During the week, when it comes to quick and easy dinners I can whip up in a flash on a busy school night, it’s hard to beat pairing a simple marinated chicken recipe with a veggie or a grain. It’s one of those dinner options I always have in the back of my mind when I don’t have time to pour hours into meal prep or meal planning because I know it’s easy to make and serves as a nutritious, satisfying meal for our family. Now that the school year is in full swing in our house (even if it is a little modified over here right now), I am feeling the perks of a routine but also the laundry list of “to dos” that come along with keeping our family moving forward on a schedule with commitments on the calendar again. Having a few go-to recipes on hand that our family loves and will eat well at dinnertime is key for me and the recipe I’m sharing with you guys today is a family-approved favorite in our house — perfect for this busy, back-to-school season of life!
When it comes to marinating chicken, I love the way changing up a simple marinade changes the flavor of chicken in a flash so it keeps things interesting without feeling overwhelming. Changing up a marinade can breathe new life into an otherwise basic chicken dinner and when you find a marinade recipe that works — one that your family simply loves — it feels like you hit the jackpot!
My latest jackpot marinade recipe: Easy Orange Juice Chicken Marinade! It has savory-sweet flavors and is always irresistible.
Here is everything you’ll need to make it:
- 100% orange juice
- soy sauce or coconut aminos
- olive oil
- garlic salt
A full cup of 100% orange juice serves as the base of this recipe and knowing that incorporating vitamin C-rich Florida Orange Juice into my family’s diet can help support a strong immune system makes this mama happy, especially during these crazy times. It’s also incredibly versatile so incorporating it into recipes is fun and delicious. I love using Florida OJ in everything from homemade salad dressings and simple stir-fries to muffins and baked goods. An 8-ounce glass of 100% OJ is also a good source of a myriad of essential vitamins and minerals such as potassium, folate, and thiamin and it serves as the perfect way to add a little citrus-y sweetness to this marinade in a healthy way. If pouring our kids a glass of Florida Orange Juice and incorporating OJ into our family’s recipes can help support healthy immune systems in our boys as they head back to preschool, I’m all about it!
My favorite way to use this Easy Orange Juice Chicken Marinade is on grilled boneless, skinless chicken thighs because chicken thighs = more flavor! The marinade joins my favorite Paleo Chicken Thigh Marinade as one of my favorite go-to healthy weeknight recipes I keep in my back pocket when I don’t have the time or energy to really give a lot of thought to dinner and just want something EASY but nutritious to make for our family. I love that I can throw everything I need to make this Easy Orange Juice Chicken Marinade together in the morning while the boys are at preschool and know that I have dinner taken care of by the time 5 p.m. rolls around and chaos in our house reaches an all-time high. (Seriously though, what is it about kids reaching peak levels of craziness in the early evening every day?)
This recipe pairs well with everything from brown rice or quinoa to roasted broccoli, sauteed zucchini and more. It’s also fantastic as leftovers and I love slicing it up and using it in grain bowls for lunch the next day. Pair it with a tangy orange vinaigrette and it takes on a whole new flavor profile!
Please let me know if you give this recipe a try! We absolutely love it in our house and I always love hearing what you guys think!
Easy Orange Juice Chicken Marinade (Grilled Orange Chicken Thighs)Print
A naturally sweet and savory marinade, this Easy Orange Juice Chicken Marinade is a simple family-approved recipe perfect for busy weeknights.
- 1 cup 100% orange juice
- 1/2 cup soy sauce or coconut aminos
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 onion, sliced thin
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tablespoon dried rosemary
- 1/2 tablespoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
- 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
- Combine all ingredients except for the chicken in a medium-size bowl and mix together. Add chicken and toss to coat. Cover the bowl and allow chicken to marinate for at least four hours or overnight.
- To cook the chicken, preheat the grill to 400 degrees. Place chicken directly on the grill and grill for approximately 6-8 minutes per side or until cooked fully and a meat thermometer reads 165 degrees F.
- Remove the chicken from the grill and let rest for a few minutes before slicing and eating. Enjoy!
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