This Balsamic Chicken Marinade is made with Balsamic vinegar, honey, and spices, and comes together in just minutes. It’s perfect for any cut of chicken!
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Looking for an easy chicken marinade recipe? This one is simple and delicious!
The honey in the marinade gives it a touch of sweetness, while the vinegar provides a nice tangy flavor. Made with just a few simple ingredients, this balsamic chicken marinade is perfect for grilled or baked chicken.
Balsamic Chicken Marinade Recipe
This Balsamic vinegar marinade is perfect for chicken! It’s simple to make and only requires a few ingredients.
This marinade is ideal for honey Balsamic chicken or any recipe that calls for marinating chicken first. Whether grilled, baked, or seared in a skillet, this marinade will give your chicken a delicious flavor!
The balsamic vinegar and honey pair together for a tangy sweetness, while the garlic and spices deepen the flavors n the chicken.
The best thing about this recipe is that it’s so versatile. You can use this recipe for any cut of chicken, whether breast meat, thighs, or drumsticks. And you can adjust the amounts of vinegar and honey to suit your taste.
Balsamic Chicken Marinade Ingredients and Substitutions
- Liquid – There are 3 liquids used in this marinade recipe. We used balsamic vinegar, which has a distinct tart flavor. And honey provides sweetness to the marinade, while Dijon mustard adds a little bit of spiciness. You can also use white balsamic vinegar for a milder flavor. Or swap out the honey for agave nectar or maple syrup.
- Herbs – We used garlic, oregano, basil, salt, and ground pepper as they add an aromatic flavor to the marinade. You can also use garlic powder instead of fresh garlic for a milder flavor.
Note: Roll the dried herbs between your fingers to crush them and release the oils.
Equipment Used for Balsamic Vinegar Chicken Marinade
- Medium bowl
- Glass container or Ziploc bag – for storing marinade
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How to Make Balsamic Chicken Marinade
Mix the Ingredients. In a medium bowl, combine balsamic vinegar, olive oil, honey, Dijon mustard, garlic, oregano, and basil.
Whisk the Ingredients. Use a whisk and mix everything together until it’s smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
(Optional) Taste the Marinade. Give it a taste to see if you need to adjust the seasonings. Add more spices, vinegar, honey, or mustard to taste.
How to Use the Balsamic Chicken Marinade
Once the honey balsamic marinade is mixed, you can use it immediately or store it in the fridge for later.
If using immediately, place chicken in a large resealable bag and pour in the desired amount of marinade.
Seal the Ziploc bag, making sure to get all the air out. Gently massage the bag so the chicken is evenly coated in the marinade, then marinade the chicken pieces in the refrigerator for 6-12 hours.
Use this as a make-ahead dinner: You can prepare the honey balsamic marinade in the morning. Then, let the chicken marinate all day in the refrigerator. When it is time for dinner, the chicken will be ready to cook.
- Add lemon juice for a fresh flavor.
- Use chicken breasts, thighs, or drumsticks.
- For a spicier version, add cayenne pepper, red pepper flakes, or chili powder.
- Use fresh herbs instead of dried ones for a more potent flavor.
How to Store Leftover Balsamic marinade for Chicken
If you have any excess, unused honey balsamic marinade, put it in a sealed container and refrigerate for up to 5 days. Discard the marinade as soon as you take the chicken out. Do not reuse it.
Can I freeze this?
Yes, you can freeze this marinade. Just place it in a freezer-safe container and store it for up to six months.
When ready to use it, thaw it overnight in the fridge, then proceed with the recipe as normal.
Frequently Asked Questions
You can marinate chicken in balsamic vinegar for up to 12 hours. Any longer than that, the acid in the vinegar will start to break down the chicken, making it tough.
There’s no need to rinse the balsamic marinade for chicken before cooking. Rinsing the chicken could keep it from browning in the oven. Just pat the chicken dry with paper towels, then continue with your recipe.
No, you should not cook chicken in the marinade. The honey and sugar will burn when exposed to high heat. Plus, raw chicken + marinade = a bacteria party. So be sure to discard the used marinade before cooking the chicken.
Check out the Full Balsamic Chicken Marinade Here
Balsamic Chicken Marinade
- medium bowl
- ¼ cup balsamic vinegar (I like Costco's Kirkland brand)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 tablespoon prepared Dijon mustard (I like Trader Joe's or Grey Poupon)
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano roll the dried herbs between your fingers to crush them and release the oils
- 1 teaspoon dried basil roll the dried herbs between your fingers to crush them and release the oils
- salt and freshly ground pepper white pepper is ideal
- Using a medium bowl, whisk together balsamic vinegar, honey, Dijon mustard, garlic, oregano, and basil. Add salt and pepper, to taste.
- Marinade chicken pieces in this poultry marinade for 6-12 hours. Use this as a make-ahead dinner: prepare the marinade in the morning and marinate the chicken all day. Then, it's all ready when it's time to make dinner in the evening.