The Best Chicken Marinade

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Chicken Marinade is so easy to make at home with a few basic ingredients, oil, vinegar, lemon juice, dijon, soy sauce and a bit of brown sugar! This marinade is perfect to make grilled chicken breasts or chicken thighs.

Marinating chicken makes it juicier and tastier and with your own easy recipe, you can tailor your marinade to match the rest of your meal!

Grilled marinated chicken breasts garnished with parsley.

How to Make Chicken Marinade

The best chicken breast marinade starts with an acid, an oil, some good Dijon mustard and herbs/spices for flavor.

Change it up: Substitute balsamic for the red wine vinegar or lemon juice for another favorite citrus (like lime) if that’s what you have on hand.

Going Italian? Use basil and garlic and serve with Italian pasta salad! South of the border style? Add cumin and lime juice! The great thing about a marinade is how easy it is to tailor to what you have on hand!

Whisk together the marinade ingredients in a small bowl and toss with chicken. Or put all the ingredients in a freezer bag, seal it and shake it up. You can add marinade to chicken before freezing it for a tasty meal ready to cook right when it’s defrosted!

A glass bowl with chicken breasts and chicken marinade ingredients.

How Long to Marinate Chicken Breasts

Place boneless, skinless chicken breasts in the bowl or bag and refrigerate a minimum of 30 minutes and a maximum of six hours. If you marinate chicken too long, the acids can break down the fibres in the meat. Remember to always marinate chicken the fridge to keep it at a safe temperature.

Once marinated, the chicken is ready to grill, bake or broil. Discard any marinade.

To Cook Juicy Marinated Chicken

There are so many delicious ways to prepare marinated boneless chicken breasts. In the summer I love to grill this recipe, but baking or cooking on the stove top is a great alternative.

To Grill: Preheat the grill to medium and brush with oil. Grill each breast 7 to 8 minutes per side or until a meat thermometer reaches 165°F when inserted into the thickest part of the breast.

A glass bowl with chicken breasts marinating.

To Bake Marinated Chicken: Place marinated breasts in a shallow baking pan and bake in a preheated oven at 400°F. Bake 22-25 minutes or until chicken reaches to ensure chicken reaches 165°F on a meat thermometer.

To Cook on the Stove Top: Place chicken breasts in a greased skillet on medium-high heat. Turn over after 10 minutes and test for doneness after 10 more minutes.

Whether you cook your chicken on the grill, in the oven, or on the stove top, you’ll be able to create the best chicken marinade in a few simple steps!

More Tasty Marinated Chicken Recipes

Chicken Marinated and grilled on a plate
4.95 from 72 votes
Review Recipe

Chicken Marinade

Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings 4
Author Holly Nilsson
Course Dinner
Cuisine American
This easy marinade makes the perfect juicy chicken and can be tailored to suit your meal!


  • cup vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons dijon mustard
  • 3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts

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  • Combine all marinade ingredients in a small bowl or a freezer bag.
  • Add chicken and marinate at least 1 hour or up to 6 hours.
  • Grill, bake or broil as desired.
To Grill Boneless Chicken Breasts
  • Preheat grill to medium-high heat and cook chicken 7-8 minutes per side or until internal temperature reaches 165°F.
  • Rest 3-5 minutes before serving.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 323, Carbohydrates: 8g, Protein: 25g, Fat: 21g, Saturated Fat: 15g, Cholesterol: 72mg, Sodium: 595mg, Potassium: 562mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 4g, Vitamin A: 50IU, Vitamin C: 4.5mg, Calcium: 40mg, Iron: 1.7mg
Keyword Chicken Marinade


This easy chicken marinade is the best on chicken breasts, thighs or even the whole chicken! With making your own recipe you can easily tailor it to your meal! Greek? Italian? Why not! #spendwithpennies #chickenmarinade #marinaderecipe #grilled #baked
This easy chicken marinade is the best on chicken breasts, thighs or even the whole chicken! With making your own recipe you can easily tailor it to your meal! Greek? Italian? Why not! #spendwithpennies #chickenmarinade #marinaderecipe #grilled #baked
This easy chicken marinade is the best on chicken breasts, thighs or even the whole chicken! With making your own recipe you can easily tailor it to your meal! Greek? Italian? Why not! #spendwithpennies #chickenmarinade #marinaderecipe #grilled #baked

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Holly is a wine and cheese lover, recipe creator, shopping enthusiast and self appointed foodie. Her greatest passion is creating in the kitchen and making deliciously comforting recipes for the everyday home cook!

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  1. Excellent! So easy my kids measured and prepared with me! Thank you!!! Printed this for our family favorite! We did not have red wine vinegar so substituted with balsamic vinegar. Delicious!5 stars

  2. For meal prep purposes… With this recipe, have you tried to you marinate the chicken and then freeze? Thank you!

    1. Hi Bria, we haven’t tried freezing this recipe, but it should work well. Just make sure you give the chicken enough time before freezing or after thawing to marinate before cooking :)

  3. This was perfect! Nice and salty but the brown sugar really balances it out.

    The only slight difference was I used olive oil as opposed to vegetable oil. I think olive oil marinates better. Just my opinion!

    Great recipe!5 stars

  4. worked great, but i beg to differ on using boneless skinless chicken

    does this tast different on wings, legs, thighs, bone-in breasts?

    probably best to leave the type of chicken out of marinade, or is this a recipe ?

    just sayin

    1. Hi Dave, you can use this marinade on any chicken. But if using boneless chicken breasts we have included grilling instructions for the perfect marinaded chicken breast!

  5. I just drooled a little! This sounds like a perfect combination of spices and seasonings for the chicken. Can’t wait to try!5 stars

  6. Yum! I need to try this. I regularly make chicken breasts to use for our son’s sandwiches and he’s been asking for more variety. the brown sugar here would make it a winner I suspect!5 stars

  7. I cooked the chicken breasts on medium high heat for the time allotted for the coming but the center is still raw and the chicken partially burnt!1 star

    1. So sorry to hear that Franco. As per the directions, you will want to make sure the chicken cooks to an internal temperature of 165°F to ensure it is not raw in the center.

    1. Hi Debby, we recommend marinating for a maximum of 6 hours. If you marinate chicken too long, the acids can break down the fibers in the meat.

  8. This is my new go-to marinade. My picky family loves it. Use mostly when I’ve done bone-in thighs & legs in oven. Comes out juicy & full of flavor. Delish!!!!5 stars