Delicious and Easy Mocha Chicken Recipe

Welcome to my mocha chicken recipe! If you’re a coffee lover and a chicken enthusiast, this recipe is definitely for you. This fusion of flavors is not your usual chicken dish – it’s bold, savory, and packed with a surprising twist of mocha.

Imagine biting into perfectly grilled chicken legs infused with the rich aroma of homemade peppermint mocha rub. Every bite will be bursting with flavors that make your taste buds dance in delight. The mocha rub gives the chicken a deep nutty flavor that compliments the soy sauce and adds an irresistible depth to this dish.

Whether you’re hosting a dinner party or just need to spice up your midweek meals with something different, this recipe will surely impress your guests or family. It’s perfect for those who love bold flavors and experiment with new tastes.

So roll up your sleeves and get ready to take your taste buds on an exciting journey in every bite. Here’s my mocha chicken recipe that will surely leave everyone asking for more.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Mocha Chicken
Mocha Chicken

Coffee lovers, brace yourself for a recipe that will make your taste buds dance with excitement. Introducing my latest creation – the Mocha Chicken Recipe. I can guarantee you that this recipe will become one of your household favorites. Let me share with you why.

Firstly, this recipe is a game-changer for those who enjoy grilled chicken but crave something different from the usual flavors. The combination of coffee, soy sauce, and brown sugar creates a rich, flavorful marinade that gives the tender chicken thighs an unbeatable smoky taste.

Secondly, the homemade peppermint mocha rub that coats the chicken adds another layer of richness to the already savory chicken flavor. You’ll be surprised how much depth it adds with just a few simple ingredients like cocoa powder and ground black pepper.

Thirdly, cooking sherry enhances the flavor profile by adding a subtle sweetness that blends perfectly with the coffee and other seasonings. This combination of ingredients cannot be found in any restaurant or supermarket brand.

Finally, this dish is versatile enough to pair with almost anything. Serve it alongside your favorite veggies or salad for guilt-free enjoyment or as a hearty meal with rice for fullness.

Trust me; this recipe won’t disappoint. With its unique blend of flavors and versatility in pairing options, it’s sure to become a staple in your kitchen’s arsenal. So go ahead and give it a try – prepare yourself for an explosion of tastes in your mouth!

Ingredient List

 A savory dish that's perfect for coffee lovers who love to experiment!
A savory dish that’s perfect for coffee lovers who love to experiment!

Let’s take a look at the ingredients you will need for this mouth-watering mocha chicken recipe.

For the Mocha Rub:

  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1 tbsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp paprika
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder

For the Chicken:

  • 4 chicken legs, bone-in and skin-on
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup strong brewed coffee
  • 1/4 cup cooking sherry
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 4 cloves of garlic (minced)
  • A pinch of cayenne pepper

If you’re feeling daring, try making your own homemade peppermint mocha by combining some peppermint extract with your strong brewed coffee! Don’t forget to grab a zip-top bag and press out as much air as possible before mixing your ingredients in there for maximum flavor infusion.

The Recipe How-To

 With a burst of caffeine and chocolate, this dish is like nothing you've ever tasted!
With a burst of caffeine and chocolate, this dish is like nothing you’ve ever tasted!

Now that we’ve got our ingredients ready, let’s dive into how to make this delicious Mocha Chicken recipe.

Step 1 – Preparing the Mocha Rub:

We will start by making the mocha rub, which will generously coat our chicken legs or breasts. In a mixing bowl, combine 1 tbsp olive oil, 2 tsp cocoa powder, 1 tsp ground black pepper, 1 tsp paprika, 1/2 tsp chili powder and 1/2 tsp garlic powder. Mix well until all the ingredients are combined and a smooth paste is formed.

Step 2 – Marinating the Chicken:

In a separate bowl or zip-top bag, combine 1/4 cup soy sauce, 1/4 cup brown sugar, 1/4 cup cooking sherry (optional), 1/4 cup strong brewed coffee and 3 cloves of minced garlic. Add in some cayenne pepper according to preference. Stir the mixture well until the brown sugar dissolves completely.

Place the chicken legs or breasts into a zip-top bag and pour in the marinade ensuring that all pieces of chicken are coated with it evenly. Press out as much air as possible from the bag and seal it tight. Place it in the fridge for at least one hour or overnight.

Step 3 – Grilling / Baking the Chicken:

Preheat your grill or oven to medium heat. Take out the chicken from the marinade and pat it dry with paper towels. Rub the prepared mocha rub all over each piece generously.

