This healthy buttermilk chicken breast recipe has all the flavor of buttermilk fried chicken without the frying. The herb sauce recipe brings together mint, basil and ground coriander--perfect for serving with the chicken, or make extra and toss with pasta.

David Bonom


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • To prepare buttermilk brine: Combine buttermilk, sugar, shallots, 8 cloves garlic, 2 tablespoons salt, oregano, thyme, rosemary, Worcestershire sauce and 1 teaspoon pepper in a bowl. Stir until the sugar and salt dissolve.

  • To marinate chicken: Place chicken in a sealable gallon-size plastic bag. Pour in the brine mixture, seal and refrigerate for at least 4 hours and up to 12 hours.

  • To prepare sauce: Combine basil, mint, 1 clove garlic, vinegar, oil, coriander, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper in a small bowl. Let stand at least 1 hour before serving (or cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days).

  • To prepare chicken: Preheat a gas grill to medium or build a fire in a charcoal grill and let it burn down to medium heat (about 400 degrees F).

  • Remove the chicken from the brine (discard the brine) and pat dry with paper towels. Rub 1 tablespoon oil all over the chicken and let stand at room temperature for at least 10 minutes and up to 30 minutes.

  • Oil the grill rack (see Tips). Grill the chicken, with the lid closed, until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest portion of the chicken registers 165 degrees F, 4 to 6 minutes per side. Serve the chicken with the herb sauce.


Make Ahead Tip: Cover and refrigerate the herb sauce for up to 3 days. Serve cold or at room temperature. Brine the chicken (Step 2) for up to 12 hours.

Buttermilk is a thick, tangy cow's-milk dairy product great for baking, salad dressings and marinades. Low-fat and nonfat versions can be used interchangeably in most recipes. Look for it in quart containers in the dairy section of the supermarket. In a pinch, you can make a substitute, mix 1 tablespoon lemon juice or vinegar into 1 cup low-fat or nonfat milk.

Once the grill is heated, oil a folded paper towel, hold it with tongs and rub it over the hot rack right before placing the chicken on the grill.

Nutrition Facts

214 calories; 11.6 g total fat; 2 g saturated fat; 63 mg cholesterol; 692 mg sodium. 256 mg potassium; 2.2 g carbohydrates; 0.4 g fiber; 1 g sugar; 23.7 g protein; 568 IU vitamin a iu; 2 mg vitamin c; 12 mcg folate; 50 mg calcium; 1 mg iron; 31 mg magnesium; 1 g added sugar;