Get perfectly juicy chicken on the inside and stunning grill marks on the outside by grilling your chicken at 400ºF over direct heat for around 15 minutes.
The key to grilled chicken recipes is the internal temperature. Make sure to grill until it reaches around 160ºF.
Grilled chicken is a summer staple in our house. Heck, even in the dead of winter when it’s snowing, we’re making grilled chicken breast (I have photo and video to prove it)!
My go-to recipe involves chicken breasts, a few seasonings, and grilling chicken over direct heat at around 400ºF until the internal temperature reaches 160ºF.
We’ve got lots of grilled chicken recipes on Fit Foodie, so if you’re looking for a different cut try our other popular variations: grilled chicken legs, grilled chicken thighs, beer can chicken, or grilled spatchcock chicken.
What You Need for Grilled Chicken
- Chicken breast: we recommend boneless, skinless chicken breast for this recipe. If possible, buy chicken breasts that are similar in thickness so that they have similar cook times.
- Seasonings or marinade: this recipe keeps things very simple with salt, pepper, and garlic powder, however I love using a few teaspoons of our chicken seasoning or chicken dry rub. In addition, you use one of our chicken marinades or our epic grilled chicken marinade, for flavor too.
- Meat tenderizer + cutting board: while this isn’t always necessary to perfect grilled chicken, we recommend pounding out your chicken so it’s equal in size
Top Tips for Grilling Chicken Breast
- Remove moisture before cooking
- Grill at 400ºF for around 15-20 minutes
- Cook until chicken reaches 160ºF
- Let rest for 10 minutes after grilling
Our biggest tip when storing grilled chicken breast is to let it cool completely before refrigerating, so that moisture doesn’t condense.
So, let it cool, transfer the leftovers into an airtight container and store it in the fridge for up to 3-5 days.
What to do with Leftovers
There are so many amazing recipes you can make with leftover chicken! Try a chicken salad, grilled chicken salad, a buffalo chicken wrap!
Looking for meal inspiration to pair with your grilled chicken recipe? Check out some of our favorite grilled sides that you can pair with your chicken breasts: Grilled Asparagus in Foil, Baked Potatoes in Foil, Grilled Zucchini, Grilled Carrots, and Foil-Pack Grilled Red Potatoes.
How to Grill Chicken
- 1 – 1.5 lbs. boneless skinless chicken breasts 3-4 medium-sized chicken breasts
- 2 –3 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- ⅛ teaspoon ground pepper
First, prepare the chicken by using a meat tenderizer to make sure your chicken is similar in thickness throughout.
Season the chicken breasts on both sides with garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Option here to sub out 1-2 tablespoons of your favorite dry rub. Set aside for at least 15 minutes. The longer the chicken sits, the more flavorful it will be.
Next, preheat the grill to 400ºF and spray grates with cooking spray
Grill chicken breasts over direct heat at 400ºF for around 7-8 minutes. Then, flip chicken breasts and continue cooking for 8-10 more minutes. You know the chicken breast is done cooking when the internal temperature reaches 160ºF – 165ºF.
Remove from the grill and let rest* for at least 5-10 minutes before serving. The chicken breasts will continue to rise in temperature around 5ºF.
TIPS & NOTES
- Cook time will vary depending on the size of your chicken breast. Thicker chicken breasts will take longer, just make sure to cook until the internal temperature has reached 160ºF. You know your chicken is completely cooked once it reaches an internal temperature of 165ºF. We use an instant read thermometer for this, that way you don’t take any risks in eating raw chicken. You can learn more about cooking here from this great article by the USDA.
- Your chicken will continue to cook once you remove it from the grill and the internal temperature will continue to rise.
- This recipe was slightly updated on July 19, 2023.