This Lemon Pepper Chicken will keep you coming back for more! The wonderful citrus and peppery flavors work so well together with chicken. You will find yourself coming back to this recipe time and time again!
What is lemon pepper?
Lemon pepper is made by infusing cracked black pepper with fresh lemon zest and salt. The oils from the zest penetrate the pepper, which gives it a unique zesty flavor. Lemon pepper is used in various dishes and is quite easy to find in local stores and online. Keep in mind that some commercial products contain other spices in addition to black pepper and lemon zest.
What you’ll need to make Lemon Pepper Chicken:
First and foremost, this recipe was designed to be cooked on the grill. However, you can bake this chicken in the oven at 375 degrees F. until they reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees.
- Chicken breasts: You’ll need 4 medium boneless and skinless chicken breasts.
- Lemon zest and juice: We always recommend using fresh lemon juice over bottled any day of the week.
- Lemon pepper
- Fresh Garlic
- Olive oil
- Onion powder, salt, and paprika
Marinade for lemon pepper chicken
- Zest the lemons first before squeezing the juice! Use a microplane zester to remove just the yellow zest. Do not grate the white rind. It does not have a pleasant flavor. After zesting, squeeze the lemons of their juice.
- Combine juice and zest with olive oil, crushed garlic, lemon pepper, onion powder, paprika, and salt in a bowl. Taste for salt content and add more if needed. You can also add red pepper flakes and a tablespoon of herbs like chopped basil, oregano, thyme, or parsley to the marinade.
- Submerge the chicken in the marinade, cover, and refrigerate for 2-3 hours.
- Prepare your grill for medium heat (350-375 degrees F).
- Remove the chicken breasts from the marinade and place them on the grill. They will cook within 10-12 minutes, depending on thickness and the type of grill you are using. Turn a few times during the cooking process. Once they reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees at the thickest part of the breast, they have cooked through. Check each chicken breast before removing them from the grill.
- Place the lemon pepper chicken on a clean platter or cutting board, and let them rest for 5-10 minutes while you get your sides ready. Slice and serve.
This lemon pepper chicken makes a great addition to salads, wraps, soups, casseroles, nachos, or serve whole. They are also a great option for make-ahead meals!
Like this recipe? Try these:
Lemon Pepper Chicken
- 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
- zest of 1 lemon
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2-3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 1/2-2 teaspoons lemon pepper
- 1-1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/4 teaspoon paprika
- 4 medium chicken breasts skinless and boneless
- Zest lemon before squeezing juice. This step will just make your life easier. Use a citrus zester and make sure not to overdo it. You just want the yellow bits, not the bitter white part that lies right under the rind. After zesting, cut lemons in half and squeeze juice through a strainer into a bowl.
- Combine lemon juice, zest, garlic. Slowly drizzle in olive oil until well combined. Add remaining ingredients and stir through.
- Place boneless, skinless chicken breasts into a resealable plastic bag, and pour mixture over top. Coat well, release air from bag, seal, and place into the refrigerator for 2-3 hours. If using marinade on wings or drumsticks, marinate them for 2-4 hours.
- Preheat your grill for medium heat (375 degrees F).
- Remove chicken breasts from marinade and place them on the grill. Cook for 10-12 minutes, turning 1-2 times during the cooking process. Once they reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees F, at the thickest part of the breast, they are done.
- Let the chicken breast rest for a few minutes before slicing.
- For even cooking, flatten the chicken breasts before marinating. Place them between two pieces of plastic wrap, and gently hit them with the blunt side of a kitchen mallet. Aim for a 1/2" thick uniform shape.
Photos by: elenathewise, vaivirga, mpessaris, and Szakaly/Depositphotos