Gone are the days of dry and dull cooked chicken. Nowadays, grilling chicken breasts is the easiest and savory way to chow down on chicken.
However, turning out dull and chalky testing poultry is still a common problem, especially for the cooks who are still new to the game.
While chicken is a delicate protein that tends to dry out very fast, a minute too long on the grilling heat can quickly take the chicken from tender and juicy to dull and boring.
Nonetheless, a few simple tips from our test kitchen will set you ahead of the curve on matters of how to grill chicken breast, allowing you to keep it perfectly juicy and ready for sandwiches, salads, and more!
By following our expert tips, worrying about making dry chicken will be a thing of the past.
You can have the ability to add juicy grilled chicken breast to your forthcoming backyard barbecue party or camping escapades!
The Procedure of How to Grill Chicken Breast
What You Will Need.
- Boneless skinless chicken breast halves. (At least 4).
- ¼ cup balsamic vinegar.
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil.
- 1-1/2 teaspoons of lemon juice.
- ½ teaspoon lemon pepper seasoning.
Step 1: Preparation
The first step in making your chicken breast savory is by tenderizing it a little bit. This is done by placing a large piece of parchment paper or plastic wrap on your work prep surface and then placing the chicken on top and covering it with another piece of parchment or plastic.
The next step is then to “butterfly” the chicken. This is done with the help of a meat mallet or rolling pin. A few firm whacks on the thickest part of the chicken butterflies the chicken into a flattened piece so that the breast has an even thickness from end to end.
The preparation stage of how to grill chicken breast is a key procedure as it helps in even cooking of the chicken breast thus eliminating the problem of one end of the chicken breast drying out before the other end has even had time to cook.
Step 2: Marinating
Marinating is a quite simple procedure. You first place the vinegar, lemon juice, oil, and lemon pepper into a medium-size bowl or pan and then add in the chicken. Next, you turn and flip the chicken to coat, then cover it for maximum flavor.
While there are different marinade formulas, this step is also important as well, as the marinade is pivotal in ensuring your chicken is juicy and adds extra flavor.
Once completely covered, set the chicken in the fridge for about 30 minutes or so. After the time has elapsed, move on to drain and discard the marinade.
While 30 minutes may seem like a pretty short time, chicken doesn’t need to marinate for a pretty long time, especially if the marinade encompasses acidic ingredients like vinegar, buttermilk, or lemon juice.
Thirty minutes to a couple of hours at most is enough for an acidic marinade to find its way into the meat.
Step 3: Grates Cleaning & Greasing
Cleaning up your grates is the best thing to do before starting your grilling. You need to check the grill and make sure the grates are free of stuck-on food residue before you begin.
Most cooking grates are made of stainless steel for one specific reason, easy cleaning. By turning up the heat, the gunk on the grates is burnt off and once the grates have cooled down, the gunk can then be scrubbed off with a sturdy wire brush.
Moreover, most grills, if not all, come along with cleaning procedures, you can follow the procedure as well.
Once your cooking grates are clean, you then proceed to brush the grill rack with oil, with the help of a paper towel. Moisten the paper towel with cooking oil and then use long-handled tongs to carefully rub it over the grill rack.
Taking the most of your time cleaning oiling your grilling grate is essential as it prevents your chicken breasts from sticking on the grates whilst grilling.
Step 4: Commence Grilling
Turn the grilling heat to medium and then with the help of tongs, place the chicken breasts on the grates.
While using a charcoal grill, place your hand five inches above the cooking grate to gauge the temperature. If you’re able to keep your hand in position comfortably for 4-6 seconds, then the grill is at medium heat.
Next, cover your grill with the lid and let the chicken cook for approximately 5-7 minutes, after which you then use tongs to flip the breasts over. Grill for 5-7 minutes longer again while monitoring the temperature.
The temperature should be 165oF (73.9oC) as this is the food-safe temperature for grilling chicken breasts.
Most people prefer brushing sweet glazes such as barbecue sauce on the chicken breasts. This also has its time as well.
Wait until the last few minutes of cooking before adding your favorite sauce(s). This prevents the chicken from getting too dark from the sugars in the sauce(s).
Step 5: Enjoy!
Once ready, remove the chicken from the grill and then cover with foil and give the chicken some time off. The time off or “resting” period is important in keeping the chicken as tender as possible!
Moreover, giving time for the grilled chicken to rest for about 5 minutes gives room for the juices inside to redistribute, rather than running out on your plate.
You can always leave your grilled meat to rest while you’re setting the table, and by the time you are done, your juicy grilled chicken breasts will be ready for you to enjoy!
Grilled chicken is renowned for its deliciousness and being a healthy meal as well. While it’s the main course that serves by itself, there are tons of ways to dress up your grilled chicken too!
Once you learn how to grill chicken breast, the versatility of grilled chicken cannot be overlooked as you can put it in just about anything: sandwiches, salads, shredded for chicken soups, or skewered on a kabob.
The list is endless! Or you can top the dish off with some grilled veggies and you’ve already got yourself dinner!