Grilled BBQ Chicken

Believe it or not, some of the most simple dishes are often the most difficult to get right. One of those dishes happens to be grilled chicken. Chicken breasts can be difficult to grill sometimes, as they can easily become dry or bland if your grilling technique is not yet mastered. And although many seem to believe that a marinade can ‘save’ chicken from turning out dry or bland, that is often far from the truth. But with this particular recipe, you can count on a flavorful, juicy, and tender piece of chicken every single time. 

In fact, you can serve this recipe a number of different ways–and the great part about it is that kids love it too! Whether you’re serving it with vegetables, on a salad, in a sandwich, or another way, you can’t go wrong with this delicious recipe. Another bonus of this recipe is that it is quick and easy to do, as you can prepare ahead of time, making it an effortless, delicious meal.

What You’ll Need for Perfect Grilled BBQ Chicken
  • 1 ¾ lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 6 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon of thyme
  • ½ teaspoon of dried oregano
  • 1 ¼  teaspoon of kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon of pepper
  • 1 ½ teaspoon of lemon zest (of one lemon)


  • First things first–you’ll need to pound the chicken. You can do so by putting the chicken in a 1-gallon freezer bag and pounding it so it gets to a ½ inch in thickness. Pounding the chicken not only tenderizes it, but it helps achieve even cooking throughout. Keep in mind that you don’t need a meat mallet to achieve this–in fact, you can use a skillet or rolling pin and they work just as well. 
  • Next, it’s time to make the marinade. While lemon is a very important ingredient in the marinade, only the zest is actually used. The zest allows the chicken to have that delicious lemon flavor, without changing the chicken’s texture. Oftentimes, people believe that lemon or acidity ‘tenderizes’ meat; however, the acidity actually cooks the outer layer and results in an unusual external texture. Therefore, only the zest will do.
  • To zest the lemon, you can use a fine grater to remove the yellow part of the lemon, turning the lemon as you go. Avoid grating the white part, as that is bitter and can change the flavor of the marinade. .
  • Once you’ve zested the lemon, now it’s time to mix all the ingredients together (minus the chicken–that comes later). You can add the ingredients in a 1-gallon zip-lock bag.
    • Now it’s time to add the chicken to the bag of marinade and massage the chicken to ensure the marinade evenly coats the chicken.
  • Let the chicken marinate
    • Close up the bag, place it in a bowl, and refrigerate it. The bowl will protect the bag from potentially leaking. Let the chicken marinate for up to four hours or overnight.
ChefsTemp - Safe Cook Temps
  • Add the chicken to the grill
    • Once your chicken is done marinating, preheat your grill so it reaches a high heat. You’ll want to make sure that the grill is very hot and the grates are oiled up. Because the chicken is thin since you’ve pounded it, it will only take about 2-3 minutes to cook on each side. The chicken should lift off easily from the grill–if not, give it another 30 seconds until it comes off easily. Also, make sure to close the grill’s lid while the chicken is cooking. This will allow the chicken to achieve a lovely char on the outside and will keep the moisture inside.
    • Once the chicken is done, remove it from the grill and let it sit for 3-5 minutes. It’s extremely important to let the chicken rest, as it’ll help the chicken retain its moisture.
What’s The Safe Cook Temp for Chicken?

To ensure that chicken is cooked thoroughly, the internal temperature should be 165 degrees Fahrenheit. The best way to determine the temperature of chicken is by using a digital internal meat thermometer. Using a meat thermometer will allow you to get an accurate reading of the chicken’s temperature, giving you the ability to achieve the perfect temperature each time. Having a meat thermometer will make things easier and will ensure that your chicken isn’t undercooked or overcooked.

ChefsTemp Quick Tip:

Steaks, Chops, and Roasts: 145 degrees Fahrenheit (Medium). Chicken and Turkey: 165 degrees Fahrenheit. Fish and Shellfish: 145 degrees Fahrenheit

Learn More About the thermometer!

The ChefsTemp Finaltouch X10 is the best meat thermometer on the market. It allows you to get an accurate reading with its effortless and intuitive design each and every time. It will make your cooking and grilling experience a seamless one, without having to deal with the guesswork when it comes to meat, poultry, and fish.  

Having the best digital meat thermometer for grilling will truly make the biggest difference in your grilling experience. If you are interested in achieving the best results when it comes to grilling chicken, meat, or fish, then the thermometer will be the perfect addition to your grilling routine.

ChefsTemp Finaltouch X10

Finaltouch X10

The Finaltouch X10 thermometer from ChefsTemp gives an accurate reading not only for the inside of food but for surface temperatures as well.  The diversity of the thermometer’s usage is second to none compared to other thermometers.  By getting a reading within 1 second, the Finaltouch X10 from ChefsTemp is prepared to take on any task it is given.

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