Brown Sugar Chicken

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NOW (January 25, 2019) – This Brown Sugar Chicken is more popularly known around our house as “Angel Chicken” ever since I first made it and Grace infamously declared that it tasted like “angels flying around in my mouth.”

Although this original recipe called for the chicken to be baked, we’ve been making it in our Crock-Pot Multi-Cooker (similar to an InstantPot) on the pressure cook setting with much success. So, now it goes from marinade to the table in 15 minutes!

THEN (July 27, 2011) – I always enjoy the combination of sweet and savory. I know it’s not a winner with everyone, but fortunately everyone else in my family agrees. So I had this idea to make a coating for chicken that was heavy on brown sugar. I wasn’t sure what direction to take it though so I did a little research.

I found several different recipes and most of them had an Asian spin to them. That wasn’t really what I was going for, so I improvised and combined and came up with something that turned out fantastic! I veered a bit from my original plan and opted for a marinade instead of a coating. I think that was the right call because the chicken ended up being so tender and full of flavor.

This dish also got me what might possibly be the best compliment I’ve ever gotten on my cooking when our 4 year declared “this tastes like angels flying around in my mouth.” With praise like that, I think it’s safe to say you can ignore the strange sounding ingredients and just trust me that this will be a hit!

Brown Sugar Chicken

Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time20 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chicken


  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tsp dijon mustard
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, finely minted
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 – 1 cup  lemon-lime soda (ie. Sprite, 7Up, etc.)
  • 1 1/2 – 2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts


  • Combine brown sugar, mustard and seasonings in a bowl and mix well. Stir in soda just until mixture is the consistency of a thick dressing.
  • Place chicken in a dish or plastic ziploc bag and pour marinade on top. Let chicken sit in marinade at least 30 minutes. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes, until fully cooked. Or, grill the chicken until fully cooked.
  • If desired, pour the remaining marinade into a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until reduced by half, about 10 minutes. Spoon over cooked chicken.