This delightful Lemon Rosemary Chicken Marinade boosts the flavor of plain chicken to amazing with its tangy citrus and rosemary herb taste! Like all of my wonderful chicken marinades, it’s super easy to make and can marinate in the fridge or go straight into the freezer for weekly meal prep!
Lemon Rosemary Chicken Marinade Recipe
Rich, tangy, and incredibly delicious are just a few words that describe this easy-to-make chicken marinade! I especially love the lemon kick of adding freshly squeezed lemon juice and zest!
This citrus-based marinade adds the perfect flavor to your ho-hum chicken. These are classic chicken pairings for flavors, but they work just as wonderfully for an everyday dinner or date-night entree!
Use this tasty marinade on chicken for grilling, pan-searing, roasting, or chicken wing appetizers!
This simple marinade combines 7 ingredients to make an intensely flavorful marinade! The best part is that these are ingredients that I always have on hand and in the pantry!
- Olive Oil – extra virgin olive oil adds the best flavor with these Italian-inspired herbs! You can use whichever cooking oils you have available at home, but do keep in mind their smoke points if you will be cooking the chicken over high heat!
- Garlic – minced garlic will help balance the citrus and herb flavor in this super easy marinade. The unique flavor of garlic adds a warm, earthy contrast to the tangy lemon! To replace fresh garlic use 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder instead.
- Lemon Juice – is easily one of my favorite marinade bases! Take the lemon ‘zing’ up a notch and add the zest from your lemons as well!! Can you use bottled lemon juice? Sure thing! It certainly works in a pinch. Meyer lemons are also a great boost to the flavor profile!
- Rosemary – the pungent woodsy flavors of rosemary also has a hint of citrus that pairs exceptionally well with lemon! Use a few sprigs of fresh rosemary or dried rosemary as shown here.
- Thyme – the very noticeable floral flavor of thyme makes this simple marinade so very addictive! I certainly wouldn’t drink this marinade, but will happily drown chicken or pork in it any day!!
- Salt & Pepper – your base spices used to highlight and heighten all of the fabulous and delicious flavors of this chicken marinade!
How To Make Lemon Rosemary Chicken Marinade
Start with grabbing a ziploc plastic storage bag, or a freezer bag if you plan on cooking the chicken later. I swear by using the bags for marinating rather than placing your chicken in a container.
Of course, what you use is up to you. However, the marinade is in constant contact with all of the chicken surfaces when bagged 🙂
- Grab a small bowl and combine the olive oil, lemon juice, rosemary, thyme, salt, and pepper. *You can use an immersion blender to break up the herbs for an even more intense flavor!
- Place the chicken and marinade in your plastic storage bag, then squeeze out any excess air while securely sealing the bag.
- Massage the marinade into the chicken by squishing the bag and making sure that the chicken is evenly coated with the lemon-rosemary marinade.
- Transfer the chicken to your refrigerator and allow to marinate for 4 hours. The marinated chicken can be frozen for up to 3 months.
Note that if you will be grilling whole chicken breasts, it is best to flatten the chicken meat for quick and even cooking. Place your chicken breasts between two sheets of plastic cling film and pound with a meat mallet or tenderizer ( the flat side ). Start at the center of the chicken breast and work your way toward the edges.
Your chicken needs to marinate for at least 15 – 20 minutes before cooking. The longer you can let the chicken marinate, the more super lemony marinade it can absorb!
I would usually recommend at least 4 hours, or overnight ( 8 hours ) for optimal marinating. However, you can marinate the chicken for up to 2 days refrigerated. This is the maximum amount of time that I would marinate the chicken in a citrus-based marinade.
While frozen chicken pieces can usually be stored in the freezer for 6 months or more, I recommend a maximum of three months. Allow the frozen marinated chicken to thaw while refrigerated overnight.
The marinade will slowly seep into your chicken while it thaws, infusing the chicken with an amazingly zingy citrus herb flavor!
Check out all of my wonderfully tasty and oh-so-easy chicken marinades in one place! The marinades are absolutely perfect for grilled, pan-fried, or oven-baked chicken breasts, thighs, wings, skewers, and more!
Lemon Rosemary Chicken Marinade
- 1/4 cup olive oil (extra virgin)
- 1/4 cup lemon juice (about 2 medium lemons juiced)
- 1 Tbsp rosemary
- 1/2 Tbsp thyme
- 1/2 Tbsp garlic (minced)
- 1/2 tsp each, salt & pepper
- In a small mixing bowl combine all ingredients (olive oil, lemon juice, rosemary, garlic, thyme, salt, and pepper) and mix well.
- Pour the marinade into a ziploc plastic storage bag then add the chicken. Squeeze out the excess air while you seal the bag securely.
- Rub the marinade into the chicken through the bag by squishing the marinade around the bagged chicken.
- Refrigerate for at least 4 hours for best results. Freeze for up to 3 months.
If you will be grilling whole chicken breasts, it is best to flatten the chicken breasts for quick and even cooking. Place your chicken breasts between two sheets of plastic cling film and pound with a meat mallet or tenderizer ( the flat side ). Start at the center of the chicken breast and work your way toward the edges.
Angela is an at home chef that developed a passion for all things cooking and baking at a young age in her Grandma’s kitchen. After many years in the food service industry, she now enjoys sharing all of her family favorite recipes and creating tasty dinner and amazing dessert recipes here at Bake It With Love!