So fresh, so delicious! This easy lemon chicken marinade uses just a few ingredients to make perfect citrus-herb flavored chicken breasts, thighs, or legs that can be served in a variety of ways. 

Prep: 5 mins.Total: 5 minutes


  • 1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts, thighs, or legs*
  • Zest of ½ lemon
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 tablespoons avocado oil or olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh herbs of choice (such as thyme, rosemary, tarragon, sage, or a mix)**
  • ½ – 1 teaspoon fine salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper


  1. Place the chicken in a large bowl, zip-top plastic bag (or a freezer-safe container, if you plan to freeze the chicken).
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the lemon zest, lemon juice, oil, garlic, herbs, salt, and pepper.  
  3. Pour the marinade over the chicken, then cover bowl or close bag. Gently toss or massage to coat the chicken pieces evenly.
  4. Marinate the covered chicken in the refrigerator for a minimum of 4 hours and a maximum of 2-3 days before cooking. Or, to freeze, remove as much air from the freezer-safe container as possible, and freeze the chicken in the marinade for up to 2 months.


* If using chicken legs, increase to 1 1/2 lbs.

** May substitute 2 teaspoons dried herbs in place of the fresh herbs

Nutrition Information

  • Serving Size: 4 oz marinated chicken breast
  • Calories: 133
  • Fat: 4 g
  • (Sat Fat: 1 g)
  • Sodium: 252 mg
  • Carbohydrate: 0 g
  • (Fiber: 0 g
  • Sugar: 0 g)
  • Protein: 23 g
  • Cholesterol: 66 mg


© The Real Food Dietitians