Barbecue Grilled Chicken Tips & Tricks
- Please trust me and try the bone-in and skin on chicken. You are going to consider boneless. skinless chicken breast to be dry shoe leather compared to this.
- How long can I marinate the chicken?According to the USDA, chicken can be marinated for up to 2 days safely.
- Can I use skinless, boneless chicken breasts? Yes, you can and it will still be delicious. I know that there are some of you that love skinless and boneless chicken better, so don’t let me stop you!
- Usually cooking chicken on the top rack of your grill to prevent flare-ups is a good idea, but we have a double grate system, so we turn on the OPPOSITE SIDE of the BBQ for heat. This helps to prevent burning!
Fast & Easy Grilled Chicken Marinade
This was thrown together because I didn’t quite have enough BBQ sauce to cover 4 chicken breasts and the subsequent basting while barbecuing. I emptied my bottle of basic chicken & ribs BBQ sauce and proceeded to make a marinade with the scant amount that I had left. This is actually far nicer than using just a BBQ sauce and to be honest, BBQ sauce has been my least favourite thing to use on meat when grilling it. Until now, that is. By turning some ready-made sauce into a marinade with some other ingredients it’s literally the best of both worlds. You thin out what I consider to be too much flavour and thickness with bottled BBQ sauces and instead reap the benefits of the flavour while turning it into something you can marinate your chicken in for the day.
Another tip? in the marinade like shown in the photo below to really get the flavour into the meat and skin.
What Is The Best Chicken To Use With This Marinade
- Boneless skinless chicken breasts are my first choice when I make this recipe. I find that the marinade adds tons of tangy flavor while keeping the chicken moist and tender. I also like the fact that chicken breasts are a nutritious, lean source of protein that my whole family enjoys.
- Boneless skinless chicken thighs will work well with this marinade and theyre also an economical alternative to chicken breasts. With a slightly higher fat content than chicken breasts, chicken thighs are extra-flavorful and juicy by nature.
- Bone-in skinless chicken breasts are another delicious pairing for this marinade! To grill bone-in chicken breast, the total grilling time will need to be increased on either side please use a meat thermometer to ensure your chicken breasts are cooked through before consuming!
- This marinade can also be used with chicken wings, drumsticks, and skin-on chicken breasts and thighs.
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How To Cook Frozen Marinated Chicken
We get this question all. the. time. Unfortunately, we dont ever recommend cooking chicken from a frozen state unless you use an Instant Pot. Follow that recipe HERE.
For the best results and to avoid any kind of food-borne illness, let your marinated chicken completely thaw before following of the above cook methods.
And now, please enjoy 6 of our go-to chicken breast marinade recipes! Because I know youre curious, my personal favorite is the teriyaki
Best Grilled Chicken Breast Recipe
Why spend a fortune at a restaurant when you can make the best grilled chicken recipe at home? At least youll know whats going into these grilled chicken breasts. Its the best chicken marinade that gives them such a spectacular flavor that this will be the only way you grill chicken from here on out!
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How To Prepare And Preheat Your Grill
While your chicken is marinating and before youre ready to grill it, its important to get your grill ready.
How Long To Marinate Chicken
For dry rub marinades, 30 minutes to 2 hours should be plenty to allow the flavors to penetrate enough of the chicken to add flavor.
For wet marinades, we know that it can be tempting to let them swim for a bitif a little soaking is good for tender, tasty meat, more must be better, right? This is one situation in which you actually can overdo it allowing the meat to boneless chicken to marinate for more than 2 hours or bone-in chicken to marinate for more than 12 hours will leave you with mushy meat.
As a general rule of thumb, follow these timelines as you perfect your skills at how to marinate chicken:
- Boneless chicken: 30 minutes to 2 hours
- Bone-in chicken breasts, drumsticks, wings, or thighs: 1 to 12 hours
Food should be cooked immediately after marinating. Marinating does not extend the shelf life of food, which includes the day of purchase and thawing time. If you’re searching for how to marinate chicken for another day, try one of our foolproof freezer chicken recipes.
Test Kitchen Tip: If you forgot to marinate before you start preparing your chicken dinner, it’s not too late! Consider a “reverse marinade.” After cooking your chicken thighs or breasts as you normally wouldgrilling, roasting, searing, etc.soak them in a chicken marinade for about 5 minutes right after the meat has come to temp.
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How Long Should You Marinate Chicken
I recommend marinating chicken for at least an hour and no more than 8 hours. Most marinades include an acidic ingredient like the lemon juice in this Grilled Chicken Marinade. Whether it is citrus juice, vinegar, or yogurt, these acidic ingredients work wonders to break down the fibers and help tenderize marinated chicken, but youll end up with a mushy, undesirable texture if it marinates too long.
