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Honey Rum Chicken

If you're bored of your ol' chicken recipes and want to try something new and different with chicken for dinner, try this Honey Rum Chicken! It has just 6 ingredients, 5 minutes of prep time, and couldn't be easier to make. This recipe uses just ONE bowl - the chicken is marinated and baked in the same pan for easy cleanup, and it always comes out juicy and flavorful.

Perfect over rice, chopped or shredded into tacos, or over a salad.

Honey rum chicken over rice on a plate
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Boozy chicken

We love boozy chicken around here! Just like this bourbon chicken recipe, the combination of alcohol in a sweet & savory sauce is just the best! A lot of the rum evaporates during baking, but it still leaves just enough flavor and just a little zip that you can feel when you're digging into this chicken. Definitely not a kid-friendly dinner, though!

In this recipe, the chicken is marinated in the rum sauce, and the rum helps make the chicken tender and juicy, along with the lime juice.

Related recipe: Best Grilled Chicken Marinade

What kind of rum to use

The best kind of rum is the one you have on hand, but a dark or spiced rum is actually the best for rum chicken. It really depends on your preference though. I do not recommend a white or light rum because it won't add much flavor to the dish. A dark or spiced rum will impart its flavor onto the chicken marinade and onto the chicken itself, and that's what I use.

If you have a flavored rum at home, many flavored rums should work as well. Coconut or mango rum can be a fun experiment to try, since coconut is a popular sauce to serve on top of chicken in many cuisines, and mango makes a great relish for chicken. If you try either of these flavor variations, I'd love to hear how it turned out! Please leave a comment at the bottom of the recipe and let me know.

Ingredients for honey rum chicken

Related: Slow Cooker Honey Chicken

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup rum (dark or spiced rum is best)
  • ¼ cup fresh lime juice
  • ¼ cup soy sauce (for a gluten-free chicken use coconut aminos)
  • 2 tablespoons honey (or up to ¼ cup (4 tablespoons) if you like a sweeter chicken)
  • ½ tablespoon sriracha or favorite hot sauce (optional, omit for no spice)
  • 1 ½ pounds boneless, skinless chicken breast (chicken tenders will work too!)
  • Optional garnish: chopped fresh scallions or cilantro leaves

Related recipe: Hot Honey Chicken

Cooking equipment

Baking dish: I recommend using a ~2.5-3 quart size container that is safe for the microwave AND oven to marinate and to bake the chicken, such as the large dish from this Corningware set. This cuts down on the number of dishes. Any glass baking dish will work, as long as it holds the marinade and the chicken!

Meat thermometerIt's super important for this recipe, since you need to make sure the chicken is fully cooked in the marinade. The easiest way to do that with a pan full of steaming hot liquid and chicken is to simply put in a meat thermometer, as opposed to try to cut open a chicken to make sure it's no longer pink on the inside.

Related recipe: Honey Ginger Garlic Chicken Wings

Instructions

Step 1: Combine all the ingredients aside from the chicken in your microwave-safe baking dish. Microwave for 30 seconds at a time and gently stir until well combined. If you don't want to microwave, you'll just need to stir it very carefully until the honey is dissolved into the rest of the marinade.

Mixing honey rum marinade in a bowl

Step 2: Add the chicken and coat it in the marinade completely. Marinate for at least 30 minutes (leave at room temperature), or if marinating for longer than 30 minutes, place in the fridge.

Step 3: When you're ready to bake, preheat the oven to 400F.

Step 4: Bake the chicken in the marinade for 30-40 minutes, or until the center of the chicken is fully cooked and registers 165F with a meat thermometer. Remove chicken from the marinate and serve over rice or salad.

Cooked chicken in honey rum marinade

If you want to make a sticky-sweet sauce from the marinade

If you want to use some of the cooked marinade to make a sauce to pour over the chicken, transfer it to a small saucepan, and add a few tablespoons of honey to balance out the lime juice. In a small cup, combine ½ tablespoon corn starch with a tablespoon or two of water (or orange juice for a citrusy tang) and use a fork to whisk together  to make a slurry. Add the slurry to the saucepan, turn on the heat, and bring to a gently boil, stirring frequently. Cook for a minute or so, or until the sauce thickens. If it thickens too much, add a splash of water or orange juice. If it's too thin, make another slurry with cornstarch and add it.

Pour the sauce over the chicken to serve.

