Summer is here – whether the calendar says it or not! We are exhausted from end of year school activities, the kids have the attention span of flies, and we’re all just ready to slide into a slightly slower, easy-going pace. Am I right?!
Today I present to you one of my go-to summer recipes: Lemon Rosemary Grilled Chicken. It’s packed full of big flavors – loads of garlic, tangy lemons and woody, delicious rosemary, and it goes with almost anything you’d like to pair with it. I threw some asparagus that I picked up at Argus Farm Stop and some zucchini I had in my refrigerator on the grill with it for a really simple dinner, but the sky’s the limit for options.
At the end of the day, I love this recipe because it’s really simple and flexible – which, I think, is what we all crave in the summer. So go grab a head of garlic, a handful of rosemary and 3 lemons and give it a go!
Lemon Rosemary Grilled Chicken
1 whole chicken, cut into it’s 8 pieces
1 head of garlic
Handful of fresh rosemary
¼ cup olive oil, plus a little more to brush the lemon halves before grilling
Kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper
Extra virgin olive oil for drizzling
2 tbsp fresh herbs of your choice, chopped
- Prepare the marinade. Separate the cloves of garlic and smash them with the side of your knife to loosen the skins. Remove the skins, roughly chop the garlic, and place it into a large bowl.
- Next, add the zest of all 3 lemons to the garlic. Then add the juice of only 1 lemon. Cut the remaining lemons in half and set them aside (they will get grilled with the chicken, later).
- Remove all of the leaves of the rosemary and roughly chop it – then add it to the bowl with the garlic and lemon.
- Lastly, add the ¼ cup of olive oil to the bowl and mix all of the ingredients well.
- Add the chicken pieces to the bowl and turn to coat well with the marinade. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours, preferably overnight.
- Grill the chicken. If you’re using a gas grill, preheat one side of the grill to high heat, and the other side to the very lowest heat setting. If you’re using a charcoal grill, you will do the same thing by setting up for indirect and direct heat – place all of your charcoal on one side of the grill and leave the other side empty.
- Remove the marinated chicken from the refrigerator and place it on a sheet pan. Season both sides liberally with salt and pepper.
- At this time, grab the two remaining lemons and brush the cut sides lightly with olive oil and set aside.
- Bring everything out to the grill. Add chicken pieces to the indirect heat (low or no heat) side of the grill, skin side down, and close the lid. Total grilling time will be about 25 minutes, but will depend ultimately on how large your pieces are. Flip pieces about half way through.
- After you first put the chicken on the grill, you should also add the lemons, cut side down, to the direct heat side of the grill. You are looking for these to get nice and caramelized. Once they are well caramelized you can move them off of the direct heat.
- When the chicken is done, remove it to a platter and let it rest for 5-10 minutes before serving. Squeeze a couple of the grilled lemon halves all over the chicken and add the remaining lemon halves to the platter for serving. Drizzle with a little extra virgin olive oil and sprinkle with freshly chopped herbs. ENJOY!
- Can you substitute boneless, skinless chicken breasts? I mean, yes, you can, but…it won’t be as good. Grilled chicken with bones and skin really do yield a superior end produce – tastier and juicier!
- Do I have to buy a whole chicken and cut it myself? Absolutely not! You can definitely buy a whole chicken cut up.
- I only have 2 lemons, can I still make it? Of course.
- I don’t have rosemary. Can I use another herb? You can – but you want it to be a woody one (like thyme) to hold up. Make the substitution this time, but be sure to try to get the rosemary for next time!
Hello, I’m Natalie! I’m a professionally-trained chef, culinary instructor and recipe developer living in Ann Arbor. A career change, a trip through culinary school 20 years ago, and being a lifelong Julia Child enthusiast has led me to a career doing my very favorite thing: making food and cooking approachable to home cooks of all ages!
My passion for creating great food experiences and getting people excited about learning and having fun in the kitchen is always at the heart of what I do. You can find me at NatalieMarbleCooks.com. And on social media you can find me at @NatalieMarbleCooks. Sign up for my bi-weekly email newsletter here, where I share family-friendly recipes, tips & tricks, new class information, and hopefully a little inspiration!