Best Chicken Marinade for the grill
I just found this site yesterday while looking for an easy marinade for boneless, skinless chicken breasts (I am definately NOT a gourmet cook ) :/ Couldn't find anything that I had all of the indgredients for so I just used Zesty Italian, and decided to throw a big *gob* of seedless raspberry jam in the bag at the last moment.. (probably a big heaping tablespoon ?).. squashed it around to mix it and put it in the refrigerator.. due to some unexpected happenings it didn't get used last night, and I was a bit worried because I had sliced the breast in half so it would cook quicker, but put it on the grill tonite and it was WONDERFUL.. just added a touch of sweet to the usual italian flavor. I have to say I am SO proud of myself!! :^)) Let me know if you try it what you think.. I LOVE this site!!
I just came across this thread... I'll post a marinade for chicken thighs that my mom used to make... Not sure where she got it... probably some book out there, but I've never tasted anything like it and while we bake it, Im sure it can also be smoked, grilled...
Mix well the following:
2/3 c oil
2 T black pepper
1T garlic powder
1T lemon juice
1/2 c red wine
1/2 c red wine vinegar
4 T soy sauce
1 T mustard
2-3 dr Tobasco
Clean excess fat from chicken thighs. Marinate chicken for 8 hrs - 3 days. (A large ziploc bag works well for this.) Bake at 375 degrees for 1 hour, turning at the half point.
----- Original Message -----
From: Kevin Hardy
Sent: Sunday, January 10, 2010 1:22 PM
Subject: Marinated Chicken Thigh Recipe
Mom... What is that recipe you for the marinated chicken thighs? I don't really need anything exact, just the ingredients that are in it with maybe some proportions.... It has a very distinct taste that I've never had elsewhere and was wondering it was....
I love bone in chicken and I'm in the middle of a renovation so simple but delish meals are my goal.
I couldn't decide between a marinade of simple italian dressing or a buffalo wing sauce so I combined the two and it was really fantastic. It marinated all day, then threw on the grill. One of those chix dishes that you want to just suck the bones dry. :-)
who da thunk
I come back to this recipe over and over again. So simple, but the complexity that black pepper, lime juice, fish sauce and a little sugar produce amazes me every single time.
Serve with cilantro rice on the side and insert grilled vegetable of your choice into the menu. You won't be disappointed.
Yes, and thanks for pointing that out! I'll typically mix the marinade, then pour over vegetables and chicken separately until it "seems right"..... I suspect that I'm using a greater amount of marinade than what's called for proportional to the chicken, but in truth, the marinade mixed separately is pretty potent!
re: Green Omnivore
4S, thanks for a very good recipe! Used it today on bone-in (skin and fat removed) chicken thighs...I mostly tasted the lime to be honest...but that's not a bad thing! Couldn't really detect the fish sauce (and I bought a brand new tiny bottle of Squid brand this morning because I don't trust the remains of big bottle I've had in cupboard for wow, about a year...need to just toss that bad boy out) ... I might add fresh crushed garlic next time around, too.
I made this marinade with boneless skinless chicken thighs and it worked out wonderfully! I eye-balled the lime juice (half a lime) and think it could've used a bit more or add a bit of lime zest at the end.
I tried it with firm tofu and the results were not so good. I think I should've used extra-firm tofu because the firm tofu turned out somewhat slimey/wet. I pressed the tofu for about an 1hr before marinating for about 30 minutes. I will have to try it again with extra-firm.
This marinade will be in regular BBQ rotation that's for sure. Thanks 4Snisl!
I frequently use simple vinaigrettes to get the job done on boneless breasts. Usually a white wine vinegar, olive oil, garlic & thyme combo. Or I will use balsamic vinegar and a little honey.
For fajitas, I dry rub the breasts with taco seasoning, then place them in a ziploc with some oil and a splash of vinegar. Splash with fresh lime juice before & after it hits the grill.
I just whipped one up out of the blue, it was a little crazy, but amazingly tasty!
