5 Steps to Perfectly Juicy Grilled Chicken

Emily Abbate
Food & Party
62

grilled chicken
This summer, you'll probably go to at least two or three barbecues. And while burgers, hot dogs, and corn on the cob are summer staples, I'm guessing there's been at least one other thing on the grill: chicken

While barbecued chicken is a hot-weather favorite, it's also an easy target for charring -- and even worse (eek!) drying out. But fear not! Check out our 5 tips for perfectly grilled chicken:

1. It's all in the seasonings: Make sure to taste your particular marinade or rub before you put it on the chicken. This will help you avoid a cooking disaster later on. Mix it up by trying a few different barbecue sauces, or a blend of marinades and spice rubs.

2. Make sure the grill is greased: It's important for the chicken to have either a good rub with oil or a marinade to make the outer layer moist. This will prevent the pieces from sticking to the grates of your grill. Just in case, use a bit of non-stick cooking spray too.

3. Use the right utensils: A pair of tongs or a large metal spatula are the best tools for handling meat on the grill. That way, you won't have tons of poke holes from prongs or forks, allowing the chicken to be more evenly cooked and the juices to stay inside. It will also look prettier!

4. Allow the heat time to cook your chicken: A common mistake for novice grillers is leaving the barbecue top open. Closing the lid lets the meat cook fully because the grill acts more like an oven.

5. Make sure it's cooked all the way through: The thicker the piece of chicken, the longer it will need on the grill. Just because it's been on the grill for a while doesn't necessarily mean it's done. Chicken should be cooked until its internal temperature is 170 degrees and there is no visible pink.

Now that you have all the tips you need to be successful, check out this tasty recipe for Easy Tandoori Chicken:

Ingredients:

  • 4 tablespoons Greek yogurt
  • Juice and rind from 1 lemon
  • 2 tablespoons tandoori paste
  • 2 tablespoons fresh, ground ginger root
  • 4 chicken breasts, pounded thin

Instructions:

1. Mix the yogurt, lemon juice/rind, tandoori paste, and ginger together in a small bowl. This mixture will serve as the marinade for your chicken. Spread the marinade over the breasts, cover, and refrigerate overnight.

2. Heat your grill to a medium-high heat and lightly oil the grate. Place the chicken on the grill (using the easy tips above) and barbecue until no longer pink. Serve with your choice of sides. We recommend grilled flatbread and raita!

Do you have any tips of your own for perfectly grilled chicken?


Image via iStock.com/quavondo

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