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This Peruvian-Style Roast Chicken (pollo a la brasa) is juicy, super flavourful, a little spicy and cooked to perfection. Served with an equally delicious and easy-to-make Ají Verde (green sauce) and fresh garden salad, it’s the ultimate chicken dinner. It also happens to be Whole30 and Paleo-friendly.

Peruvian-Style Roast Chicken with Ají Verde Green Sauce Primal Gourmet Whole30

Ingredients You Need For the Peruvian-Style Roast Chicken

  • Chicken: I used chicken quarters for this recipe because I prefer dark meat when given the choice. You can substitute a whole chicken that has been spatchcocked, chicken wings, or any chicken parts you like. The marinade recipe is enough for around 3 pounds of chicken.
  • Aji Amarillo Paste: You can find this Peruvian yellow chile pepper paste in the international aisle of many major grocery stores or purchase it online.
  • Garlic: As always, measure this ingredient with your heart and don’t let anyone tell you there’s such a thing as too much.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar: For a little extra twang and to help tenderize the chicken.
  • Extra-Virgin Olive Oil: Olive oil will add flavour and help stretch the marinade so it more evenly coats the chicken. It will also introduce a bit of fat so that the chicken browns even more while roasting.
  • Coconut Aminos: To keep this recipe gluten-free, Paleo and Whole30-compliant, I add coconut aminos to the marinade instead of the more commonly used soy sauce. Coconut aminos are naturally gluten-free and contain around 1/3 the amount of sodium as soy sauce, so be sure to taste the marinade and adjust with kosher salt as desired. Coconut aminos are also naturally sweet, which helps balance some of the salty and spicy flavours in the marinade and help the skin to brown as it cooks.
  • Freshly-Squeezed Lime Juice: For best flavour, use the fresh stuff.
  • Spices: A simple combination of cumin, oregano and paprika help add some flavour to this Peruvian-inspired roast chicken.
Pollo a la brasa Peruvian Chicken Marinade
Peruvian-Style Roast Chicken Marinade with Aji Amarillo

What You Need for the Ají Verde (Green Sauce)

  • Mayonnaise: Use an avocado oil mayonnaise to keep this recipe Paleo and Whole30 compliant.
  • Lime Zest and Juice: Use both the zest and juice of fresh lime for the most amount of flavour.
  • Garlic: My heart told me to go with around 3 cloves here.
  • Green Onion: This will help give the green sauce a bit more body and flavour. You can also use fresh chives.
  • Jalapeño: This recipe calls for 1 whole jalapeño, with the seeds. For less spice, you can remove the seeds from the jalapeño. Or, to make it spicier, simply add more jalapeño, as desired.
  • Fresh Cilantro: A big handful of fresh cilantro will give the sauce lots of flavour and a beautifully vibrant green colour.
  • Salt and Pepper: Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Ají Verde Peruvian-style Green Sauce

What Is Ají Amarillo?

Known for its vibrant orange or yellow colour, ají amarillo is a type of chile pepper that is commonly used in Peruvian cuisine, particularly in sauces and marinades. It has a fruity flavour and is moderately spicy.

For this recipe, you’ll need ají amarillo paste, which has a slightly sour and fermented flavour. It will completely transform the marinade and give the Peruvian-style roast chicken and incredible taste.

Look for an ají amarillo paste that is free of preservatives, colourings or artificial ingredients, such as this one from Belmont.

Peruvian-Style Roast Chicken Marinade with Aji Amarillo

Serving Suggestions

This Peruvian-style roast chicken can be served with a wide variety of side dishes. We enjoyed it with a very simple and fresh garden salad. Other options include some roasted sweet potatoes, fried plantains, sautéed vegetables, or steamed rice. It goes with just about anything your heart desires.

Peruvian-Style Roast Chicken with Ají Verde Green Sauce Primal Gourmet Whole30

How to Cook the Chicken

For the absolute best results, try cooking this Peruvian-style roast chicken on your Traeger Grill. It will add an irresistible wood-fired flavour and smokiness that you just can’t beat. Keep the temperature around 425F and cook the chicken on the lowest grill grates, skin side-up at first. Once the thickest part of the chicken reaches around 150F, flip it over and cook the skin side until it gets a light char and the thickest part of the meat registers at least 165F. Note: you can cook the dark meat of the chicken up to 180F without it drying out.

