With a 24-hour marinade Greek Chicken infuses chicken breasts with vibrant Greek flavors. Juicy & tender Greek chicken has been a family favorite for years!
Greek Chicken brings classic Mediterranean flavors to juicy, succulent chicken. This is a go-to recipe in my family dinner rotation. I’ve been cooking this recipe for decades, and they’re still requesting it! This simple recipe transforms plain chicken breasts into flavorful works of culinary magic!
The Greek flavors shine, and it all comes together with about five minutes of prep. It’s a showstopping main dish but flexible enough to use to make Greek chicken gyro.
Grab some flatbread and wrap it up gyro style! Just remember- you’ve got a 24-hour marinade to plan for!
How to Make Greek Chicken?
One of the best things about Greek Chicken is its simplicity!
24 hours before cooking: Whisk together the ingredients for the marinade. Pour it in a gallon Ziplock bag and add the chicken. Seal it up and move the chicken around to coat evenly. Refrigerate for 24 hours.
When it’s time to cook, preheat the grill. Remove the chicken from the bag and discard the leftover marinade. Remember food safety when grilling chicken. It needs to reach 165° which usually takes about eight minutes on each side.
This recipe translates easily into Greek Chicken bake as opposed to grilled. See the recipe notes for instructions!
1. Mix all the ingredients for marinade.
2. Pour it in a ziplock bag and add the chicken. Refrigerate for 24 hours. When it’s time to cook preheat grill and grill the chicken until cooked.
What Ingredients Do You Need To Make Greek Chicken Marinade
My Greek Chicken Marinade mixes common ingredients into an exceptional blend of flavors. Olive oil and lemon juice make up the liquid. For spices, you’ll need salt, pepper, garlic, dried oregano and dill, and fresh rosemary and flat-leaf parsley. You will use the zest of the lemons and a little bit of sugar to round it all out!
In some Greek Chicken marinade yogurt is added, and others make Greek Chicken recipe feta cheese is included. Honestly, I prefer it without the dairy! This marinade is simply delicious just the way it is!
What Do You Serve With This:
You’ve got a winner-winner chicken dinner, but now you need to decide what to serve with Greek Chicken. Here are some tasty suggestions!
Great Side Dishes:
Greek Chicken and rice or a simple side salad are a couple of quick and easy combos. If you want something a little fancier, try my Antipasto Salad that’s jammed packed with olives, salami, veggies, and pasta. Pasta Salad always is a classic side to a grilled main dish. My favorite combo is Mediterranean Salad. It carries the Greek flavors right on through the entire meal!
Of course, what’s dinner without a yummy dessert? Lemon Ricotta Cookies are a perfect way to end the meal with their bright lemony flavor. My Atlantic Beach Pie or Pineapple Sunshine Cake are both super easy and make you feel like summer- no matter what the temperature is outside!
More Recipes We Have Our Eye On:
Greek Lemon Chicken
Quick and easy Greek Lemon Chicken uses a luscious lemon marinade that’s versatile enough for the skillet, grill, or oven!
Greek Chicken And Potatoes
Greek Chicken and Potatoes infuses flavor throughout the dish with a low and slow bake to get tender meat and delicious potatoes.
Greek Chicken Salad
Use cooked chicken like rotisserie or leftover Greek Chicken to whip up this eat-like-a-meal Greek Chicken salad!
Greek Chicken Kabobs
Similar to a Greek Chicken Souvlaki recipe, Greek Chicken Kabobs offer perfectly seasoned meat and veggies skewered and grilled.
Recipe Notes For Greek Chicken:
Marinating Time: The only tricky part about this recipe is the timing. It’s important to marinade the chicken for 24 hours. That seems to be the “magic number” to impart the chicken with that deep, prominent lemon-and-herb flavor we all want. If you’re pressed for time (who isn’t!), you could marinade for a minimum of 12 hours, but any less than that and you’ll miss out on the zesty “Greek” part of Greek chicken.
It’s also risky to marinade for any longer than 24 hours—the lemon juice can begin to affect the finished texture of the chicken, making it rubbery and not at all like the crisp, grilled chicken you were hoping for.
Herbs: You can make it up with fresh or dried herbs. Truthfully, it always seems that I have the dried oregano, rosemary, and dill on hand in my spice rack. So typically that’s what I use to make up the marinade. Instead, save any of those fresh herbs you may have to top of the finished chicken for a little extra flavor spike. You don’t have to use all three—I often use just one of the herbs and mix it with a little fresh flat-leaf Italian parsley.
Convert For Baking: The recipe below calls for the chicken to be grilled, but baking it can be just as delicious. Here are the baking instructions:
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Remove the chicken from the marinade and shake off any excess. Discard the used marinade.
- Lay the chicken in a 9×13 baking dish and bake for 35-40 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through to 165 degrees.
Fresh Lemons: This recipe uses both lemon zest and lemon juice. There’s a good reason for it. Lemon zest contains high levels of the essential oils that give lemons so much of their delicious flavor. We include the zest, amazing flavor that simply can’t be achieved using only lemon juice.
Removing lemon zest can be tricky. You don’t want to accidentally get the bitter pith (the white part of the peel) in your delicious marinade. I use a microplaner (sort of like a really fine grater) and have been really happy with this handy kitchen tool.
Sugar: Don’t skip out on the sugar. It seems like such a small amount, and you may be tempted to just omit it entirely. But the sugar actually acts to enhance the flavor of the lemon. It tempers the acidity of the lemon a little bit which allows the flavor profile of the lemon to really shine.
How Many Lemons: In lemon-based recipes, the question is always, “How many lemons will I need?” The trick is really the size of the lemons you buy. If you buy small lemons, you can expect four of them to produce about 1/3 cup of lemon juice. With larger lemons, you can probably get by with two or three. I’ve found that one and a half small lemons give you about one tablespoon of zest. But, again, if you tend to buy large lemons you might only need one.
Must Have Tzatziki: And, of course, I love making good Tzatziki to go along with any Greek recipes. This tangy, yogurt-based sauce is really versatile. It’s a great companion to the Greek chicken in that way. Please don’t bother with store-bought Tzatziki, it doesn’t even. Need a good recipe for Tzatziki? I’ve Posted my favorite along with a photo below.
Greek Chicken Recipe
This Greek Chicken Recipe is definitely near and dear to my heart. I bet it becomes a regular on your dinner rotation too!
- 6-8 Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast Trimmed of Any Fat
- 1/2 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 1/3 Cup Fresh Lemon Juice
- 1 Tablespoon Fresh Lemon Zest
- 1 Tablespoon Garlic Cloves Minced
- 1 Teaspoons Dried Dill
- 2 Teaspoons Fresh Rosemary
- 2 Teaspoons Dried Oregano Crumbled
- 1/2 Teaspoon Salt
- 1/2 Teaspoon Black Pepper
- 1/2 Teaspoon Granulated Sugar
- 1/4 Cup Fresh Parsley Chopped
- In a small bowl, whisk all the marinade ingredients together.
- Place chicken breasts in a 1 gallon Ziplock. Pour marinade into bag, seal bag and lay flat in a rimmed baking dish and refrigerate for 12 hours minimum to 24 hours maximum.
- Remove from marinade, shaking off any extra, and cook on the preheated grill, about 8 minutes per side, depending on the temperature of your grill, and the thickness of your chicken, or until cooked through and registers 165 degrees with an instant-read thermometer
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