The Best Chicken Marinade Recipe

Best Chicken Marinade Recipe – An easy chicken marinade that comes together in minutes for the best grilled chicken or baked chicken you’ve ever tasted!

Best Grilled Chicken Marinade Recipe - Grilled Chicken recipes are always a crowd-pleaser. This easy grilled chicken marinade recipe will become a favorite! // addapinch.com

For years now, we’ve used this simple grilled chicken marinade that I quickly throw together when grilling chicken. It uses ingredients that you’ll most likely have on hand. If not, I urge you to buy them the next time you are at the grocery store, along with your favorite cuts of chicken and make it! It makes the perfect marinade for the best grilled chicken I’ve ever had!

Best Chicken Marinade Recipe

A few years ago, we made grilled chicken legs using this marinade when my sister-in-law Karen, her husband Todd, and their three boys were on an RV trip with us. I knew that our son loved it and hoped that their boys would as well. We won’t even talk about how much chicken we got all of the kids to eat…so let’s just say they loved it as much if not even more than I’d hoped!

Best Grilled Chicken Marinade Recipe - Grilled Chicken recipes are always a crowd-pleaser. This easy grilled chicken marinade recipe will become a favorite! // addapinch.com

In all seriousness, I’ve not fed anyone chicken made with this marinade that hasn’t loved it.

I originally just included this recipe in with my grilled chicken legs recipe that I shared a long time ago. It makes such juicy, delicious grilled chicken breasts and works for baked chicken too! Since I have requests for this recipe so often, I thought it deserved it’s own little spot in the world.

How to Make It

To make this, you’ll need:

  • Olive oil
  • salt
  • pepper
  • Cumin
  • paprika
  • cayenne
  • garlic
  • onion
  • fresh parsley
  • beer, ginger ale, apple cider (not apple cider vinegar), or apple juice

Best Grilled Chicken Marinade Recipe - Grilled Chicken recipes are always a crowd-pleaser. This easy grilled chicken marinade recipe will become a favorite! // addapinch.com

I rarely cook with beer, but it definitely adds something to this chicken. For the beer, I would recommend using whatever beer you prefer. I usually use Corona or Yeungling, but any beer that you prefer will work. If you can’t use beer or prefer not to, I’ve included a couple of other options that I’ve tested in the recipe below for you.

  • Ginger Ale
  • Apple Cider
  • Apple Juice

Best Grilled Chicken Marinade Recipe - Grilled Chicken recipes are always a crowd-pleaser. This easy grilled chicken marinade recipe will become a favorite! // addapinch.com

Stir. Stir together all of the ingredients in a medium mixing bowl.

Pour. Then pour the marinade over the chicken in a large zip top or other airtight container.  If using a zip top bag, press as much air as possible out of the bag as you seal.

Chill. Make sure that all of the chicken is well coated with the marinade. Arrange in the refrigerator and chill for at least an hour.

Best Grilled Chicken Marinade Recipe - Grilled Chicken recipes are always a crowd-pleaser. This easy grilled chicken marinade recipe will become a favorite! // addapinch.com

How Long to Marinate Chicken:

  • At least 1 hour
  • No longer than 2 days

If I’m using a ziptop bag, I place it on a half sheet pan in the refrigerator for at least an hour, but hopefully overnight so the chicken has plenty of time to soak up all that goodness.

Every few hours, I’ll turn the bag from one side over to the other to keep the chicken coated with the marinade.

Can I Freeze Chicken in this Marinade?

Yes! Here are the steps.

Package. Place chicken into freezer-safe container and pour over the marinade. Make sure that all of the chicken is well coated. Remove as much air as possible as you seal the container. Label the container with the contents and date.

Freeze. Arrange in the freezer so that the container is as flat as possible. Freeze for up to 3 months.

Thaw. Remove from the freezer and thaw in the refrigerator overnight. After it’s thawed, then remove the chicken from the marinade and discard the marinade. Finally, cook the chicken according to your favorite chicken recipe.

What Chicken Recipes Can I Use With This Marinade?

You can use this recipe with many of your favorite chicken recipes! We love it for our grilled chicken as well as for our simple baked chicken!

 

Best Grilled Chicken Marinade Recipe - Grilled Chicken recipes are always a crowd-pleaser. This easy grilled chicken marinade recipe will become a favorite! // addapinch.com

Here’s The Best Chicken Marinade Recipe. I hope you love it as much as we do!

