Vietnamese Grilled Chicken with Kale & Spinach Salad or Mixed Greens

A Bit of the Asian Vibe

A Bit of the Asian Vibe

The Vietnamese like to eat food that incorporates the sweet, tangy, and spicy flavor all in one.  So this grilled chicken is perfect as a compliment to salads.

I find that cooking with thigh meat that is skinned, boneless and trimmed of fat is much better and user friendly than breast.  The thigh meat has more flavor and juice so that if you find yourself overcooking the meat, it will be less dry.  In Vietnam, we salt most of our dishes with fish sauce.  It’s like the soy sauce of Asia.

Spinach and Kale both have the high vitamin A, K, and C.  They are high in fiber and low in calories.  They have a small amount of fat but it’s mostly omega-3 fatty acid, called alpha linolenic acid.  Nutritiously dense and jam packed with anti-oxidant.

The highest amount of Vitamin C in a bell pepper is concentrated in the red variety. Red bell peppers contain several phytochemicals and carotenoids, particularly beta-carotene, which lavishes you with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits. The capsaicin in bell peppers has multiple health benefits.

Onions are a very good source of biotin. They are also a good source of manganese, vitamin B6, copper, vitamin C, dietary fiber, phosphorus, potassium, folate, and vitamin B1.



Serve: 6                                                                                                                Total Time:  30 minutes (grill – 15 minutes)

Vietnamese Grilled Chicken

2 lbs. Skinless, boneless chicken thigh meat (excess fat trimmed)
1 cup Fish sauce (any brand will do)
2 Tablespoon Minced ginger (you can buy them in a tube from the produce aisle)
2 Tablespoon or 1 bunch from Utopian Harvest Grated lemon grass (you can buy them in a tube) or cook down the lemon grass stalks and grind them up
2 Tablespoon


1 Bunch

Minced garlic


Elephant Garlic Bulb

2 tablespoon Agave or honey
1/8 teaspoon Red pepper flakes
1 cup Olive oil
1 bunch Thai basil leaves (optional for garnishment/topping the chicken)


  1. Preheat the grill to high (you want the grill to be hot enough to sear the meat which is usually around 400 degree Fahrenheit)
  2. In a large bowl combine all the ingredients except for the Thai basil. Mix well and let it marinate for 10-15 minutes.
  3. Placed the marinated chicken on the grill and put some grill marks on them (usually for 2-3 minutes on each side)
  4. Reserve the marinate;
  5. Mix the grilled chicken (not yet fully cooked but with grill marks and some browning) in the left-over marinate and continue cooking in a pan for 10 minutes. You will see the chicken gets caramelized in the marinate as it is cooking in the pan.

Making the minced lemon grass from scratch using the Utopian Harvest supply (1 bunch):

  1. Minced/grated lemon grass: if you are cooking from scratch then use only the bottom 6 inches of the stems/stalks.
  2. Cut the stems into small slices (like 1/16” inch).
  3. In a pot fill up with enough water to cover the sliced stalks.
  4. Heat on high until boil.
  5. Boil for 5 more minutes or until the water evaporate.
  6. Use a coffee grinder and grind the cooked lemon grass until it is minced. The minced lemon grass can be refrigerated for 1 week.

Serve the chicken over a bed of kale and spinach salad.  See recipe below.

Serve:  6                                                                                                               Total Time:  15 minutes

1 bunch Kale (loose cuts into bite size pieces).  Red Russian or Dinosaur Kale are my favorites.  Swiss Chard is also a good substitute too.
1 bunch Spinach (loose cuts into bite size pieces
1 small Onion sliced or chopped
1 each Red bell pepper sliced
1 each Yellow bell pepper sliced
¼ cup Olive oil
1 cup Balsamic vinaigrette
1 tablespoon Agave or honey
1 tablespoon Pesto (see previous recipe from Utopian Harvest for a home made pesto)
To taste Salt and pepper


In a large bowl, combine all the vegetables;

In another bowl combine the following and whisk thoroughly to make the dressing.  It will last in the refrigerator for 2 weeks:

  1. Olive oil,
  2. Balsamic vinaigrette;
  3. Honey/agave;
  4. Pesto (see below for recipe);
  5. Salt and pepper

Making homemade pesto:

  • 1 bunch of sweet basil or Holy basil leaves only;
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic;
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil;
  • Combine the above ingredients in a food processor and blend until it becomes pasty. It will last in the refrigerator for about 2 weeks.

Toss the salad (vegetable mix) and dressing and serve when ready.