How To Make Ahead
- whisk the marinade together in an airtight container up to 5 days ahead of time and store in the refrigerator WITHOUT the chicken.
- Chicken: cooked grilled chicken makes fantastic meal prep or leftovers if not initially overcooked. If you are making the chicken specifically to reheat later then consider slightly under-cooking it because it will cook a little more when reheated.
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Creating The Perfect Marinade:
Creating a marinade for your chicken is the key to adding so much flavor and helps keep your chicken juicy. To create a good chicken marinade it will need the following key ingredients. A fat, salt, sweetness, and an ingredient to make it come alive.
Here are some helpful tips:
- Adding a Fat Option Olive oil is our choice of fat to add to the marinade. The buttery flavoring really pulls in all the seasoning that is added to it.
- Salt Option Plain salt is an easy addition to your marinade. Soy sauce is another one that we like using. It is slightly sweet but full of flavor.
- Add Sweetness A good addition to any marinade is brown sugar. We love how it balances out the ingredients plus gives the chicken a caramelized texture. Another option to use is honey.
- Add Brightness We love using lemon juice to really make the marinade come alive. You can also use Dijon Mustard. Adding in the seasoning really pulls the ingredients together to give it the best flavor.
Grilled Chicken Breast Ingredients
- Boneless, skinless chicken breasts Our main ingredient!
- Minced garlic Press it yourself and it tastes better than jarred.
- Dijon mustard Adds a zing to your chicken breast marinade.
- Worcestershire sauce Gives your chicken breast marinade more depth and more of a smoky quality.
- Italian seasoning The perfect grilled chicken seasoning that brings all the flavor in your grilled chicken marinade.
- Apple cider vinegar Added to your grilled chicken marinade to make the chicken tender.
- Lemon juice For an umami taste in the best grilled chicken marinade.
- Olive oil to help it grill.
- Parsley You can use dried or chop some up fresh.
- Salt and pepper Helps round out your marinade.
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Barbecue Grilled Chicken Marinade
Need a fast and easy Barbecue Grilled Chicken Marinade that uses ingredients that you have in your cupboard? Look no further, this is the chicken marinade for you! It uses the convenience of bottled BBQ sauce that is then amped up with simple ingredients that you already have at home to make one delicious dinner! This is for those of you that love barbecue sauce chicken but are looking to spice it up!
My Back Pocket Chicken Marinade
This is the chicken marinade I make the most often because its made with pantry standbys. It tenderises, adds savoury flavour with a touch of sweet, and its quick to make. Its my emergency marinade!
Ingredients: brown sugar, olive oil, soy sauce*, lemon, Worcestershire, garlic, oregano, pepper* The secret ingredient, acts as brine and adds flavour but does not make this taste Asiany at all!
Ideal for: Brilliant for chicken breast, also great for any cut of chicken.
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How To Freeze Marinated Chicken
Freezing marinated chicken is one of our secret meal-prep tips! Simply place your chicken in a large, gallon-size bag and then add the marinade. Remove as much air as possible and then seal the bag shut. Store in the freezer for up to 3 months.
PS: there is no need to let your chicken marinate for the full 24 hours before freezing. It will marinate as it freezes and as it thaws!
Rosewood Porcelain Grid Grill Brush Outset
Place the chicken breast onto the grill in a spot with no direct heat. If your heat source is only on one side be sure to place the thicker side of the breast toward the heat. You can also lower the heat and place it onto an upper rack if you dont have multiple burners.
Grill marinated chicken breast for 5 to 6 minutes and then rotate it 90 degrees on the grate. After another 5 to 6 minutes turn it over. Repeat the 5 to 6 minute rotation that we did on the first side. Check the temperature of the chicken at this point. Depending on the size you should be around 100 to 120 degrees.
At this point any left over marinade should have dried off of the surface of the chicken. We can now move it over the direct heat for finishing. Depending on your temperature reading this should take another 5 to 10 minutes.
This is where the marinade we set aside comes into play. With a basting brush apply a light coating of the remaining marinade. Wait a few minutes and brush on another layer. The first layer will absorb into the meat and the second should give you a nice finishing coat.
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Can I Freeze Chicken In This Marinade
Yes! It works perfectly to freeze chicken in this marinade. Here are the steps.
Package. Place chicken into freezer-safe container and pour over the marinade. Make sure that all of the chicken is well coated. Remove as much air as possible as you seal the container. Label the container with the contents and date.
