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6 Ratings
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I'm showing you how I make what is probably the best barbecue chicken you've never had, which I should've already done, but I've hesitated since one of the main ingredients is banana ketchup. But then I remembered that I teach people to cook things, so this includes a recipe for this special ingredient.

Recipe Summary

15 mins
4 hrs
30 mins
4 hrs 45 mins

I'm always hesitant filming a video that requires a special ingredient that might be difficult for the average food wisher to find at the local market. There's nothing more frustrating than getting all excited to try a new dish, only to find out you can't get one of the key ingredients, which in this case is banana ketchup. Do you have banana ketchup in your pantry? I didn't think so.

But, as I joked about in the video, I remembered that I actually teach people how to cook things, so I decided to show a fast, easy version of this fabulous, fruity condiment, and I'm so glad I did. This was some truly great barbecue chicken, and I'm a little upset I didn't post it long ago. I remember getting a request for this stuff a while back, and taking a look at a recipe online, but after seeing the marinade needed "Filipino banana sauce," I think I moved on to something easier and more approachable.

I worked with Filipino cooks many years ago, and I vaguely remember them using, and loving, something called banana sauce, which I thought was a type of hot sauce, but apparently it's the exact same thing as banana ketchup, which is what most recipes call for. I don't think I ever even tried it, but now, after making this, I'm officially a big fan. So, whether you can find a bottle of ketchup at the store, or you make it from scratch, I really must insist you give this incredible barbecue chicken a try soon.


Original recipe yields 6 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
For the Banana Ketchup:
For the Chicken and Marinade:
For the Basting Sauce:


Instructions Checklist
  • Mash ripe banana, tomato paste, vinegar, brown sugar, oil, ginger, onion powder, garlic powder, cayenne, salt, allspice, and turmeric together in a saucepan. Add water and stir to combine.

  • Place over medium-high heat and bring to a simmer. Stir to combine. Reduce heat to medium and simmer until reduced and thickened, 7 to 10 minutes. Remove from heat; reserve 3 tablespoons for the basting sauce, leaving about 1/2 cup for the marinade.

  • Transfer ½ cup banana ketchup to a bowl and add lemon-lime soda, soy sauce, garlic, brown sugar, black pepper, and lemon juice for the marinade. Whisk until combined. Add halved chicken thighs and toss to coat.

  • Cover with plastic wrap and marinate in the refrigerator for 4 to 18 hours.

  • When you are ready to cook the chicken, combine reserved 3 tablespoons banana ketchup, soy sauce, brown sugar, oil, and fish sauce in a small bowl for basting sauce.

  • Preheat a charcoal grill until coals are very hot.

  • Remove chicken from the refrigerator and place on metal skewers, folding in half with the smooth side on the outside, the rougher side folded in.

  • Grill chicken over hot coals until no longer pink in the centers, 15 to 20 minutes, turning and basting every 2 to 3 minutes. Serve with accumulated juices or extra basting sauce.

Chef's Notes:

Feel free to grill chicken without skewers.

If chicken is getting too dark on the grill, move to indirect heat, or remove from the grill and finish in a preheated 400 degrees F (200 degrees C) oven until desired doneness.

Editor's Note:

Nutrition data for this recipe includes the full amount of marinade ingredients. The actual amount of marinade consumed will vary.

Nutrition Facts

368 calories; fat 11.4g; cholesterol 157mg; sodium 2052.3mg; carbohydrates 26.5g; protein 40.2g. Full Nutrition