I salted 4 large boneless, skinless chicken breast
then in zip lock bag added:
1/2 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup pink lemonade
1/4 cup sweet pepper Thai sauce
1/4 cup sweet onion dressing
1 table spoon honey mustard
1 table spoon maple syrup
added the chicken, shook vigorously
added 2 pineapple round slices on top.
Put in fridge for 3 hours, then on the bbq for a quick grill
The girlfriend and I enjoyed them so much, we just had to share with our roommates.
Chicken is quickly becoming my new favorite meat.
Hey -- that sounds great, Liam. I am really always enjoying new ways to prepare chicken too. After a number of years as a vegetarian, it's been so interesting to learn to cook meat. I'll try lots of these marinade ideas this summer, I hope, although with the cooler weather I made chicken paprikash last week -- first time -- fantastic. I've also picked up lots of great chicken recipes from the Cookbook of the Month here at chowhound -- chicken with feta and onions, Chicken Marbella (Silver Palate) which is so easy b/c like yours, you marinate the chicken (a whole one in pieces) in a ziploc. One of my favorite ones is from Slow Mediterranean Kitchen: Garlic and Lemon Marinated Chicken Kabobs. A little mayo and a really cool Middle Eastern spice mix go into the marinade with the garlic and olive oil and lemon. In cooler months, I just do this under the broiler. Great weeknight dinner and sometimes I make wraps with it -- the spice mixture is sooo tasty, better the next day
I used this marinade recipe for making spiedies, but it works nicely for chicken breasts too.
Most bottled commercial spiedie mixtures, such as Salamida's, are both
expensive and use a little too much oil for some tastes. This recipe
(actually a vinaigrette) produces a more tangy sauce, and will marinate
anywhere from one to three pounds of meat.
8 bay leaves (crumbled up)
4 tsp oregano
8 sm cloves of fresh garlic, minced
1/2 C lemon juice
1/2 C salad oil or fruity olive oil (preferred)
3/4 C vinegar (any variety)
1 tsp pepper
3 tsp salt (or to taste)
(If using lamb, try adding a couple of mint leaves)
Mix all ingredients together in a non-metallic dish. Add meat, cover,
and marinate in the refrigerator for at least 24 hours; stir
occasionally. Olive oil will solidify when refrigerated, so remove the
spiedies once or twice per day to allow the oil to 'melt', then stir.
Spiedies can be left marinating for 2 to 5 days; some claim that they
can be left for a week or more! (Longer marinating may help make
beef & veal more tender.) Add more marinade if required.
We just had grilled chicken yesterday and used a marinade that I had left over from a grilled tofu recipe. I really enjoyed the tofu, but the chicken was even better! I'm kicking myself that I didn't take pics and blog the chicken platter yesterday. Ugh!
Oh, and the marinade is strong and only needed about 45 minutes to completely penetrate the chicken.
1/2 cup low sodium soy sauce
1/2 cup red wine
1/2 cup seasoned rice vinegar
1/2 cup Asian sesame oil
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons hot chile oil, or to taste
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1/2 cup sesame seed, preferably black variety
4-6 green onions, including green tops (optional)
Vegetable oil for brushing grill rack
By far my favorite is a tandoori marinade-you can find them in most cookbooks-I use the one in the Gourmet cookbook (big yellow one that also has the foolproof grilled chicken mentioned by DanaB). This one isn't too far off:
It isn't exactly "simple," but it is tasty. I've only done it with bone-in chicken thighs, so it does take about 45 minutes on the grill.
I like to cube my chicken, add whole mushrooms, large chunks of red and green pepper, wedges of sweet onion and set aside in a bowl. In another bowl I mix a couple of tablespoons of olive oil, chicken stock, garlic, lime juice, a drizzle of honey and some fresh thyme (salt and pepper also). I put everything in a large Ziploc and leave in the 'fridge over night. When I'm ready I skewer everything and grill. (I'm a New Yorker, so I just do this on my George Foreman.)
Alternately, I also like whole chicken breasts in plain yogurt, lime juice, finely diced jalapenos (or serranos or habaneros or scotch bonnets), salt, pepper and garlic. This only needs to marinate an hour or two. These I do under the broiler, but it would be great on the grill.
