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Coconut grilled chicken with mango salsa

Unless you, too, frequently drive along Viking Drive in the city in which I work, you might not believe me when I say that there is still a 10-foot pile of dirty snow that sits on the ground across the street from my place of employment. Every time I see that disgusting pile of slop, I let out a defeated sigh and instantly start dreaming of a tropical vacation. My husband and I started planning a tropical vacation a few months back, right after we learned that our oldest son would need to have his next surgery sooner than we expected. We weren't able to find childcare, though, so our tropical vacation never transpired. And I find myself sadly dwelling on that missed opportunity a lot these days.

So I have found that I have to do little things to trick myself into thinking that I'm sitting on a beach, enjoying my husband's company in WARMTH and with no large piles of snow in sight. When Kelapo contacted me and asked me to try their coconut oil, I knew it was meant to be. Coconuts = beaches = sunshine = no snow. Can I tell a quick story? Five years ago when my wonderful husband and I were on our honeymoon in Nassau, Bahamas, lying on the beach, absorbing the hot sunshine, we listened to a beach vendor repeat, "Fresh COCONUTS, tropical DRINKS, this is not a CEMETERY, let's get the pah-ty STAH-TED!" Over and over and over. But we didn't mind the repetition because, well, we were in the Bahamas. And he was talking about drinks and parties, and oohhhhh, I hate that stupid pile of snow. I often wonder if it will be July when it finally disappears.

The first thing that came to my mind when concocting a coconut-oil-related recipe was a light, fresh, fruity, delicious chicken meal that would make me think of a tropical vacation. First, though, I'd like to tell you how delicious coconut oil is. It can be such a great replacement for olive oil in a variety of dishes. I highly recommend it, and especially the Kelapo brand, which is now available in the Minneapolis area at Lunds and Byerly's. There are nutritious benefits to consuming coconut oil, as well. Check out Kelapo's website for details.

I wanted to create a sweet-spicy marinade for the chicken. My goal was to keep it simple because what I had in mind for the salsa was a little bit more complicated.

In a medium bowl, combine:

2 jalapeno peppers, sliced

4 green onions, sliced

Juice from 1 lime

2 tablespoons coconut oil

Salt and pepper

Place 4 chicken breast halves in a shallow dish and cover with the coconut oil-jalapeno mixture. Cover and let sit in the refrigerator overnight, turning the chicken occasionally.

Discard the large chunks from the dish and grill the chicken over medium heat until meat is no longer pink, about 15-18 minutes.

In the meantime, add the following ingredients to a medium bowl:

1 mango, peeled and diced

10 strawberries, stemmed and diced

1/3 cup dried cranberries

Juice from 1/2 a lime

1/2 red onion, chopped

1/4 cup cilantro, finely chopped

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

2 tablespoons coconut oil

Salt and pepper

By the way, I used these delicious Orange Flavored Cranberries from Trader Joe's, and I loved the citrus flavor they added. Yum. Yum. Yum. TJ's rocks.

Mix well.

Spoon the salsa over top the grilled chicken. Close your eyes and pretend you are near the ocean. Someone in the distance is talking about fresh tropical drinks.

I have to say, this is a fabulous little meal. I love the underlying coconut flavor that peeks through, mixed in with the assortment of other light flavors that danced around inside my mouth.

The next day for lunch, I shredded the chicken and put it atop a piece of flatbread. I topped it with the mango salsa and a little extra fresh cilantro.

It was a delightful lunch, once again bringing me back to an imaginary tropical location. And making me forget about that wretched pile of snow.

Click here for a printable recipe!

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Reader Comments (32)

Ew, you still have snow!! Stinks!! But this chicken doesn't! I love fruit salsas!

05.14.2011 | Unregistered CommenterThe Food Hound

That recipe is just screaming out for summer! Did you notice a difference with the coconut oil? Worth getting?

