Your dad has been there through scraped knees, fender benders, and broken hearts. Show the father (or father figure) in your life how much you love and appreciate him with a Father’s Day meal.

This is an easy recipe that you can (and should) make ahead of time so the chicken absorbs the flavor of the marinade before you BBQ outside or cook it indoors. With the food prep already done, you can spend Father’s Day giving loving attention to your dad!

Secret Marinade Chicken Skewers Recipe

Makes about 30­-40 small skewers


  • Generous 1/2 cup wheat­free tamari or low ­sodium soy sauce
  • 1⁄4 cup of honey (a little more if you like it sweet)
  • 1⁄2 cup of red wine, as marinade (about a couple cups)
  • 3 medium garlic cloves
  • 1⁄2 cup fresh rosemary leaves, taken from about 5­6 branches of rosemary
  • 1 vine­ ripened tomato
  • 3⁄4 cup shallot, coarsely chopped
  • 1⁄3cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1⁄2 cup sesame seeds
  • 2 pounds boneless organic chicken thighs​
  • Bamboo skewers
  • Your favorite balsamic glaze/reduction


  1. Soak your bamboo skewers for water for 4­5 hours. Make marinade by pureeing all ingredients in your blender. Using a kitchen scissors (just scissors that you use only in your kitchen), cut each thigh into 4 or 5 two-­bite-size pieces. To do so, place chicken in a horizontal position and cut from bottom to top to get 4 or 5 pieces.
  2. Marinate chicken for about 5 hours in large covered container or in a Ziplock bag. Bring to room temp for an hour before grilling. Place one or two pieces per skewer.

If you’re grilling on an indoor grill pan and using an oven…

Heat your indoor grill pan over medium high flames and let it get hot for at least 10 minutes. Throw down as many pieces as you can fit on the grill pan, without them touching each other. Grill for about 1 1⁄2 minutes per side. You want them to get dark grill marks — a little bit of burn of the marinade is a good thing. Let cool and then skewer each one so that the pointy tip is still inside of the chicken so no one hurts themselves. (If not eating immediately, store in fridge and cover until mealtime.) Place chicken skewers in preheated oven at 350 degrees, as many as you want on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper. Bake for about 15 minutes. A little longer is not a problem. You can also keep them warm in an oven at 250 degrees and take out as needed. Serve with a drizzle of your favorite balsamic reduction or glaze.

If you’re grilling on a BBQ…

Prepare gas or charcoal grill for medium­high heat. Place skewers on heated grill and cook, turning every few minutes, for about 10 to ­12 minutes. Serve with a drizzle of your favorite balsamic reduction or glaze.

Elana Horwich is the founder of Meal and a Spiel, a boutique Beverly Hills cooking school and online recipe resource based on the philosophy that anyone can learn to cook. Her recipes reflect a crossroads between authentic country Italian and healthy California cooking. The result is simple rustic fare that prioritizes flavor and indulgence without the food coma.

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