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Grilled Buttermilk Chicken

I created this recipe years ago after one of our farmers market customers, a chef, shared the idea of marinating chicken in buttermilk. The chicken is easy to prepare and always turns out moist and delicious! I bruise the thyme sprigs by twisting them before adding them to the buttermilk mixture; this tends to release the oils in the leaves and flavor the chicken better. —Sue Gronholz, Beaver Dam, Wisconsin
  • Total Time
    Prep: 10 min. + marinating Grill: 10 min.
  • Makes
    12 servings


  • 1-1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 4 fresh thyme sprigs
  • 4 garlic cloves, halved
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 12 boneless skinless chicken breast halves (about 4-1/2 pounds)


  • Place the buttermilk, thyme, garlic and salt in a large bowl or shallow dish. Add chicken and turn to coat. Refrigerate 8 hours or overnight, turning occasionally.
  • Drain chicken, discarding marinade. Grill, covered, over medium heat until a thermometer reads 165°, 5-7 minutes per side.
Nutrition Facts
1 chicken breast half: 189 calories, 4g fat (1g saturated fat), 95mg cholesterol, 168mg sodium, 1g carbohydrate (1g sugars, 0 fiber), 35g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 5 lean meat.

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Average Rating:
  • happykathi
    Jun 1, 2020

    Marinated overnight and added a little "better than bouillon" instead of salt, but followed the rest of the recipe. The taste was bland and a little dry. This was just ok for me.

  • Deborah
    May 19, 2020

    I haven't tried this recipe, yet. I would love to know the recipe for the salad on the plate. It looks delicious.

  • ejshellabarger
    Oct 6, 2019

    Easy and wonderfully moist! A keeper!

  • cynandtom
    Aug 19, 2019

    Love this chicken! Easy to prepare, moist, and flavorful!

  • amygattuso
    Aug 12, 2019

    Very moist

  • kimmarel
    Jul 21, 2019

    This chicken had no flavor at all.

  • ReneeMurby
    Jul 13, 2019

    This chicken was great to use in other recipes calling for cooked chicken as I found it did not have much flavor on it's own. Adding this chicken to another dish allows you to season as desired and the chicken to take on the flavor of your recipe.

  • AllisonO
    Jul 7, 2019

    Very moist for grilled chicken! The buttermilk leaves only the slightest tang on the cooked chicken. I cut the recipe in half but next time, regardless of how many pieces I make, I will increase the amount of garlic, thyme, and salt I use as the flavor was very subtle and we typically enjoy stronger/bolder flavors on our chicken. Overall, a keeper of a recipe!