Its the 4th of July — time to strike up the grill! Here are your steps to making the best grilled chicken for tonight. Stop by our ET meat department and pick up your organic, grass feed chicken from Aaron.
Season your chicken: You can go with a number of ideas to season your chicken. We suggest something simply and quick so that you can get to the fun! Here is one idea that many of us at Ellwood love when grilling: salt, pepper, paprika, italian dressing, fresh garlic, fresh parsley, and rosemary with a little lemon zest.
Grease your grill: Chances are you won’t have a sticking problem if your chicken has skin, or if it’s marinated or rubbed with some oil. But play it safe. Before you light the grill, spray the rack with nonstick cooking spray or brush it with oil.
Keep it hot: Sear the chicken on a hot grill — this helps seal in the juices and makes it easier to turn over the chicken.
Watch seasonings carefully: Marinades and basting sauces, many of which have a high sugar content, will burn if the grill temperature is too hot or if exposed to heat for too long. A hot grill is normally not a problem with quick-cooking cuts (such as skinless, boneless breasts); longer-cooking cuts (such as bone-in chicken parts) should be cooked over a lower heat. And don’t start basting until the chicken is almost fully cooked.
Close the top: If your grill has a cover, always cook your chicken with the cover down. It will make your grill more oven-like, and your food will cook more evenly. Also, because the cover cuts off some of the oxygen, you’ll have fewer flare-ups.
Be patient: Resist the urge to continuously move the chicken around while it cooks. The chicken will cook more evenly (and more quickly!) if you follow the recipe cooking instructions or turn it over only once midway through the grilling.
Use the right utensil: Use long-handled tongs or a wide metal spatula to move the chicken. Poking it with a fork will cause precious juices to escape.
Test for doneness: Don’t risk serving under-cooked chicken. When in doubt, make a small cut into the thickest part so you can be positive that it’s no longer pink inside. You can also use a meat thermometer to check if your meat has reached a safe internal temperature: 180 degrees F. for breasts.