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Chicken Drumsticks with Cilantro Pesto

A homemade Cilantro Pesto gives grilled Chicken Drumticks party-time flavor, while a serrano chile adds a subtle kick to this zesty sauce.

Cooking Light JULY 2014

  • Yield: Serves 4 (serving size: 2 drumsticks and about 2 tablespoons pesto)


  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 8 skinless chicken drumsticks
  • Cooking spray
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons crumbled Cotija cheese
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 4 teaspoons lime juice
  • 4 teaspoons olive oil
  • 3/8 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 serrano chile, seeded
  • 1/2 bunch cilantro (including stems)


1. Preheat grill to high heat. Combine 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, 1/8 ­teaspoon kosher salt, and ground red pepper; sprinkle over chicken drumsticks. Place drumsticks on grill rack coated with cooking spray. Cover and grill 3 minutes or until charred; reduce heat to ­medium. Grill 18 minutes or until a thermometer inserted into the thickest part registers 160°, turning occasionally.

2. Combine cheese, water, lime juice, olive oil, cumin, 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt, 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, garlic cloves, serrano chile, and cilantro in a blender. Process until sauce is smooth. Serve sauce on the side for dipping.

Nutritional Information

Amount per serving
  • Calories: 353
  • Fat: 16.6g
  • Saturated fat: 4g
  • Sodium: 448mg

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Chicken Drumsticks with Cilantro Pesto recipe