A long-time contributor to SeriouslySmoked. Jim has had a lifelong relationship with the art of grilling, passed on from his father and grandfather to him.
Doug is a hardcore barbeque enthusiast and connoisseur. While he spends most of his time on editing and research,
he sometimes moonlights as a product tester for particularly interesting things he comes across.
Grilling chicken breast on a gas grill might seem like the easiest of tasks. After all, you just need to fire up your gas grill, place your chicken breasts on the cooking grate and let the chicken cook for a few minutes.
Well, nothing could be further from the truth.
Chicken breast is a lean piece of white flesh that tends to overcook if left on the grill for far too long. In essence, you need to know how long to grill chicken breast on a gas grill and what temperature to set to ensure your summer meal comes out juicy, tender, and moist, just the way you like it.
In today’s post, we highlight a few tips on how to make a perfectly grilled chicken breast. Read on to find out more…
1. What You Need to Make Perfectly Grill Chicken Breasts on a Gas Grill
Before you start grilling your chicken breasts, you need to gather a few essential tools and ingredients. Here’s a list of what you need to get started.
- Instant-read thermometer
- Quality tongs
- Seasoning and flavorings
- Fruit juices or balsamic vinegar
- Olive oil
- Clean spray oil
2. Steps to Grill Chicken Breast on Gas Grill
Step 1 – Prepare the chicken breasts
Chicken breasts are usually lean, meaning you won’t have any problem tenderizing the meat.
Simply wrap the pieces of chicken in parchment paper or plastic wrap and whack the thickest parts with a meat mallet or rolling pin. Flatten the chicken to make it even from end to end to ensure that the breasts cook evenly.
Step 2 – Marinate the chicken
Next, pre-season the chicken by coating the breasts with olive oil, salt, pepper, and other seasonings.
Alternatively, you can also place your vinegar, oil, flavorings, and seasonings in a bowl and then add the pieces of chicken to marinate them.
Make sure the mixture covers both sides of the chicken. Marinating your chicken will keep it tender and juicy, and add extra flavor to your dish.
Step 3 – Pre-heat the grill
Fire up and pre-heat your gas grill to high until the temperature reaches 400°F. Preheating the grill ensures that your chicken breasts sear and caramelize quickly and more efficiently.
Besides, preheating helps prevent your food from sticking onto the cooking grate, meaning you can turn and flip your chicken easily as needed.
Step 4 – Clean and grease the cooking grates
Before you start grilling, you need to clean and grease the cooking grates to remove any food residue from previous BBQs and prevent further latching.
With the grill already pre-heated, scrubbing the grates to remove the gunk and stuck-on food is very easy. You only need to use the right tool for scrubbing such as a grill brush or stone.
Step 5 – Place your chicken breasts on the grill and cook on medium heat
Lower the setting to medium heat (300°F) and add your chicken breasts to the grill. Remember, the grill has to be hot before adding your chicken. You can therefore use a grill thermometer to check the current temperature.
Lay the pieces of chicken breasts on the grates, leaving at least 2 inches between each piece to allow for even cooking and searing.
Step 6 – Turn the chicken breasts every 5-7 minutes
The interesting bit about grilling chicken breast on a gas grill is that it doesn’t take long to cook. Depending on the size of the breasts, it should take between 5 and 7 minutes for one side to cook.
Using tongs, flip the chicken breasts over after every 5-7 minutes to ensure even cooking. Make sure you keep an eye on the hot spots on the grill to prevent parts of your chicken from turning black and drying out.
If you are a fan of sugary sauces and sweet glazes, wait until the final stages of cooking before brushing your chicken with these sauces.
Step 7 – Check the internal temperature of the chicken breasts
After flipping your chicken and making sure that both sides are cooked, you should check the internal temperature to ensure the meat does not dry out or overcook.
Like most grilled dishes, the internal temperature of your chicken breasts should be 165°F. Take a meat probe or an instant-read thermometer and measure the internal temperature of your cooked chicken breasts.
Step 8 – Serve
Do not serve immediately. Remove the chicken breasts from the grill and wrap them in aluminum foil. Wrapping the breasts in foil ensures the meat remains juicy and tender. Wait for at least 10 minutes before unwrapping the chicken and serving.
3. How Long Does It Take to Grill Chicken Breast on a Gas Grill?
Depending on the size, it should take between 5 and 7 minutes to grill chicken breasts on a gas grill. This duration is for one side only, meaning it will take approximately 15 minutes to grill both sides of the chicken breast.
How to Tell Your Chicken Breasts Are Cooked?
Small chicken breasts do not take long to cook. However, if you are grilling big chicken breasts on a gas grill, expect them to take a bit longer to cook. This means you have to pay keen attention to ensure you don’t serve partially cooked chicken. Here’s how you can tell whether or not your chicken is ready to serve.
Check the internal temperature
If your chicken breasts are ready, the internal temperature should be approximately 165°F. Use an instant-read thermometer to check the internal temp of the cooked bird.
You don’t have to be a pro chef neither do you need special tools to know whether or not your chicken breasts are ready. You can perform a visual check by simply slicing the thickest parts of the breasts using poultry shears. If you notice the slightest hint of pink or red, then the meat is not ready since cooked chicken should be white.
Another easy way to tell whether your grilled chicken breasts are ready is by conducting a firmness test. Remove the chicken from the grill and press the center with your finger. If the chicken is a bit firm, then it is probably ready.
Grilling chicken breast on a gas grill doesn’t take long as other types of meat. This makes it ideal for making quick BBQ dishes. Follow the above steps to impress your guests with perfectly grilled tender and juicy chicken breasts.
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