Alabama-Style Chicken Kebabs

October  4, 2022
12 Ratings
Photo by James Ransom
  • Makes 4 kebabs (but there will be enough sauce to do 6 to 8 kebabs)
Author Notes

Maybe you've heard of or make "white" barbecue sauce from Alabama -- it's tart and tangy with mayo and vinegar as its base instead of the more common tomato. I like it a lot and thought I'd put a new twist on it for some chicken kebabs. Instead of the traditional horseradish I substituted sambal oelek for a bigger kick and a little sugar for sweetness. And extra is great as a dipping sauce. —inpatskitchen

Test Kitchen Notes

WHO: We've been cooking with inpatskitchen for a long time, and this is one of her best recipes yet.
WHAT: Moist, flavorful, addictive kebabs that will put the rest of the backyard barbecue spread to shame.
HOW: Mix up the sauce, fire up the grill, don't forget to baste.
WHY WE LOVE IT: "How is this chicken so moist?" is what you'll ask yourself while you're eating these. And probably, "Why can't I stop?" Don't ask questions, just keep eating. You have the recipe now -- the secrets are yours. —The Editors

What You'll Need
  • Sauce
  • 1 1/2 cups mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon sambal oelek (or more if you can handle it..I used two!)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 clove garlic, mashed or put through a press
  • Kebabs
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (6 to 8 ounces each)
  • four 12-inch skewers (if using wood, soak them in water for at least 30 minutes to prevent burning)
  • Salt, pepper, and olive oil
  • The sauce
  1. Sauce
  2. Whisk all ingredients together. Cover and refrigerate. (Sauce can be made well ahead of time.)
  1. Kebabs
  2. Cut the breast halves into 1 1/2 inch cubes and thread them on the skewers. Season the kebabs with a little salt and pepper and drizzle with a little olive oil. Light your grill to medium heat and oil the grates well.
  3. Reserve 1/2 to 3/4 cup of the sauce for dipping.
  4. Place your kebabs on the grill and start lightly basting and turning until the chicken is done. (Be careful not to burn!) Serve them up with a little of the reserved sauce on the side.
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Recipe by: inpatskitchen

I think I get my love for food and cooking from my mom, who was an amazing cook. She would start baking and freezing a month before Christmas in order to host our huge open house on Christmas afternoon. I watched and I this day I try not to procrastinate when it comes to entertaining. My cooking style is pretty much all over the place, although I'm definitely partial to Greek and Italian cuisine. Oh yes, throw a little Cajun in there too!

