This chicken breast marinade is very simple, but will make your chicken so juicy and flavorful! Brown sugar adds the perfect balance to the savory garlic, green onions, and ginger. A mouthwatering grilled chicken recipe that you will want to make all summer long!
I got this easy chicken marinade recipe from my friend Suzanne years ago. She used fresh ginger, and that is awesome. I don’t usually have it on hand, so I use dry, and it is still amazing.
Frequently asked questions:
What kind of chicken should I use?
At my house, boneless, skinless chicken breast is the preferred chicken of choice. But you can use chicken thighs, drumsticks, or any cut of chicken you prefer. Just keep in mind that the cooking times will vary. Use a meat thermometer for best results.
How long should I marinate chicken breasts for?
The longer you let the chicken marinate, the more flavor it will have. I like to assemble the recipe a day ahead and let the chicken soak in the marinade for 24 hours. Perfectly juicy and delicious!
Even if you forget to plan ahead and only give it 4-8 hours in the marinade, it will still be tasty.
Do you rinse marinade off chicken before cooking?
It depends on the result you want. Rinsing or patting the chicken dry will give you more of an even sear on the chicken. You are also less likely to have flare ups on the grill.
But leaving marinade on the chicken will leave you with a caramelized coating. Personally, I prefer my chicken with that sweet and savory glaze on the outside, so we leave the marinade on the chicken before cooking it.
Can I serve the marinade with the chicken?
If you want to serve the marinade with the cooked chicken, you must heat it to remove all bacteria. Bring it to a boil in a saucepan, and simmer it for at least 5 minutes. If you want to thicken it, you can stir in a tablespoon of cornstarch before heating.
HOW TO MARINATE CHICKEN
There are a few methods for marinating chicken, and all of them work well. My favorite method is just combining the chicken and marinade ingredients in a large ziplock bag and letting it all chill in the fridge for a few hours.
You can also combine your chicken and marinade ingredients in an airtight container and store it in the refrigerator the same way.
If you have a vacuum sealer, you can just seal up the chicken and marinade. The pressure from the vacuum pack presses the flavor into the chicken, so you only need to marinate for an hour or two.
Some people like to add marinade to their chicken in a ziplock bag before freezing it, then pulling the bag out and just letting it thaw in the refrigerator before cooking.
COOKING YOUR CHICKEN
No matter how you marinate it, this recipe makes for some incredibly delicious chicken breast! We like to grill ours, but you can also cook it in a skillet with a bit of vegetable oil. Just make sure the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 165 degrees.
PRO TIP: To ensure that your chicken cooks evenly and doesn’t have dry ends, pound it with a meat mallet or rolling pin so that it is the same thickness from end to end.
GRILLING TIP: Make sure you brush oil on your grill to prevent the chicken from sticking.
You can also bake the chicken at 375° for 30-40 minutes, depending on the thickness of your chicken breast. I like to line my cooking pan with foil for easy clean up.
I love using this smart meat thermometer. You insert it in your meat before cooking, and it hooks up with your phone to tell you when your meat is the perfect temperature. No more dry chicken or overcooked steak!
How to store leftover marinated chicken breasts?
If you have any chicken left over, it is great served over salad the next day. After it’s cooled, place it in an airtight container or ziplock bag. It will last for 3-4 days in the refrigerator.
TIP: To ensure that your chicken isn’t dry the next day, reserve some of the marinade that you have simmered. Drizzle some of the marinade over the chicken before you reheat it.
We like to reheat our chicken in the microwave for a few seconds, but it can also be reheated in a skillet with some oil or a bit of marinade or water.
SIDE DISHES TO SERVE WITH GRILLED CHICKEN:
CHICKEN BREAST MARINADE
- 2 green onions, finely chopped
- 3/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup soy sauce
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 tsp dry ginger (or 1/2" grated fresh ginger)
- 4 10 oz chicken breasts
- Combine all ingredients except chicken in a gallon size ziplock bag.
- If desired, cut the chicken breast into halves or strips.
- Add the chicken to the bag and squish the bag till everything is well combined and the brown sugar is dissolved.
- Refrigerate for at least 4 hours, but overnight is best.
- Grill or pan sear chicken on medium heat for 5-6 minutes on each side until juices run clear and internal temperature reaches 165°. Let chicken rest for 5 minutes before slicing.
You can bake the chicken at 375° for 30-40 minutes, depending on the thickness.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 413Total Fat: 7gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 161mgSodium: 1316mgCarbohydrates: 24gFiber: 0gSugar: 22gProtein: 61g