I Tried Trader Joe’s Chicken Marinade Recipe—It's My Favorite

All you need is four simple ingredients.

<p>Simply Recipes / Adobe Stock</p>

Simply Recipes / Adobe Stock

Of all the things I throw on the grill in the summer, chicken ranks pretty low. It’s not that I don’t like chicken or prefer other forms of protein; it’s just that it rarely turns out well on the barbeque—it’s either dry and sinewy or charred and without flavor.

Though I’ve found numerous easy ways to prepare tasty birds in the oven, air fryer, casseroles, and salads, grilling chicken has just never been my thing… until now. As it turns out, Trader Joe’s has a recipe for marinated, grilled chicken that combines a few unexpected ingredients with delicious results.

The ingredients list includes Greek yogurt and onion salt—a flavor combo I’d never think to try out—and successfully works as a marinate, resulting in chicken that is juicy and tangy. It was so easy to prepare and so successful at the dinner table that the recipe will undoubtedly become a family go-to in my household.

How To Make Trader Joe’s Tangy Grilled Chicken

To make the marinade, you'll need:

  • 1/2 cup plain Greek whole-milk yogurt

  • Juice of 1/2 a lemon, plus 1 lemon sliced in rounds

  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

  • 2 teaspoons onion salt

  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts

In a bowl, mix the yogurt, lemon juice, olive oil, and onion salt. Add your chicken and coat well with the marinade. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the breasts marinate for an hour.

Remove the chicken from the bowl and shake off any excess marinade. Place it on a medium-high grill, cook for six to eight minutes per side, or until the internal temperature is 165°F, and remove from heat. Add lemon slices to the grill for two to three minutes per side until caramelized grill marks appear. Serve the chicken with the grilled lemon slices.

<p>Simply Recipes / Stella Totino</p>

Simply Recipes / Stella Totino

The Verdict

For the sake of transparency, I want to note that I used chicken breasts with the skin on, as that is preferred in my family. However, next time I make this recipe, I’ll try it with skinless chicken because the yogurt marinade provides enough moisture by itself.

This marinade tenderizes the chicken—it comes out succulent and moist in a way I’ve never experienced on the grill before. Although there was a tanginess perceptibly present (especially when eaten with a bite of the grilled lemon), I might add a little more onion salt as I found the onion flavor too subtle.

I love that you can fine-tune this recipe according to your specific preferences. The base ingredient list and methodology promise such juicy, well-cooked chicken that you just can’t go wrong.

My Tips for This Trader Joe’s Chicken Marinade Recipe

  • I recommend tasting the yogurt mixture before you add the chicken in and see if you want to add a little more onion salt or lemon. For my salt-heavy tastebuds I needed a little kosher salt, which I added about a half a teaspoon of.

  • While a bowl and plastic wrap work perfectly for the marinating period, I just popped everything in a large airtight storage container so that I could shake the whole container to really coat the breasts.

  • I recommend finding thinner breasts as I had thicker pieces of chicken and the outside got a little more charred waiting to reach that 165°F mark. That being said, I love a little char when the interior is moist and flavorful and in this case, I think the darkened outside pairs really well with the bright pop of the lemon.

<p>Simply Recipes / Adobe Stock</p>

Simply Recipes / Adobe Stock

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