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For an easy weeknight meal or a casual weekend get-together, Balsamic Chicken Thighs are always a welcome sight at the table. Marinated in balsamic vinegar, honey with fresh herbs, and garlic, this chicken is tender, juicy, tangy, and sweet.
It’s summer. I live in the south, and it’s hotter than…well, you know. I’m not complaining; I’m just stating a fact because there’s still life to live and savor. Even when temps soar, when it comes to cooking, I keep things simple and as effortless as possible.
That’s where this recipe comes in. Grilled chicken thighs that have been soaking up an easy 8-ingredient marinade is one of the best dinners with chicken and a great way to enjoy a delicious meal without going to a lot of work.
What Makes Balsamic Chicken So Delicious
This balsamic marinade is one of my favorites when it comes to imparting flavor to the chicken. I like to use chicken thighs, either with the bone in or not, for this recipe. The marinade is so flavorful that you can let your chicken hang out for as little as 15 minutes or as long as 2 hours for delicious balsamic vinegar chicken.
- Caramelization: The honey in the marinade helps create a beautifully caramelized crust on the chicken thighs when they are grilled. This caramelization adds depth of flavor and a slightly crispy texture to the dish.
- Moist and tender chicken: Chicken thighs are used in this recipe, which tend to be more moist and flavorful than chicken breasts. The marinade helps the chicken thighs stay juicy and tender during grilling.
- Sweet and savory flavors: The marinade also includes ingredients like honey, Dijon mustard, garlic, and Italian seasoning. These ingredients add a combination of sweet and savory flavors, enhancing the taste of the chicken.
By combining the balsamic marinade, sweet and savory flavors, caramelization, and reduction sauce, this recipe creates a delicious and well-balanced dish that is sure to satisfy your taste buds.
What You Need To Make Balsamic Chicken Thighs
- Chicken Thighs (I’ve used boneless skinless in this recipe)
- Balsamic Vinegar
- Olive Oil
- Fresh Thyme
- Fresh Rosemary
- Salt and Pepper
To add even more flavor to the chicken, I like to cook it on the grill. The outside of the chicken gets a little charred with a tangy, slightly sweet flavor from the marinade.
Tips For Grilling
- Make sure to oil the grates of your grill. I like to use a grill pan, and I also make sure to oil it.
- Sear the chicken over high heat when you first put it on the grill. This usually takes 1 to 2 minutes. Flip it and sear the other side. Once that’s done, I turn down the heat or move the chicken to a cooler part of the grill to finish cooking. The chicken is done when an instant-read thermometer reaches 165 degrees.
- Preheat the grill: Preheat the grill to medium-high heat to ensure even cooking.
- Paper towel technique: Before grilling, pat the chicken dry with paper towels. This helps remove excess moisture, allowing the chicken to sear better and preventing sticking to the grill.
To take this recipe to a whole new level, I finish off the grilled chicken with a drizzle of balsamic glaze. It’s sweet, rich and adds a burst of flavor that is irresistible. It’s super easy to make yourself by using my Balsamic Reduction recipe, or you can buy it in the grocery store.
What To Serve With Juicy Balsamic Chicken Thighs
Try These Easy To Make Grill Recipes
- Marinated Pork Tenderloin
- Hamburger Hobo Dinner Foil Packs
- Grilled Sweet Potatoes
- Grilled Chicken Souvlaki Skewers
- Sweet Heat BBQ Chicken
- 2 – 21/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
- ½ cup balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- 1 sprig fresh rosemary (substitute ¼ teaspoon of dried if fresh is not available)
- 2 sprigs fresh thyme (substitute ¼ teaspoon of dried if fresh is not available)
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 green onion, thinly sliced – optional
- In a small bowl, mix together balsamic vinegar, olive oil, honey, salt, pepper, and garlic. Add chicken to a glass container or zip-top bag. Pour marinade over chicken. Add the fresh herbs. Cover container and place in fridge to marinate 15 minutes or up to 2 hours.
- Remove chicken from the fridge. Heat grill to medium-high heat, about 450 degrees. Clean and oil grates. Place chicken on the grill and cook for 5-6 minutes then flip. Cook the chicken an additional 5-6 minutes until done. Internal temperature should reach 165 degrees.
- *** You can substitute bone-in, skin-on chicken. Cooking time will need to be increased, cooking for approximately 10 minutes per side. The chicken will be done when the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees.
- Remove chicken from grill and let rest for 5 minutes. Drizzle with balsamic glaze.
- Sprinkle with sliced green onion if desired.
How To Make Balsamic Reduction
- To a small saucepan, add 1 cup of vinegar and 1 tablespoon of honey. Stir. Bring to a low boil, and quickly, reduce to a slow simmer. Stir often and watch the pot so as not to burn.
- Cook for approximately 20 to 25 minutes. When the liquid is reduced by ⅓, turn off the burner and allow it to cool. The sauce will thicken and can be kept in the fridge until ready to use.