Grilled Maple-Bourbon Chicken

Maple-Bourbon Chicken Breasts
Maple-Bourbon Chicken Breasts

Sam Stowell / Getty Images

Prep: 12 mins
Cook: 20 mins
Marinate: 3 hrs
Total: 3 hrs 32 mins
Servings: 2 to 3 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
798 Calories
18g Fat
74g Carbs
75g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 2 to 3
Amount per serving
Calories 798
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 18g 23%
Saturated Fat 4g 18%
Cholesterol 204mg 68%
Sodium 1190mg 52%
Total Carbohydrate 74g 27%
Dietary Fiber 0g 1%
Total Sugars 65g
Protein 75g
Vitamin C 1mg 5%
Calcium 163mg 13%
Iron 3mg 19%
Potassium 887mg 19%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

These juicy and tender chicken breasts are a perfect dinner. Easy-to-make and quick to be served, the chicken breasts are marinated for 2 to 3 hours and then grilled to perfection. If you're looking to step up your grilled chicken game, this easy recipe is a great alternative. It uses Maple syrup, bourbon, and soy sauce as the base of a tasty marinade that also doubles as the sauce you'll be serving with the chicken. These breasts are delicious on a bed of greens or served with mashed potatoes and grilled vegetables. The sweet and salty combination of the marinade makes a succulent coating that caramelizes when cooked. Prep ahead of time, as the chicken is best when marinated in the fridge for a few hours.

For our recipe you don't need to splurge on your bourbon, as any average brand will do just fine. Top-shelf bourbons are best enjoyed on their own and are a shame to use in these types of marinades. Many agree that the best bourbon to cook with is actually the cheapest you can find because the alcohol will be reduced during the preparation of the meal and many other flavors and ingredients will be added to the mixture. What you'll end up with is a hint of bourbon but not a mouthful of it with each bite. But many others go for a bourbon that you'd drink, noting that if you enjoy it on its own you'll enjoy it in the recipe. In either case, it's up to you and what you have available—this chicken is going to be delicious regardless.

Our recipe makes 2 to 3 servings, which depends on how big your chicken breasts are and if you are serving the chicken as the main dish or as one of many other proteins. When buying the chicken, keep in mind that the weight of raw chicken will be reduced when cooked by almost 40 percent. A 6- to 8-ounce serving of cooked chicken is a great size serving when chicken is the main dish, but if you are making other main meats like beef, or fish, or pork, a 3-ounce serving of cooked meat might be enough. Also think of all the side dishes you're serving. If you have any leftover chicken, keep it in the fridge for up to 2 days and use it in sandwiches, wraps, or chicken salad.


  • 4 to 6 chicken breasts

  • 1 teaspoon sea salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

For Marinade/Sauce:

  • 1 cup maple syrup

  • 1/4 cup bourbon

  • 2 tablespoons water

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce

  • 2 cloves garlic​, minced

  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme

  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Combine, herbs, bourbon, soy sauce, water, maple syrup, and olive oil in a large bowl. Divide the mixture in half.

  3. Add the chicken to the bowl and coat well with half the mixture.

  4. Cover and marinate for 2 to 3 hours.

  5. Place the remaining mixture in a small saucepan and simmer on low heat for eight to ten minutes, stirring often.

  6. Remove from heat. You may need to reheat before serving.

  7. Preheat the grill for medium heat. Remove chicken from refrigerator and discard marinade.

  8. Place chicken on the grill and allow to cook for 20 minutes or until meat reaches an internal temperature of 165 F in the thickest part.

  9. Once cooked, remove from heat and serve with warmed sauce on top.

  10. Enjoy!