All these recipes sound great!
I found one a few years ago that's really good for boneless chicken breasts or thighs.
Mix 2 cups plain yogurt with 1/2 cup well crumbled feta cheese together. Add few dashes of Tabasco and 3 or more tablespoons fresh chopped rosemary, 1/3 t black pepper and 1/2 t salt to yogurt mixture. Put mixture in large zip lock bag.
Cut chicken breasts up into large cubes for scewering, and place in bag with marinade.
Marinate several hours, remove chicken, shaking off as much of the marinade as possible. Place on scewers and grill. Delicious, and the chicken will be so tender.
BTW: I add a little more rosemary than that because I love the flavor of rosemary.
I do grilled chicken at least twice a week and this super easy marinade gets compliments every time.
Italian dressing (I keep a big bottle of an inexpensive brand just for marinades)
Bottled BBQ Sauce or Ketchup
Just a bit of Orange juice or something acidic (only if I happen to have it)
Put in a Ziploc, squeeze to mix it up, add your boneless, skinless chicken breasts and let marinade for the day or overnight. I've only done this for grilling chicken - not for baking.
I admit I'm lazy about anything more than quick balsamic, oil, herbs and spices marinades so have been known....ssshhhh.... to buy quite a few, relatively inexpensive bottled marinades. Generally they are fine (I'm still whispering) but just bought a new one - Stonewall Kitchen's Garlic Rosemary Citrus Grill sauce. Used it Mother's Day for a large barbecue on chicken breasts (I'm at least given a pass for jarred marinade on Mother's Day right?). Was a huge, and I mean, huge hit. It's now my very favorite jarred marinade. Well worth the extra few bucks over the cheaper brands. Oh, and no fat at all!
Personally for bbq chicken, we love a good piri-piri that has you reaching for ice cold beer. That and a lemon or lime, or soy sauce with some serious serranos and garlic thrown in for good measure.
Also hot chilies garlic and with sweet like molasses and soy, or now that I have it, maple syrup and soy, with lime and chilies. Me personally, I'd rather use the cumin along with the garam masala in a yogurt based marinade for the Chicken. It does wonders for pork and beef however.
The recipe for "Foolproof Grilled Chicken," from Gourmet Magazine (linked below), makes the BEST chicken I've ever tasted anywhere. Period. Everytime I make it, people tell me it's the best chicken they've ever had. It starts with a brine, and then has an asian-inspired sauce to finish with. It's great both with and without the sauce.
Here's something I would not have come up with in a thousand years - just a plain old bottle of (not too oaky) chardonnay. I tried it at a friend's place for the first time a couple of days ago and it was delicious - he says to marinate for only about 8 hours or else the wine becomes a bit too much.
Welcome to the burbs.
Jfood suggestions. First, big difference in the time required to grill boneless and with bone and you should be a little more careful with sugar based marinades (and since you mention low-fat jfood will assume you mean low-cal ifpossible) if going the bone-in root. The boneless cook sooooo fast that a sugar based works there and won't give you black outside chix.
First rule to recommend for boneless is pounding. Try to get the breasts about 1/4" thick around. Then place in the marinade as desired. Some like more infusion, others less. Recommendation for the bone-in chiken, bot breast and thigh, is turn often so they do not burn as well but get that rich mahogony color on the skin. :-)))
To your question. If you are looking for store bought, jfood likes the Soy-Vay varieties. They are really good and quick. Put all the chicken in a plastic bag, shake around and let the marinade soak in. But making your own is pretty simple as well. Some oil, an acid (people love lemon, jfood likes limes as well for another interesting flavor) plus seasoning as desired. Most people like chicken saltier than they admit, so jfood always salts the meat right before it goes on the grill.
For seasonings, all the suggestions here are great but you need to feel your way through them to see what you like. Jfood does not do heat, so jerk chicken does not work for him, but love fresh herbs under the skin (herb garden planted this weekend, :-))) and a sprinkling of seasonings. Likewise if you want flavor without marinade try some of the herb blends by Pennzy's and other spice purveyors.
