Take your ordinary chicken dinner from ordinary to extraordinary with this quick & easy balsamic chicken marinade. Requiring just a few pantry ingredients, you’ll get a sweet and savory chicken that’s perfectly juicy all with little effort. A short list of ingredients and quick marinade time is all you need for this time-saving recipe will become your go-to marinade!

Closeup shot of grilled chicken breast on an oval platter being drizzled with a balsamic based sauce. The platter is surrounded by small containers with olive oil, herbs, and spices.

Visual Guide: How to Make Balsamic Chicken Marinade

Jump to Recipe Instructions

Testing Notes from Robyn

A quick and easy marinade is the simplest way to elevate a basic chicken, just like my curry chicken marinade and Greek chicken marinade.

And this honey balsamic chicken marinade has become my new go-to marinade for any occasion because I almost always have the ingredients in my pantry.

It quickly infuses chicken breasts (or thighs) with garlicky and herby flavors, and the honey and balsamic vinegar give a lovely caramelized finish and a deep flavor.

I love balsamic vinegar because it’s such a versatile ingredient! It imparts so much flavor, meaning you don’t need a ton of other ingredients.

I use it in my balsamic vinaigrette and slow cooker garlic balsamic chicken, and this easy marinade is another recipe in that list with very minimal prep time and minimal ingredients you likely have on hand.

This is also a great time-saving recipe because the chicken only needs to marinate for 30 minutes (or up to 4 hours), but in reality, if you’re strapped for time, you can get away with a 15-minute marinade.

Then either cook them quickly on the grill or in the oven, serve with a few easy sides, and you have a meal in no time!

Closeup shot of grilled chicken breast on an oval platter. The platter is surrounded by small containers with marinade, olive oil, herbs, and spices.

FAQs

Can I make balsamic chicken marinade ahead?

Yes! I recommend marinating at least 30 minutes and no longer than 4 hours, however if you need to make it further ahead of time, you can freeze the chicken in the marinade for a later time.

Simply add your chicken and marinade to a 1-gallon zip-top freezer bag and stash away in the freezer. When you’re ready to use, let it defrost in the fridge.

How do I store and freeze?

Once cooked, the balsamic chicken keeps well in the fridge for up to 3-4 days, in a sealed container.

You can also freeze the cooked chicken when stored in a sealed freezer friendly container for up to 2-3 months.

What should I serve with balsamic chicken?

What doesn’t go well with this chicken? The flavors go well with so many different side dishes including creamy cabbage slaw or any of my quick and easy BBQ side for grilled chicken! It also is a great way to add protein to red pesto pasta, sun dried tomato pasta salad, or orzo pesto salad.

How else can I use the marinade?

The marinade is great with shrimp, steak, and vegetables like portobello mushrooms. For fish, shrimp, or vegetables, just marinate for 30 minutes maximum.

Overhead shot of grilled chicken breast on an oval platter. The platter is surrounded by small containers with marinade, olive oil, herbs, and spices.

This Recipe Is…

Closeup shot of grilled chicken breast on an oval platter. The platter is surrounded by small containers with marinade, olive oil, herbs, and spices.
5 stars (5 ratings)

Balsamic Chicken Marinade (5-Ingredients!)

Elevate chicken with this easy balsamic chicken marinade! All you need is a few pantry ingredients, and you’ve got sweet and savory chicken that’s perfectly juicy.

Ingredients

  • cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon no-salt added dried Italian seasoning
  • 1 ½  teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, or thighs

Instructions 

Grilling Instructions

  • Whisk the balsamic vinegar, olive oil, honey, mustard, garlic, Italian seasoning, and salt together in a large baking dish or 1-gallon zip-top bag until well combined.
  • Set aside 2 tablespoons of the marinade.
  • Toss the chicken in the marinade in the baking dish or zip-top bag to coat, then press as much air out of the bag (if using) as possible, or cover with plastic wrap (if using a baking dish). Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, or up to 4 hours, flipping halfway through. 
  • When ready to grill, heat a gas grill to high. Allow to preheat, then remove the chicken from the marinade, shake off any excess, and discard any remaining marinade from the bag or dish.
  • Grill, with the cover down, for 5-6 minutes, then flip, and grill uncovered until the internal temperature reaches 165F, about 5-6 additional minutes.
  • Remove to a cutting board and allow to rest for 5 minutes. Drizzle with the remaining 2 tablespoons of marinade. Slice against the grain into ½ inch slices and serve.

Oven Baking Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 425F. Remove the chicken from the marinade. Discard any remaining marinade. Add the chicken to a foil or parchment lined baking sheet. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the internal temperature reaches 165F.

Notes

See blog post, above, for substitution suggestions, storage, and more. 

Nutrition Information:

Serving: 1 (of 4), Calories: 359kcal, Carbohydrates: 9g, Protein: 48g, Fat: 13g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 7g, Cholesterol: 145mg, Sodium: 655mg, Potassium: 880mg, Fiber: 0.3g, Sugar: 8g, Vitamin A: 78IU, Vitamin C: 3mg, Calcium: 29mg, Iron: 1mg
Nutrition disclaimer
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