Grilled Honey Chicken with Cherry Sauce

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Grilled Honey Chicken with Cherry Sauce is a recipe you’ll want to make while fresh cherries are in season and at their sweetest.

grilled chicken on a white plate with cherry sauce . bowl of cherry sauce in the background

This is a fabulous summertime dinner.  Heat up your grill and cook the chicken that is lightly brushed with honey and lemon. And then you’ll top that grilled chicken with a wonderful, fresh cherry sauce that is super easy to make.

grilled chicken breasts on a wooden board. a bowl of cherry sauce in the background with some fresh cherries scattered around

What are the best sweet cherries?

Bing cherries are the most popular cherries that you’ll spot in your market.  Feel free to use those- they’re sweet and delicious enough.  Rainier cherries can also be used for the cherry sauce.

white bowl with fresh cherry sauce and a wooden board with grilled chicken and fresh cherries

How to make Cherry Sauce:

You’ll combine red wine, brown sugar, red wine vinegar, orange juice and orange zest in a saucepan and bring to a boil.  Then you’ll add fresh cherries and let those cook for about 10 minutes.  Finally, you’ll add a slurry of cornstarch and water and heat until the sauce thickens a bit.  That’s it!

Can I substitute something else for the red wine?

Absolutely!  If you don’t like to use alcohol in your cooking, go ahead and sub one of the following for the red wine in the cherry sauce: pomegranate juice, cranberry juice or grape juice. All of those should still give the sauce great flavor!

overhead shot of a white plate on a patterned red and white napkin with grilled chicken and cherry sauce on top. bowl of cherries and fresh cherries and more grilled chicken in the background

What’s the best way to pit cherries?

Your best option is to buy a cherry pitter.  You’ll probably use it more than you’d think (I use mine all the time!)  If you don’t want to invest in a cherry pitter, check out this post on how to pit cherries without a cherry pitter.

overhead shot of a serving of grilled chicken on a white plate served with cherry sauce. Fork on plate and red/white patterned napkin underneath

This recipe is Weight Watchers friendly!  One serving will count as just three blue and purple WW points (and 6 green).  Otherwise, it’s just a good, healthy, delicious summertime dinner.  Enjoy!

Here are a few more grilled chicken recipes you might enjoy:

grilled chicken on a white plate with cherry sauce . bowl of cherry sauce in the background
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Grilled Honey Chicken with Cherry Sauce

This simple grilled chicken recipe is topped with the most amazing fresh cherry sauce.
3 6 3
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Calories 268kcal
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword cherry sauce, grilled chicken, grilled honey chicken

Ingredients

CHERRY SAUCE:

  • 1/3 cup dry red wine
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon grated orange zest
  • cups pitted and quartered sweet cherries (about one pound)
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 2 teaspoons water

CHICKEN:

  • 6 (2 pounds) boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded to an even thickness
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

Instructions

PREPARE THE CHERRY SAUCE:

  • Combine the first 5 ingredients (through zest) in a medium saucepan; stir well. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat, and cook 5 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium-low; add the cherries, and cook 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • In a small bowl, combine the cornstarch and water; stir well, and add to the cherry mixture. Bring to a boil over medium heat, and cook 1 minute or until slightly thickened, stirring constantly. Pour the cherry sauce into a bowl; set aside, and keep warm.

PREPARE THE CHICKEN:

  • Pre-heat your grill. Sprinkle the chicken with salt and pepper. In a small bowl, combine the honey and lemon juice; stir well. Lightly brush the chicken with half of the honey mixture; grill on a grill rack sprayed with cooking spray for 3 to 5 minutes. Turn the chicken over; brush with the remaining honey mixture. Grill 3 to 5 minutes or until the chicken is done.
  • Serve the chicken topped with the cherry sauce.

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 268kcal | Carbohydrates: 22g | Protein: 33g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 97mg | Sodium: 372mg | Potassium: 694mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 19g | Vitamin A: 90IU | Vitamin C: 10mg | Calcium: 19mg | Iron: 1mg | Blue WW Smartpoints: 3 | Green WW Smartpoints: 6 | Purple WW Smartpoints: 3
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Comments

  • Candi wrote:

    This cherry sauce is absolutely delicious!!! I added pomegranate juice as well. I poured it over baked turkey breast fillets. Yummy!!! Thanks so much for sharing this delightful sauce!!!

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      Great tip- thank you!

  • DogRescuer wrote:

    This looks and sounds absolutely delicious. Question: can I use pitted FROZEN sweet cherries? Thank you.

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      Sure!