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Basic Marinade for Chicken Thighs

3-Ingredient Basic Chicken Marinade

  • Prep Time: 1 hour
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4 1x


Easy and delicious basic chicken marinade that works with any kind of chicken you like! The sweet + tangy + savory combo makes this the perfect kid-friendly chicken recipe, and charred on the grill adds even more flavor. Memorize this recipe and use it with your favorite side dishes!



  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs or breasts
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • kosher salt


  1. Whisk together the syrup, vinegar, and worcestershire sauce. Add the chicken and let marinate, 20 minutes or up to 4 hours.
  2. When ready to cook, preheat a grill or grill pan for direct-heat grilling (medium-high or so).
  3. Grill or sear the chicken for about 7 minutes on each side until charred and cooked through.
  4. Let rest for 5 minutes before slicing and serving with your favorite dinner.


We grill our chicken when the weather allows to cut down on dishes, but this chicken marinade works for searing inside, a grill pan, or even broiling. Depending on your preferred cooking method, the time will vary, but aim to cook the chicken until it's juuuuuust done (165F if you're using a meat thermometer) and then remove from the heat so the chicken doesn't dry out.

This recipe doesn't contain oil, so if you cook this indoors use some oil or cooking spray to cook your chicken. I recommend a cast iron skillet for good searing indoors.

Serving suggestion: Your favorite side dishes!

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