Our 15 Best Chicken Marinades
When you marinate chicken, the meat is your blank canvas; the marinade, your palette with which you paint on the deliciousness. And there are so many options! These 15 marinades boast exciting flavor combinations.
Grilled Chicken Marinade
Jennifer says this olive oil and red wine vinegar chicken marinade is "simply the best chicken marinade for grilling — or any occasion. It works wonderfully on top of a salad."
Believe it. This apple cider vinegar and olive oil chicken marinade makes the most of cider vinegar, mustard, garlic, lime juice, lemon juice, and brown sugar. "This unusual combination of common ingredients is fabulous," says LETSGGGO.
Marinade for Chicken
Red wine vinegar and lemon juice add tang while tenderizing the chicken. Vegetable oil is the featured fat here, and soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, mustard powder, and parsley provide additional flavorings. Bev raves, "I loved this marinade. I used boneless chicken breasts and marinated them for about 4 hours. The flavor was excellent and the chicken was very moist and delicious."
Yummy Honey Chicken Kabobs
This honey chicken marinade is always a sweet success. You'll cube the chicken and combine it with vegetable oil, honey, soy sauce, and pepper. So simple. After a quick soak, string up your kabobs and toss them on the grill or make them in the broiler. "So simple and so delicious," raves Elizabeth.
Garlic and Herb Marinade
Here's an Asian marinade for chicken thighs that's garlicky, sweet, and spicy. Asian chile pepper sauce, soy sauce, and rice vinegar combine with mayonnaise and maple syrup. Chef John describes the delicious results, "No one flavor dominates this beautifully balanced, all-purpose grilled chicken marinade. I call it 'rusty chicken' to celebrate the color of the marinade and meat."
Korean BBQ Chicken Marinade
This marinade brings the sweet heat, combining hot chile paste, ground ginger, and onion powder with sugar and soy sauce. "This sauce is from the very popular 'chicken bowls' in my hometown," says SASEIGEL. "It's very tasty! Use it as a marinade for chicken, or to baste chicken while grilling. Increase the hot chile paste as desired. Four tablespoons of it is usually as much as anyone can take!"
Grilled Lemon Yogurt Chicken
With this marinade, Chef John combines yogurt with lemon juice to create a tenderizing double-whammy. "There is something special about what yogurt does to chicken in its smoky, sizzling time over charcoal," says Chef John. "It grills to a caramelized dark brown without tasting burnt."
Chicken Teriyaki Marinade for Chicken Thighs
This delicious teriyaki marinade for chicken takes just 15 minutes to prep and about 30 minutes to marinate. You'll simmer a mixture of soy sauce, sake, mirin, brown sugar, green onions, ginger, and a touch of vegetable oil, just long enough to dissolve the brown sugar and meld flavors. Cook your marinated chicken thighs under the broiler until they're a gorgeous, shiny mahogany color.
Easy Chicken Fajita Marinade
Here's a marinade for grilled chicken fajitas. Lime juice and honey combine with vegetable oil and spices -- chili powder, garlic powder, paprika, and black pepper. Marinate strips of skinless chicken breast in a large resealable plastic bag before hitting the grill. Terri says, "It seriously doesn't get any easier than this! And, to top things off, I had all the items in my cupboard."
Key West Chicken
Here's a lime chicken marinade straight from the Florida Keys. "This recipe is the best chicken marinade," says TINA B. "And it only takes 30 minutes from prep till you can grill."
Balsamic Marinated Chicken Breasts
This one does it without a fat — it's balsamic vinegar, minced onion, garlic, red pepper flakes, paprika, rosemary, parsley, chili powder, and oregano. If you want, sneak in a splash of olive oil. "This is a recipe I made up after eating LOADS of bland chicken breasts," says R.Upchurch. "Chicken is so easy to prepare and this recipe makes chicken breast meat extra-tender and juicy."
Italian Chicken Marinade
"I don't know what magic occurs when these four little ingredients come together but the results are fantastic. I cooked the chicken in a skillet and it was great." — momabroad
Recipe creator Adam Banfield describes this as a "flavorful and spicy marinade that has a Thai-style influence with a ginger kick."
Smokey Tequila-Lime Marinade
"This awesome marinade for chicken, chicken wings or flank steak has a taste of Mexico with a hint of Texas. It's definitely a must for the grill!" — DALEANDESTELL
Krystal's Perfect Marinade for BBQ or Grilled Chicken
"Uhh, this marinade really is perfect! I had four thinly sliced chicken breasts that I marinated in it for about five hours. It was amazing. I was dubious initially, but I was proven very wrong! It grilled up beautifully." — DEIRDRE7