Best recomendation jfood can give is DO NOT OVERCOOK. boneless breast thin should take only a few minutes per side, bone-in breast obviously longer. Just when that raw look disappears, they are done, they will continue to cook for a little bit off grill.
Grilled chicken is a staple in jfood-land and both wet marinades and dry seasoning make the summer more enjyable.
tj seconds jf's pounding recommendation. Best thing that EVER happened to boneless breast regardless of cooking method. TENDERIZES like you wouldn't believe. And they cook more evenly, so you don't get that nasty dried-out tip of the breast as per normal. And no more hockey-puck kabobs!
I go for about 1/2" thickness mainly because that's about all I can get before the meat starts to tear a bit. It seems to be enough to tenderize.
Also, chicken parts respond to "low and slow", so you could give initial high heat, then cook indirectly ( not over the heat source, but ot the side) at about 250 degrees (or barely open vents) for a bit longer grill time. Meat is juicy and tender and all those fabulous leg tendons get soft and gooey, so full of flavor. Indirect cooking at lower heat also helps prevent the sugar scorching of a sweet glaze.
Feel free to experiment and have flavor cook-offs with family & friends so you can try several combos/methods at once.
I must also second the favorite vinagrette (bottled or homemade) method. I use Girard's low fat Caesar for meats and veggies, lightly brushing it on before cooking over direct heat. S'wonderful, especially on eggplant and zuke slices.
Don't forget to try a few soaked woodchips of your choice near the end of grilling to impart a hint of smoke.Have a great grilling season!
Jamaican Jerk Chicken -
1 tablespoon ground allspice
1 tablespoon dried thyme
1 1/2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons black pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons ground sage
3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg (fresh is best)
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons crushed garlic
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup soy sauce
3/4 cup white vinegar
1/2 cup orange juice
juice of 1 lime
1 habanero pepper- finely minced (or serrano if you can't take the heat of the habanero)
4 green onions -- finely chopped
1 cup onion -- finely chopped
4 to 6 chicken breasts
(ok, if you want to go really simple you can just buy a bottle of jerk marinade at the store and add more stuff to it, but this has so much more flavor...)
I marinate the chicken breasts overnight - but I like to reserve alittle of the marinade to baste with during grilling (I don't like to use the same liquid that I've marinated chicken in - some people do, I'm just weird that way...) These are best over a good smoky charcoal or woodfire grill, but they are pretty decent on a gas grill too!
This is my mom's boyfriend's recipe . . . and it is amazing...
Rich’s Charcoaled Lemon Lime Chicken
6 small or 3 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts halves
Chopped herbs, to garnish
Lemon slices, to garnish
3 medium cloves garlic, crushed
1 ½ teaspoons salt, or to taste
½ cup firmly packed brown sugar
3 tablespoons coarse grained mustard
¼ cup cider vinegar
Juice of 1 lime
Juice of ½ large lemon
6 tablespoons vegetable oil
Freshly ground pepper, to taste
For marinade: In a bowl, combine garlic, salt, sugar, mustard, vinegar, lime, and lemon juices.
Blend well. Whisk in oil and pepper. Place chicken in a re-sealable plastic bag and add marinade.
Refrigerate overnight, turning occasionally.
Bring chicken to room temperature 1 hour before serving. Grill breasts for 4 minutes per side (overcooking with toughen chicken). Garnish with herbs and lemon slices.
I puree olive oil, lemon, garlic, dijon mustard, and salt & pepper...marinate chicken for 1-12 hours and grill it. When I do this I usually cut the chicken up into thin slices so it cooks quickly...and cook a TON of it so I have one meal of hot grilled chicken with side dishes...one with sliced chicken on top of a green salad...and one with cold chicken sandwiches with mayonnaise and cucumbers. yum!
Two parts lemon juice, one part olive oil and lots and lots of cracked black pepper. Marinate chicken in fridge for two or three hours. Drain, reserving the marinade. Salt and grill, basting with the marinade. You can add herbs to the marinade if you like, but they're mostly superfluous.