If you want to pan-fry rum chicken

This chicken can be pan-fried instead of baked, and it gets the most gorgeous charred marks! Simply heat a heavy bottom pan or skillet, such as a cast iron, and add some olive oil. Pan-fry the chicken on each side until it is golden brown and fully cooked inside. If you are using thicker chicken breasts that start to get too brown before cooking all the way through, just add a little water to the pan and cover it to let the chicken steam and cook without burning.

Grill rum chicken

This chicken can be grilled as well! Remove the chicken from the marinade and place directly on a preheated grill. Grill for 7-8 minutes per side, or until the chicken is fully cooked. The cook time will depend on the thickness of the chicken breasts.

What to serve with honey rum chicken

This chicken is great over white rice and steamed veggies. It's also pretty good chopped or shredded and served in tacos. If you want to keep it healthier, chop the chicken and serve it over salad. 

If you enjoyed this recipe, let me know with a comment and a star rating below. And don't forget to share it on Facebook and save it on Pinterest for later!

Close up of honey rum chicken
Print Recipe
5 from 2 votes

Honey Rum Chicken

A little spicy, a little tangy, a lot delicious!! This honey rum chicken recipe uses only ONE dish! It's great served over rice with steamed veggies, or in tacos or over a salad. Read the notes below the recipe for tips for grilling and pan-frying this chicken, as well as how to make a rum sauce for the chicken.
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time40 mins
Marinating time30 mins
Total Time1 hr 15 mins
Course: Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine: American, Caribbean
Servings: 6 servings
Author: Kate

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup rum (dark or spiced rum is best)
  • ¼ cup fresh lime juice
  • ¼ cup soy sauce (for a gluten-free chicken use coconut aminos)
  • 2 tablespoons honey (or up to ¼ cup (4 tablespoons) if you like a sweeter chicken)
  • ½ tablespoon sriracha or favorite hot sauce (optional, omit for no spice)
  • pounds chicken breast boneless skinless (chicken tenders will work too!)
  • optional garnish: chopped fresh cilantro leaves or scallions

Special equipment

  • 2.5-3 quart baking dish microwave-safe and oven-safe
  • Meat thermometer

Instructions

  • Combine all the ingredients aside from the chicken in your microwave-safe baking dish. Microwave for 30 seconds at a time and gently stir until well combined. If you don't want to microwave, you'll just need to stir it very carefully until the honey is dissolved into the rest of the marinade.
  • Add the chicken and coat it in the marinade. Marinate for at least 30 minutes (leave at room temperature), or if marinating for longer than 30 minutes, place in the fridge.
  • When you're ready to bake, preheat the oven to 400F.
  • Bake the chicken in the marinade for 30-40 minutes, or until the center of the chicken is fully cooked and registers 165F with a meat thermometer. Remove chicken from the marinate and serve over rice or salad.

Notes

If you want to turn the marinade into a sauce: Transfer the marinade to a small saucepan and add a few tablespoons of honey. In a small cup, combine ½ tablespoon corn starch with a tablespoon or two of water (or orange juice for a citrusy tang) and use a fork to whisk together  to make a slurry. Add the slurry to the saucepan, turn on the heat, and bring to a gently boil, stirring frequently. Cook for a minute or so, or until the sauce thickens. If it thickens too much, add a splash of water or orange juice. If it's too thin, make another slurry with cornstarch and add it. Adjust to taste with more honey, soy sauce, or lime juice.
If you want to pan-fry rum chicken: Preheat a large pan, add olive oil, and transfer the chicken from the marinade into the preheated pan. Cook on each side until it is golden brown and fully cooked inside. If you are using thicker chicken breasts that start to get too brown before cooking all the way through, just add a little water to the pan and cover it to let the chicken steam and cook without burning.
If you want to grill: Remove the chicken from the marinade and place directly on a preheated grill. Grill for 7-8 minutes per side, or until the chicken is fully cooked. The cook time will depend on the thickness of the chicken breasts.

Nutrition

Calories: 146kcal (7%) | Carbohydrates: 2g (1%) | Protein: 24g (48%) | Fat: 3g (5%) | Saturated Fat: 1g (5%) | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 73mg (24%) | Sodium: 353mg (15%) | Potassium: 429mg (12%) | Fiber: 1g (4%) | Sugar: 2g (2%) | Vitamin A: 34IU (1%) | Vitamin C: 2mg (2%) | Calcium: 7mg (1%) | Iron: 1mg (6%)

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