Healthy Chicken Marinade

This healthy chicken marinade for skinless breasts or any other cut of chicken is prepared in under 5 minutes with stocked fresh ingredients.

A handful of herbs and spices that you probably already have in your pantry and refrigerator is all that is needed.

A mixture of marinade for chicken breasts in a clear mixing bowl.

Healthy Chicken Breast Marinade

With so many ways to cook up chicken, people often overlook the simplest and healthiest way to do so: marinate with olive oil and herbs, then bake it.

Even though chicken is a healthy source of lean protein, coating it with breadcrumbs and deep frying the heck out of it doesn’t make it still a healthy choice.

According to Healthline, fried foods are high in calories and trans fat, which can lead to all kinds of health issues.

But you already knew that, right?

Now let’s face it, chicken can sometimes be boring to eat, but this delicious marinade will leave you wondering why you never thought of this sooner.

All the ingredients for chicken breast marinade.

Ingredients needed:

As mentioned earlier, the ingredients are common and may already be stocked in your kitchen. Here is what you’ll need:

  • Lemon juice from fresh lemons – adds flavor and tenderized the chicken.
  • Worcestershire Sauce – check below for a link to a homemade version.
  • Olive oil – I used extra virgin olive oil. This healthy fat adds flavor and moisture to the chicken.
  • Herbs – Oregano, parsley, and basil. I like to use fresh herbs, when possible. Dried herbs can also be used. The recipe card gives the amount for dried herbs.
  • Garlic cloves
  • Paprika
  • Salt and pepper to taste

The marinade is perfect amount for about 2 pounds of chicken. Double the recipe if needed.

Most times I buy four chicken breasts that are about 8 ounces each.

A clear bowl with homemade marinade for chicken.

How to make chicken marinade

To make this marinade all you need is a large mixing bowl, whisk, and a ziplock bag or container with a lid that seals tightly.

  1. Add all marinade ingredients to a medium bowl and whisk until completely combined.
  2. Add chicken to large resealable bag.
  3. Pour marinade over chicken, seal bag.
  4. Place in refrigerator to chill up to 4 hours. Turn bag a couple of times to ensure marinade is on each piece of chicken.
  5. Remove from refrigerator and set at room temperature, 20-30 minutes before baking.

Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 165° Fahrenheit.

Is olive oil good for you?

Extra virgin olive oil is rich in antioxidants and one of the oils that doesn’t require a lot of processing.

The oil is from squeezing the olives, which gives us monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs), which is considered to be one of the healthiest fats available.

According to Medical New Today, not only is olive oil a healthy fat, but there are several studies that support the the benefits of this fat such as the following;

  • Beneficial to our cardiovascular system
  • Protects our nervous system
  • Reduces the risks of some cancers
  • Slows the progression of Alzheimer’s disease
  • Helps repair liver damage
A white baking dish with cooked chicken breasts.

Can you freeze marinade?

One of the best things about this recipe is that you can make it in batches and freeze for up to 3 months.

Just take it out of the freezer and transfer it to the fridge for 24 hours to thaw. Awesome!

Another thing I love about this recipe is that you get all the flavor from the fresh herbs and spices and still get to taste the yumminess of the chicken because remember, chicken doesn’t have to be boring.

Preparing this healthy chicken marinade honestly can’t get any easier.

Healthy chicken breast marinade is keto friendly

Honestly, how great is that?

And of course this recipe is totally keto friendly for those of you who are watching your carbs and calories.

No sugar or thickeners, just naturally healthy ingredients!

Top overhead view of cooked chicken breasts.

Healthy chicken marinade for all cuts of chicken

Though this recipe calls for skinless chicken breast you can most certainly use any cut of chicken you prefer.

If your protein intake is important to you, you can find the protein content of different cuts of chicken here.

I use chicken breast because of the wonderful tenderness and juiciness you get from baking in this healthy marinade.

In addition, I usually use regular store purchased Worcestershire sauce, but ironically, I also have a homemade vegan Worcestershire sauce recipe that whips up in seconds!

Sliced chicken breasts on a cutting board ready to enjoy.

Cooking alternatives

Is your slow cooker your cooking weapon of choice? No problem.

