Grilled Lemon Chicken
If you’re looking for an easy way to make your chicken dinners more exciting, add this Grilled Lemon Chicken to the menu on your next grill night. Just don’t be surprised when your guests ask for seconds. Made of fresh lemon juice and extra virgin olive oil, the marinade keeps the chicken juicy and tender while also creating lots of flavor.
In This Article
What You’ll Love About Grilled Lemon Chicken
- It’s super juicy and tender.
- You probably already have the simple ingredients on hand.
- The chicken only needs to soak for 30 minutes, making prep time fast.
- The marinade packs a punch of sweet and savory flavor in each bite.
- Leftovers store well and are versatile so you’ll never get bored.
- You can make it fancy with sophisticated sides…we won’t spill the beans about how easy it actually is.
Fresh Ingredients You’ll Need for Grilled Lemon Chicken
The ingredient list is short and includes cooking essentials you may already have in your kitchen. Here’s what you’ll need:
- Chicken Breast. We prefer skinless, boneless breasts as they are easiest to prepare and eat, but feel free to experiment with other cuts as well.
- There’s no better way to lighten up a recipe than with a splash of lemon juice, unless of course you add lemon zest, too…and we do!
- High quality extra virgin olive oil is crucial to form the base of the marinade, binding the ingredients together.
- A drop of honey makes everything better and balances out the tang of the coarse mustard.
- Don’t forget your herbs and spices! This chicken wouldn’t be the same without a dash of salt, pepper, and a sprinkle of basil or parsley.
Grilled Lemon Chicken Common Questions
Fully submerge the chicken in the marinade for at least 30 minutes or up to 1 hour. Any longer and the acid in the lemon juice will begin to denature (cook) the chicken, causing it to break down before it is placed on the grill.
To ensure your chicken is fully cooked, you’ll want to use a meat thermometer to make sure it reaches an internal temperature of 165° Fahrenheit. Be careful not to overcook! Typically, it will only take about 4 minutes on each side. You’ll know it’s done when grill marks are visible, and the center is no longer pink.
Leftovers will keep well in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Yes, we love to pair this lemon marinade with other protein sources such as swordfish, mahi mahi, and tilapia. It also works well with shrimp, and don’t forget to try it with veggies. Use it to coat broccoli or cauliflower, and add them to the grill, too. You won’t believe how delicious they taste.
More to Grill and Enjoy
- Grilled Teriyaki Chicken – this prep ahead recipe is so easy to make it’s basically magic.
- Grilled Chicken with Garlic Lime Marinade – bursting with big flavors, we can’t get enough of this family-friendly chicken.
- General Tso’s BBQ Grilled Chicken – super easy, this recipe is a delightful way to change up your usual BBQ.
- Hawaiian BBQ Grilled Chicken Recipe – one bite and you’ll be transported to a tropical island; it doesn’t get better than this.
Video: watch us Make This Recipe
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Grilled Lemon Chicken
- 4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts, pounded to even thickness and towel dried
- ⅓ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 4 large cloves garlic, minced
- 1 heaping TB pure honey
- 1 heaping TB stone ground/coarse mustard, with whole seeds
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
- zest of 1 large lemon
- ½ cup freshly chopped basil or parsley for garnish
- Make the marinade: In a bowl, combine lemon juice, oil, garlic, honey, mustard, salt, and pepper. Whisk to combine well. Reserve about 1/4 cup for later basting. Using a fork, pierce towel-dried chicken all over. Place chicken in the bowl of marinade and toss to combine well. Let sit in marinade 30 min to 1 hour.
- Grill: While chicken is marinading, grease and heat grill on high. Place chicken on the grill (discard used marinade.) Cook and baste with reserved 1/4 cup of marinade, about 4 min per side, depending on the thickness of chicken. Don’t over cook; remove from heat as soon as nice grill marks are achieved and center is no longer pink.
- Garnish and Serve: Sprinkle with lemon zest and basil or parsley and serve immediately.