Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Five Spiced Chicken Breasts with Hosin Sauce

Nothing says summer like a backyard cookout. We enjoyed several meals on our patio, lakeside this weekend. Despite the 30 mph winds, we had a great time. Chicken is one of my favorite meats to grill. It's so versatile and easily takes on the flavors of sauces or marinades.

Hoisin sauce is a Chinese dipping sauce that reminds me of a thick barbeque sauce.  I wouldn't recommend using it alone but mixed with other ingredients, it makes a perfect sauce or marinade. I didn't have five spice powder.   I improvised and made my own by grinding fennel seeds, cinnamon, cloves and peppercorns in the coffee grinder.  When I am finished grinding, I run a piece of dry bread through the grinder to remove the spice residue.

 What did you grill this Memorial Day weekend?

 Five Spiced Chicken Breasts with Hoisin Glaze
Recipe courtesy of Cooking Light
  • 3 1/2 cups water
  • 1/3 cup kosher salt (such as Diamond Crystal)
  • 3 tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons five-spice powder
  • 4 (6-ounce) boneless chicken breast halves 
  • 1 cup ice
  • 2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
  • 2 teaspoons dark sesame oil
  • 2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dark brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1/4 teaspoon five-spice powder


  1. Combine first 4 ingredients in a large bowl, stirring until salt and sugar dissolve. Stir in 2 tablespoons five-spice powder. Pour salt mixture into a large zip-top plastic bag. Rinse chicken with cold water. Add chicken and ice to bag; seal. Refrigerate 2 hours, turning bag occasionally. Remove chicken from bag; discard brine. Pat chicken dry with paper towels.
  2. Combine hoisin sauce and next 5 ingredients (hoisin sauce through 1/4 teaspoon five-spice powder).
  3. Prepare the grill for indirect grilling, heating one side to medium and leaving one side with no heat.
  4. Place chicken, skin side down, on grill rack coated with cooking spray over medium heat side. Close lid; grill chicken 8 minutes on each side, brushing occasionally with hoisin sauce mixture. Place chicken, skin side up, on unheated side; brush with hoisin sauce mixture. Grill an additional 5 minutes or until done. Discard skin; serve immediately.
  • 3 tablespoons cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons anise seeds (I didn't have these)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons fennel seeds
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons szechuan peppercorns or 1 1/2 teaspoons whole black peppercorns
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cloves


  1. Combine all ingredients in blender or coffee grinder.
  2. Blend until finely ground.
  3. Store in airtight container.
  4. Keeps up to 2 months
I am linking this to Tasty Tuesday, Miz Helen's Full Plate Thursday and Foodie Friday!


  1. I'm so glad you had a sweet weekend and this chicken looks awesome...bbq heaven for sure!

  2. Love this combination of ingredients; healthy yet full of flavour. Thank you for sharing.

  3. Looks delicious, Julie! I love hoisin sauce, will definitely be trying your recipe soon. Lot of great flavors there.

  4. Sounds like a very flavorful chicken and glad you had a great weekend! I had some chicken on the BBQ too:@)

  5. This chicken looks yummy. I love the ingredients. I might need to buy some 5 spice.

  6. This looks so good. I'm with you - grilled chicken is so versatile. There are so many ways to prepare it, and they're all great!

  7. I recently bought five-spiced mix and I was trying to find a recipe to use it! Now I think I found the right one! great looking chicken!

  8. Chicken breast must have some good flavor for me to enjoy them and these sound like they have great flavor!!

  9. Julie, This is a scrumptious way to prepare chicken. I have Five-Spice in my pantry... So happy to use it up! I'm making this great sounding recipe! Your pictures are making me hungry.
    I would like to invite you to ON THE MENU MONDAY, my weekly recipe and menu linky party. Linky goes live on Sunday at 8:00 PM. Hope to see you and your great reacipes there!

  10. We love grilling too. I'm sure your deck has the perfect setting for it! No coffee grinder here, so I'll have to track down the 5-spice powder, but this chicken looks great.

  11. I absolutely ADORE the flavor of five-spice and any recipe that includes it! Great meal!

  12. Hi Julie,
    I just love your Five Spice Chicken! We would really enjoy this dish.
    Hope you are having a great week end and thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen


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