How to make Best Grilled Chicken with lemon, garlic and herbs that turns out juicy and flavorful every single time. Pair this with a salad, grilled veggies, or meal prep it for the coming week.
- 1 1/2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts (4-5 small-ish breasts) or boneless, skinless chicken thighs (6-8 pieces- see notes.)
Grilled Chicken Marinade:
- 2 tablespoons fresh oregano, rosemary, thyme, or sage, finely chopped (or use a combo)
- zest from one medium lemon (2 tablespoons) and save the lemon for grilling/ juicing.
- 1 tablespoon granulated garlic, or 4 garlic cloves, finely minced
- 1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cracked pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon chili flakes- optional (Aleppo or Urfa Biber are good here)
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- Pound thickest part of the chicken breast into uniform thickness aiming for 3/4 inch thick and if very large, cut into uniform sizes roughly 5-6 ounces each.
- Make the marinade: Mix marinade ingredients together in a small bowl. Set aside 2 tablespoons (for garnish). Place chicken and marinade in a bowl, baking dish or large zip lock bag and massage to coat all sides well. Marinate for 30 minutes, a few hours, overnight or even a few days.
- Grill: Preheat grill to medium-high. (See notes for chicken thighs.) Lift chicken breasts out of the bowl, letting most of the oil drip off -before carefully placing it on the grill. Cut the zested lemons in half, placing open sides down on the grill too. Feel free to add any veggies to the grill- here we added halved tomatoes. Close the grill lid and cook for 5-6 minutes (or until deep golden grill marks appear) before flipping. Cook the other side, 5-7 minutes, and lower heat or move to a cooler spot until the thickest part of the breast registers at 160F and meat is no longer pink, and the meat looks opaque. Let it rest 5-10 minutes before serving.
- Serve: Place the grilled chicken on a serving platter, squeeze generously with the grilled lemon, and tuck in fresh herbs for garnish. Spoon the reserved 2 tablespoons marinade over the chicken, and serve! (NOTE: DO not use the “used marinade” that the raw chicken was in for this!).
THIGHS: If using chicken thighs, follow the same directions up until grilling. Have a spray bottle filled with water handy for flare-ups. Using tongs, let marinate drip off each piece, before placing on the grill. If grill flares, lightly spray the flame out (don’t spray the chicken). Cut the zested lemons in half, placing open sides down on the grill too. Feel free to add any veggies to the grill- here we added halved tomatoes Grill each side until deep grill marks appear- 5-7 minutes, lower heat, then continue cooking low and slow until cooked all the way through to 170F. ( You can also finish thighs in a warm oven- they won’t dry out.)
Store: The grilled chicken can be refrigerated for up to 4 days for midweek meals!
If making a big batch of marinated chicken, feel free to use a blender for the marinade ingredients.
The raw chicken breast can also be refrigerated in the marinade for up to 3 days or frozen in the marinade if doing meal prep.
Do not use “skin-on” chicken here- the oil from the marinade will cause it to burn.
- Serving Size: 1 chicken breast
- Calories: 242
- Sugar: 0.1 g
- Sodium: 372 mg
- Fat: 12 g
- Saturated Fat: 2 g
- Carbohydrates: 1.6 g
- Fiber: 0.3 g
- Protein: 30.9 g
- Cholesterol: 99.3 mg
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