The First Step To Juicy Chicken Breasts: Pound Them A Bit
The first thing you need to do to get juicy chicken is to flatten the chicken breasts out to an even thickness. If the chicken breast has a consistent thickness, it will cook more evenly. Note that this is a good idea no matter how youre cooking your chicken breasts. Ive recently done a series of little experiments and have found that this step makes a big difference when baking chicken breasts too.
Flattening the chicken breasts a little bit also means that they wont be on the heat for as long. When chicken breasts are their full thickness, it can take awhile for the heat to penetrate right to the middle. That means that by the time the inside of the chicken is fully-cooked, the outside has dried out. If your chicken breast is thinner because you flattened it a bit, then the outside doesnt dry out as badly by the time the inside is cooked.
Another perk of flattening the chicken breasts is that any brine or marinade you use will be able to penetrate the chicken more quickly. So putting in the bit of time to get the chicken even will actually result in less time needed overall.
Ingredients For Grilled Barbecue Chicken
Chicken breasts: Thick and juicy, boneless skinless chicken breasts are ideal for this recipe because they become super tender and enjoyable. You will need four chicken breasts. Olive oil: High-quality olive oil is used for the marinade and gives the chicken its juicy rich flavors. Salt and pepper: A simple blend of sea salt and pepper is all you need for this BBQ chicken breast recipe. BBQ sauce: Use your favorite store-bought barbecue sauce or make it yourself. You can use any kind of flavorful BBQ sauce.
What To Serve With Chicken Barbecue
No matter how delicious your barbecued chicken breasts are, they can not be served alone. Here I have suggested some side dishes, which are known to be compatible with chicken barbecue:
A perfect compliment for a well-cooked chicken breast barbecue can be coleslaw. The vegan-creamy side dish makes the table look complete when served with any barbecue.
Another good companion of chicken barbecue is cornbread. You can make some sweet homemade cornbread easily and quickly to put beside your barbecue.
Another wonderful partner for barbecued chicken could be mashed potatoes. It will definitely make the barbecue more delicious.
Baked beans are quite traditional to be with barbecued chicken. The graveness of baked beans is craved by many on any occasion.
Recommended Reading: What Is The Cheapest Pellet Grill
How To Flatten Thick Chicken Breasts
If your chicken breasts are different in thickness or over ¾ inches thick, they need to be flattened. Without flattening, the surface of the breast will be overcooked and dry before the center reaches a safe temperature.
To flatten, protect yourself and the surrounding area from splatter by placing the breast in plastic wrap or one-gallon freezer bags. Then use a meat mallet or the bottom of a heavy pan on a large cutting board.
Why This Chicken Breast Recipe Is Great
- A handful of simple ingredients. You only need a few ingredients and you likely have them on hand already.
- Fast and easy. You can have dinner on the table in 30 minutes with this recipe. Its so simple to make, perfect for busy days.
- Delicious! Baked BBQ Chicken Breast is juicy, tender, and covered in the most flavorful sticky BBQ sauce.
Read Also: What Is The Best Rated Gas Grill
How Do Restaurants Get Their Chicken Breasts So Tender
The tenderness of chicken breasts comes from a variety of things, including how the bird is raised and the methods used to cook it. In general, chickens are raised in more natural ways than factory-farmed animals, which means they have a better chance of being gentle andLean when cooked. Some restaurants use methods like grilling or broiling to ensure that their chicken breasts come out juicy and tender.
How To Grill Chicken Breast On A Gas Grill
- Coat both sides of chicken with olive oil and sprinkle with salt, pepper or desired seasonings. Let the chicken sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes.
- Preheat gas grill before cooking to medium-high heat, or 350-400° F.
- Lightly grease grill surface and add chicken. Close lid and cook 8 minutes, or until bottoms are browned with sear marks.
- Rotate chicken, close lid, reduce heat to medium, and cook 7-10 minutes more, or until internal temperature reaches 165° F.
- Remove chicken breast from the grill and let rest 5 minutes before serving.
Also Check: What Is The Best Ceramic Grill
Tips For Grilled Chicken Breast
Dont grill chicken cold: As with most meats, you want to bring close to room temperature before grilling or cooking. This allows more even cooking throughout. If you grill directly from the fridge, the outside will cook much faster and you risk chairing before the center reaches the correct temperature.
Allow chicken breast to sit about 30 minutes at room temperature before cooking. Not much longer or youll increase the risk of food contamination.
Pre-season: Generously coat both sides of chicken with light olive oil and sprinkle with salt, pepper, and desired seasonings. The olive oil helps to hold in moisture while cooking, increases those nice golden sear marks and helps seasonings stick better to the meat.
Preheat the grill: Preheat the gas grill to medium-high until the temp reaches 350-400° degrees F. The grill needs to be hot when you add chicken, allowing it to sear and cook evenly.
How to add chicken breasts to gas grill: Lightly grease cooking grates of the preheated gas grill with vegetable oil spray or paper towel application to prevent sticking. Immediately add chicken with at least 2-3 inches between pieces. Close lid and cook.
Reduce heat to medium midway: Rotate mid-way for even sear marks and cooking.
