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Grilled Chicken with Lemon and Thyme

by Suzie Bellomo on May 03, 2022

It is almost grilling season! For those of you in Sonoma County, it is looking like that season is here and we got you covered.
Our Grilled Chicken with Lemon and Thyme is packed with flavor so you do not have to marinate it for hours. This recipe also can be made ahead of time, which makes hosting, or having to bring this dish somewhere, an absolute breeze — it gets more flavorful as it hangs out in the lemony marinade. 
Our tip: When it comes to grilling chicken breasts, go with skin-on and bone-in. The meat stays juicy and you can get a crispy skin!

Ingredients (4 Servings):
  • 3 Tbsp. plus 1/2 cup Il Fusti Estate Extra Virgin Olive Oil, divided, plus more for grill
  • 4 skin-on, bone-in chicken breasts (about 3 lb.)
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 2 lemons
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 3 large sprigs thyme
  • 1 cup torn pitted Castelvetrano olives


  1. Prepare a grill for 2-zone heat (for a gas grill, set one burner to medium-high and one or two burners to low; for a charcoal grill, bank most of the coals on one side). Lightly oil grate.
  2. Pat chicken breasts dry; season generously all over with salt and pepper. Place on a rimmed baking sheet; let sit at room temperature at least 30 minutes.
  3. Thinly slice 1 lemon crosswise into rounds; pluck out seeds. Place half of lemon slices in a small bowl. Add garlic and 1 Tbsp. oil and toss to coat; season with salt and pepper. Set remaining lemon slices aside for serving.
  4. Slice remaining lemon in half and squeeze juice into another small bowl (you should have about 1/4 cup). Set aside.
  5. Pat chicken dry again (the salt will have drawn out more moisture) and rub with 2 Tbsp. oil.
  6. Grill oiled lemon slices over hot side of grill, turning once, until charred in spots, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a plate.
  7. Grill chicken on cooler side of grill, skin side down, until skin is browned and starting to crisp, 15–20 minutes. Turn chicken over, cover, and continue to grill until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of breasts registers 160°F, 8–10 minutes longer. If desired, uncover grill, move chicken over to hotter side, and lightly char a minute or two. Transfer to a cutting board and let rest 10–15 minutes.
  8. Pull chicken meat from bones and slice 1/2" thick. Place on a rimmed platter. Scatter thyme sprigs, olives, grilled lemon slices, and reserved fresh lemon slices over.
  9. Season with more salt and pepper; drizzle reserved lemon juice and remaining 1/2 cup oil over. Let sit at least 15 minutes and up to 1 hour before serving. Adapted from

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