Grilled Balsamic Chicken

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This tender, juicy, grilled balsamic chicken is so easy to prep ahead and throw on the grill at dinnertime! It’s a new favorite that’s perfect for any occasion.

A grilled chicken breast on a plate with grilled veggies and tomatoes.

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As a family, we eat a lot of chicken! This lean, versatile protein makes an appearance on our dinner table more often than not, and I’m always looking for new ways to cook it up.

I cook some chicken breasts every week to use in various way throughout the week. I’ll use them to top a quick BLT salad, or dice them up and throw them into a soup for extra protein. I use them to make chicken salad, or wraps, or to cut in chunks for the kids’ lunchboxes. The possibilities are endless!

Although I often cook them plain with just salt and pepper (they can be juicy and delicious plain, if you do it right!), I also love a good marinade, for a flavor boost that makes them suitable for serving on their own with a quick side. This Greek marinade is a long time favorite, but this tangy balsamic marinade is another versatile and delicious option.

In the winter, I tend to sauté my chicken breasts in a pan, but in the summertime, I love to put them on the grill whenever I happen to be grilling something.

This grilled balsamic chicken is juicy, tangy, so full of flavor, and incredibly easy to make. Whether you’re hosting a backyard BBQ, making this grilled balsamic chicken salad, or just looking for a quick and healthy weeknight dinner, this grilled balsamic chicken is a winner.

Why You’ll Love This Grilled Balsamic Chicken Recipe

It’s Quick and Easy: With just a handful of ingredients and minimal prep time, you’ll have a delicious meal ready in no time.

a plate of grilled chicken breast with roasted veggies and cherry tomatoes.

It’s Healthy: Packed with protein and made with wholesome ingredients, this dish is as nutritious as it is tasty.

It’s Versatile: Use it in this grilled balsamic chicken salad, summer veggies like this grilled zucchini and summer squash, or on top of this fresh tomato alfredo pasta for a complete meal.

Ingredient Notes

Chicken Breasts

I use boneless, skinless chicken breasts for this grilled balsamic chicken. They cook quickly on the grill and stay juicy with a great balsamic marinad, and as long as you don’t overcook them!

You can also use chicken thighs, or drumsticks for this recipe if you prefer them.

Olive oil

The olive oil acts as a base for the balsamic marinade, helping to coat the chicken and lock in moisture. I like to use extra virgin olive oil for all its health benefits and rich flavor.

Balsamic Vinegar

Known for its tangy, rich, and sweet profile, balsamic vinegar infuses the chicken with a deep, complex flavor that also caramelizes beautifully on the grill.

Dijon Mustard

The mustard adds a mild tang and a bit of spice, enhancing the overall depth of the marinade. Its creamy texture helps emulsify the marinade, making it cling to the chicken.

Garlic

Freshly minced garlic cloves are best but you can also use garlic powder in a pinch.

Salt & Pepper

For seasonings, I like to use kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Fresh basil

I like to finish my grilled balsamic chicken with some chopped fresh basil. You can also finish it off with some parsley!

Don’t forget to watch the video!

Most of my recipes include a short step-by-step video tutorial. Just scroll down to the recipe card, or use the “Jump to Video” button at the top of the post!

Step by Step Instructions

  1. If your chicken breasts are on the thicker side, use a meat mallet to pound them to an even thickness, or slice them horizontally to create chicken cutlets.
  1. In a large bowl, a glass container with a lid, or a baking dish, whisk together the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, Dijon mustard, minced garlic, 1/4 tsp of salt, and 1/4 tsp of black pepper until well combined and emulsified. Set aside 2 tbsp of the marinade for basting later.
mixing marinade ingredients in a glass container
  1. Add the chicken breasts to the bowl or container, ensuring they are fully coated in the balsamic marinade. Cover and refrigerate to marinate for at least 30 minutes and up to 24 hours. 2-3 hours is optimal.
chicken breasts placed in the balsamic marinade
  1. Heat your grill pan to medium heat. Remove the chicken breasts from the balsamic chicken marinade and season lightly with salt and pepper.
marinated chicken on a plate seasoned with salt and pepper
  1. Place the chicken on the grill grate and cook for about 5 minutes on the first side. Flip the chicken and grill for an additional 3-5 minutes, basting once or twice with the reserved marinade, until the chicken is cooked through, and reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees F on your meat thermometer.
grilling balsamic chicken on a grill
basting chicken breasts with excess marinade
  1. Once the grilled balsamic chicken is cooked, let it rest for a 5-10 minutes, then sprinkle it with fresh basil and serve with your favorite grilled veggies, salad, rice, or potatoes.
balsamic grilled chicken breasts on a dish with fresh basil and cherry tomatoes