On a greased baking pan or grilling tray, place chicken pieces ensuring there is enough space between each piece to cook evenly. For an accurate temperature reading, insert an instant-read thermometer into thickest part of the meat.

Grill for about 6-8 minutes per side, or bake at 350°F for approx 35-45 minutes. Once the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165°F, it is fully cooked and can be removed from the grill or oven.

Step 4 – Serving:

Let the chicken cool down for a few minutes before serving. This would allow even distribution of juice throughout each piece. Serve the Mocha Chicken with a side salad or steamed vegetables.

Enjoy your homemade Mocha Chicken with its delectable coffee notes and bold spices!

Substitutions and Variations

 A unique combination of flavors that all come together for an unforgettable meal.
A unique combination of flavors that all come together for an unforgettable meal.

Looking to switch things up a bit with this mocha chicken recipe? No problem – I’ve got you covered. While this recipe calls for specific ingredients, there are a variety of substitutions and variations that can be made to adjust the flavors to suit your preferences.

Firstly, if you’re not a fan of chicken legs, you can easily swap them out for boneless, skinless chicken breasts. Simply slice the breasts into thin strips and follow the same instructions in the recipe for marinating and grilling.

If you’re looking for a healthier option, you can try substituting the cooking sherry with apple cider vinegar or lemon juice. Additionally, you could use coconut sugar or honey as alternatives to brown sugar.

For those who prefer their food on the spicier side, try adding in some extra cayenne pepper or chili powder to the mocha rub. You could also replace the peppermint in the homemade “peppermint mocha” with spices such as cinnamon or nutmeg for a warmer flavor.

One variation I love is using brewed espresso instead of coffee for an extra bold flavor. If you’re feeling creative, why not try experimenting with different types of coffee? A Mexican mocha would make for an interesting twist on this mocha chicken recipe.

Finally, if you’re not able to grill outdoors or don’t have access to a grill, don’t worry! This recipe works equally well with crispy chilli chicken done in a deep fryer or oven-baked BBQ chicken.

Ultimately, the beauty of cooking is being able to experiment and make things your own. Don’t be afraid to play around with ingredients and flavors until you find your perfect mocha chicken recipe.

Serving and Pairing

 Your taste buds will thank you for exploring beyond the typical savory chicken dishes.
Your taste buds will thank you for exploring beyond the typical savory chicken dishes.

Now that you’ve got your delicious mocha chicken ready to plate up, it’s time to think about what to serve alongside it. This chicken recipe is versatile and can be paired with a wide range of sides, depending on your preferences.

For a simple and classic pairing, consider serving the mocha chicken with rice or roasted vegetables. The savory flavors of the chicken work especially well with roasted squash or root vegetables, like carrots or sweet potatoes. You could also try pairing the chicken with a fresh green salad for a lighter meal option.

If you’re looking for something a bit more adventurous, experiment with pairing this dish with other bold and flavorful dishes. This recipe calls for a mix of soy sauce, sherry, coffee, garlic, cayenne pepper, olive oil and brown sugar to create a unique rub – so why not continue the theme? Mexican mocha and homemade peppermint mocha would make lovely drinks options to serve alongside this recipe.

Plus, if you want to add some crunchiness to your meal, crispy chilli chicken would be perfect as a side dish.

If you’re looking for an alcoholic beverage that will pair well with this dish, look no further than a full-bodied red wine like Merlot or Cabernet Sauvignon. A rich red wine will complement the deep flavors of the mocha rub while providing a refreshing acidic note that will cleanse the palate between bites.

Or if you’re feeling fancy – sip on homemade mocha while indulging in your mouth-watering creation!

Overall, this versatile recipe offers plenty of opportunities for different pairings and flavors – so don’t be afraid to experiment and find what works best for you!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 The perfect recipe for cozy nights in or a special dinner with friends.
The perfect recipe for cozy nights in or a special dinner with friends.

Now, imagine preparing and having your mocha chicken ready to go but not needing it for a meal until later in the week? No need to worry because this recipe is easily adaptable to make-ahead meals.


To prepare your mocha chicken ahead of time, simply follow the recipe instructions and let it cool before storing in an airtight container. It will keep well in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months.


When storing your chicken, be sure to use an airtight container or plastic wrap to prevent any moisture from seeping in. This ensures that your chicken stays fresh and doesn’t dry out.


