One of the best ways to enjoy chicken breasts is steaming hot and juicy right off a grill. Grilling can be labeled as an art form that must be perfected if you want optimum results. There are several other foods that you can grill, but they hardly beat perfectly grilled chicken breasts that you can pair with just about sauce or side dish you want. However, learning the proper steps to achieve such perfection is required. Read on for a simplified guide to grilling chicken breasts.
Grilling may look like it'd be a tough lesson from afar, but all it requires are basic cooking skills and your ability to modify recipes to your personal preferences. Did you know that one of the easiest ways to get the chicken to cook thoroughly is by pounding it? Do you know how best to get those beautiful grill marks on the chicken for an even more appealing dish? These and many more will be discussed below.
To start, we will outline the steps to take before and after getting the chicken on the grill.
Things To Do Before Getting Your Chicken On The Grill
These include preparing the chicken as well as the grill itself.
Like you would typically, wash the chicken properly. Afterward, pound it. A mortar will work well for this as long as you can get the breasts flat enough so that they cook thoroughly and evenly no matter what time they use on the grill.
Unlike the marinade-brine glaze, brining is essential to grilling chicken. It helps the chicken stay moist while on the grill and also helps it get the perfect grill marks for a dish that will make your mouth water just at its sight!
To brine the chicken, submerge and let it soak in a salt solution for as little as 30 minutes and a maximum of 12 hours.
This is an optional step, but a marinade-brine hybrid can be your secret key to getting the tastiest chicken breasts. Unlike the typical brining solution, which is a mixture of salt and water, this hybrid recipe requires the addition of honey, vinegar, and spices of your choice to the brine solution. It is made slightly thick so that it can be used as a glaze for the chicken before they are placed on the grill.
This is another method that is less heard of despite its many benefits. Just like an oven, a grill that is preheated will help cook the chicken faster. How long this requires depends on the type of grill you use as well as its size. For a gas grill, preheating it for about 10 to 30 minutes is perfect; if you are using a charcoal grill, let it preheat for about 15 to 25 minutes.
Learn the difference between direct and indirect heat to determine which is right for you
In grilling, the term "direct heat" refers to cooking the chicken directly over the heat source i.e., your grill. This method helps you get distinct grill marks quickly. On the other hand, cooking the chicken with "indirect heat" means that it is placed adjacent to the heat source; this cooks the chicken thoroughly.
Learning to combine these two methods is the optimum achievement in grilling. First, use a fast flame to get the grill marks then use indirect heat to get the chicken done to the correct temperature without drying it out.
Make sure the chicken is thoroughly cooked by checking the temperature.
Use a digital probe thermometer is a vital tool for grilling. Although you have worked to help the chicken cook quickly and thoroughly, don't rush to get it off the grill. Insert a probe thermometer into the thickest part of the chicken; the optimum temperature for cooked chicken is 165°F.
Our last worthy mention is the grill marks! Do the following to get them right:
Clean your grill grates before usePat the chicken breast dry to remove excess surface moisture that may cause steaming instead of searing. Cook the chicken over direct heat for three minutes to get gorgeous grill marks and then move to indirect heat and cover until it cooks.
We hope you enjoy it!