Low carb chicken recipes don’t have to be dry/bland/chewy chicken, and this Mediterranean chicken marinade is the proof! This is one of the most flavorful Mediterranean chicken recipes I’ve got, it’s a total game changer!
It’s one of those healthy recipes that utilizes plenty of sensual spices to coax out Mediterranean flavors and balsamic vinegar to tenderize the chicken to succulent juiciness. Once you try this Mediterranean chicken marinade, you’ll understand why its one of my favorite low carb chicken recipes ever!
Hungry yet? Let’s get started…
I love that this Mediterranean chicken marinade has such a bold flavorful quality and it makes the chicken so tender and juicy! Nothing is more off-putting than dry chewy chicken – eeuwww!
I know that I never have to worry about that with this recipe and it sets my mind at ease but there are other reasons to love this recipe too.
- Recipe defines simplicity
- No dishes needed
- Tenderizes chicken to succulent juiciness
- Bold Mediterranean flavor
Making this awesome Mediterranean chicken marinade infuses bold vibrant flavors into your chicken. You’re going to love serving this almost as much as you love eating it. The flavor is surprisingly delicious!
Letting the chicken rest when you take it off the grill (or out of the oven) is the key to keeping it succulent and juicy. There is science behind it but basically a 10-minute resting time allows the juices to evenly redistribute among the fibers of the meat so they don’t spill out when you cut it.
Mediterranean chicken marinade calls for balsamic vinegar along with some citrus, olive oil and spices. Balsamic vinegar is not a wine vinegar, but it’s made from grapes via a special process.
The sweet undertones make it ideal for marinades and dressings while the characteristics of vinegar do a fantastic job of tenderizing meat to a melt in your mouth consistency. Plus, balsamic vinegar is low carb. Yay!
Using lemon juice is also important in this recipe. Not only does it help to tenderize the meat but the natural sugar content in the lemon juice actually caramelizes when exposed to heat.
This helps to thicken the marinade and makes it stick to the chicken as it’s cooked.
Tools To Make This Low Carb Dinner
Here is the beauty of this recipe!! All you need is a large Ziploc bag (or two) and maybe some tongs or whatever you’ll use to grill your chicken! The simplest of low carb dinners!
You can marinade your chicken in an airtight container, but it works best in a Ziploc bag. Air causes oxidation which can work against you and degrade the quality of your chicken.
Marinating in a Ziploc bag and squeezing the air of it helps ensure that all the yummy flavors permeate your chicken completely. Plus, there are no dishes to wash which is always a positive in my book!
Healthy Dinner Storing Tips
You’ll definitely want to store your healthy dinners leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge.
If I’ve got a busy schedule, then I’ll pre-make my marinade and store it in an amber colored mason jar in the fridge. (Light, air and heat are enemies to both balsamic vinegar and EVOO, hence the tinted jar.)
Then I just have to pull out my Ziploc and my chicken when the time is right. (I like to keep things as simple as possible.)
Can You Freeze This?
Yes, you can absolutely freeze this Mediterranean chicken marinade. I like to go ahead and cook the chicken, then freeze it — but your kitchen your rules.
Meal Prepping Tips
Prepping and planning prevents poor performance and it makes the week so much easier! Here are a few tips to help along the way.
If you prefer to freeze the Mediterranean chicken marinade by itself (without the chicken), ice trays work really well. Just be sure to cover them with wax paper and saran wrap. Then you can thaw as much as you need.
If your family schedule is super hectic (like mine), you can freeze the chicken in the marinade in single-serve portions. Then just thaw exactly what you need according to who will be home for dinner.
Simply take your chicken out of the freezer the night before and slow thaw it in the fridge. The marinating process will start again as the chicken thaws and you won’t believe the vibrant flavor!
Adapting this Mediterranean chicken marinade to your specific taste is super simple.
Smooshing a few raspberries and tossing them in there adds loads of flavor with sweet undertones. If that’s too extreme, then try playing with the spices.
