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The Santa Fe Grilled Chicken Sandwich has the most amazing marinated chicken, spicy pepper jack cheese, and spicy curry mayo on a grilled bun. You’re going to love this barbecue favorite!

overhead view of 2 sante fe grilled chicken sandwiches with fresh garlic bulbs nearby

We love the Sante Fe Grilled Chicken Sandwich. It brings back so many childhood memories! As far as fast food goes, it is a great chicken sandwich. We try to avoid the whole fast food thing though. Making food at home gives us complete control over the ingredients and the quality without sacrificing flavor. 

This sandwich is totally easy to make at home. It’s full of flavors and has lots of different spicing combinations in it. You’ve got basically a teriyaki chicken combined with a spicy curry mayo, with the southwest flavors of the green chili and pepper jack cheese. It totally works! It’s a great summer grilling alternative to the plain old burger. Give it a try at your next barbecue!

  • Can I make a Sante Fe Grilled Chicken Sandwich on the stovetop?

    We love to grill, but if you don’t have a grill you can always make this on the stovetop. Make sure to heat a small pat of butter or a teaspoon of oil in a large skillet over medium high heat and then add your chicken!
  • Mayo Spread Substitutes:

    Don’t love curry? You’re not alone. You can always stick to your favorite toppings, including regular mayonnaise.
  • Spice Control:

    Between the mayo spread and chicken marinade, this sandwich has a little bit of heat. If you would like a more mild spice level, reduce or omit the red pepper flakes and cayenne pepper.

If you like this recipe, you may be interested in these other delicious grilled recipes:

a sante fe grilled chicken sandwich cut in half to show the cut chicken breast inside
Santa Fe Grilled Chicken Sandwich (Carl's Jr. Copycat)

2 grilled chicken sandwiches on a wooden serving board, one intact and the other cut in half

Chicken Marinade

  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 1/3 cup rice vinegar
  • 1/3 cup soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon crushed garlic

Mayo Spread

  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Chicken Sandwiches

  • 4 hamburger buns
  • 4 slices pepper jack cheese
  • 4 whole green chile peppers from can, patted dry
  • Lettuce
  • Pound out each of the chicken breasts so that they are a fairly even thickness throughout. Marinate the chicken by combining the rice vinegar, soy sauce, sesame oil, brown sugar, red pepper flakes, ground ginger, and crushed garlic in a resealable plastic bag with the chicken breasts. Marinade for 30 minutes to an hour.
  • Preheat a gas grill to medium-high heat.
  • Make the sauce by combining the mayo, paprika, cayenne, curry powder, and salt in a bowl and mixing it up.
  • Grill the chicken for about 5-8 minutes each side. Actual time will depend on the thickness of your meat. The chicken is done when it is firm to the touch. Place the pepper jack slices on each piece of chicken during the last minute or so of cooking so it can melt.
  • Grill the buns face-side down for just a minute or two so that they are toasted. Spread the mayo mixture on the face of each bun. Top with cheese smothered chicken, green chili, and lettuce.
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