Buttermilk Chicken Recipe
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Our typical go-to meal for any night of the week is grilled or baked chicken. We often serve it with a side of something green, like roasted broccoli or one of our favorite go-to potato dishes, quick baked potatoes. To avoid boredom with the same ole, same ole, we mix things up, and experiment with different marinades and techniques for the chicken. This grilled (or baked) Buttermilk Chicken is one of our tried and true favorites that makes flavorful, tender chicken every single time. Yay for tried and true!
You can easily prepare this chicken ahead of time, by at least 30 minutes or up to a whole day. Allow the recipe to marinate in the fridge until ready to cook. The longer it can mingle in the buttermilk marinade the better. (See how to make an easy buttermilk substitute below.)
When I have planned ahead of time (which is not often) I like to buy bone-in chicken pieces in bulk and divide them for more than one meal. As with most meat, chicken pieces are usually less expensive when bought in bulk, so hit your favorite butcher counter, then divide and conquer!
A couple of weeks ago, I prepped half of a batch of chicken legs with another favorite chicken recipe, Honey Jalapeño Chicken to grill one evening. For the remaining half, I used this buttermilk chicken recipe and marinated them for dinner the next night. Of course that means two nights in a row for grilled chicken, but hey, no one is complaining over here about grilled chicken. We’re a grilled chicken-loving family.
Ingredients needed for Buttermilk Chicken
- buttermilk (or make your own, see above)
- garlic powder
- dried Italian Seasonings
- ground red pepper
- bone-in chicken pieces
Quick Tip: How to Make Buttermilk in a Pinch
Out of buttermilk? Easily make a quick substitute by stirring 1 tablespoon of fresh lemon juice or white vinegar into 1 cup of milk and let it sit for about 5-10 minutes. I’ve used this buttermilk alternative for marinades like this one as well as in baking recipes. While we don’t always have buttermilk on hand, we do usually have vinegar and a lemon. Try it sometime.
How to Make Buttermilk Chicken (see full printable recipe below)
- Begin by mixing together in a small bowl or large measuring cup the buttermilk, garlic powder, Italian seasonings, red pepper, and some salt.
- Next pour the buttermilk mixture into a large zip-top plastic bag or a large baking dish and add the chicken pieces. Fully coat the chicken with the buttermilk mixture. Seal/cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to overnight. Turn the chicken occasionally in the marinade. When ready to cook, remove the chicken from the refrigerator 30 minutes ahead of time.
- To grill, heat the grill to medium-low. Once heated place the marinated chicken on grill, cover and cook, turning occasionally, until golden brown and cooked through, about 30 to 40 minutes. (Discard the unused marinade.)
- To bake, preheat the oven to 450-degrees F. Place the marinated chicken in a single layer in an oven safe skillet or baking pan. Bake until done, about 30 minutes. Be sure to check for doneness.
See how easy this Buttermilk Chicken is to grill or bake in an oven in about 30 minutes? That’s what I call easy and flexible. Serve this alongside a tossed salad, quick Garlic Lemon Green Beans, and Twice Baked Potatoes (or Quick Baked Potatoes) for a weeknight win!
More delicious grilled chicken recipes:
- Honey Jalapeno Grilled Chicken Recipe
- Southwestern Grilled Chicken with Lime Butter
- BBQ Chicken Recipe
- Mint Lime Grilled Chicken Breasts Recipe
- Sweet and Spicy Grilled Chicken Wings Recipe
Buttermilk Chicken Recipe
- 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
- 1 tablespoon garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon dried Italian Seasonings
- 1 teaspoon ground red pepper
- 2 teaspoons coarse salt
- 3 pounds bone-in chicken pieces
- In a small bowl or measuring cup, whisk together buttermilk, garlic powder, Italian seasonings, red pepper, and 2 teaspoons salt.
- Pour buttermilk mixture into large ziptop plastic bag or large baking dish; add chicken and toss to coat. Seal/cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to overnight, turning chicken occasionally. Remove chicken from refrigerator 30 minutes before grilling.
- Heat grill to medium-low*. Place marinated chicken (discard the marinade) on grill, cover and cook, turning occasionally, until golden brown and cooked through, about 30 to 40 minutes.
*To bake, preheat oven to 450-degrees F. Place marinated chicken in a single layer in an oven safe skillet or baking pan. Bake for 30 minutes or until done.
Originally published June 3, 2016.