Grilled chicken breast safe temp: Cook chicken breast just to an internal temperature of 165° F with an instant-read thermometer. Watch carefully and do not overcook.
The Best Chicken For Grilling
For the juiciest, most flavorful grilled chicken, use bone-in, skin-on pieces. Place the chicken on a paper towel-lined tray and pat it dry. This removes excess moisture, which prevents the skin from getting crispy. Remember to wash your hands and all equipment after handling raw chicken.
Next, season both sides generously with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper and allow the chicken to come to room temperature for 15 minutes. This helps it cook evenly and gives the salt and pepper a chance to work their magic. Keep in mind that sweet sauces like glazes and barbecue sauce shouldnt be applied until the chicken is finished cooking. They will burn before the chicken is fully cooked.
You May Like: Clean Outside Of Stainless Steel Grill
Read Also: Country Style Pork Ribs Grilled
How To Cook Boneless Chicken Breast On The Grill
The best way to cook boneless chicken breasts on the grill is with a little heat and some love. Grill your chicken over medium-high heat until browned all over and cooked through, about 4 minutes per side. Serve immediately, topped with your favorite sauce or Thousand Island dressing.
How To Make Grilled Bbq Chicken Breast
I’ve included instructions for both a charcoal and a gas grill below, so pick your favorite method. An indoor grill pan on the stovetop will also work, but you can’t beat the smoky char from a classic outdoor grill!
Read Also: Cod On The Grill Recipe
How To Grill Bbq Chicken:
Grilling BBQ chicken is really simple, but doing it the right way requires a little bit of technique. This recipe utilizes a quick brine, a flavorful dry rub, & indirect grilling, a simple combination that yields perfectly tender, juicy, & flavorful BBQ chicken every time. Youll be making the absolute best BBQ chicken on the grill in no time!
Note: full Recipe Directions are provided in the Recipe Card, below.
#1 Start with an easy grilled BBQ chicken marinade.
Before you panic about the need to mix up a complicated marinade for your chicken, let me assure you were keeping things really minimal here. This grilled BBQ chicken marinade is actually a simple brine!
Because chicken is pretty lean, marinating or brining it before you barbecue it is key. A quick brine will help ensure your grilled barbecue chicken stays totally juicy & doesnt dry out on the grill.
2 brine options:
- Beer brine: Even if youre not a beer lover , soaking chicken in beer adds an incredibly rich, deep flavor to the chicken. Its my favorite grilled chicken trick. For best flavor, use a full-bodied, dry & hoppy beer, such as an IPA.
- Buttermilk brine: If beer isnt your thing , you can use buttermilk, which is totally classic & has the added benefit of tenderizing the chicken. If you dont have buttermilk on hand, you can DIY it by adding a splash of vinegar or lemon juice to regular ol milk.
#2 Layer on the best grilled BBQ chicken rub.
#3 Get grilling!
Grilling BBQ Chicken:
Here Are A Few Ways To Tell If Your Chicken Is Cooked:
The most important factor to moist grilled chicken is to not overcook. Grill chicken according to the heat and times in this recipe, and watch carefully.
- Internal temp: The internal temp should reach 165° F to be safe. Pro tip: You can cook chicken slightly less to 160° and let it rest 5-10 minutes under foil. It will continue to cook to a safe temp and be moister.
- Visual check: Cut into the center of the chicken breast with a knife. It should be white, with just the slightest hint of pink. If its pure white and looks stringy inside, its overcooked. Note: using this method while the chicken is still cooking or before resting will cause some liquids and moisture to drain out.
- Test for firmness: Remove chicken from the grill. Once cooled slightly, press in the center with finger. It should have a little bit of give but also not be squishy feeling. Note: this method takes practice is the least accurate.
Don’t Miss: How To Grill Fish On Charcoal Grill
How Do You Keep Chicken Moist On The Grill
Grilling chicken isnt as difficult as you may think. In fact, it can be quite easy to follow a few simple steps that will help make your chicken juicy and tender. First, coat your chicken in cooking spray or cooking oil and place it on the grill.
Once the chicken is Grill-Brated, cook it for about 5 minutes per side or until cooked through. Next, use a fork to mash the chicken up into small pieces so that its evenly coated with cooking juices and seasonings. Finally, place the chicken onto a baking sheet and bake for about 25 minutes or until cooked through.
An Easy Marinade For Grilled Chicken Breasts
For 4 chicken breasts I like to combine the following ingredients in a ziptop bag:
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1 tsp. dried thyme leaves
- 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
- 1/4 tsp. coarsely ground black pepper
You could use a mixture of lemon juice and white wine vinegar, or just cider vinegar instead of the lemon, if youd like. And you can use a different herb. This one calls for thyme, but dried oregano and dried rosemary are also really nice.
Combine those ingredients in a zip top bag. Then add the chicken to the bag and seal it. Refrigerate for 30-60 minutes or overnight. Remove chicken from the bag, discard the marinade. Grill the chicken according to the instructions below.
Okay, now that we have the prep for our chicken breasts done, its time to learn how to grill them!