Tips for the Perfect Grilled Balsamic Chicken

  • Make sure your chicken breasts are of even thickness for uniform cooking. You can either pound the thicker parts down or slice them horizontally to make chicken cutlets.
  • Marinating the chicken for 2-3 hours in the refrigerator will yield the best flavor for this grilled balsamic chicken. Avoid marinating for more than 24 hours as the acid in the marinade can start to break down the meat too much.
  • Preheat your grill to medium to ensure the chicken cooks evenly without burning the outside. If using a gas grill, this typically means a temperature around 350-375°F.
A grilled chicken breast on a plate with roasted veggies and cherry tomatoes.
  • Olive oil in the marinade can cause flare-ups on the grill. To prevent this, ensure excess marinade is shaken off before placing the chicken on the grill.
  • Use a meat thermometer to ensure your chicken is cooked through. The internal temperature should reach 165°F. Insert the thermometer into the thickest part of the chicken for an accurate reading.
  • Let the balsamic grilled chicken rest for a few minutes after removing it from the grill. This helps the juices redistribute within the meat, making it more tender and flavorful.
  • For beautiful grill marks, avoid moving the chicken too much while it’s cooking. Place it on the grill grates and let it cook undisturbed for a few minutes before flipping.

Storage Instructions

This grilled balsamic chicken is great for meal prep because you can make some and store in airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to 3-5 days. If you want to freeze it, you can put it in the freezer for up to 3 months.

A grilled chicken breast on a plate with a bite on a fork.

Serving Suggestions

  • You can serve the sliced grilled balsamic chicken over a bed of mixed greens, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, red onions, and feta cheese.
  • Serve alongside grilled vegetables like zucchini, bell peppers, asparagus, and red onions or roasted potatoes like these roasted potatoes and asparagus.
  • Serve the chicken over a bed of fluffy quinoa mixed with chopped fresh herbs, diced tomatoes, and cucumbers.
  • You can also slice the chicken thinly and wrap it in a tortilla with lettuce, tomatoes, avocado, and a drizzle of ranch or Caesar dressing.

FAQ

Can I make this balsamic chicken on the stovetop or in the oven instead of grilling?

Sure! To cook this chicken in a skillet, preheat your skillet to medium with a tablespoon of olive oil, and cook for 5-7 minutes per side, until cooked through. To bake this chicken, preheat your oven to 425F, place the chicken breasts in a greased baking dish, and bake for 20-25 minutes until cooked through.

Why is my grilled chicken dry?

Dry chicken is generally a result of over-cooking, and since chicken breasts are so lean, they can be easy to overcook. For juicy chicken, grill it with the lid closed, and use a meat thermometer and take it off the grill as soon as it reaches 165F. Let the chicken rest after taking it off the grill to allow the juices to re-distribute in the meat. The time needed to cook the chicken will vary based on the size of your chicken breasts, so it’s best to check with a thermometer rather than relying on the time.

Tell me what you think!

If you try this recipe, l’d be so grateful if you’d leave a comment and a rating in the recipe card. I love to hear your feedback, and your tips can help other readers too!

A grilled chicken breast on a plate with a bite on a fork.

Grilled Balsamic Chicken

This tender, juicy. grilled balsamic chicken is so easy to prep ahead and throw on the grill at dinnertime! It's a new favorite that's perfect for any occasion.
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate Save
Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
marinating time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 331kcal
Author: Ann Otis

Ingredients

  • 4 chicken breasts
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • kosher salt
  • black pepper
  • Fresh basil chopped

Instructions

  • If your chicken breasts are quite thick, pound the thicker part down to get an even thickness, or slice them horizontally to make chicken cutlets.
  • In a large bowl, or glass container with a lid, whisk together the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, dijon mustard, garlic, ¼ teaspoon of salt, and ¼ teaspoon black pepper until well combined and emulsified. Reserve 2 tablespoons of marinade for basting.
  • Add the chicken to the bowl or container and toss to coat completely. Cover and transfer to the refrigerator to marinate for at least 30 minutes or up to 24 hours (2-3 hours in optimal).
  • Preheat your grill to medium. Remove the chicken from the marinade and sprinkle with a little more salt and pepper.
  • Grill for about 5 minutes on the first side, with the lid down, flip, close the lid, and grill another 3-5 minutes, basting once or twice with reserved marinade, until cooked through. Let the chicken rest for a few minutes before serving, and sprinkle with fresh basil.

Video

Notes

Storage Instructions
This grilled balsamic chicken is great for meal prep because you can make some and store in airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to 3-5 days. If you want to freeze it, store in a freezer-safe container for up to 3 months.

Nutrition

Calories: 331kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 48g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 0.03g | Cholesterol: 145mg | Sodium: 278mg | Potassium: 851mg | Fiber: 0.1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 69IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 16mg | Iron: 1mg
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