You can most certainly toss this in the slow cooker for about three hours, go run errands and come home to dinner all ready for you!

For those who love to grill your chicken, fear not.

You can toss this on to your bbq (for this option I would definitely poke tiny holes in the chicken if you are grilling without the skin!) and get that yummy bbq flavor added to the already scrumptious flavor of the marinade.

If you prefer stove top cooking, you can pan fry the chicken with delicious results.

No matter which way you prefer to cook, you can’t go wrong with this healthy chicken marinade.

Ways to use cooked chicken breasts

Now that you have your chicken cooked, be sure to check out these ideas and recipes for inspiration:

The options are endless. Let me know how you are enjoying your cooked chicken!

A horizontal view of sliced chicken on a brown wood cutting board ready to enjoy.
A mixture of marinade for chicken breasts in a clear mixing bowl.

Healthy Chicken Marinade Recipe

Healthy chicken marinade for chicken breasts or any cut of chicken. This easy marinade adds flavor as well as tenderizes the chicken.
4.70 from 13 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Condiment
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chicken marinade, chicken marinade recipe, healthy chicken breast marinade, healthy chicken marinade
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Additional Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 1 Cup
Calories: 572kcal
Author: Sandra Sandra

Ingredients

Chicken Marinade

  • ½ cup fresh lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons Worcestershire Sauce
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons fresh oregano minced or 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • ¼ cup fresh parsley minced and lightly packed or 4 teaspoons dried parsley
  • ¼ cup fresh basil minced and lightly packed or 4 teaspoons dried basil
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper

Chicken

  • 2 pounds of skinless chicken breasts or any cut of chicken.

Instructions

Chicken Marinade

  • Add all marinade ingredients to a medium bowl and whisk until completely combined.
  • Add chicken to large resealable bag or other container with a lid.
  • Pour marinade over chicken, and seal.
  • Place in refrigerator to chill up to 4 hours. Turn bag half way through marinading to ensure all chicken is coated.
  • Remove from refrigerator and set at room temperature, 20-30 minutes.

Bake

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  • Set out 13×9 baking dish and lightly coat with olive oil or olive oil cooking spray.
  • Place chicken in baking dish.
  • Discard marinade.
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes or until
    internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F. 
  • Remove from oven and let chicken rest 5 minutes before slicing.

Slow Cooker

  • Lightly coat the inside of the slow cooker with olive oil or spray with cooking spray.
  • Place chicken in a slow cooker.
  • Discard marinade.
  • Cover and slow cook on low for 3-4 hours or until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F. 
  • Remove from oven and let chicken rest 5 minutes before slicing.

Grill

  • Lightly coat the grilling grates with olive oil.
  • Pre-heat grill to 400 degrees.
  • Place chicken on the grill.
  • Discard marinade.
  • Cook chicken for 4-5 minutes on each side or until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F.
  • Remove from grill and let chicken rest 5 minutes before slicing.


Notes

I use 4 chicken breasts that are about 8 ounces each.

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 572kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 76g | Fat: 25g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 18g | Cholesterol: 213mg | Sodium: 578mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 2g

Disclaimer

Please note that the nutritional information provided are guidelines and may vary based on the brand of products used. For your specific nutritional goals use My Fitness Pal or Verywell Fit recipe calculators. All content within this site is not intended as medical diagnosis or treatment and should not be considered a substitute for professional medical expertise.

PIN TO YOUR SAUCE AND CHICKEN BOARDS

Cooked chicken doesn't have to be bland or smothered in a sauce to add flavor. This marinade recipe is healthy and easy to make! Use on all cuts of chicken, then bake, slow cook or grill. Check out the details on The Foodie Affair blog. #chicken #marinade #healthyrecipe
Sandra The Foodie Affair Post Signature

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4.70 from 13 votes (13 ratings without comment)

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2 Comments

  1. This chicken marinade is AMAZING!! I cannot get over what a difference it made to the flavor of my chicken breasts I grilled last night! I will never use another! Thanks!

  2. A top notch healthy chicken marinade! The weather has been mild so I made this last night to bbq, oh my word! Plus, I doubled it and froze some for next time I need a quick meal! Thanks!