You May Like: What Is The Best Gas Grill On The Market
How To Grill Chicken Breasts
The key to perfect boneless, skinless chicken breasts is a quick sear followed by indirect grilling. Learn how to grill juicy chicken breasts on a charcoal grill.
Let’s get grilling
For grilling chicken breasts, you need a two-zone, medium-hot fire. Fire up a full chimney of Kingsford® Charcoal, or light a pile of about 100 briquets. When the coals are ready, arrange them in a two-zone fire. Replace the top grate, and allow the grill to heat up with all vents fully open. Just before placing the chicken on the grate, dip a folded paper towel in cooking oil and oil the entire grate using long-handled tongs. This will prevent the skinless breasts from sticking to the grate.
Boneless skinless breasts dry out easily, so we highly recommend marinating or brining before cooking. For a basic brine, combine ¼ cup salt to four cups water, and soak the chicken breasts for 30 minutes to an hour in a gallon size plastic zipper bag. If you choose not to brine or marinate, simply season to your liking.
Place the chicken breasts on the hot side of the grate, directly above the coals. Sear the breasts for about three to four minutes per side, turning only once, until golden brown. If the grill flares up, temporarily move the chicken away from the coals. When the breasts are properly browned, move them to the warm, or indirect, side of the grate. Replace the lid and, if using a grill thermometer, bring the temperature up to 350°F.
- salt and pepper to taste
Best Grilled Chicken Breast
Grilled chicken breasts can be the epitome of boring. Too often theyre dried out or rubbery. But when soaked in a super-quick with balsamic, brown sugar, and dried thyme youre guaranteed deliciousness. Not to mention, grilling the breasts will lock in all those amazing flavors while providing some serious char.
How long can I keep the chicken in the marinade?
Wed recommend no longer than 24 hours! Technically you can keep raw chicken refrigerated for up to 2 days, but we dont recommend marinating that long.
How do I keep the chicken from sticking on the grill?
As long as you give each side enough time, it shouldnt! When your chicken gets those nice charred lines, it naturally releases from your grill grates. If you try to flip and the chicken feels stuck, try giving it another minute or two! Itll release naturally, when its ready.
What should the internal temperature of my chicken be?
According to the FDA, all chicken should be cooked to an internal temperature of 165°. We prefer our chicken breasts closer to 150° because were rule breakers. Jokes aside, the real reason we dont go all the way to 165° is because boneless skinless chicken breasts have basically no fat, so in order to maintain some juiciness we pull them a little early.
Can I adapt the marinade?
How hot should my grill be for chicken breasts?
What should I serve with this?
Made this recipe? Tell us how ya feel! Rate & comment below.
Freshly ground black pepper
Don’t Miss: Can You Pressure Wash Grill Grates
How To Grill Chicken Breast Without Drying It Out
As with any method of chicken breast preparation , a few simple but critical steps will ensure your grilled chicken breast turns out juicy, moist, and well-seasoned all the way through.
To grill chicken breast without drying it out, be sure to follow these essential tips.
- . Marinades tenderize meat by changing its protein structure which helps it stay juicier for longer. Even 15 minutes can make a major difference in results.
- Pound. Pounding the chicken to an even thickness helps it cook more evenly on the grill so that the ends dont dry out before the center cooks through.
- Poke. While not strictly required, I like to poke holes all over my chicken breast with a fork to help the marinade absorb more quickly.
- Temp It. No matter what other careful steps you take to keep your chicken from becoming dry, NOTHING saves you if you overcook it. For best results, remove the chicken when it reaches the 155 to 160-degree F mark.
- Rest. No matter what kind of meat you are grilling , allowing it to rest is mandatory. Resting allows the juices to reincorporate into the protein. If you cut it right away, those yummy juices will escape onto the plate.
The Best Bbq Chicken Calls For The Simplest Ingredients
The best thing about grilled BBQ chicken is the fact that youve likely got everything you need to make it on hand at any point in time. Absolutely necessary for any summer staple!
The cast of characters includes :
- chicken You can use whatever chicken parts you love most for this BBQ chicken recipe: breasts, drumsticks, wings, leg quarters, thighs it all works! Personally, I have a thing for chicken thighs I think theyre the tastiest, most flavorful & juicy part of the chicken.
- beer or buttermilk, used for a quick BBQ chicken marinade. Both are delicious in their own right. Beer lends an awesome funky flavor , while buttermilk tenderizes the chicken. Use whatever youve got on hand or whatever youre in the mood for.
- spices, like chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, mustard powder, onion powder, & smoked paprika, which, when combined with a little bit of brown sugar, create the easiest & most delicious dry rub for chicken. I buy all my spices & staples at ALDI. Theyre super high quality, fragrant & full-flavored, & totally affordable.
- BBQ sauce Use your fave! You can, of course, make your own BBQ sauce from scratch. With so many amazing bottled BBQ sauces out there, I always opt to just grab something from the store. The Burmans BBQ sauces at ALDI are my personal favorite. With a variety for each major BBQ region , its fun to pick & choose what youre in the mood for whenever you make grilled BBQ chicken. I always keep a bottle of each stocked in my pantry.
You May Like: How To Prep Charcoal Grill