Freeze. Arrange in the freezer so that the container is as flat as possible. Freeze for up to 3 months.
Thaw. Remove from the freezer and thaw in the refrigerator overnight. After its thawed, then remove the chicken from the marinade and discard the marinade. Finally, cook the chicken according to your favorite chicken recipe.
How To Make Grilled Chicken Marinade
This grilled chicken marinade is easy to whip up! Heres how:
- Pound chicken to an even thickness. Place chicken breasts in-between two pieces of plastic wrap or I like to place my chicken in a large freezer size bag. Pound the chicken to an even thickness using the flat side of a meat mallet, rolling pin or side of a can.
- Make marinade. Whisk the olive oil, soy sauce, balsamic vinegar, brown sugar, lemon juice, Dijon mustard and seasonings together in a large plastic bag. Add chicken, push out excess air and turn to coat.
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How To Make Marinated Grilled Chicken
The recipe card below lists detailed instructions for making this recipe, but here are the basic steps for now:
- We like to combine all the marinade ingredients in a ziplock bag. The kids love squishing all the ingredients together.
- Once the ingredients are well mixed, add the chicken in the bag and let it marinate.
Looking To Grill Other Cuts Of Chicken
Ive got your back! Heres how to grill chicken drumsticks and thighs:
For chicken drumsticks:
- To grill: preheat your grill to medium high and lightly oil the grate. Place the chicken on the grill and cook for 8 minutes, then flip, brush with the reserved marinade, and grill for an additional 8 minutes. Turn the chicken over one last time, brush again with the remaining marinade, and cook for 5 more minutes, or until no pink remains in the center of the chicken.
- To bake: preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Place a oven-safe rack on a large baking sheet and grease with nonstick cooking spray so that the chicken doesnt stick to the pan. Place the drumsticks on the pan with the thicker part of the drumstick to the outside. Bake for 40-50 minutes or until cooked through.
For boneless skinless chicken thighs:
- To grill: preheat your grill to medium high and lightly oil the grates. Cook your chicken thighs for 6-8 minutes per side, flipping once. When the internal temp reaches 165 degrees F your chicken is done.
- To bake: preheat your oven to 350 degrees F and bake your chicken thighs for about 25-30 minutes or until the internal temp reaches 165.
For skin-on chicken thighs:
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Quick Tips For Grilling Chicken Breasts:
How long do I grill chicken breast?
Grill chicken breasts for around 9 to 10 minutes total, flipping halfway through.
How long do you grill chicken on each side?
Grill chicken breasts around 5 minutes on each side.
What’s the perfect grilled chicken temp?
Internal temperature of chicken breasts should be 165°F.
How hot should your grill be for chicken?
Heat your grill to between 425 and 450°F for chicken breasts.
How To Marinate Grilled Chicken
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When youre grilling chicken, the key to creating a delicious dish is using a good marinade. A marinade helps to tenderize the meat and gives it lots of flavors. In this blog post, well show you how to make a simple marinade for grilled chicken. Well also provide some tips on how to cook the chicken perfectly every time. So, whether youre a beginner or an experienced grill master, read on for some helpful advice!
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What Is A Marinade
A marinade is used to soak any type of meat before cooking. Marinades usually includes spices and oils. The main reason you marinade your meats is to give it more flavor and to make is extra juicy.
To get the most out of your marinade it is good to marinade your meat for at least 15 minutes. The majority of the time we like to marinade the meat overnight.
Should You Marinate Chicken Breasts Before Grilling Them
What I actually like to do the most is to add garlic powder to the brine mixture. You can also add black pepper and other seasonings too. In that way, youre adding flavor like a marinade would while brining.
The only thing to note is that you dont want to leave the chicken in the brine anywhere near as long as you would in a marinade. The most youd want to leave them in there for is 3 hours or 5 hours . Then take them out of the brine and refrigerate them dry until youre ready to cook them.
If you would prefer to not brine your chicken breasts, you can do a marinade instead.
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Why Are Grilled Chicken Breasts Usually Dry
You probably know that chicken breasts are very lean. Since theres not much fat in them, its hard to keep them juicy on the grill. But, its possible! Read on to find out how to make perfect grilled chicken breasts that are juicy, tender, and full of flavor every single time.
Another reason that chicken breasts can be dry is due to the fact that they are not usually an even thickness. This means that the thinnest part tends to dry out before the thickest part is cooked all the way through. There is only one way to fix this and it involves a tiny bit of work, but not hard work. Dont worry!