Another marinade I like is whole-grain mustard, olive oil and fresh thyme.
These all sound great, but my favourite is the Cornell BBQ chicken sauce from Upstate NY.
1 cup vegetable oil
2 cups cider vinegar
1 Tbl salt
1 Tbl poultry seasoning
1/2 tsp pepper
Beat the egg, add oil and beat to combine, add remaining ingredients and stir to combine.
Put chicken on grill and baste frequently each time you turn the chicken over.
This is a thin sauce so apply it liberally. It is a nice subtle sauce that allows the natural flavour of the chicken to come through.
My brother and I recently made some great chicken on the grill. We bought boneless chicken breasts with the skin on and sprinkled them pretty liberally with salt and pepper, then put them in a baggie with olive oil, garlic and fresh chopped rosemary. Right before we grilled them we put some lemon slices under the skin. They were delicious.
I did something very similar to this last night. Quarter cup of olive oil. Juice plus zest of one lime. Juice plus zest of one lemon. Two teaspoons garlic. 1/2 cup chopped fresh oregano and thyme. Two pinches of salt and twenty grinds of black pepper. Marinated three thighs and five legs for two hours.
Came out really yummy, and the citrus really gave it great flavor.
There are so many good ones! We love this one with soy sauce, lime juice and fresh herbs...Southwestern Lime Chicken with Ancho Chili Sauce...you can simmer the marinade while the chicken is grilling to serve over the chicken (or baste the chicken while it's grilling with the marinade):
re: Covert Ops
Did you make the Ancho Chili Sauce? I've tried it with the dried anchos as in original recipe and with chipotles in adobo as an alternative...much preferred the chipotles in adobo method and found the re-hydrating of the anchos inferior in flavor BUT I am very partial to chipotles in adobo anyway.
Real simple and easy.... skim the adobe from a can of Chipotles and use that straight as a marinade. Cook it down for a basting sauce.
Of course using just the adobo is fairly wasteful so I make my own marinade that includes canned Chipotles, the adobo and stretch it out with a combination of Olive Oil, Vinegar, Worcestire Sauce, Water & Salt to taste. From there you can use it as is or take it in many directions....
Blend with Mango Puree for a Sweet, Smokey & Spicy Marinade
Blend with Blackened Tomatoes for a more earthy & savory experience
etc., etc., etc.,
That chili sauce is delightful! I used pasilla chiles, actually, and I loved the consistency and flavor of this sauce. thanks for posting the recipe, Val --
I marinated my chicken in lemon and garlic, then grilled and served with the chili sauce and the usual Mexican suspects: lime wedges, hot fresh corn tortillas, a quick fresh tomato-red pepper salsa, sour cream, a little cheese. mmmmm. With the sauce, these are close to the chicken tacos (tingas, they call them) at my favorite local teeny-tiny mercado, and the ones I wolfed down nightly when backpacking around Chiapas.
I usually do rubs instead of marinades.
Sometimes I'll do cumin and oregano with some lime zest. Or smoked paprika, salt and pepper and thyme. Lemon zest, pepper, salt.
For marinade: dijon mustard, rosemary, honey, beer and garlic.
The thing that's the most fun is playing around, combining ingredients!
We do a soy sauce / sesame oil / salt and pepper and 5 spice concoction. You only need a teaspoon of sesame oiil for BIG flavor. This s soooo god on chicken thighs.... we let them soak in the mix in a ziplock for the afternoon..... or even sometimes freeze them in it...so simple so good!
re: Oh Robin
the best way to grill chicken is to let leg quarters marinate over night in a mixture of Wicker's and Italian Dressing... when your ready to grill drain excess and then sprinkle liberally with Strawberry's rub... makes the best chicken you will ever eat...
and to go along with that i have a recipe for an amazing bbq sauce...
2 cups ketchup
1/3 cup of apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 tbs worcestershire sauce
2 tbs honey
2 tbs Tiger sauce
1 jar of apricot preserves
1 tsp ginger
1 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp black pepper
1 tbs onion powder
*simmer all ingredients for 30 minutes