Try using cardamom, ginger or maybe even turmeric for some unforgettable old world flavor options.
Za’atar is another tasty Mediterranean option you can toss into the mix. It’s a savory, citrusy spice blend that includes dried sumac, marjoram, salt and other enticing spices.
How Can I Make This A More Healthy Chicken Marinade?
Mediterranean chicken marinade is a pretty health conscious option but there are others. Try my Greek chicken marinade or go with a simple balsamic chicken marinade, depending on your meal and personal preference.
They both offer tender juicy chicken with layers of flavor that you can easily build a meal around!
What Citrus Can I Add To This Marinade?
Citrus is a key element in this Mediterranean chicken marinade (for multiple reasons). Lemon chicken marinade is probably the most popular, but lime chicken marinade runs a close second. They both work the same way and the flavor differences are subtle.
Personally, when I use the lime chicken marinade I like to garnish with fresh cilantro! It just adds that extra pop of flavor that complements the lime.
Can I Make This Marinade Spicy?
Yes!! I love spicy! I typically make the spicy chicken marinade on the weekends because I feel like I have more time to enjoy meals with my family.
If you just want a little extra kick but maybe not specifically a spicy chicken marinade, then just add extra red pepper flakes to your Mediterranean chicken marinade.
You can also go an entirely different direction by making chipotle chicken marinade. That slightly sweet smoky flavor is enough to curb any craving. It’s absolutely de-lish!
Can I Add Sauce To This Marinade?
Sure, if you like! Turn this into a teriyaki chicken marinade or a soy sauce chicken marinade for a dish with an oriental flair. I love chicken with a sweet and tangy flavor profile and it can be served so many ways.
You can also go with the proverbial BBQ chicken marinade for a flavor-packed dish reminiscent of childhood weekends in the backyard with the fam! Remember when the neighbors strolled over because the smell permeating the backyard was just so irresistible?
Can I Use This Marinade On Any Chicken Cut?
By all means! Using this Mediterranean chicken marinade on any part of the chicken is not only okay, its recommended! There’s no need to look for a chicken thigh marinade or a chicken wing marinade specifically, unless you just want to.
Personally, I use the chicken breast when I’m looking for a meal on the lighter side. BUT, if I’m ready for a treat, then I’ll cut up a whole chicken and toss it in the Mediterranean chicken marinade.
The thighs happen to be my favorite, but I love tasting all the savory cuts of chicken, especially in this vibrant marinade!
Mediterranean Chicken Marinade
- Add all ingredients to a large resealable bag, seal, and toss to combine.
- Place bag in the fridge for 3 hrs - overnight*.
- Heat grill to medium high heat**.
- Clean and grease grates.
- Add chicken and cook on each side for 5-7 minutes, or until it flips easily without sticking to the grates -- you'll know the chicken is done once the inside has reached an internal temperature of 165 F.
- Place cooked chicken on a plate and loosely tent for 10 minutes before slicing***. Enjoy!
Once you get your hands on some great low carb chicken marinade recipes, the world is your oyster! Not only will you look like a rock star in the kitchen, but you can also count on everyone being home on time for dinner.
Plus, it’s a super easy way to add some variety to your weekly menu without spending a ton of money. Here are some of my favorite low carb chicken marinades.
- Asian Chicken Marinade
- Bourbon Chicken Marinade
- Grilled Chicken Marinade
- Jerk Chicken
- Chicken Fajita Marinade
Marinating chicken is just an easy hassle-free way to add tons of flavor that’s easy to build a meal around. Mediterranean chicken marinade makes the chicken so moist and succulent you’ll want to slap your knee every time you take a bite (but you’ll have to wipe your chin instead).
The best part is that you can cook your chicken just about any way you want and still enjoy those yummy layers of flavor. Whether you are doing meal prep or just looking to add some variety to your dinner menu…
Mediterranean chicken marinade is the way to go! Give it a try and let me know what you think in the comments below!