4 Chicken Marinade Recipes Using Basic Ingredients

You can’t make a good chicken dish, without a good marinade recipe. You can, but it will turn out dry and tasteless, almost forcing you to become a vegan. We know a lot of marinade recipes, but these 4 easy chicken marinade recipes only require you to use some basic ingredients. The amount of each ingredient is considered for a pound of chicken, or roughly 500 grams. There’s a substitute for almost all ingredients you may not own, or at least a different version that produces the same effect.

chicken marinade recipes

Easy Chicken Marinade Recipes

When it comes to easy chicken marinade recipes, chicken can be marinated in only two ingredients: oil and salt. Add lemon juice and garlic to that, and you got an even tastier chicken marinade recipe for today’s main dish. If that is all you have in your kitchen right now, because those are the basic ingredients needed for your culinary magic, go ahead and mix away. Mince the garlic, add the salt and lemon, stir in a dash of olive oil and rub the chicken thoroughly. But in case your list of basic ingredients includes other basic herbs, spices, and condiments, scroll down and take screenshots. These marinade recipes will be all you ever needed.

Tangy Chicken Marinade Recipes


  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • Lemon zest (2 small-medium lemons)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup olive oil


In a bowl, mix the salt and pepper, lemon juice and garlic, in that order. Jumble the contents with a fork or spoon and add the zest and oil. Mix them well, until the salt is dissolved. This pungent marinade sauce is great if you can let it sit for an hour before using. That way all the aromas will mix together and transfer on the meat.

Sweet and Tangy Chicken Marinade Recipe Ideas


  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
  • A pinch of black pepper
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • Lemon zest (1 small-medium lemon)
  • 2 small-medium garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 table spoons of hot pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup of honey
  • 1/3 cup of soy sauce
  • 1/3 cup olive oil


Mix the salt and pepper, lemon zest and garlic in a deep bowl. Press well with a spoon and add the soy sauce and honey. Once well blended, pour the olive oil and sugar. Best to use before the sugar is completely dissolved: Tip: add sugar just before marinade time.

Saucy Chicken Marinade Recipes


  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 1/3 tablespoon mustard
  • 1/4 cup spicy balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon dry dill or marjoram
  • 1/3 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon honey, or 1 ½ tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup olive oil


Add the dill, salt and pepper in a bowl and cover them with the vinegar. Add the garlic, mustard, and sour cream and mix well. Finally, mix in the oil and sugar/honey cover the meat with this sweet and saucy blend. Toss and turn to coat well, and let the meat sit and marinate for an hour or two. Not the best chicken marinade for barbeque. Steer safe around aluminum covered, baked chicken recipes, saucepan recipes and closed pies.

Classic Italian Chicken Marinade Recipe


  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon mustard, whole
  • 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 ½ teaspoon oregano, thyme, rosemary, or mix all three
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, or minced fresh garlic
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1/2 cup olive oil


Mix the salt, pepper, spices and vinegar in a bowl. Add the garlic, honey and mustard, and mix until combined. Pour the oil last and transfer the mix on the meat. Turn to coat on each side and cover with foil for at least an hour. Best for marinating meat overnight or as a base for a tasty chicken sauce recipe.

Cooking tips and tricks for chicken marinade recipes

Chicken, like all meat, is best when bought fresh. But, fresh meat is not always available, so we compensate with a good marinade. To make sure your meat marinates well, you need to make sure the marinade touches all parts and bits in the pan. So don’t choose an oversized pan for marinating. The juices will run around the pan, without thoroughly soaking the meat.

Skinless chicken breasts or tights can be poked with a fork before or during the marinate process. You can also use a mallet or another heavy object to beat the meat to make it tender. That way, the juices and flavors can enter the meat and make it amazing. You can do the same with whole chickens, wings and tenderloins.

To prepare the meat in a saucepan or a baking dish, pour some of the marinade mix at the bottom of a large plate. Arrange the chicken inside, and pour the rest of the marinade. Make sure all chicken is dipped in the aromatic juices of the marinade. Or you can just put the meat in a ziploc bag, pour the marinade inside, lock it and put it the fridge. Massage the meat while inside the bag, so it all gets covered in juices and aromas.

If you don’t have fresh herbs and spices, use their dry version. Just soak them in vinegar before using, so they can stay flakes (not dust) during the entire cooking process. Just remember that dried herbs shrink in size, so make sure you don’t over season your dish. Be especially careful with the powdered garlic, because too much can ruin a good recipe.

If you’re meat lovers, it’s best to make these meat dressing recipes ahead, and use them throughout the week. Just don’t add the brown sugar and sour cream when you prepare them, you can re-add them later, just before marinating the meat. Vinegar, mustard, salt, pepper and some herbs is basic salad dressing anyway, so make a load to last you a month.

When the marinade is too thick and dry, you can always add wine or beer. Chicken goes with white wine, so don’t rush to throw away your party leftovers.



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