How to Grill Chicken in Easy-to-Follow Steps


Completely grilled hen — crusty on the skin, and moist and juicy on the within — is a superb addition to any picnic, barbecue, or summertime meal plan.

It’s additionally a simple approach to increase your protein consumption.

And utilizing grilled hen in your meal prep may also help you save time within the kitchen — simply grill a batch on Sunday and use it all through the week in all kinds of delicious chicken recipes, together with soups, salads, pastas, pizzas.

So how lengthy do you have to cook dinner hen on the grill — and how will you hold it from drying out? Right here’s what you should know.

The way to Grill Hen Breast

Grilled chicken fillets on plate.

Observe these easy steps to get evenly-cooked, juicy hen with loads of taste.

Prep it

An hour earlier than grilling, take your hen out of the fridge and permit it to return as much as room temperature, which helps it cook dinner extra evenly, says Holly McKee-Clark, culinary specialist for Beachbody.

Even it out

Hen breasts usually have an irregular form, in order you await the thicker aspect to cook dinner, the thinner aspect turns into dry and rubbery.

“To forestall undercooked or overcooked hen, you wish to create a good floor — flatten out the hen piece in order that one aspect shouldn’t be thicker than the opposite,” says Brittany Crump, M.P.H., R.D. at Savor Nutrition.

Put your hen breast right into a zip-top bag with a little bit oil, seal it, and provides it just a few good whacks with a meat mallet or different blunt instrument.

Get your grill prepared

“All the time brush your grill clear earlier than grilling,” McKee-Clark says.

Earlier than lighting the grill, flippantly rub or spray the grates with a cooking oil that has a excessive smoke level.

Add hen to a scorching grill

To maintain the hen juicy, cook dinner it rapidly over a scorching grill that has been preheated for at the very least 10 minutes.

“Don’t put your meals on the grill till it’s super-hot, and don’t transfer it as soon as positioned, till it’s time to flip,” McKee-Clark says.

If potential, examine that the grill’s floor reaches 425 to 450° F earlier than cooking.

Cook dinner totally

Now, how lengthy to grill hen breast? “5 minutes on both sides must be enough,” McKee-Clark says.

Use meals scissors to examine for pinkness. Higher but, a meat thermometer is a surefire approach to examine that your hen is finished all through.

“For security causes, hen have to be cooked to an inner temperature of 165° F,” Crump says.

The way to Grill Hen Thighs

Grilled chicken thighs in round dish

If you understand how to grill hen breast, then you understand how to grill hen thighs! For essentially the most half, you may merely observe the steps above.

Nevertheless, there are just a few further issues to remember when cooking hen thighs:

  • Select boneless, skinless thighs. Bone-in hen thighs are available in numerous sizes and shapes, making them more durable to cook dinner evenly. (For those who’ve by accident hit the uncooked heart on a chunk of barbecued hen thigh, you realize what we’re speaking about!)
  • Boneless, skinless thighs may also soak up seasoning higher and cook dinner and extra evenly. And since they are typically extra uniform in thickness than hen breast, you could not must flatten them.
  • For those who’re questioning how lengthy to cook dinner hen thighs, the precise reply varies relying on the thickness. As with hen breast, begin by grilling for five minutes on both sides, and be sure you use a meat thermometer to verify the inner temperature reaches 165° F.

Suggestions for Completely Grilled Hen

Raw chicken thighs with seasoning

Able to step up your grilled hen recreation?

The following tips may also help you get juicy, expertly cooked hen that’s filled with taste.

1. Brine earlier than grilling

“Brining hen earlier than grilling is one of the best ways to make sure it doesn’t dry out,” McKee-Clark says.

Brining is a technique of letting meat soak in salty water so as to add moisture. Observe McKee-Clark’s steps for making a simple, flavorful brine:

  • Make the brine base: Add equal components water and salt to a big, resealable plastic bag.
  • Convey in additional flavors: Add citrus (lemon, orange, lime), herbs (cilantro, parsley), and vinegar (balsamic, purple wine). Shake the bag to combine.
  • Seal in hen items and wait: Let it marinate for at the very least two hours, or as much as in a single day. An extended soak helps the hen soak up extra taste and moisture.

An excellent rule of thumb is to brine hen for two to three hours for each inch of thickness.

If you should save time, remember that a thinly butterflied (or pounded) piece of hen may solely take half-hour to brine. For meals security causes, at all times brine hen within the fridge.

2. Add taste

After brining, season hen as you usually would with a marinade or dry rub.

“Be conscious to not add an excessive amount of salt to hen after brining, since it can have already absorbed some sodium from the brining answer,” Crump says.

  • Marinades — often made with oil and acid — will likely be higher at making the hen tender. Plan for at the very least a 30-minute soak so your meat can soak up the flavour of the marinade.
  • Dry rubs — made out of a mix of herbs and spices — assist you get sear and crust in your grilled hen. To keep away from drying out your hen, think about including a glaze to seal in moisture. You possibly can simply make a glaze by mixing oil with a little bit of honey or syrup. Grill your hen naked first, to get crisp on all sides, then brush in your glaze in the previous couple of minutes of cooking, a number of occasions on all sides.

3. Prime it off

Grilled hen is nice by itself, however you may add extra taste by topping it with a wholesome sauce.

Attempt considered one of these:

Need extra knowledgeable diet suggestions and scrumptious wholesome recipes? Head over to to learn the way Beachbody diet applications and merchandise may also help you lead a more healthy way of life.


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