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Fresh oranges, limes and basil ~ This citrus chicken marinade brings your grilled chicken to another level of delicious!

citrus chicken marinade with fresh basil

Summer Grilling Series

Welcome back to the Summer Grilling Series! I’ve got another fabulous grilled chicken recipe for you today!

In case you missed the other recipes in this series so far:

Nothing says ‘summer’ like fresh basil. It it one of my all time favorite herbs. I love to grow it in our garden and make pesto to enjoy all winter long. 2 years ago, our garden failed. It was so sad. We don’t exactly have green thumbs anyways, so growing things is kind of challenging for us.

citrus basil marinade

But then last summer, I had abundant basil flowing! I was so excited, I made a bunch of pesto. Then we went on vacation to Universal Studios, and guess what we came home to… a broken refrigerator/freezer. All that pesto, gone. All my frozen strawberries, gone.

So, this year, I will attempt yet again to stock my freezer with precious pesto made from home grown basil. We shall see. But, for now, I’m using it in this citrus chicken marinade. The flavors of citrus and basil together is absolutely lovely, fresh, and summery.

citrus basil chicken marinade

With summer in full swing, we are using our grill almost daily. It’s such a quick and easy way to cook a meal. If you’re chicken breasts aren’t too thick, it really only takes 10-15 minutes to cook. In this video, I show you how to fillet them for quicker and more even cooking.

citrus basil grilled chicken

Citrus Chicken Marinade

Marinades are the perfect way to flavor meat. It only really needs 30 minutes, but longer definitely intensifies the flavor. You can make it the night before, the morning of, or simply 30  minutes before grilling. It also freezes well. So, make a double batch, throw all the ingredients in a zip lock bag for the extra one and lay it flat in your freezer.

citrus basil grilled chicken with fresh oranges

More great grilling recipes:

Grilled Carne Asada

Coconut Lime Grilled Chicken

Ready to get grilling?

citrus chicken marinade with fresh basil

Citrus Basil Grilled Chicken

Fresh oranges, limes, garlic and basil ~ This citrus chicken marinade brings your grilled chicken to another level of delicious!
5 from 4 votes
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Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
marinating time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings: 6
Calories: 252kcal


  • 3/4 cup 100% pure orange juice, or fresh squeezed from oranges
  • 2 tbsp fresh squeezed lime juice
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced or pressed
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh basil
  • 2 1/2 lbs boneless, skinless, chicken breasts


  • Whisk together orange juice, lime juice, olive oil, garlic and salt. Add basil and stir.
  • Place chicken in an 8×8 square dish or zip lock storage bag. 
  • Pour marinade over top, coat chicken well. Marinate for at least 30 minutes and up to one day.
  • Preheat grill to 400-500 degrees.  Remove chicken from marinade and grill about 5 minutes per side, or until cooked through. Serve garnished with fresh orange slices.


Freezer instructions:  Place all ingredients in a zip lock bag and coat well.  Lay flat in freezer.  Thaw in refrigerator before cooking.


Calories: 252kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 40g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 121mg | Sodium: 414mg | Potassium: 761mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 165IU | Vitamin C: 20mg | Calcium: 13mg | Iron: 1mg
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