05.14.2011 | Unregistered CommenterJeff

Ohmigoodness! This is totally a beach worthy dish. In fact, when you come to Cayman you will make this dish for me. Huge fan of the mango! Yuuuuuuuuuuum

05.15.2011 | Unregistered CommenterParsley Sage

Yes, I will make it for you when I visit!! :)

And yes, I loved the coconut oil addition. It's worth checking out for sure!


05.15.2011 | Registered CommenterMegan Porta

This looks incredible!! I will definitely be making this and directing my blog readers to your recipe! We don't have a TJ's near me, but I want to take a road trip and stock up so badly!!!

05.15.2011 | Unregistered CommenterFarrah

thats a stunning combo of flavors! that looks healthy and sooo delish!

05.15.2011 | Unregistered Commenteroureyeseatfist

thats a stunning combo of flavors! that looks healthy and sooo delish!

05.15.2011 | Unregistered Commenteroureyeseatfist

Snow?? Still? Then this is the perfect solution. I love coconut oil - and those orange cranberries are some of my favorite snacks. So this, my friend, is my kind of meal!

05.15.2011 | Unregistered CommenterBelinda @zomppa

This dish looks fantastic! I love how fresh everything is. I definitely need to get myself some coconut oil too!


I am extremely interested in making this dish!! But I have a quick question, I am not a huge jalapeno fan, is the taste over powering or will I not even know they were there? Thanks!

05.15.2011 | Unregistered CommenterKatherine

10 feet of dirty snow?! That must stink!
Love fruit salsas and your looks very tempting. Wonderful photos

05.15.2011 | Unregistered CommenterRoxana GreenGirl

Hi Katherine,

NO, the jalapeno is not overpowering at all. It is very very subtle and adds just a very slight zinginess. I hope you enjoy!


05.15.2011 | Registered CommenterMegan Porta

This looks so fresh and inviting! I'm totally curious about Coconut oil, I will have to check out the website you mentioned. My trainner told me that the body can not "process" coconut oil, so when you eat it your metabolism goes up a lot since the body tries really hard to break it down.

mmmmmm!! That is one of the best summer dishes that I will definitely make! Beautiful flavors, colors, and just gorgeous pictures!

05.15.2011 | Unregistered CommenterKate @ Diethood

I am trying still to figure out what to make out of that amazing oil! Smells amazing!!!
This is very unique and delicious dish..I am loving your photos!Thanks for sharing!

Ultimately refreshing!!!

05.16.2011 | Unregistered CommenterJun

My goodness - how PRETTY! Those colours just leap off the plate at you. Tres inviting!

05.16.2011 | Unregistered CommenterJuanita

When I saw Mango Salsa, you had me, and then on top of Coconut chicken, I was back in the Caribbean. I love all of the flavors and textures in the salsa. Then you paired it with the Coconut Chicken. I'll be making this soon! Love TJ's!.

05.16.2011 | Unregistered CommenterBecky higgins

Oh my! I love the colors! This looks incredibly delicious!!

New to your blog; happy I found you!

Mary xo
Delightful Bitefuls

This looks delicious! So colorful! Your pics are awesome!

05.16.2011 | Unregistered CommenterErin

Gorgeous! That flavor combination seems so perfect. Loving all of that fresh produce.

05.16.2011 | Unregistered CommenterCarrie

I have no words. I want to eat this right now. Yesterday in fact. I have been obsessed with coconut lately. And all of those flavors?! I am stumbling this and pinning it to my Pinterest Board! Wow!!

This looks so delicious :) I don't know which way I want to eat it first :)
We are still stuck in winter. We get two days in 80s than week in freezing cold ugh... But this recipe is perfect and so summer like :)

05.16.2011 | Unregistered CommenterFirefly

This looks sooooo good. I want it in my mouth my belly, please. A trip to the grocery store it is, because I cannot pass up something that looks this good. Fantastic!

05.16.2011 | Unregistered CommenterKate from Scratch

Oh my that looks amazing! I love all the colors - just gorgeous!

05.17.2011 | Unregistered CommenterJen

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