The Best Grilled Chicken
Updated: Dec 17, 2020
Do you always dip your grilled chicken in some dressing? Or maybe always slather it in hot/BBQ sauce? Or possibly only want in it a salad, but can never find it appeasing just on it's own? Without being fried? This post is for you.
I always find myself making BBQ chicken on the grill and dipping it into ranch. Essentially masking all flavor of chicken entirely and covering it in dressings. Or, seasoning it before grilling and tossing it into a Caesar salad. Which is honestly my favorite salad aside from fried buffalo chicken. But, I wanted more. I wanted yummy, moist (sorry), and to not feel the need to smother it in dressing or dipping sauce.
Recently I was watching this awesome guy on a Youtube show Matt is obsessed with called "Good Mythical Morning" and their chef Josh on "Mythical Kitchen". He gives such useful information about cooking and something that really resonated with me (because I like to cook chicken) was that the only seasoning to actually penetrate chicken or steak is salt or sugar. All the other seasonings and marinades just coat the meat and don't actually flavor the dish.
I thought back to a meal I had at a steakhouse in Minneapolis. They only season with salt and pepper, then top the hot steak cut with a seemingly tiny ice cream scoop of herb butter. I had this idea, that if I treated grilled chicken like steak, it would be flavorful and the herb butter would act as a "dressing" or "gravy" but, it wouldn't completely cover the chicken flavor like thick BBQ sauce and ranch.
People, it was soooo good. I mean, I had to add "s"s it was so good. Juicy, flavorful, then the herb butter just glazed over it. I laid the chicken breast over a bed of roasted green beens and all that perfect herb butter melted right over the veggies.
This dish serves really well with herb potato wedges, or chunks and topped with a dusting of parmesan cheese.
The best part about the entire meal is that it's a beloved pantry dish! Dried herbs, butter, salt and olive oil. Cut up potato chunks, trimmed and tenderized chicken breast, it all comes together perfectly. The gentleman on Good Mythical Kitchen reminded his viewers that an evenly distributed chicken breast cooks best, so be sure to tenderize your chicken to get all of the sides at an even layer. I have a smooth sided tenderizer, but honestly he used a glass bottle of hot sauce to get the job done, so whatever floats your boat. Or flattens your chicken ;)
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, trimmed and tenderized
salt, to coat as seen above
2 TBSP room temperature butter
1/2 TSP dried thyme, basil and 1/4 TSP rosemary
1/2 TSP garlic powder
*use your judgment on the herbs, if you feel like this mix it too potent, add more butter OR cut them down, I generally eyeball my seasonings, these measurements are suggestions
Salt the chicken well and let it rest in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
While the chicken is marinating, make the herb butter topping by combining the butter, dried herbs and garlic powder, mixing together thoroughly then leave at room temperature while the chicken cooks
Heat a cast iron skillet or grill top on MEDIUM and grease it with cooking spray, butter will melt too quickly and then begin to burn. If you have thin pieces of chicken, butter will be okay but try to go with cooking spray. The grill works best, but if that is not an option, cast iron will do the job
If you are grilling the chicken be sure to rotate it at 2-3 minutes for grilling marks, either way flip at 5-6 minutes onto the uncooked side. Rotate again for the underside on the grill
Let rest for 3 minutes on a cutting board or your plate. While resting serve up sides of choice then top the chicken with the herb butter and enjoy!
(Best recommendation is to lay the chicken on a bed of green beans or asparagus, then top with the herb butter)