Italian Marinated Grilled Chicken

This Italian Marinated Grilled Chicken is easy to make with a quick marinade of olive oil, fresh rosemary, and thyme! It is flavorful, juicy and can be served in a variety of ways for dinner.

For the perfect light summer dinner, this Italian marinated chicken is a family favorite! We love serving it with breaded grilled tomatoes, but you can serve it a variety of ways, from turning it into a grilled chicken salad or serving it with grilled eggplant.

Grilled chicken on two black plates.

The chicken is marinated in some of my favorite Italian herbs and spices, including fresh rosemary and thyme, with a drizzle of olive oil. Adds the best flavor profile to the chicken!

Grilled to perfection, juicy and tender, a fresh squeeze of lemon juice is added right before serving to brighten up the flavors and it's so delicious!

Because you'll love this grilled chicken

  • Simple and tasty: You only need a handful of ingredients for this marinated grilled chicken recipe and the results are always tasty!
  • Versatile: This grilled chicken tastes great whether marinated for 30 minutes or 12 hours, plus you can serve it in so many ways, from using it to prepare meals or serving it for lunch or dinner.

Ingredients of the Italian marinated chicken recipe

  • Chicken: 6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, trimmed and pounded until uniform in thickness.
  • Italian marinade: All you need for this Italian Dressing Chicken Marinade is fresh rosemary, olive oil, salt, pepper, and thyme.
  • Grilled Tomatoes: 2 large tomatoes, cracker crumbs and parmesan.
  • Side: Fresh lemon juice, fresh basil and fresh thyme.
Ingredients for the recipe.Ingredients for the recipe.

Substitutions and variations

  • Other proteins: Use thin turkey breasts or cutlets. Even boneless, skinless chicken thighs or pork chops would work great with these simple ingredients.
  • Fresh garlic: Lots of fresh garlic is always great in an Italian chicken marinade recipe!
  • Spice: Add some red pepper flakes if you prefer a little heat in your seasoning.
  • Herbs: In addition to fresh rosemary, try fresh basil, parsley or fresh thyme. If desired, add a little dried Italian seasoning.
  • Add a splash of vinegar: This can help balance the oil in the marinade and add additional flavor! Try red wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar, white wine vinegar, or even apple cider vinegar.
  • Creamy: Add a tablespoon or two of Greek yogurt to the marinade, it really helps tenderize the chicken!

How to make Italian-style marinated grilled chicken

To start, marinate the chicken. In a medium bowl add chicken, season with rosemary, salt, pepper, thyme and olive oil. Cover with cling film and store in the refrigerator.

Marinated chicken in a glass bowl.Marinated chicken in a glass bowl.

If preparing grilled tomatoes, wash and cut the tomatoes into three thick slices. On a medium-sized plate, mix together the cracker crumbs and Parmesan, dip the tomato slices one at a time into the crumb mixture and grill, then transfer to a clean plate.

Tomatoes before and after grilling.Tomatoes before and after grilling.

Remove chicken from marinade and shake off excess marinade. Grill the chicken on a hot grill for a few minutes on each side until no longer pink.

Grilled chicken in a pan.Grilled chicken in a pan.

Assemble your grilled chicken with tomatoes by placing a slice or two of chicken on top of the tomato slice. Drizzle with lemon juice and garnish with fresh basil and thyme.

Grilled chicken on breaded tomato.Grilled chicken on breaded tomato.

Expert advice

  • Firm but ripe tomatoes are best. Otherwise they will become soggy or fall apart during cooking.
  • Tastier chicken. If you have time, marinate the chicken for an hour up to 12 hours. The longer the marinade stays on the chicken, the tastier it will be.
  • Pound the chicken until it is uniformly thick: This not only helps them cook at the same time, but also makes them more tender.
  • Prevent chicken from sticking to the grill: Once you add the chicken to the grill, avoid moving or turning it until it naturally releases after a few minutes of cooking.
  • How to know when chicken is done: Chicken is ready when the internal temperature reaches 165°F degrees. You can use a meat thermometer to check doneness.
  • Let the chicken rest. For tender, juicy Italian grilled chicken, remove it from the grill and let it rest covered so the juices redistribute into the meat.

How to serve this chicken?

We love serving it over grilled tomatoes, but it would also be great in a lettuce wrap or on top of a salad!

You could also serve it with some delicious sides like Italian Roasted Vegetables or Oven Roasted Rosemary Potatoes. During the summer it goes great with this creamy Italian pasta salad and when my kids were younger, they always asked for this easy tiramisu recipe for kids!

More chicken recipes

Grilled chicken on breaded tomato.Grilled chicken on breaded tomato.

I'm pretty sure this marinated grilled chicken dish was eaten faster than I could put it on the table. So here we are at summer barbecues and grills! Enjoy your meal!


  • ½ pound 6 slices chicken (not too thin) 400 grams
  • 2 twigs chopped fresh rosemary
  • 2 spoons olive oil 30 grams
  • 2 pinch salt
  • 2-3 dashes pepper
  • 1-2 dashes thyme


  • 2 great round cherry tomatoes (not too ripe but firm)
  • ¾ cup cracker crumbs 80 grams
  • 2 spoons freshly grated parmesan


  • 3-4 fresh fresh basil
  • 1-2 twigs Fresh thyme

Prevents the screen from going dark


  • In a medium bowl add chicken slices, season with rosemary, salt, pepper, thyme and olive oil. Cover with plastic and refrigerate for about 15-20 minutes.


  • In the meantime, wash and cut the tomato into thick slices (3 slices per tomato), mix the cracker crumbs and parmesan on a medium-sized plate, pass the tomato slices one at a time in the crumb mixture and grill. Grill on a hot skillet or barbecue, on both sides until browned, about 2 minutes per side, then move to a clean plate.

  • Grill the chicken the same way until it is no longer pink inside.

  • Place a slice or 2 (if it's small slices) of chicken on top of 1 tomato slice, drizzle with lemon juice, garnish with chopped fresh basil and thyme if desired. Enjoy!

Can I make this chicken on the stovetop?

Yes, but it will have to be cooked a little differently than my pan fried chicken. Pan sear in a skillet coated with olive oil for an average of 5 to 7 minutes per side or until golden brown. The chicken may brown quickly, so you may need to lower the heat.

Can I bake this chicken in the oven?

YES! Marinate the chicken in the herb mixture, then arrange in a single layer in an olive oil-greased baking dish. Bake at 350°F for 25-40 minutes, similar to my Herb Roasted Chicken Pieces. The time will depend on the thickness of the chicken pieces, so adjust accordingly.

How to store leftover grilled chicken?

Store leftover chicken in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days, it's great for meal prep! You can also freeze leftover chicken in a freezer bag or airtight container for up to 2 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight.

Calories: 141kcal | Carbohydrates: 8G | Protein: 10G | Fat: 8G | Saturated fats: 2G | Polyunsaturated fats: 2G | Monounsaturated fat: 4G | Trans fats: 0.1G | Cholesterol: 26mg | Sodium: 272mg | Potassium: 304mg | Fiber: 1G | Sugar: 2G | Vitamin A: 576UI | C vitamin: 9mg | Soccer: 39mg | Iron: 1mg

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Updated as of June 23, 2015.

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