Nigerian Chicken Suya Recipe
Chicken Suya is another way to enjoy the deliciousness that the Nigerian Suya Pepper adds to meats.
It is prepared exactly the same way as the classic Nigerian Suya, the only difference is the meat used. We use beef fillets for the classic Nigerian Suya while we use fillets of chicken breast for this one. You can also use chicken quarters (chicken laps) but to get more suya pepper in there, you need fillets of chicken.
There is also Ram Suya, Lamb Suya, you can use your favourite meats. Once you have a well prepared suya pepper, the end product will taste like suya.
Ingredients you need for Chicken Suya
- Chicken breast
- Suya Pepper (Suya Spice)
- Groundnut or Peanut Oil
Tools you'll need: Skewers or sticks
Notes on the ingredients
- I use chicken breast from the male chicken (cockerel, cock, rooster) because is it soft and juice and cooks in less time. You may use the fillets of the female chicken but your cooking times will be different from mine.
- You can buy the suya spice (suya pepper) from African food stores, you can also make yours. Visit How to make Nigerian Suya Spice for details.
- If you do not have groundnut oil (peanut oil), use any tasteless and odourless vegetable oil eg sunflower oil.
- To be honest, I never measure the quantity of suya pepper that I use. I just set the bag of suya pepper on one side, scoop a small quantity into the tray that I am using to dab the fillets, use that one up and scoop more till I have dabbed all the chicken fillets of suya that I am making.
The thing is to look at the quantity of suya spice you have and decide how heavily coated you want the fillets. With a well prepared Suya Pepper, even if you just sprinkle the fillets with the spice, the end product will still taste like suya.
With all that said, for 1kg (2.2 lbs) of chicken breast, I used about 200g of suya pepper.
Making the Chicken Suya
- Make some suya pepper if you do not have it.
- Cut the chicken breast into fillets. The chicken sellers at the meat market where I live usually do this for me. If you do not have such a market close by, use a sharp knife and try your best. I show how they do it in the video below.
- Cut the fillets into manageable suya sizes. Click the image for a bigger view. Please note that the image is just a guide, I do not follow those cuts always, I look at each fillet and decide how to cut it. Watch the video below for more tips on how to cut the fillets professionally like the Mai Suyas of Nigeria.
- Thread the fillets of chicken on the suya sticks as shown in the video below. Putting the beef on sticks is optional so you can actually skip this step but it's not Nigerian Chicken Suya if it's not on a stick.
- Put some vegetable oil in a bowl, add a small quantity of salt and stir. Using a cooking brush, rub the vegetable oil on the threaded fillets of chicken. This is what helps the suya spice stick to the chicken so make sure you rub the oil on every part of the chicken fillets.
- Spread the suya spice in a wide dish and dab the threaded fillets of chicken in the spice so that all parts of the chicken is covered with the suya spice.
- Place the sticks of spiced chicken fillets in a flat plate and cover with a think plastic film or aluminium foil.
- Place in the fridge to marinate for at least 1 hour. I even leave this overnight depending on when I want it. For instance if you have a party the next day, you can do all the threading and dabbing the night before and place in the fridge till the next day.
- When you are ready to grill, set your oven to Grill/Broil and 200°C (400F) to preheat.
- Place the chicken fillets on the oven rack making sure that the ears of the suya lie flat on the rack. Click image for a bigger view.
- Grill/Broil in the preheated oven for about 30 minutes making sure that both sides of the chicken suya are grilled evenly. So you grill the top side for about 10 minutes, turn them upside down and grill the bottom side for 10 minutes and keep turning them around till done.
- Towards the end, you can rub more vegetable oil on the fillets of chicken suya, this is so that they are moist rather than dry.
- That's it!
Serve with chunks of onions, tomatoes, cabbage and cucumber. Then a chilled drink. Yummy! Use it to prepare Chicken Suya Salad.
If you have any questions about this recipe, click here and ask me.