Hawaiian Huli Huli Chicken

8 Servings
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Marinate 8 hours
Total Time 8 hours 15 minutes

Hawaiian Huli Huli Chicken is flavored with a ketchup, soy sauce, and brown sugar marinade then grilled to perfection along with sweet and tangy pineapples.

This Chicken Recipe is packed with tropical flavor that makes it the perfect dish for summer. You can heat it up on your outdoor grill for the perfect cookout dish served with classic sides like Fruit Salad, Potato Salad, or Hawaiian Macaroni Salad

Hawaiian Huli Huli Chicken on serving plate

Authentic Huli Huli Chicken is a classic Hawaiian chicken dish that’s prepared by grilling and basting with a delicious, sticky-sweet sauce. The glaze is really what gives this chicken dish its amazing flavor. We’ve made it with distinct sweet and savory flavors from ketchup, soy sauce, brown sugar, and sherry. The sauce does double duty in this recipe acting as a marinade and a nice glaze to make the perfect mouthwatering chicken. 

This Hawaiian Chicken recipe is perfect for a summer cookout or a simple weeknight dinner. As long as you get the marinade prepped ahead of time the Huli Huli Chicken recipe is super quick and easy to make on the day you’re serving it. Just pop it on the hot grill and glaze as it cooks. The Healthy Grilled Chicken is also served with an amazing Grilled Pineapple for garnish that enhances the tropical flavors of the whole dinner. 

If you’re serving it for a simple weeknight meal and want an easy way to make it more filling, just serve the Grilled Chicken over a bed of white or Brown Rice. Or, if you want to change up the recipe a little bit, you can serve it in Huli Huli Chicken Tacos with amazing food like carrots, pineapple, and cabbage all served in a soft tortilla with the meat. 

Hawaiian Huli Huli Chicken collage



  • Marinade: Start by whisking together the brown sugar, ketchup, soy sauce, sherry, minced garlic cloves, and ginger until the ingredients are well combined to make the marinade. Pour half the sauce in a medium bowl to store covered in the fridge for later in the recipe. Add the other half to a zip lock bag with the boneless, skinless chicken thighs. Seal the zip lock bag and put it in the fridge. Let the chicken rest in the marinade overnight before beginning the recipe. 
  • Pineapple skewers: Slice and core fresh pineapple, and place the pineapple slices on wooden skewers. Spray the pineapple spears with vegetable oil.
  • Cooking time: Set the grill to medium heat. Drain chicken pieces from the marinade and transfer chicken and pineapple slices to the grill. Grill chicken for 5-6 minutes, until it starts to get some grill marks. Then flip for another 5-6 minutes of cooking. Coat chicken in the remaining sauce while cooking the second side. Garnish the Grilled Huli Huli Chicken with green onions and serve. 
Hawaiian Huli Huli Chicken on serving plate


  • Chicken marinade: There are lots of ways you can experiment with the overall flavor of the dish by using different ingredients in the marinade. First off, you can replace the sherry with apple cider vinegar, wine vinegar, or rice vinegar. You could also add in different sauces like barbecue sauce or hot sauce. For a sweeter flavor, you could also replace some of the regular soy sauce with teriyaki sauce. 
  • Pineapple marinade: Another great way to change up the flavor of this mouthwatering chicken, is by adding more pineapple flavor to the chicken by marinating it in fresh pineapple juice. Whisk ½ cup of pineapple juice into the marinade so the sweet, tropical flavor can soak into the chicken. 
  • Seasonings: You can also add yummy flavors with simple spices like red pepper flakes, black pepper, paprika, oregano, cumin, or chili powder. 
Hawaiian Huli Huli Chicken on serving plate



  • Serve: Don’t leave Grilled Huli Huli Chicken at room temperature for more than 2 hours after cooking.
  • Store: Let leftovers cool to room temperature, then cover them in plastic wrap or put them in an airtight container to store in the fridge and eat later in the week. They’ll stay good for 3-4 days. 
  • Freeze: Another option is sealing and freezing the chicken for up to 6 months. Let the chicken thaw in the fridge before reheating on the stove or in the oven. 

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Hawaiian Huli Huli Chicken

Hawaiian Huli Huli Chicken is flavored with a ketchup, soy sauce, and brown sugar marinade then grilled to perfection along with sweet and tangy pineapples.
Yield 8 Servings
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 8 hours 15 minutes
Course Dinner
Cuisine Hawaiian
Author Sabrina Snyder


  • 1 cup brown sugar , packed
  • 3/4 cup ketchup
  • 3/4 cup low sodium soy sauce
  • 1/3 cup sherry
  • 5 cloves garlic , minced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger , minced
  • 8 chicken thighs , boneless skinless
  • 1 pineapple , trimmed and cut into spears (core removed)
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup green onions , thinly sliced


  • Whisk together brown sugar, ketchup, soy sauce, sherry, garlic, and ginger.
  • Reserve half the sauce in a covered bowl in the refrigerator.
  • Add the remaining sauce and chicken to a large zip lock bag and marinate overnight or 8 hours.
  • On medium-high heat, grill cook the chicken for 5-6 minutes on each side.
  • Coat pineapple spears with vegetable oil and grill alongside the chicken.
  • Brush remaining sauce over the chicken while grilling the second side (do not serve remaining sauce if you use brush on partially raw chicken).
  • Garnish with green onions.


Calories: 543kcal | Carbohydrates: 51g | Protein: 26g | Fat: 26g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 6g | Monounsaturated Fat: 10g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 142mg | Sodium: 1122mg | Potassium: 597mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 43g | Vitamin A: 325IU | Vitamin C: 56mg | Calcium: 63mg | Iron: 2mg
Hawaiian Huli Huli Chicken collage

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the cookbook Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients, published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

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    1. I wouldn’t recommend baking this recipe in the oven. The grilled glaze is what makes this recipe so special.

  1. Could both the chicken and pineapple spears be baked in the over? If so, what temp and for how long?

    Thank you