This easy grilled chicken is made with just 5 simple ingredients in less than 30 minutes. Tender, juicy and flavorful grilled chicken breast every time!
Grilled chicken is one of my favorite things to make during the summer. I love how juicy and tender the meat gets, with a delicious charred flavor. It’s super simple to whip up and can be cooked in unison with grilled vegetables, vegetable skewers or grilled corn to make an easy, no-fuss meal.
Seasoning + marinade
When seasoning the meat, I like to keep it simple and use a mixture of salt, pepper, garlic powder, olive oil and some smoked paprika. If you’re not a fan of heat, you can omit the paprika. This blend gives the chicken the perfect easy boost of flavor, while still letting the natural juices shine through.
TIP: If you have time, marinate your meat about 2 hours before grilling. I like to place the chicken in a zip top bag and pour the marinade on top. The flavors infuse a bit more and taste extra delicious!
The trick to tender chicken breasts
If you want super tender grilled chicken, don’t skip this step! The trick is to pound the breasts with a meat tenderizer. It helps to soften the muscle fibers in the meat, creating an amazingly juicy and tender result. It also evens out the thickness of the breast, making it easier to evenly cook.
Another key trick is to make sure to let your meat rest for a few minutes after removing from the grill. If you slice it right away, the juices will immediately run out. Letting it rest keeps the juices inside so that it’s super moist and delicious.
Helpful grilling tips
- Clean your grill. Start with clean and oiled grill plates, so that the meat doesn’t stick to the grill when cooking.
- Flipping. Don’t flip the chicken until about 4 to 6 minutes have passed. That’s how you achieve those beautiful charred grilled marks.
- Meat thermometer. Use a meat thermometer to easily check the temperature while grilling. I like to remove my chicken from the grill when it’s about 160ºF. After it rests for a few minutes, the temperature usually rises up to 165ºF.
- Let rest. Make sure to let the meat rest for at least 5 minutes! If you don’t, the juices will all run out.
Sides for serving
Pretty much anything tastes great alongside grilled chicken. Keep it light with a fresh vegetable dish or side chopped salad. Or make a more hearty side dish since the chicken is light in itself. Below are a few of our favorites side dishes.
- Sliced watermelon
- Loaded potato salad
- Grilled corn
- Roasted potatoes and carrots
- Greek salad
- Homemade mac and cheese
- Southwest quinoa salad
- Grilled sweet potatoes
- Grilled asparagus
- Sheet pan gnocchi
Storing + freezing leftovers
The chicken will stay fresh in the fridge in an airtight container or bag for up to 3 days. To freeze, make sure it has cooled completely. Do not slice the chicken, it should be whole when freezing. If freezing more than one piece, wrap each individually in plastic wrap so that they don’t stick together. Then place in an airtight container or bag in the freezer for up to 3 months. Let thaw in the refrigerator overnight, then warm in the microwave or in a pan on the stove (or enjoy cold if you prefer).
More recipes for the grill:
- Grilled chicken kabobs or steak kabobs
- Turkey burgers
- Easy steak marinade
- Grilled salmon
- BBQ grilled chicken foil dinner
- Preheat grill to medium-high heat. Trim chicken breasts. Pat down with paper towels if needed. Then pound the chicken down with a meat tenderizer to an even thickness.
- Combine the olive oil, salt, garlic powder, pepper and paprika in a small bowl. Then rub over both sides of the chicken.
- Place chicken on the grill for 4 to 6 minutes per side (or until a thermometer reads 160ºF to 165°F and then center is no longer pink). Allow to rest 5 minutes before serving.