139 Reviews

Anonymous June 2, 2021
The chicken was GREAT. But the “dipping sauce” was AMAZING! To me, its all about that basting sauce! Advantage of this recipe over a “marinade?” You don't have to think about this the day, or hours before, to marinate over night, or whatever! I don't always plan ahead! This one is good to go, right away! I haven’t tried it yet, but I also think the reserved basting sauce would make a good salad dressing! I think I could drink that stuff! One other tip: dont cut the pieces of chicken too small, or overcook!
Anne May 3, 2021
Have you tried marinating the chicken pieces in the sauce (reserving some) before grilling and still basting??
inpatskitchen May 4, 2021
Hi Anne! I haven't because the chicken was so tender without time in a marinade. I don't see why it wouldn't be wonderful by doing it though....hope you let me know how it turns out if you do.
Hollis R. March 7, 2019
most, if not all, Alabama White Sauce recipes i've read call for a heck of a lot more pepper -- and it probably should be fresh-cracked on a *big* setting on a pepper mill, unless crunching on large-ish nuggets of black pepper isn't to your liking. i like the idea of using the Alabama (Black Peppery) White Sauce as a dip, once it's been properly peppered.
inpatskitchen March 7, 2019
Thanks for your interest Hollis! This was just another "take" on white sauce (sweeter with a different heat than black pepper and horseradish). Hope you give this a try!
Zach August 11, 2018
Signed up to thank you for this recipe. If anyone is out off by the mayonnaise (I was) just go ahead and make it. The flavors come together amazingly. I almost didn't make it after tasting the sauce. I'm so glad I did!
inpatskitchen August 11, 2018
I'm so glad you made this too Zach! Thanks so much!
Linda D. July 13, 2018
Thank you so much for the most flavorful moist chicken kabobs I have ever eaten, Pat. The next time I make this, I will try horseradish or harissa instead of the sambal oelek. I will keep the ingredient ratios in mind as I do not care to have that much sauce on hand. I have a very small refrigerator (we live in a motor home) and space is at a premium.
inpatskitchen July 13, 2018
Thanks Linda! I'm so happy you enjoyed...horseradish is traditional in the sauce so I'm sure the kebabs will be great!
Caroline C. September 4, 2017
I made these kabobs (again) at a family BBQ and people went nuts for them! My nephew (11) has demanded these for his birthday dinner. The key is to baste and turn on a well prepared grill so that you get the perfect ratio of juicy chicken to bits of charred edges.
inpatskitchen September 4, 2017
Yay! So happy you all like these...our family does too!!
Lisa H. June 28, 2017
These kebabs were terrific! Very juicy and flavorful. I did use two tablespoons of sambal oelek and next time, I may use even a little bit more. We had quite a bit of leftover sauce, which I used to grill a pork tenderloin a few days later. This one is a keeper for sure.
inpatskitchen June 28, 2017
Thanks so much Lisa! Leftover sauce is terrific on all sorts stuff (my fave is shrimp!)
Theresa June 19, 2017
I had high hopes for this chicken BBQ recipe. Having spent a bit of time in Alabama, I wanted to introduce a bit of Alabama BBQ flavor to my husband and sons. Unfortunately, it was not for them. Although they said the chicken was very moist, they didn't like the BBQ basting sauce AT ALL and this recipe went into the category of "unanimous thumbs down" :(
inpatskitchen June 19, 2017
Sorry you weren't happy but I understand that everyone has different tastes. Hopefully you've found a chicken kebab you like.
Jennifer M. June 1, 2017
I made Smashed Potatoes...
Lorrie H. May 31, 2017
This was great! Thanks! Any ideas about what to serve with?
inpatskitchen June 1, 2017
Thanks Lorrie! We usually have a spinach salad with it but any of the usual BBQ sides would be great: slaw, corn on the cob, etc.
Jennifer M. May 1, 2017
Making this tonight as I have chicken breasts that have nothing to do and a jar of mayo that is bored.
inpatskitchen May 1, 2017
Once that sambal gets added to the mayo it won't be bored! Thanks for trying this...sure hope you like it.
Jennifer M. May 2, 2017
Made was fantastic! My husband loved it! I wasn't able to grill it outside due to weather but used grill pan. Will make again!!
inpatskitchen May 2, 2017
I'm so happy you liked it.Thanks!! I'm planning this for dinner as soon as we get rid of this rain....
Nanners May 28, 2016
Just grilled this tonight on charcoal barbeque and my husband who is not a fan of chicken,,,, said that this is the best chicken he has ever had, THANK-YOU FOR SHARING.... this meal was absolutely fantastic and can not wait to share with my friends. KUDOS to you!!
inpatskitchen May 29, 2016
Thanks so much Nanners!! We love this one too!
Allison W. April 15, 2016
This looks delicious! Do you think it would be ok with egg-free mayo?
inpatskitchen April 16, 2016
I think it will be fine! Hope you enjoy....
Ronna R. April 16, 2016
I'm sure it would work and taste just as good!
Caroline C. December 17, 2015
I made these on an indoor grill pan since there are heaps and heaps of snow outside. The results looked just like the photo above: Charred edges, juicy, flavorful meat. Very delicious.
inpatskitchen December 17, 2015
Thank you Caroline! So happy you enjoyed!
Idalu October 30, 2015
Made this fir a BBQ this past summer and everyone wanted more including the kids. A keeper.
inpatskitchen October 30, 2015
Thanks so much Idalu! I'm especially happy when kids like the meal!
Christinekim June 28, 2015
How long should the chicken cook for, or should I be testing with a thermometer till they reach 165? Thanks
inpatskitchen June 28, 2015
A thermometer is a good idea... timing depends on your grill so I can't give you an accurate one.
Jennifer June 17, 2015
We made this with chicken wings and they were gone instantly! I was hoping for leftovers, but no luck! Simply delicious! I will make this again and again. Thanks so much for sharing!
inpatskitchen June 17, 2015
Chicken wings sound fabulous! Thank you so much!
Ronna R. June 16, 2015
We made these yesterday, exactly as the recipe indicates (other than we used our on hand "Rooster Sauce"- Sriracha, instead of sambal oelek). It is FANTASTIC. We've never had grilled chicken that wasn't marinated turn out THIS moist and THIS delicious!! It was even good as leftovers..cold!! We will make this again, and again, and again! It was awesome! We did a side of grilled mushrooms, onions, zucchini and yellow squash. It was HEAVEN!
inpatskitchen June 16, 2015
THANK YOU...THANK YOU...THANK YOU!! We just love this happy you enjoyed!
Jennifer May 23, 2015
You can buy sambal oelek from
Jean N. May 8, 2015
My family loved this. I grilled some skewers of mini peppers and onions along with the chicken kabobs, great combo.
karencooks May 8, 2015
Thanks for suggesting skewering and grilling mini peppers and onions!!! I will definitely do that the next time I make this recipe.
inpatskitchen May 8, 2015
Thanks so much Jean! I'm so happy all enjoyed and love the idea of peppers and onions to go along with the chicken!