Cooking chicken breasts is easy but you have to depend on many factors to perfect it. You can also get different cuts from a chicken, so here is how long to grill chicken breasts.
Chicken breasts are one of the favorite parts of a chicken especially for people trying to gain some muscles. It is perhaps the meatiest cut of chicken with a lot of protein on the cut.
It is full of meat, a little bit of skin, and no bones at all. That is why if you are working out and you want a delicious chicken meal, it is best to get chicken breasts as it contains fewer fats.
You can cook chicken in almost any cookware that you have.
However, frying it on a pan will add oil to the mix, which can add to the meat’s fat content, which you should try to avoid.
The best way to keep the healthy proteins and other nutrients on the chicken breast is to grill it.
That way, you do not have to worry about the oil added to the chicken breasts.
Again, it is quite easy to grill chicken breasts but you need to perfect the timing so that you do not leave it dry when cooked and not undercook it as it might contain harmful bacteria.
How Do You Cook Chicken Breast On The Grill?
Setting the timer on how long you should grill chicken breasts depends on things other than the heat.
You need to see how long it takes to grill thick chicken breasts and thinner or cut ones.
As for any type of meat, you also need to adjust the time you grill the chicken breasts according to the cut’s thickness.
Make sure to prolong the cooking time with thicker cuts.
This also brings us to the temperature at which you cook the chicken breast.
You need to make sure to grill the chicken breasts at the right temperature to know how long they cook.
Since a regular cut of chicken breast is relatively thick and drier than other chicken cuts, you need to make sure that the heat is hot enough to enter the middle part of the chicken breasts.
However, you should also ensure that the heat is just right to prevent burning the skin or the outer parts.
This is also a challenge with other types of meat and you should know how to do it.
For a regular chicken breast at the right temperature, you should grill one side first for about 8 minutes.
Flip the chicken over and then cook for another 8 minutes until the middle cooks to perfection.
You should never leave any pink on the chicken and even the middle part should be white when cooked, these are different from steak. They also need to be cooked longer than steaks.
There is no such thing as medium-rare or rare doneness on chicken. Do not believe and follow this as chicken is very dangerous when you undercook it with all the bacteria.
At What Temperature Should I Cook Chicken Breasts?
There are different temperatures where you can cook your chicken breasts. That depends on the type of finish you want, the thickness of the chicken breasts, and the grilling style you do.
For a regular chicken breast with a thickness of a little over 3 inches, you will need to cook it for about 25 minutes. This is to make sure it cooks through the middle.
That should be the standard for cooking chicken breasts. The preparation stage is also important because it will help keep the chicken breasts juicy.
As for the temperature, the grill should be set to medium heat or somewhere around 450 degrees Fahrenheit. This will cook the chicken properly up to the middle with the proper timing.
Preheating the grill is also important to ensure that the chicken does not stick to the cold grill grates. There are also some other ways to prevent the chicken from sticking on the grill.
How To Grill Chicken Breasts Without Burning Them?
When it comes to cooking chicken breasts, the first issue is that the outer parts usually get burned while the inside or the middle part is left with a pink color or a raw finish afterward.
This is usually when you put the chicken breasts on the grill with the temperature set to higher heat than what is needed. So you need to adjust the temperature immediately.
The other issue why we usually burn the outer parts of the chicken breasts is that they stick on the grill grates. Once they stick, they can easily burn as they will be hard to flip over later on.
You can do many things to prevent the chicken breasts from sticking onto the grill grates. First, you need to make sure that the grill grates are perfectly clean by brushing.
Get a brush and use it to remove all the food residue from the past grilling sessions that you had. After cleaning the grill grates, get a paper towel and spray some oil on the grill grates.
Do not go overboard as you will only need a light coating. Spread the oil and remove the grill grates’ excess by wiping it with paper towels until the grill grates have a thin layer of oil.
From there, you can cook your chicken breasts so that you will not have a hard time flipping them over. You can also braise or marinade chicken with an oil-based marinade before cooking.
Also, make sure that you thaw the chicken breasts before putting them on the grill. The frozen parts will likely harden and leave the chicken breast raw with a pink middle color.
How Long Should I Grill Thick Chicken Breasts?
Thicker chicken breasts need to cook longer than thinner ones. You need to make sure that the heat cooks in the middle of the breast to remove any food-borne illnesses.
For chicken breasts that are thicker than 4 inches, you need to make sure that they cook all the way through by cooking them longer or doing some of the tricks to cook with a shorter period.
You can pound the chicken breasts with a meat hammer to reduce the thickness. This will help you cook the chicken breasts faster and it will also allow the heat to pass through the middle.
After that, you should cook the thick chicken breasts on high heat for 12 minutes on each side. Flip only once and wait for the chicken to cook in the middle before removing it from the grill.
What Is The Safe Temperature For Chicken Breasts?
No matter how long or how short you cook the chicken breasts, there is a standard that you should follow to make sure that the bacteria and other harmful substances in the chicken
As I have said earlier, chicken has a slightly higher cooking temperature than other meat cuts such as pork and beef. You need to cook the chicken until it reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
This is the rule of thumb that you should follow to ensure that there is no bacteria inside the meat. This is the safe zone but you can remove the chicken breasts beforehand.
Once the chicken breasts have reached an internal temperature of 160 degrees Fahrenheit, you can remove them from the grill as long as you let them rest for at least 5 minutes before serving.
Perhaps the most important thing that you should invest in when you love grilling your chicken breasts is a meat probe to ensure that you get to the right internal temperature.
Grilling chicken breasts is easy as long as you know how to time the cooking process. You can also even out the thickness of the chicken breasts to have a more even cooking time.
So make sure that you cook the chicken breasts until they reach the suggested internal temperature to make sure that they are safe to eat with your favorite salad or barbecue sauce!
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