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Sticky BBQ Chicken Skewers with Pineapple

BBQ chicken skewers with pineapple and red onion featuring a sticky, sweet & sour glaze that rocks a bit of a Chinese takeaway vibe.

These chicken kebabs are ideal on the barbecue but are just as good cooked on the stovetop or under the grill and I have instructions for all of them.

Overhead BBQ chicken skewers with pineapple & red onion with a sweet and sour glaze.

BBQ Chicken & Pineapple Kebabs

Stuff on sticks, whether you call them kebabs, kebobs, kababs or skewers are always a perennial favourite.

To me, more often than not, stuff on sticks means tikka, either my lamb tikka or chicken tikka kebabs.

But I also have something with North African influences like my beef kofta kebabs, Indo-Chinese influences like my chicken shashlik recipe and European influences in my sticky duck kebabs.

These bbq chicken skewers with pineapple sticks with a takeaway vibe, but Chinese rather than Indian. Because these chicken skewers are influenced by the sauce in my sweet and sour chicken balls.

Tomato ketchup forms the base of the glaze and it is joined by rice vinegar, brown sugar and soy sauce.

Finally, I add the distinct and magical flavour of Szechuan pepper, one of my favourite ingredients!

But if the weather ain’t playing ball don’t worry! I have tested these in a griddle pan and under the grill or broiler and they work wonderfully.

BBQ chicken skewers with pineapple & red onion cooking on a barbecue.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I have to use Szechuan pepper?

No, you can omit it if you like and these kebabs will still be awesome.

If you want to skip using it because you are worried about it going to waste, then don’t be! I have a host of recipes that will use it up.

Just type it into the search option at the top of the page, but to name-check a few, I have Chinese pork belly, Szechuan beef and dan dan noodles that make use of them.

Can I use fresh pineapple?

Yes, fresh pineapple is great in this recipe. I do not use it because I cook for two and a fresh pineapple has a short shelf life.

If you have any leftover tinned pineapple then I would recommend giving my fruity pineapple and chicken curry a whirl.

Are these better cooked on the BBQ, grill or stovetop?

Better is such a loaded question, these chicken kebabs absolutely rock the BBQ, but let’s face it, most of us do not BBQ every day!

Nine times out of ten I cook these on the stovetop as it is the most convenient way to cook them. But the grill gives marginally better results that more closely resemble the BBQ vibe.

BBQ chicken skewers with pineapple and red onion with a sweet and sour glaze.

Serving Suggestions

These bbq chicken skewers are wonderfully versatile, they are great as finger nibbles at a BBQ get together.

You can throw them on the barbecue alongside dishes like my stuffed onions, BBQ chicken drumsticks or even venison burgers.

Throw a selection of salads on the side like a spicy mango salad, cucumber salad and of course a nice slaw.

If I am cooking on the stovetop or under the grill I’d usually add a salad of some description and some potatoes.

My goto side would typically be some air fryer wedges, they are great dipped into the leftover sauce.

BBQ chicken skewers with pineapple & red onion with a sweet & sour glaze.

Equipment Used

I only name-check brands of equipment if I think they make a material difference to a recipe. But if you have any questions feel to ask them in the comments section below the recipe.

  • BBQ, grill (broiler) or stovetop.
  • Griddle pan if you are cooking on a stovetop.
  • Kitchen knife.
  • Chopping board.
  • Skewers, I prefer to use bamboo skewers.
  • Kitchen tongs.
  • Weighing scales and or measuring cups and spoons.
  • Mixing bowl stirring spoons.
Overhead BBQ chicken skewers with pineapple & red onion with a sweet & sour glaze.
Yield: 2 Servings

BBQ Chicken Skewers Recipe

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

These BBQ pineapple chicken skewers are simple fodder and are loaded with the delicious sweet and sour flavours more commonly associated with a Chinese Takeaway!


