Chicken Marinated with Lemon and Basil

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This Lemon and Basil  Chicken is another new favorite of ours.  The marinade flavors the chicken so much more and the meat is really moist if you let the chicken marinate in the refrigerator for 24 hours before you cook it. 

We buy the family size packs of boneless skinless chicken breasts which usually weigh about 4 pounds.  It sounds like a lot to cook for just 2 people but we eat it all kinds of ways for the next few days.  We eat it that night with a vegie and a salad, then the next day it makes a great healthy sandwich for Frank and a salad for me. 

We are really lucky to have several grocery stores to choose from because at least one of them always has the chicken that I buy on sale.  This last time we only paid $1.68 a pound for boneless skinless breasts.  I only buy meat from brands that I trust to not add any salt brine or other ingredients to preserve the meat.  If you see pork or beef that is “guaranteed tender” or other words like that, watch out because things have been added to the raw meat to make it tender.

We are trying to avoid foods with nitrates and nitrites, so that usually means sliced meats from a grocery store deli are out.  Unless the meat is freshly roasted at the store you are buying it from, most meat will have some kind of preservatives added so it can sit in the case until it is purchased by someone.

Boar’s Head is one of the main brands of deli meat and cheese that grocery stores here in Arizona carry.  I just looked on their website and they have an All Natural category in their product line.  I will have to look now to see if the local stores carry any of the All Natural deli meats.

I kind of got sidetracked from my Lemon and Basil Chicken recipe, didn’t I?  The reason I went sideways was because I started thinking about barbecuing and roasting more chicken and other meats to use in sandwiches instead of buying sliced deli meat.

In this recipe I used some Meyer lemon rind and juice that I had frozen when my neighbor at the old house had a huge crop a couple of years ago.  If you like Meyer lemons and you find them in your store for a good price, think about buying a bunch and zesting and juicing them to freeze for future recipes.  I use a Microplane zester and then juice them with a citrus juicer.  The year that my neighbor gave me all of those lemons I think I counted and it was 175 lemons that I zested and juiced!  No wonder I still have some left!

This recipe for Meyer Lemon and Basil Marinade makes just under 2 cups which was more than enough for the 6 chicken breasts that I had. 

In addition to the lemon, basil, onion, garlic and olive oil, I added 3/4 of a cup of peeled chopped apple to this marinade.  I wanted to sweeten it naturally and also give the mixture a little more bulk.  I used 1 tablespoon of honey to balance the rest of the acid from the lemon juice.  If you use regular lemons instead of Meyers you will probably need to add a little more honey.

I shared this recipe with Monday Mania at The Healthy Home Economist, Allergy Free Wednesdays at The Tasty Alternative, Real Food Wednesday at Kelly The Kitchen Kop, Fight Back Friday at Food Renegade, Slightly Indulgent Tuesday at Simply Sugar and Gluten Free, Fat Tuesday at Real Food Forager

Here are a few of my previous chicken recipes:


Grilled Chicken Chopped Salad with Curry Dressing



Chicken Cacciatore


Soy Free Teriyaki Style Marinade


2 Responses to Chicken Marinated with Lemon and Basil
  1. amber
    May 15, 2012 | 2:02 pm


    This recipe has me drooling! I’m trying this one for sure! Pinned it!!

    Be Well,

  2. Andrea
    May 15, 2012 | 10:23 pm

    Thank you so much Amber!

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