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Coconut Lime Chicken is a bright fresh chicken recipe with only 10 ingredients, perfect for an easy weeknight dinner! The light coconut sauce is bursting with lime flavor and cilantro. Dairy free, gluten free, keto, paleo, and Whole30 compliant.

coconut lime chicken in pan with spoon

Ah yes, the summer months! Coconut and lime give this dish a tropical flavor that is so good when the weather is warm. 

The ginger and garlic infuse the light coconut sauce with incredibly delicious aromas and tastes that remind me of Thailand.  The lime juice makes the dish bright and light.  I add a little fish sauce which gives it the umami Thai taste I love so much.

This dish is proof you don’t need a lot of ingredients to make a delicious meal. There are only 10 ingredients in this recipe. The combination of ginger, garlic, coconut milk, lime and fish sauce creates a creamy lime sauce that turns plain chicken into a really amazing dish. 

It’s all made in one pan.

I use a microplane to grate the ginger, it makes it so easy.  

Sometimes limes can be hard to juice.  I love my new hand held lemon juicer.  It easily extracts the juice without seeds or pulp. You can find them in most supermarkets or health food stores. Put the lime half in cut side down to get the most juice.

I highly recommend cutting your boneless chicken breasts in half horizontally. The thinner slices cook more evenly without drying out.  Alternately you can buy thin cut chicken breasts if they are available.

Look for chicken that is Certified Humanely Raised.  This way you know the chicken lived in a kind and  responsibly raised environment. 

Start by cooking the chicken breasts in a little coconut oil. Use medium high heat when you first add the chicken to the pan. This prevents them from sticking and lets them get nicely brown.  Cook them for 3-4 minutes on each side. Don’t let them overcook. When chicken breasts are overcooked they get dry and tough.

Once your chicken is browned, remove it from the pan and set aside. Add the shallots and garlic. Then the ginger, lime juice, fish sauce and coconut milk. Simmer for 5 minutes to marry the flavors and the sauce begins to thicken.

Place the chicken back in the pan and simmer until warmed through. Add chopped fresh cilantro and serve.

Since the dish has lots of sauce I serve it with coconut rice along with sautéed spinach. You could serve it with basmati rice, quinoa or cubed potatoes and a vegetable. 

Enjoy this easy, one pan Coconut Lime Chicken dish. It has the tropical taste of coconut and lime that’s light and creamy. It’s so yummy and quick you’ll be including it in your regular rotation!

If you like this recipe you may also enjoy these other chicken dishes:

Easy Chicken Piccata (Paleo, Dairy-free)

Creamy Italian Chicken and Vegetables

Garlic Lemon Chicken with Anchovy Sauce and Cauliflower

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Coconut Lime Chicken (Paleo, Keto)

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  • Author: Ingrid DeHart
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x


Coconut Lime Chicken is a bright fresh chicken recipe in a light coconut sauce bursting with lime flavor and cilantro.


  • 11 ½ pounds boneless chicken breasts, thinly sliced*
  • Celtic sea salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 shallot, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, peeled* and grated on a microplane or finely minced
  • 1/4 cup lime juice (about 2 limes)
  • 1 can (13.5 ounces) coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon fish sauce or gluten free tamari
  • 1/3 cup fresh cilantro, chopped plus more for garnish
  • Lime slices for garnish (optional)


  1. If your chicken breasts are whole, cut each breast in half horizontally to make 2 thin sliced breasts. Season both sides with salt and pepper.
  2. Prep shallots, garlic, ginger, juice limes, chop cilantro and set everything aside.
  3. Heat a large saute pan over medium-high heat and add coconut oil.
  4. Once hot, add the chicken to the pan (you may have to cook the chicken in 2 batches depending on the size of your pan. Cook, without disturbing for 3-4 minutes, until lightly brown.
  5. Turnover and cook another 3-4 minutes until the chicken is mostly cooked through.
  6. Remove chicken from the pan and set aside. Lower the heat to medium.
  7. Add the garlic and shallot to the pan. Cook, stirring for 1-2 minutes until fragrant.
  8. Add ginger and stir.
  9. Add lime juice, coconut milk, and fish sauce to the pan. Stir to mix, scraping up any browned bits remaining in the pan from when you cooked your chicken.
  10. Simmer 5 minutes until slightly thickened.
  11. Add the chicken breasts back to the skillet with the sauce. Simmer for 1-2 minutes, or until the chicken is fully cooked.
  12. Stir in the cilantro.
  13. Serve with cauliflower rice, quinoa or potatoes. Spoon sauce over everything for serving.
  14. Sprinkle with cilantro and garnish with lime slices (optional).


I find ¼ pound chicken breast to be enough per person but if you want more, cook 1 ¼ – 1 ½ pounds of chicken breasts.. There will be enough sauce.

The easiest way to peel ginger is by scraping the skin off with the edge of a spoon.

Nutrition information is with 1 pound of chicken.

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Saute
  • Cuisine: Paleo, Keto, Dairy free, Gluten-Free, Whole30


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