In episode 68, host Taryn Solie teaches you how to grill boneless skinless chicken breast with a Greek seasoning. In addition to step-by-step instructions, you’ll hear Taryn’s two main tips to prevent leaner cuts of meat from drying out. And once you’ve grilled up the perfect chicken breast, there are some meal suggestions for what to pair it with. Tune in for some dinner inspiration!
These are some of the recipes mentioned in the episode, all of which are on Hot Pan Kitchen.
- Dry Brined Greek Chicken Breast
- Greek Salad with Chicken
- Greek Rice Salad
- Grilled Zucchini
- Grilled Onions
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- Episode 67: Grilling Greek Lamb Skewers
- Guide to Internal Temperature for Grilling Meats
- Episode 46: Dry Brining a Turkey
- Diamond Crystal kosher salt
- Salt conversion chart from Epicurious
- Grilling tongs
Taryn Solie: Hello grillers, and thank you for tuning in today! I am your host, Taryn Solie, and I am here to give you some grilling inspiration.
In the last episode, number 67, we talked about how to make lamb skewers with a Greek-inspired seasoning. Today we’re sticking with a similar seasoning but changing the meat – we’re going to be grilling boneless skinless chicken breast.
Chicken breast is a popular cut of meat, but it can be difficult to grill because it’s lean, meaning it has a lower fat content than other types of meat like beef or pork. Leaner cuts of meat can dry out when cooked or grilled for too long, and there are really two key things you can do to prevent that from happening.
One is to know the internal temperature you need to cook to, as well as be able to measure the internal temperature. For chicken, you want to cook it to an internal temp of 165 degrees F. Particularly with chicken breast, if you go over that it starts to turn dry and almost dusty. So get a meat thermometer so you can measure the temp of your meat while grilling – I’ll link to the one we love and have used for years on the show notes page.
The other key thing to help prevent chicken from drying out is to brine it, and you can either do a wet brine or a dry brine. I talked about brining in episode 46, where I went over how to dry brine a turkey, and the concept is the same for chicken breasts.
First, to explain dry brining, you rub salt onto your chicken (or other meat) and let it sit to soak in the salt for flavor. What actually happens is the salt draws the moisture out of the chicken, the moisture mixes with the salt and forms a brine that then gets absorbed back in to the meat itself. The salt affects the proteins in the meat so when you go to cook the chicken, the meat stays juicier and is more flavorful.
Now you can also do a wet brine, where you let the chicken breasts soak in a water and salt solution for a period of time, but I find dry brining to be much easier and less messy. Also, with wet brining, the chicken holds on to the water that’s in the brine solution, which might make it juicy but not as flavorful as just absorbing salt without the added water.
So for this recipe, we’re going to dry brine the chicken breasts, and here are the ingredients you’ll need:
- 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, which is between 1 and 1.5 pounds of chicken;
- 2 tsp of Diamond Crystal kosher salt, for the dry brine;
- 1 tsp of oil;
- ½ tsp of onion powder;
- ½ tsp of garlic powder; and
- 1 tsp of dried oregano.
A quick note about the kosher salt. This recipe specifically uses Diamond Krystal kosher salt, which is my preferred salt for cooking and grilling. This is because it’s less salty by volume than other salts, which leaves more room for error when salting your food. If you’re using a different type of salt, you’ll want to adjust the measurement a bit and I’ll link to a resource on the show notes page for how to do that.
Okay, onto the instructions!
Start out by placing the raw boneless skinless chicken breasts on a cutting board and drying them off with a paper towel – this will help the salt stick to them better. Use a sharp knife to remove any fatty pieces.
Sprinkle the kosher salt on both sides of each chicken breast, rubbing it in with your hands to make sure the surface of both breasts is covered. At this point you’ll refrigerate the breasts, and you can either do that on the cutting board or in a different dish, like a plate or flat-bottom bowl. You want to leave the breasts uncovered, but if you’re worried about bumping into them when you open the fridge, you can loosely cover them with a piece of plastic wrap. Keep them in the fridge for 8 to 10 hours – I like to brine them in the morning, then come back and grill them for dinner.
When you’re ready to cook the chicken, go ahead and remove the breasts from the fridge and pour the oil over both sides of both chicken breasts. Use your hands to rub the oil on the chicken to make sure the surface is fully covered.
Measure out the spices and combine them in a small bowl, then sprinkle the seasoning mixture over both sides of each chicken breast. Again you want to use your hands to make sure each breast is evenly covered.
Heat your grill to 375 degrees F and use a pair of tongs to place the chicken breasts on the grill. Close the lid and cook for 5 minutes. When the 5 minutes are up, open the lid and flip the breasts over, again using the tongs. Close the lid once more and cook for another 7 to 10 minutes, until the internal temperature of the chicken breasts reaches around 165 degrees in the thickest part of the breast. You can remove the breasts from the grill a couple degrees before they reach 165 degrees F for their internal temp as they will continue to cook for a minute or two after taken off the heat.
Place the grilled chicken breasts on a cutting board and let them rest for 5 to 10 minutes, then slice them up and serve!
My family loves to eat this chicken on top of a Greek salad with cherry tomatoes, kalamata olives, cucumber, and some feta, but it’s also really great on its own. I have a Greek rice salad that would be great with it, or even just some grilled veggies like zucchini or onions. And of course you could serve it alongside some pita and tzatziki sauce too.
I’ll include a link to the full printable recipe for this Greek-inspired grilled chicken breast, as well as the other recipes I’ve mentioned, on the show notes page. To get to it you can either go to my main website at Hot Pan Kitchen dot com and click on podcast in the main menu, or you can click on the link provided in whatever podcast app you’re listening on.
If you enjoyed this recipe, consider subscribing to the show on your favorite podcast platform so you don’t miss out on future episodes! I’ve got so many more great grilling and smoking recipes you’re going to love.
That’s it for today, thank you so much for listening, and until next time, keep grilling like a mother.