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Grilled Lemon Herb Chicken

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Grilled lemon herb chicken is quick, easy and full of flavour. This is a delicious, versatile chicken that goes with everything.

Grilled boneless skinless chicken breast on a plate with lemon wedges and fresh thyme.
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Chicken breast is probably one of the most frequently cooked meats.

It can be used for so many dishes and cooked in so many ways. But it can be easy to overcook leaving it flavourless and dry.

This grilled chicken breast with lemon and herbs is full of flavour and stays tender and juicy.

The blend of lemon, shallots garlic and herbs are give the chicken enough flavour that it can be eaten on its own with a variety of side dishes. But the flavours are subtle enough that it can be used to add to salads, sandwiches or wraps.

You can marinade this chicken for as little as an hour or leave it overnight and it cooks in about 20 minutes on the outdoor grill.

Grilled chicken on a platter with lemon wedges.

Ingredients

The ingredients you will need are:

  • Boneless skinless chicken breast
  • Olive oil
  • Fresh lemon juice
  • Shallots
  • Garlic cloves
  • Fresh thyme
  • Salt & Pepper

Pro Tip – If you can’t find fresh thyme you can replace it with 2 teaspoons of dried thyme leaves. If you don’t like thyme this recipe works well with fresh rosemary as well.

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Instructions

Prepare the Chicken Breast

Trim the chicken breast of any visible fat and remove the fillet if the butcher did not do this for you.

Using a rolling pin or meat mallet, gently pound the the thick end of the chicken breast so the entire chicken breast is about the same thickness. This will ensure it cooks evenly without drying out.

Season both sides of the chicken generously with salt and pepper.

Pro Tip – Place the chicken breast between 2 pieces of plastic wrap or into a small ziplock bag before pounding to keep things clean.

Chicken breast in a small ziplock bag pounded flat. A rolling pin is beside it.

Making the Lemon Herb Marinade

Add the olive oil and lemon juice to a small bowl or measuring cup.

Finely mince the shallot and garlic and remove the leaves from the stems of the thyme.

Add the shallot, garlic and thyme to the olive oil and lemon juice and stir to combine.

Boneless skinless chicken breast seasoned with salt and pepper.  On a small cutting board is finely diced shallot and garlic.

Marinade and Grill the Chicken

Place the chicken in a small baking dish. I use a 7×9, but an 8×8 or 9×9 will work just as well. You want it to be crowded, but not overlapping.

Pour the marinade over the chicken and then turn the chicken a couple of times to make sure it is fully coated. Cover and refrigerate for at least one hour or overnight.

Chicken breasts in a small baking dish in lemon herb marinade.

Preheat your grill to a medium high heat.

Remove the chicken from the dish and place on the grill. Cook for 8-10 minutes then flip and cook an additional 8-10 minutes until the internal temperature of the chicken is 165°F.

Remove from the grill to a plate, cover with foil and let rest for 5 minutes before serving.

Serving Suggestions

Because the flavours of this lemon herb chicken are subtle, it goes well with almost any side dish.

We love serving using this chicken for chicken Caesar pasta salad, or in wraps or sandwiches.

It also goes well with grilled mixed vegetables, lemon butter green beans, or topped with corn and black bean salsa.

For something more indulgent, and to make the kids happy, it can be served alongside some creamy Mac and cheese.

Grilled chicken breast sliced on a cutting board with lemon wedge on the side.

FAQS

How long should I marinade chicken?

You will want to marinade this chicken for a minimum of one hour. However, you can marinade it up to 24 hours before cooking so long as it is kept covered in the refrigerator.

What can I use instead of shallots?

If you don’t have any shallots you can substitute minced red onion.

More Easy Chicken Recipes

Recipe

Grilled boneless skinless chicken breast on a plate with lemon wedges and fresh thyme.

Lemon Herb Grilled Chicken

Grilled lemon herb chicken is quick, easy and full of flavour
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Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Marinating Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 35 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 268kcal
Author: Deanna

Ingredients

  • 4 bonless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1/4 Cup olive oil
  • 1/4 Cup lemon juice freshly squeezed
  • 4 Cloves garlic finely minced
  • 1 small shallot finely minced (1/4 cup minced)
  • 2 Tbsp fresh thyme leaves
  • salt & pepper

Instructions

  • Trim the chicken breast of any visable fat and remove the fillet if the butcher did not already do so.
  • Place the chicken between two pieces of plastic wrap, or into a small ziplock bag. Using a rolling pin or meat mallet, gently pound the thicker end of the chicken so the chicken breast is an even thickness.
  • Generously season both sides of the chicken breasts with salt and pepper, then place into a small baking dish. The chicken should be crowded, but not overlapping. I use a 7×9 dish, but 8×8 will work well too.
  • Pour the olive oil and lemon juice into a small bowl or measuring cup, then finely mince the shallot and garlic.
  • Remove the leaves from the stems of the thyme and add the thyme, shallot and garlic to the olive oil and lemon juice. Stir well.
  • Pour the marinade over the chicken. Turn the chicken a few times to make sure it is fully coated then cover the dish and refrigerate a minimum of one hour, or overnight.
  • Heat the grill to medium high heat. Remove the chicken from the marinade and place on the grill.
  • Cook 8-10 minutes then flip and cook an additional 8-10 minutes until internal temperature reads 165°F.
  • Remove the chicken to a plate, cover with foil and let rest for 5 minutes before serving.

Notes

If you don’t have fresh thyme you can replace with 2 teaspoons of dried thyme leaves.
Shallot may be replaced with equal amounts of minced red onion.
If you don’t like thyme, rosemary makes an excellent substitute in this recipe. 

Nutrition

Calories: 268kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 72mg | Sodium: 133mg | Potassium: 512mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 387IU | Vitamin C: 21mg | Calcium: 44mg | Iron: 2mg
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