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Latin-Spiced Chicken Thighs
with grilled romaine

Active: 35 min Total: 35 min
A Latin-inspired spice mix builds big flavor when paired with chicken thighs in this recipe, but they're not the only star of the meal. If you're using the grill, give romaine hearts a quick run over the heat to create an unusual and beautiful side salad. This meal was first featured in 2018.
Smarts: If not using the grill (or if you'd prefer a regular salad), just chop the romaine and toss it with the other salad ingredients.


Latin-Spiced Chicken Thighs:
  • Coriander, ground - 1/2 tsp
  • Cumin - 1/2 tsp
  • Garlic powder - 1/2 tsp
  • Chili powder - 1/2 tsp
  • Salt - 1/2 tsp
  • Black pepper - 1/4 tsp
  • Chicken thighs, boneless and skinless - 4
Grilled Hearts of Romaine:
  • Shallots - 1 clove , chopped
  • Mustard, Dijon - 2 tsp
  • Paprika - 1/2 tsp
  • Vinegar, apple cider - 1 Tbsp
  • Oil, cooking - 3 Tbsp
  • Corn kernels, fresh or frozen - 1 cup
  • Lettuce, romaine - 2 hearts
  • Avocados - 1 , cubed
  • Pepitas / pumpkin seeds - 1/4 cup


  1. Make spice mix - (If prepping right before cooking and using grill, get grill heating before continuing with prep.) Combine ground coriander, cumin, garlic powder, chili powder, salt, and black pepper. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
  2. Make vinaigrette - Chop shallots. Whisk together shallots, mustard, paprika, and vinegar. Add oil while whisking. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
  3. Corn - If using fresh, slice kernels off cobs and heat in the microwave until tender, 2 to 3 minutes on high. If using frozen corn, defrost in the microwave. (Can be done up to 3 days ahead)
  4. Season chicken - Rub chicken on all sides with spice mix. Tenderize with a fork. (Can be done 1 day ahead)
  5. Lettuce / Avocados - If cooking on the grill, slice romaine hearts lengthwise down the middle, keeping the base intact. If cooking on the stovetop, chop romaine hearts. Chop avocados.

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  1. If cooking on the grill: Heat grill to 425F / 218C degrees, keeping one part over direct heat and one part over indirect heat.
  2. {grill}: Brush grates with some oil and place chicken over direct heat. Sear chicken on both sides until lightly charred.
  3. {grill}: Move chicken to indirect heat and continue cooking until chicken is cooked through, 165F / 74C degrees. When chicken is nearly finished cooking, place lettuce, cut-side down, over direct heat. Grill just long enough to give the lettuce grill marks and a smoked flavor, 1 to 2 minutes.
  4. {grill}: Arrange lettuce, cut-side up, on a serving platter. Top with corn kernels, avocados, and pepitas. Drizzle vinaigrette over top.
  5. If cooking on the stovetop: Heat a grill pan or skillet over medium-high heat. Brush with some cooking oil. Add chicken and sear on both sides. Reduce heat to medium and cover chicken with a lid or foil. Continue cooking until chicken is cooked through, 165F / 74C degrees.
  6. {stovetop}: Toss together lettuce, corn kernels, avocados, and pepitas. Toss with vinaigrette.
  7. Serve chicken with grilled hearts of romaine / salad on the side. (Note: The hearts of romaine are impressive to bring to the table whole, but slice / shred them before serving to treat them like a traditional salad.) Enjoy!



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