This healthy buttermilk chicken recipe has all the flavor of buttermilk fried chicken without the frying. Using salt in the brine to draw moisture into the chicken, buttermilk to tenderize and a heap of herbs for fresh flavor, this easy chicken marinade creates unbelievably delicious fried chicken.




Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • To prepare buttermilk brine: Combine buttermilk, sugar, shallots, garlic, salt, oregano, thyme, rosemary, Worcestershire sauce and 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 chicken: Remove the chicken from the brine (discard the brine) and pat dry with paper towels. Rub 1 tablespoon oil over the chicken and let stand at room temperature for at least 10 minutes and up to 30 minutes.

  • Meanwhile, preheat a grill to 400 degrees F or build a fire in a charcoal grill and let it burn down to medium heat (about 400 degrees F).

  • Oil the grill rack (see Tips). Grill the chicken with the lid closed, turning once, until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest portion of the chicken registers 165 degrees F, 28 to 30 minutes total for breast halves; 32 to 36 minutes for thighs and drumsticks.


Make Ahead Tip: 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

3-4 oz. chicken
207 calories; protein 30.1g; carbohydrates 1.5g; sugars 1.3g; fat 8.1g; saturated fat 2.1g; cholesterol 116.4mg; vitamin a iu 41.8IU; vitamin c 0.4mg; folate 5.6mcg; calcium 28.8mg; iron 1.2mg; magnesium 29.9mg; potassium 303.3mg; sodium 295.6mg; thiamin 0.1mg; added sugar 1g.