Grilled Five-Spice Chicken

I think I have Senioritis. I am not a senior anything, but it’s spring, and the weather has been gorgeous, and I don’t want to work. I just want to bang on the drums all day.

Or toot my oboe. Either one.

God bless the teachers of high school seniors in the spring. You might as well just phone it in. That’s what your students are doing.

My high school graduating class recently had its 20-year reunion. I didn’t go, because oh my gosh I totally wanted to but there was this really important thing I had to do that day and I’m so sorry but I just couldn’t get out of it which is a shame ’cause I’m sure it was loads of fun, too bad I had to miss it, so sad boo-hoo.


When the weather is as nice as it’s been this past week, I want to grill every night. This accomplishes three things: one- there is very little kitchen mess to clean up. Two- Don Corleone does the grilling (less work for me). And three- we get to eat a super yummy dinner (not to mention make our neighbors jealous with the delicious smell of meat cooking on an open fire).

Grilled Five-Spice Chicken

  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, sliced in half horizontally
  • 1/3 cup sesame oil
  • 2 tbsp sherry
  • 1 tsp Chinese five-spice
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • sesame seeds for garnish (optional)


  1. Combine oil, sherry, five-spice, and garlic in a large ziploc bag. Put the chicken in the bag and coat thoroughly. Marinate in refrigerator for at least an hour.
  2. Grill the chicken. Truth be told, my directions end here. I would like to write: “Give the chicken to somebody else to grill while you go read a book” but I realize that not everyone is scared of the grill like I am. I’m afraid you’re on your own for this part.
  3. Combine soy sauce and brown sugar and brush on chicken during the last few minutes of grilling, to create a glaze. Remove from grill and sprinkle with sesame seeds.

Chicken on the grill

Holy cow.

Is what you will not be having for dinner tonight, because you have to make this chicken. It is really, really simple, and really, really good! My critics all loved it, and that’s saying something!

Don Corleone: This chicken is an explosion of summer in my mouth. It reminds me of the summers I spent in China, if I ever went to China.

Sarah Crewe: This chicken rocks!

Batman: I love the chicken!

Curious George: I like it.

Elmo: More yeah-yeah.

Grilled Five-Spice Chicken

See the pretty salad next to the chicken? I was going to blog that recipe, too, but it wasn’t so great. In fact, next to each of the Critics’ comments above, just insert “…but do I have to eat the salad?”

Except for Don Corleone, who said, “The rice reminds me of Apocalypse Now.” I asked him what he meant by that and he said, “I don’t know. It just does.”

Here’s to high school graduations, movies, and grilling! Enjoy!

2 responses to “Grilled Five-Spice Chicken

  1. Great recipe. I want to grill even when the weather’s rotten! At least I live in the South and don’t have to knock snow off of it.

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