It will be grilling season soon, and that means it’s time to find out how to grill the perfect boneless and skinless chicken breast.
Chicken can be very tricky on the grill, so here are some tips.
Key areas to concentrate on when preparing to grill the perfect chicken breast include chicken breast selection for the grill, marinading the chicken, and grilling the boneless chicken breast.
When you are preparing to grill a boneless and skinless chicken breast, the first thing you need to do is choose your chicken breast. Many grocery stores will have very thin cut chicken breasts on sale during grilling season.
Avoid these at all costs. They will cook too fast on the grill. You want to choose a nice thick chicken breast like this —
Keep in mind they will plump some as they grill from the juices inside heating up, so you don’t need to choose the jumbo size either. Try to avoid choosing boneless and skinless chicken breasts with a lot of rib meat if you can, as it will have to be removed before grilling.
This is because that meat tends to be very fatty and fuels grill flares.
After purchasing your boneless and skinless chicken breast, your next step is a marinade or rub.
My suggestion with chicken breasts is to use a nice liquid marinade. Chicken tends to take less time to absorb the flavor of a liquid marinade than steak does, so you can usually marinade a boneless and skinless chicken breast for your grill in about three hours.
If you are using a marinade that has a high sugar content make sure you shake off any excess marinade before placing the boneless and skinless chicken breast on the grill.
If you marinade your chicken in BBQ sauce this is especially important as the sauce will burn quickly.
Once you have your chicken marinaded, fire up your grill. Make sure the goals are nice and hot and ashen over appearing grey in color.
I highly recommend a three zone cooking method for boneless and skinless chicken breast on the grill.
This means making a stack of charcoal two briquettes high under one third of the cooking surface. For the middle third use a standard one layer of briquettes. For the final third use no charcoal briquettes at all.
When grilling your boneless and skinless chicken breast you should sear it for 2 minutes per side over the grilling surface that has the double layer of charcoal.
Next move your chicken over the single layer of charcoal for about five minutes. Finally, finish your chicken over the area with no coals.
When sitting over this section it is a great time to coat it with barbecue or fresh marinade (never use the marinade you had the raw chicken in), close the lid of your grill and give it another 3-5 minutes to form a glaze on the chicken breast.
After removing your boneless and skinless breast from the grill, make sure you let it sit for at least five minutes. This allows the juices to redistribute just like they do in a steak.
After the five minutes the boneless and skinless breast you have grilled is ready to serve.
Following these steps will ensure that you have a moist boneless and skinless chicken breast cooked on the grill with plenty of flavor.