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Grilled Lemon Chicken Salad with Basil Dressing

Grilled Lemon Chicken Salad with Basil Dressing

Chicken method adapted from here.
Servings 1 serving
Author Brandon Matzek


For the chicken:

  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice (about 1/2 lemon)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • For the dressing:
  • 2 handfuls of basil, about 2/3 cup
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil

For the salad:

  • Grilled lemon chicken, 1/2 a breast per person
  • Leafy lettuce greens, 3 large leaves per person
  • Sliced avocado, 1/2 an avocado per person
  • Halved cherry tomatoes, 10 halves per person
  • Chopped crispy bacon, 2 slices per person


  1. In a small bowl, whisk together lemon juice, salt, pepper, sugar and olive oil. Place chicken in a large zip-top bag and pour over marinade. Seal the bag, pressing out as much air as possible. Let rest in the fridge for 30 minutes, flipping halfway through.
  2. Meanwhile prepare a dual heat grill*. Pull the chicken out of the marinade and let any excess drip off. Place the breasts on the cooler part of the grill, thicker part towards the direct heat. Cover and let cook until the bottom develops light grill marks (6 to 8 minutes). Flip the breasts and this time have the thinner part of the chicken towards the direct heat. Continue cooking until the thickest part of the chicken registers 140°F (8 - 11 minutes). Move chicken over to the direct heat and cook until the exterior turns golden and darker grill marks form (2 - 4 minutes). Flip and repeat with other side until chicken hits 160°F (2 - 4 minutes longer). Let rest for 5 minutes, then slice as needed.
  3. To make the dressing, place the basil leaves in a small food processor or blender, and pulse until chopped. Add the lemon juice, a couple pinches of salt, several turns of black pepper and honey, pulsing to combine. Add the olive oil, and process until combined. Season to taste with additional salt, pepper and honey.
  4. To assemble the salad, line a large platter with lettuce leaves, then top with sliced chicken, avocado, tomatoes and bacon. Drizzle basil dressing over top. Sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper. Enjoy immediately!

Recipe Notes

* To prepare a dual-heat setup on a gas grill, preheat the grill with all burners on. When you're ready to cook, turn off the flames on one side of the grill and proceed with instructions above. For a charcoal grill, mound hot coals on one side of the grill, then preheat the grate and proceed with instructions above.