Nothing makes me hungrier then the smell of grill in the air in the summer. So when I get home in the evening and my neighbors have beat me to it and that incredible smell of grilled veggies and meat greats me in my driveway, I love to have something ready to go to throw on our grill as soon as I walk in the door.
That and the fact that my daughter has already asked me 152 times what we are having for dinner in the 5 minute drive since I picked her up from school.
So my go-to is chicken that I can start marinating the night before or the morning of. Most weeks in the summer we are making chicken one of these ways and eating for dinner for two nights and I'm probably having it for lunch one day as well.
The key to not getting bored is bold and different flavors. Each of these chicken marinades comes from very different flavor profiles. Also, if you don't feel like firing up and cleaning the grill, or its just pouring down rain outside. Or maybe your husband left the propane tank on the last time he grilled and now its empty and you can't start your gas grill (I have heard of this happening before to other wives). Or maybe its so hot outside it feels like you are standing 2 feet from the sun just walking outside onto your front porch (hello North Carolina) and the thought of standing next to a grill is obscene. No problem, all of the following recipes can be thrown in the oven instead, just dump all of the chicken into a Pyrex with the marinade and bake on 425 until chicken reaches 165 degrees measured by a cooking thermometer, or about 25-30 minutes for legs or thighs, and 40-45 minutes for breasts. The following are marinade enough for 8- 10 pieces of chicken.
Here we go:
Asian Grilled Chicken Marinade:
- 1/2 cup soy sauce
- 2Tablespoons toasted sesame oil
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1 Tablespoon chopped fresh ginger
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 3 green onions chopped (optional)
Whisk ingredients together in a bowl until combined, pour over chicken either in a gallon ziplock bag or Pyrex dish and cover. Refrigerate for 8-24 hours. Let marinade drip off each piece of chicken before grilling. Grill over medium high heat. Take remaining marinade and put it in a small sauce pan on the stove over medium heat and bring to a simmer, then lower the heat to medium low and let simmer for 5 minutes. Baste chicken with marinade before removing from the grill. Grill chicken for about 6- 8 minutes per side, longer for thicker chicken breasts, or until chicken reaches 165 degrees at the thickest part.
Thai Chicken Marinade:
- 1-1/2 cups chopped fresh cilantro
- 1 can coconut milk
- 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves (large hand full)
- 1 large or 2 small jalapeños chopped, seeds and membranes removed
- 4 garlic cloves
- ¼ inch slice of peeled fresh ginger
- 1-1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1-1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
- ¾ teaspoon ground coriander
- 2 teaspoons packed brown sugar
Put peeled garlic in a blender or food processor and pulse until chopped. Add the rest of the ingredients and blend until smooth. Pour over chicken in either a gallon ziplock bag or Pyrex and cover and refrigerate for 8-24 hours. Let marinade drip from the chicken pieces and place on a well oiled grill. Grill chicken for about 6- 8 minutes per side, longer for thicker chicken breasts, or until chicken reaches 165 degrees at the thickest part.
Peach Chipotle Chicken Marinade:
- 3/4 cup Peach or Apricot preserves
- 2 chipotle peppers in adobo, diced and 3 teaspoons of the sauce
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
Combine the ingredients and wisk together in a bowl and pour over chicken (we really like using legs for this recipe) or combine ingredients in a gallon ziplock back and mush together and then add the chicken. Marinate in the refrigerator for 8-24 hours. Let marinade drip from the chicken pieces and place on a well oiled grill. Grill chicken for about 6-8 minutes per side, longer for thicker chicken breasts, or until chicken reaches 165 degrees at the thickest part.