It's not hard to make a great marinade with just a few ingredients, as long as one of those ingredients is the magical miso. This super savory paste, made from fermented rice, barley, and soybeans, isn't that hard to find. While the marinade is simple, the flavors are anything but.



Original recipe yields 8 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified


  • Combine miso and honey in a bowl. Pour in rice vinegar, followed by hot sauce and salt. Whisk well until mostly smooth. Add chicken halves; cut 3 to 4 slashes into the legs and thighs. Toss chicken in the marinade until well coated. Refrigerate for 2 to 12 hours.

  • Flip chicken over in the bowl. Sprinkle more kosher salt on top.

  • Preheat grill to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) over indirect heat. Add chicken and cover. Grill for 20 minutes and flip chicken over. Cover and grill for another 20 minutes. Brush the excess marinade on top. Cover again and continue cooking until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center of each thigh reads 165 degrees F (74 degrees C), 5 to 10 minutes more.

  • Plate chicken alongside lemon wedges sprinkled with cayenne pepper. Squeeze some spicy lemon over the chicken as you cut it up.

Chef's Notes:

You can substitute kosher salt with about 2 teaspoon fine salt.

Cooking over indirect heat prevents the chicken from burning too much. To achieve this, I used a foil-wrapped ceramic heat diffuser in my grill. If using a regular grill, just place the coals on 1 side and chicken on the other.

Nutrition Facts

255 calories; 13.1 g total fat; 102 mg cholesterol; 1119 mg sodium. 6.9 g carbohydrates; 26.5 g protein; Full Nutrition

Reviews (7)

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11 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 9
  • 4 star values: 2
  • 3 star values: 0
  • 2 star values: 0
  • 1 star values: 0
Rating: 5 stars
Awesome as always Chef John! Read More
Rating: 5 stars
This recipe is a keeper! I was surprised at how delicious this turned out to be because the ingredients are few and prep was easy and quick. I did not make any changes. Thank you Chef John:) Read More
Rating: 5 stars
I have made this many time I have cooked it in a pan in the oven and finally on the grill I have to say my favorite way to cook it was on the grill. Everyone loves this dish even my kids because it's a bit on the sweet side from the honey. I did however leave out the cayenne pepper and hot sauce my family doesn't really care for a lot of spice this recipe was still amazing Read More
Rating: 5 stars
We really loved this. I did not make any changes and it was amazing. Simple flavorful and the meat was so juicy and tender. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
I really enjoyed this simple and tasty recipe for cooking a whole chicken. It's a unique flavor that's tangy savory and different from any other marinade I've ever had. I couldn't get the color right even after 55 minutes on a closed grill (temp fluctuated between 300 and 380 F) but another 10 minutes in a convection oven followed by a few under the broiler got it right. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
Such an easy and amazing tasting marinade. The whole family loves it and we will be using it again! Read More
Rating: 5 stars
I had light yellow rather than white miso. It still worked. I've cooked this on the grill and also in a pan in the oven with added chicken broth (in the style of Greek Lemon Chicken and Potatoes, turning rather than dipping). Both were delicious, but if you are cooking in the oven, you might want to line your pan. It was not easy to clean. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
Great! So tasty! Read More