a plate, served with rice, broccoli and a pineapple salsa.

What to serve with Huli Huli Chicken

There are lots of options and all of them are delicious. To give you some inspiration:

Collage of two pictures of Huli Huli Chicken, with recipe title text.

For remakes Huli Huli Chicken, tag on Instagram or Facebook.

Enjoy, Florian.

Closeup on two filets of Huli Huli Chicken.

Huli Huli Chicken

Yield: 6
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes

Huli Huli Chicken is made with vegan chicken and lots of flavors from the huli huli marinade using pantry staples like ketchup, brown sugar, garlic. Everything comes together so easy and will always turn out so juicy, tender and delicious. Serve it up and you know it is a keeper that everyone can't get enough of it.

Ingredients

  • 6 chicken filets (plant based)
  • 3/4 cup ketchup
  • 2 cloves garlic, pressed
  • 1 tsp ginger, grated
  • 3 Tbs soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tbs apple cider vinegar
  • salt, pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. You will need either a freezer bag or a large bowl for marinating.
  2. In a jar, mix brown sugar, ginger, vinegar, garlic, and season with salt and pepper.Side by side view of how the Huli Huli marinade is prepared in a glass jar.
  3. Combine the chicken with the marinade either in the freezer bag or the bowl.
  4. Close the bag or cover the bowl, and let sit for 15 minutes.Step by step instructions on how to marinade the vegan chicken using a ziploc bag.
  5. Heat about 1 tsp of olive oil in a grilling pan. Give the chicken to the pan but reserve marinade.Double view of the marinating chicken filets in a bag, and after transferring them to a grill pan.
  6. Cook from both sides for about 5 minutes each. The time depends a bit on the size and type of the chicken you use. Side by side view of the Huli Huli Chicken being grilled in a pan.
  7. Add remaining marinade to the chicken and cook for 3 minutes more, serve.

Notes

  • Leftovers are good for 3 days.
  • Keep in mind that the cooking time can vary depending on size and type of the chicken.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1 filet
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 228Total Fat: 4gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 882mgCarbohydrates: 17gFiber: 0gSugar: 3gProtein: 31g
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