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Grilled Chicken with Lemon and Oregano

  • Prep:
  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 8
Grilled Chicken with Lemon and Oregano

Source: Everyday Food, July/August 2006


  • 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
  • 1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (from 2 lemons)
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh oregano (or 1 tablespoon dried)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for grates
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 4 chicken halves (1 1/2 pounds each) or 2 whole chickens, split
  • 4 lemons, halved crosswise
  • Oregano sprigs (optional)


  1. Make marinade: In a small bowl, whisk together lemon zest and juice, oregano, oil, 2 teaspoons coarse salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper. Divide marinade between 2 large resealable plastic bags. Place 2 chicken halves in each bag; shake to coat. Let marinate at room temperature 30 minutes, turning bags occasionally.

  2. Preheat grill to medium; lightly oil grates. Remove chicken from marinade, and pat dry with paper towels. Place chicken, skin side up, on grill. Cover and cook, until lightly browned and cooked through, about 20 minutes. Turn chicken over; cover and cook until well browned, 10 to 15 minutes (an instant-read thermometer should register 175 degrees.when inserted into thickest part of meat, avoiding bone). If chicken is browning too quickly, move to cooler parts of grill or turn grill to low heat.

  3. Transfer chicken to a cutting board. Tent with foil; let rest 10 minutes. Meanwhile, place lemon halves on grill, cut side down; cook until slightly charred, 8 to 10 minutes. Cut chicken pieces in half; serve with grilled lemon halves, and, if desired, garnish with oregano sprigs.

Reviews (10)

  • swimminginpaper 7 Apr, 2014

    Make this all the time using boneless, skinless chicken breasts (small kids, so bone-in is a hassle at meal time). Always turns out moist, whether grilled (summer) or in the oven (winter). Foolproof. It's my go-to when we have summer visitors and it always gets rave reviews.

  • justgetgoing 26 Feb, 2015

    I, too, used boneless and skinless chicken breasts. They were also kosher, in deference to my BF, who follows Jewish dietary guidelines. He and I were both very happy with the results. My only tweak to this recipe will be to make the grill fire a little hotter.

  • lauralee422 16 Jun, 2010

    My husband is the pickiest of the picky. He doens't even really like chicken on the bone. But he loved this. . Nex ttime I may try it with a boneless chicken breast.. not sure if that would work.

  • omahaloisl 24 May, 2010

    I use a variation of this marinade on boneless, skinless breasts as well as bone-in skinless breasts and it is a family favorite. I add several crushed segments of fresh garlic. The garlic, lemon, oregano combination is so delicious!

  • grrlTravels 24 May, 2010

    This is one of our go-to grilled chicken recipes. Love the fact that there is no sugar in the marinade.

  • rebekah kaminski 21 Jun, 2009

    Very good recipe. So easy. Give yourself plenty of time for grilling though, they take a long time on the grill. Don't forget to do the lemons they are delicious!

  • lostcomma 9 Sep, 2008

    Just for practical purposes I roasted this. Simply because it's set it and leave it. Being single 4 chicken halves would go uneaten I used two bone in skin on chicken breasts.(400 for 25-35min chk internal temp 175deg.) Reduced the amount of oregano in the marinade and used one lemon but have used two before. Tasted great. I find chicken has a tendency to taste like chicken no matter what yo do with it. This was a nice deviation.

  • akougias 5 Aug, 2008

    This is greek chicken.

  • befrie 4 Aug, 2008

    My family is not fond of oregano so I use basil and its fantastic.

  • oobrittney13 17 Jun, 2008

    If you dont favorite oregano as an ingredient, dont double up the oregano when doubling the recipe, it comes out too strong.

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