Grilling is an excellent way to cook chicken breasts – especially during warm and sunny months when days are longer and dining outdoors is ideal. Whether you choose to grill, bake, pan-fry, stir-fry, deep-fry or poach, the versatility and popularity of chicken breasts is undeniable. A classic mealtime favourite, not only can this cut be prepared in many ways but also using a myriad of different flavours.
Either boneless and skinless, bone-in and skin-on, or somewhere in-between, chicken breasts benefit from a well-seasoned spice rub or quick marinade. Not only will this add flavour-packed vibrancy, it can help tenderize meat as well. Up to two hours marinating time in the refrigerator is recommended.
Think of mild-tasting chicken breasts as a bit of a blank canvas upon which you can build a diverse array of flavours and aromas while cooking. The possibilities are endless!
- Everyone loves tacos, and Turmeric Chicken Tacos with Tomato Avocado Salsa is a delicious dish to serve when company is coming. Set out bowls of taco toppers, such as shredded cheese or lime wedges, to allow diners to get creative and customize.
- Club House La Grille No Salt Added Barbecue Chicken Seasoning has all the zesty flavour you need in one convenient package. It’s perfect for shaking on grilled chicken breasts, and also on thighs, drumsticks and whole chickens. Speaking of whole chickens, try flattening whole chicken for more even cook time on the grill. To flatten (also known as “spatchcock”), use a good set of kitchen shears or chef’s knife to cut down and along by sides of backbone to remove it. Flip chicken over, then press down to flatten breastbone. You can also have your butcher do this for you.
- A main course salad featuring grilled chicken and broccoli slaw, Szechwan Chicken Strips is superb enjoyed al fresco on hot summer nights with family or on weekend get-togethers with friends.
- Make it a wrap – a sandwich wrap, that is. Simply season boneless, skinless chicken breasts with Club House La Grille No Salt Added Chicken Seasoning and grill. Once cooked, let rest for a few minutes before slicing chicken into strips. Spread flour tortillas with mayonnaise then top with chicken, shredded lettuce, diced tomatoes and cooked, crumbled bacon. Fold, roll and enjoy. Montreal Grilled Chicken Wraps is a slightly different spin on this.
- For lip-smacking smoky, rich and tangy flavour, brush Club House La Grille Gourmet Chicken & Rib BBQ Sauce on chicken breasts, wings or just about any other favourite cut of chicken during the final 10 minutes of grilling. And for outstanding sandwiches, shred cooked chicken then heat through with BBQ sauce thinned out with a little water or broth. Pile saucy “pulled chicken” on hamburger buns and top with creamy slaw.
More Chicken Breast Tips and Techniques
- Temperature: Use an instant-read thermometer inserted in centre of chicken to make sure the internal temperature has reached 165°F (74°C). For smaller cuts, including flattened chicken breasts or chicken strips, make a cut in meat to ensure it’s no longer pink inside. Bone-in breasts will take a bit longer to cook than boneless.
- Rest Time: While this applies more to larger cuts of meat, whole chicken breasts will also benefit from a brief five-minute rest time after grilling and before cutting into meat. This will allow juices to settle and meat to reach its most tender perfection.
- With Skin: Selecting skin-on chicken breasts will help keep meat moist by providing a barrier from direct heat, while also adding a little fat to an otherwise lean cut. If you so choose, the skin can be removed once cooked. However, that skin becomes irresistibly golden brown and crispy once cooked which, in turn, provides the perfect complementary contrast to juicy meat.
- With Bones: Bone-in chicken breasts are flavourful while also helping to keep chicken from drying out while cooking. Pound for pound, they are usually more economical than boneless, skinless counterparts.
- Skinless and Boneless: Some benefits to boneless, skinless chicken breasts include being convenient, easier to eat and quicker to cook. Ideal for sandwiching on toasted buns or chopping for salads, they can also be pounded thin or stuffed and rolled before cooking. Ultimately, the chicken lovers’ choice is yours.