  • 350g (12oz) Chicken Breast
  • 1 Red Onion
  • 250g (1-1⅓ Cups) Tinned Pineapple Chunks in Fresh Juices
  • 1 Tbsp Cooking Oil
  • 1 Tbsp Szechuan Pepper

For the Glaze:

  • 2 Tbsp Dark Soy Sauce
  • 2 Tbsp Light Soy Sauce
  • 2 Tbsp Rice Wine Vinegar
  • 3 Tbsp Tomato Ketchup
  • 50ml (3 Tbsp + 1 Tsp) Water
  • 50ml (3 Tbsp + 1 Tsp) Pineapple Juice from the Tin
  • 1 Tbsp Cornflour (Cornstarch)


  1. If you are using bamboo skewers soak in water for 30 minutes.
  2. Toast the Szechuan pepper in a dry pan and transfer to a pestle and mortar or spice grinder and grind to a fine powder.
  3. Sieve this powder and discard any bits that do not pass through.
  4. Cut your red onion into 8 wedges and break into leaves, cut the outer leaves in half to reduce them in size.
  5. Cut the pineapple into chunks 2-3cm (1") in size if needed.
  6. Cut your chicken breast into the same size as the pineapple.
  7. Place the chicken, pineapple and chicken in a bowl and pour over the oil and Szechuan pepper and mix and set aside.
  8. Combine all of the ingredients for the sauce in a pan and place on the heat.
  9. Whisk until the sauce begins to boil and thicken.
  10. Thread the chicken, red onion and pineapple onto the skewers alternating between them.
  11. Whilst the skewers are cooking combine the water with the cornflour for the sauce and set aside.

Barbecue Instructions:

  1. Place the kebabs in the indirect heat zone of your hot barbecue and cook for 10 minutes, flipping over after 5 minutes.
  2. Transfer the skewers to the direct heat and baste with the sauce.
  3. Keep basting and spinning in order to get a nice caramelised colour and to finish cooking your chicken, this should take another 5-10 minutes.
  4. Serve with any remaining sauce on the side.

Stovetop Instructions:

  1. Heat a griddle pan over a fairly high heat.
  2. Brush the kebabs with the glaze and then place in the griddle pan.
  3. Flip the skewers every 2-3 minutes and continue cooking and adding more glaze until the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 73°C or 165°F.

Grill/Broiler Instructions:

  1. Heat your grill or broiler as hot as it will go.
  2. Brush the kebabs with the glaze and then place them under the grill.
  3. Flip the skewers once they have coloured which should take 3-5 minutes and continue cooking and adding more glaze until the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 73°C or 165°F.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 578Total Fat: 14gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 149mgSodium: 2406mgCarbohydrates: 54gFiber: 3gSugar: 43gProtein: 59g

Calorific details are provided by a third-party application and are to be used as indicative figures only.

Did you make this recipe?

If you made this recipe, I'd love to see what you did and what I can do better, share a picture with me on Instagram and tag me @krumplibrian and tell me how it went!

Kate | The Veg Space

Thursday 14th of June 2018

Loving the Chinese takeaway combination of flavours here, what a fab idea! I bet your BBQs are amazing!

Brian Jones

Friday 15th of June 2018

Thanks Kate :D

Shashi at SavorySpin

Thursday 14th of June 2018

Loving this idea of Chinese takeout in kebab form! That pineapple bbq sauces sounds heavenly! Cannot wait to try these out soon!!

Brian Jones

Friday 15th of June 2018

Thanks Shashi, enjoy!


Thursday 14th of June 2018

These sound absolutely Delicious! Love the sweet and sour, and I'm ready for summer grilling recipes! I'm totally going to have to go check out those duck kebabs and I am in love with duck.

Brian Jones

Friday 15th of June 2018

Thanks Danielle, I hear you on duck, I love the stuff too!


Thursday 14th of June 2018

Love the sound of this - you're right that the second I think of pineapple in savoury food I think of Chinese cuisine! Will be trying these this weekend :-D

Brian Jones

Friday 15th of June 2018

Enjoy Emma, a really simple riff on a Chinese takeaway :D

Bintu | Recipes From A Pantry

Thursday 14th of June 2018

Hoping the weather clears up soon for a BBQ so I can give these a try, they look and sound so delicious and packed full of flavour!

Brian Jones

Friday 15th of June 2018

We are in full season here, glorious weather apart from the last two days... Hopefully yours catches up soon!

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