When reheating your mocha chicken, you have a few options. If you’re short on time, you can simply place it in the microwave or oven and reheat it until it’s hot and steaming. Alternatively, you can also place it in a pan on medium heat with some oil and heat until it’s crispy on both sides. This makes for a delicious crispy chilli chicken that pairs well with just about anything.


For best results, allow your chicken to come to room temperature before reheating. This ensures that it heats evenly and keeps the inside moist while crisping up on the outside.

Bon appétit!

Tips for Perfect Results

 Chocolate and chicken? Yes please!
Chocolate and chicken? Yes please!

If you want to create the perfect Mocha Chicken every time, then these tips should be useful for you. In my experience, making a recipe requires more than just having the right ingredients on hand. Understanding the nuances of the ingredients and cooking methods is crucial, and learning about the things that might go wrong is equally important. Here are some tips for making sure your Mocha Chicken turns out perfectly every time:

1. Don’t skip the marinade

The marinade in this recipe is what gives the chicken its distinctive flavor. So don’t rush through it or decide to skip it altogether. Take your time to mix all ingredients properly in a bowl, and let the chicken sit in it for at least 30 minutes before cooking.

2. Use bone-in chicken legs

While it’s tempting to use boneless chicken legs to save time, using bone-in chicken legs will result in juicier and more flavorful meat. Plus, the bones help maintain their shape during grilling.

3. Remove excess air from the zip-top bag

When marinating chicken in a zip-top bag, make sure to press out as much air as possible before sealing the bag. This will ensure that all pieces of chicken are evenly coated with marinade.

4. Grill over indirect heat

Grill the chicken over indirect heat as this will prevent charring and allow for even cooking. Make sure to monitor the temperature so that you don’t overcook or undercook your chicken.

5. Rest before serving

After removing from grill, let your chicken legs rest for at least five minutes – this allows juices to redistribute throughout the meat and keeps them moist and tender.

6. Experiment with sauces and rubs

The beauty of recipes is that you can always experiment with flavors without losing personality on its core recipe. Try adding different kinds of sauces or seasonings like crispy chilli flakes or homemade peppermint mocha sauce.

By following these tips, not only will you create a delicious Mocha Chicken recipe, but you might also find yourself grilling the best chicken legs in the neighborhood. Enjoy!

Bottom Line


In conclusion, the mocha chicken recipe is a delicious and easy-to-make dish that will leave your taste buds craving more. With its unique blend of coffee, soy sauce, brown sugar, sherry, garlic, and cayenne pepper, this dish packs a flavorful punch that’s hard to resist. Whether you’re grilling chicken legs or boneless skinless chicken breasts, the mocha rub adds an irresistible layer of flavor that’s sure to impress.

To get the most out of this recipe, make sure to follow the tips above, which include using quality ingredients and allowing enough time for marinating. You can also experiment with different variations and substitutions to make the recipe your own.

And remember, food is more than just nourishment; it’s also an opportunity to connect with others and create memorable experiences. So next time you’re looking for a crowd-pleasing meal that’s sure to impress, give this mocha chicken recipe a try. Your taste buds – and your friends – will thank you for it.

Mocha Chicken

Mocha Chicken Recipe

An unusual marinade that produces a tastey sweet glaze for your chicken. Marinating time not included.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 25 mins
Cook Time 35 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine International
Calories 782.7 kcal


  • 2/3 cup soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup cooking sherry
  • 1/4 cup brewed coffee
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 6 chicken legs
  • ground black pepper


  • In a medium, nonreactive container, mix the soy sauce, brown sugar, sherry, coffee, and 2 tablespoons olive oil.
  • Place chicken legs in the mixture. Cover, and marinate in the refrigerator 3 to 4 hours.
  • Remove chicken from the marinade mixture, and set aside. Transfer the marinade to a medium saucepan, and bring to a boil
  • Heat remaining olive oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Season chicken with pepper, and brown on all sides in the skillet.
  • Pour the hot marinade mixture into the skillet.
  • Reduce heat, and simmer 30 minutes, or until chicken is no longer pink and juices run clear.
  • Cool slightly before serving.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 428gCalories: 782.7kcalCarbohydrates: 31.7gProtein: 50.6gFat: 43.9gSaturated Fat: 10.4gCholesterol: 207.9mgSodium: 2892.5mgFiber: 0.4gSugar: 28.1g
Keyword < 60 Mins, Chicken, Chicken Thigh & Leg, Meat, Poultry, Weeknight
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