View this slideshow to learn how to marinate chicken and to find some great new chicken recipes to help you hone your skills.
1. Start with:
Boneless, skinless chicken breast, 1-1 1/4 pounds for 4 servings. Choose one of the rubs or marinades. Each makes enough for 1 1/4 pounds chicken.
2. Marinate or Rub:
For marinated chicken: Place chicken in a shallow dish or 1-gallon sealable plastic bag. Add the marinade and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 12 hours. Remove and pat dry before grilling or broiling. For dry-rubbed chicken: Coat chicken with the rub up to 30 minutes before grilling or broiling.
3. Grill or Broil:
To grill: Preheat grill to medium-high. Oil the grill rack. Grill the chicken, turning once, until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part registers 165°F, 4 to 8 minutes per side. To broil: Position rack in upper third of oven; preheat broiler. Line a broiler pan with foil; coat with cooking spray. Place the chicken on foil. Broil until a thermometer inserted into the thickest part registers 165°F, 10 to 15 minutes.
Check out some of the rubs and marinades we recommend followed by meal recipes.
*Analyses are for three ounces marinated or rubbed cooked chicken.
Whisk 1/2 cup reduced-sodium soy sauce, 1/4 cup sake (or mirin), 2 tablespoons light brown sugar, 2 minced garlic cloves and 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger. Makes: scant 1 cup. Per serving*: 135 calories; 3 g fat (1 g sat, 1 g mono); 263 mg sodium.
Combine 2 teaspoons each light brown sugar and dry mustard, 1 teaspoon onion powder, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt and 1/4 teaspoon white (or black) pepper. Makes: about 2 tablespoons. Per serving*: 140 calories; 3 g fat (1 g sat, 1 g mono); 196 mg sodium.
Take a look in your pantry (go ahead—we'll wait!): If you have ingredients like soy sauce, garlic powder, paprika, balsamic vinegar and garlic, you can throw together a flavorful rub or marinade in minutes. That's all you need to take chicken breast from flat to bodacious, upping its juiciness without sacrificing its lean profile. It's even better when you opt for homemade over store-bought, because you're in charge of the ingredients. You can skip the preservatives, colorings and additives, keep sodium and sugar in check and choose olive oil (high in heart-healthy monounsaturated fats) over the less-healthy oils used in many commercial marinades. Want a break from chicken? Try other meats such as fish or tofu.
Check out the slideshow above for a guide to marinating chicken and additional recipes.