If you don’t have a Traeger grill, you can roast your chicken in the oven, as the recipe calls for. Or, grill the chicken on your charcoal or gas grill using indirect heat.

TOP TIP: If you plan on roasting the chicken in the oven, be sure to line a sheet pan with foil and set a wire rack in the middle. This will help make clean up much easier and will allow hot air to flow under the chicken, resulting in a more evenly cooked bird. The wire rack also helps elevate the chicken and keep it away from all of the marinade juices that will inevitably burn and scorch on the sheet pan as they render.

Peruvian-Style Roast Chicken Primal Gourmet Whole30
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4.80 from 10 votes

Peruvian-Style Roast Chicken

This Peruvian-Style Roast Chicken (pollo a la brasa) is juicy, super flavourful, a little spicy and cooked to perfection. Served with an equally delicious and easy-to-make Ají Verde (green sauce) and fresh garden salad, it's the ultimate chicken dinner.
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings: 4 people


For the Ají Verde (Green Sauce):

  • ¾ cup avocado oil mayonnaise
  • Zest and juice 1 lime
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 green onions
  • 1 whole jalapeño
  • ½ cup fresh cilantro
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly-cracked black pepper

For the Roast Chicken:

  • 2 tablespoons ají amarillo paste
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons coconut aminos
  • Juice of ½ lime
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely grated
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • ½ teaspoon dry oregano
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly-cracked black pepper
  • 3 to 4 chicken quarters, around 3 pounds total, substitute 1 whole chicken, preferably spatchcocked

For the Garden Salad:

  • ½ head of iceberg lettuce, thinly shredded
  • 1 to mato, thinly sliced
  • ½ English cucumber, thinly sliced
  • ¼ red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 avocado, thinly sliced
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • Red wine vinegar
  • Kosher salt and freshly-cracked black pepper


For the Ají Verde (Green Sauce):

  • In a blender, combine the mayonnaise, lime zest, lime juice, garlic, green onions, jalapeño, cilantro, salt and pepper. Blender over high speed until completely smooth. Taste for seasoning and adjust with salt and lime juice, as desired. If you would like it spicier, add more jalapeño. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. Leftovers can be refrigerated up to 5 days.

For the Roast Chicken:

  • In a large bowl, combine the ají amarillo paste, olive oil, vinegar, coconut aminos, lime juice, garlic, cumin, oregano, paprika, salt and pepper and stir to combine. Add the chicken and toss everything to coat. Cover and refrigerate 4 hours to overnight.
  • Preheat oven to 425F. Line a sheet pan with foil for easy clean up and set a wire rack in the middle.
  • Remove the chicken from the marinade and shake off any excess. Place the chicken on the wire rack, skin-side up, and transfer to the oven. Roast until the chicken is golden brown and the thickest part of the meat registers 165F, around 45 minutes. Switch the oven to broil and cook, rotating the sheet pan as needed, until the skin is lightly charred and slightly crispy, around 3 minutes.
  • Remove the chicken from the oven and let it rest 5 minutes before serving with the Ají Verde sauce and Garden Salad.

For the Garden Salad:

  • On a platter or in a bowl, layer the lettuce, tomato, cucumber, onion and avocado. Before serving, drizzle with olive oil and red wine vinegar and season to taste with salt and pepper.


Tried this recipe? Leave a comment below!

About the Author

Hi, i’m Ronny! In 2013, after a lifetime of struggling with my weight and body issues, I rehabilitated my relationship with food, lost over 40 pounds and completely changed my life.

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Recipe Rating


  1. Absolutely fabulous!!! Unfortunately, we were out of Aji Amarillo, and couldn’t find it around where we now live. But that didn’t stop me, I used a jalapeño because it was what I had. The aroma of the chicken while in the oven, was so good, I could hardly wait. Next time, I will definitely make it with aji amarillo.