Print Recipe
4.8 from 113 votes

The Best Chicken Marinade Recipe

Best Chicken Marinade Recipe - Chicken recipes are always a crowd-pleaser. This easy  chicken marinade comes together in minutes for juicy, tender chicken every time. 
Prep Time10 mins
Chilling Time1 hr
Total Time10 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chicken breast, chicken marinade, chicken marinade recipe, chicken recipe, chicken recipes, grilled chicken, grilled chicken marinade recipe
Servings: 2 cups
Author: Robyn Stone | Add a Pinch

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic chopped
  • 3 tablespoons chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 1/2 cups beer, ginger ale, apple cider, or apple juice

Instructions

  • Pour olive oil into a 2-cup liquid measuring cup.
  • Mix together salt, pepper, paprika, cumin, and cayenne pepper and add to olive oil. Add garlic, onions, and parsley. Mix together well with a fork. Slowly add beer as it will cause the mixture to foam and bubble slightly.
  • Pour marinade over the chicken in the zip top bag. Remove as much air as possible from the bag and seal. Turn the bag from side to side to make sure all chicken has been coated with the marinade.
  • Place the bag flat on a small, rimmed kitchen sheet pan and into the refrigerator. Allow to sit up to 1 hour or overnight for best results, turning the bag over every few hours to keep the chicken coated.

Notes

Marinade works best for about 5 pounds of chicken.

Enjoy!
Robyn xo

 Best Grilled Chicken Marinade Recipe - Grilled Chicken recipes are always a crowd-pleaser. This easy grilled chicken marinade recipe will become a favorite! // addapinch.com

From the Add a Pinch recipe archives. Originally published 2012.

558 comments on “The Best Chicken Marinade Recipe”

  1. first time trying it doing it for the 4th of July I’ll let you know thanks

  2. Love it. I accidentally used apple cider vinegar the first time I tried this and it turned out fine . I have started using a mixture  of vinegar and white wine. Today I added a sliced fresh jalapeño pepper to part of the mix to spice it up for my nephews’ first visit back to the Southwest after 18 months in Oregon.

  3. Thanks for publishing. BBQ chicken is my favorite so I will be using this marinade. Just me at home and I mostly scratch cook, so I may have time to make the marinade & then be delighted what I find at a Farmers Market,

    A few questions:

    1. How much marinade does this recipe make?
    2. What is the nutrition info? Didn’t see it on this recipe. Thanks.
    3. On what other meats might this go well?
    4. How long might the marinade last in the fridge BEFORE using?

    • Hi Leslie,
      BBQ chicken is a favorite around my house, too. This makes 2 cups of marinade. I didn’t do nutritional value for this marinade since I don’t know how much of the marinade is being absorbed into the meat and it might differ with different types and amounts of meat. I have used this marinade also with pork and it was delicious. You should be able to keep this in the refrigerator up to about 4 days before using. Hope this helps and you enjoy this marinade. Thanks

  4. Going to try making this. I need clarification first. Do you use 1 1/2 cup each of all ingredients beer, ginger ale, Apple cider and apple juice? Or do you pick one from that list?

    • Hi Karen,
      You only use 1 1/2 cups of one of these, whichever you prefer. Hope you enjoy!

      • Have you ever used this marinade to make grilled chicken breast? Wondering if any adjustments should be made to the marinade?

      • Hi Ilana,
        Yes, I have used this marinade with chicken breasts. I didn’t make any adjustments to the recipe. It works best for about 5 pounds of chicken so if you have more, you might want to increase the recipe. Hope you enjoy!

  5. I’ve made this 4 times and it’s always a hit in my house. I’m marinating some for 4th of July tomorrow and am sure it will be another home run! Thanks for sharing. 

  6. Idk if I’m overlooking it but how much chicken legs?

    • Hi Jonina,
      This recipe works best with about 5 pounds of chicken. The recipe is just for the marinade. You can use it with your favorite chicken recipe. Enjoy!

  7. I am marinading my chicken right now, I used apple cider vinegar so hopefully it turns out good. Fingers crossed.

  8. Trying this on 4th of July. Can you baste the chicken with the marinade?

    • Hi Colin,
      I’ve never tried basting the chicken with this marinade. I just leave the chicken in the marinade from one hour to overnight and then discard the marinade.

  9. Do you use BBQ sauce in addition to the marinade when grilling it?

  10. I will be baking the chicken. so do I cover it at first and then take off the cover half way and how long to bake or grill?

  11. Trying this recipe today! Love it when I have all the ingredients on hand. Our BBQ season is short up here in southern Ontario, so I’m making the most of it! I even have fresh parsley ready in the garden 🙂

  12. I need to know within 15 min to now 

    How long do I grill for breast and the temp

  13. Just used this recipe a few days ago for some chicken thighs and drumsticks which we grilled on the bbq grill, and my boyfriend said it was the best chicken he’s ever had IN HIS LIFE!

    So glad I found your recipe!

  14. Am I missing the part of the marinade recipe with how much of each ingredient to use? Also is it fresh garlic and onion? 

  15. Thanks! This was great! Didn’t have parsley and used Prosecco instead of beer, etc., as I had some open, and it turned out wonderfully! Will save this recipe and make again for sure!

  16. Have you or any of your readers tried to substitute orange juice for apple juice in the recipe?

  17. does this taste the same on the stovetop? 

  18. I made it with beer the first time and loved it but my girlfriend can’t have wheat so I’m thinking of trying it with Somersby apple cider. Any thoughts?

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