Grilled herb chicken is pictured on Wednesday, June 7, 2017, in Bloomington, Indiana. (Photo by James Brosher)

Herb Garden Grilled Chicken

This healthy herb garden chicken recipe makes the most of summer’s amazing flavors by using fresh herbs from your backyard. You can easily customize the recipe and make it your own based on what’s growing in your garden!

Every evening when I go outside to water our plants and garden, I close my eyes and take in the amazing, natural smells they all emit. While I’m a big fan of flowers, the potted herbs lining our back deck produce my favorite smells. My parents have always been gardeners, so the smell of fresh herbs has always signaled summer to me. It reminds me of running around the backyard as a kid looking for caterpillars on the dill plants and summers filled with my mom’s homemade pesto.

Fresh herbs help elevate everyday meals with their strong fragrances and flavors. I plant a wide variety of herbs in pots on our back porch every summer to use in everything from drinks to desserts. Basil and mint are the two I find myself using most often.

I wanted to throw together an easy dinner last night with what we had on hand, so I plucked some herbs from their pots and made this healthy meal come to life. I always cut chicken breasts in half because they’re so large they can easily be split. It’s very important to make sure you don’t marinate this chicken for more than one hour because there’s vinegar in the marinade, which will give the chicken an odd texture if it sits too long before cooking.

You can easily swap out other herbs you have on hand for the ones I use in this recipe. I served our chicken alongside kale I sautéed in a small amount of butter, but it would also taste great with my everyday salad. To make this meal a bit fancier, you can cut a slit in the middle of the chicken breasts and stuff them with goat cheese. Because everything’s better with cheese, right?

Ingredients

  • 2 large chicken breasts, weighing about 1 lb. total
  • 1/4 cup high-quality olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 1/2 Tbsp. fresh thyme, chopped
  • 1/2 Tbsp. fresh oregano, chopped
  • 1 tsp. crushed red pepper
  • Salt

Directions

  1. Take each chicken breast and cut it in half vertically in order to get four, thinner chicken breasts. Season chicken generously with salt, place in a gallon-sized freezer bag and set aside.
  2. In a small bowl, combine olive oil, vinegar, garlic, herbs and red pepper. Carefully pour marinade over the chicken in the plastic bag. Squeeze all of the air out of the plastic bag before sealing it and tossing the chicken to coat. Refrigerate chicken for 30 minutes to 1 hour.
  3. About 15 minutes before your chicken is done marinating, preheat your grill over medium-high heat. Once it’s preheated, place chicken on grill and cook for three to four minutes on each side, until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees. Remove chicken from grill and serve immediately. Season with more salt to suit your taste.

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