Greek Marinated Chicken

$8.97 recipe / $1.12 serving
by Beth - Budget Bytes
4.59 from 165 votes
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Need something easy and flavorful to throw on the grill this weekend? This Greek Marinated Chicken is it.

The marinade for this chicken (similar to what I used for this Chicken Shawarma ) takes just a few minutes to stir together and creates an absolute explosion of flavor. It’s incredible. I only marinated my chicken in this magical mix for 30 minutes, but the flavor was still loud and clear. Once marinated, you can grill the chicken outdoors over a gas or charcoal flame, or (if you don’t have a grill) you can bake it in the oven. Either way, you’ll get a super flavorful and moist end product.

I served this Greek Marinated Chicken with my Lemony Cucumber and Couscous Salad, which was the perfect cold summer side, and incorporated both starches and vegetables into the meal. Two birds with one stone!

Greek Marinated Chicken

Three pieces of Greek Marinated Chicken on a plate

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Greek Marinated Chicken

4.59 from 165 votes
A tangy lemon and garlic marinade makes this Greek Marinated Chicken super fast and flavorful. Cook it in the oven or on a grill.
Servings 8 pieces
Prep 45 minutes
Cook 1 hour
Total 1 hour 45 minutes


  • 1 cup plain yogurt ($0.63)
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil ($0.32)
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced ($0.32)
  • 1/2 Tbsp dried oregano ($0.08)
  • 1 medium lemon ($0.49)
  • 1/2 tsp salt ($0.02)
  • freshly cracked pepper ($0.05)
  • 1/4 bunch fresh parsley ($0.20)
  • 3 1/2 to 4 lbs chicken pieces ($6.86)


  • To make the marinade, combine the yogurt, olive oil, minced garlic, oregano, salt, and some freshly cracked pepper in a bowl. Use a fine holed cheese grater or a zester to scrape the thin layer of yellow zest from the lemon skin into the bowl. Also add the juice from half of the lemon (about 1-2 Tbsp). Stir until the ingredients are well combined. Roughly chop a big handful, or about 1/4 bunch, of parsley and stir it into the marinade.
  • Add the chicken pieces and marinade to a gallon sized zip top bag. Remove as much air as possible, close the bag tightly, and massage the bag to mix the contents and make sure the chicken is well coated. Refrigerate the bag for 30 minutes.
  • After marinating for 30 minutes, either cook the chicken on a grill OR preheat the oven to 375 degrees in preparation to bake the chicken.
  • To bake the chicken, place the chicken pieces in a large casserole dish (9×13). Bake the chicken in the preheated 375 degree oven for 45-60 minutes, or until golden brown on top.

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This recipe is extra garlicky. If you’re not into heavy garlic, try starting with two cloves instead of four.


Serving: 1ServingCalories: 566.34kcalCarbohydrates: 3.49gProtein: 52.26gFat: 38.58gSodium: 950.88mgFiber: 0.53g
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Top view of three pieces of marinated chicken on a plate
Top view of a plate with one piece of chicken and a side salad

Step by Step Photos for Greek Marinated Chicken

Marinade Ingredients in mixing bowl

First prepare the marinade. Combine the yogurt, olive oil, oregano, minced garlic, salt, and some freshly cracked pepper in a bowl. Add the zest from one lemon and the juice from about half of it (1-2 Tbsp). Stir these ingredients until well combined.

Finished Marinade for Greek Marinated Chicken

Add a handful, or about 1/4 bunch, of roughly chopped parsley. This is your finished marinade (or a REALLY awesome dip!).

two packages of chicken pieces for Greek Marinated Chicken

I used about 3.75 pounds of chicken pieces (drumsticks and thighs). You could easily half this Greek Marinated Chicken recipe, if needed.

chicken and marinade ini zip lock bag

Add the chicken pieces and the marinade to a large, gallon-sized zip top bag and mix it around to make sure the chicken is well coated. Refrigerate the bag for 30 minutes.

marinated chicken placed in baking dish ready to bake

After marinating, you can either grill the chicken or bake it. I don’t have an outdoor grill, so I decided to bake it. Place the chicken pieces in a large casserole dish. I ended up pouring the extra marinade over top, but later realized that this just made it take longer to brown, so I don’t suggest doing so. There is plenty of flavor in the marinade that you won’t need to add the extra.

Baked Greek Marinated Chicken

Bake the chicken in a preheated 375 degree oven for 45-60  minutes, or until it is golden brown. It will smell SO good! Now eat!

Plate with one piece of marinated chicken and a side salad

I served this Greek Marinated Chicken with my Lemony Cucumber and Couscous salad and it was PERFECT! :D

Greek Marinated Chicken is flavored with a garlicky lemon and yogurt marinade and baked (or grilled) till tender.
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  1. Love the fresh taste of this recipe!

    I couldn’t get it to brown very well, even at 60 minutes and the chicken is quite dry/chewy at the 60 minute mark so I’m not sure I could leave it to brown further, but still yummy!

    1. E.L. Everyone’s oven is different. Next time you cools heat a cast iron skillet. Brown the chicken skin side. Flip and straight into the oven to finish. Or after cooking in the oven, put them under the broiler for about 5 minutes.

    1. Now I’m curious about this too! I wonder if the yogurt + lemon juice would hold up or curdle over a few hours though.

  2. Has anyone adjusted this recipe to chicken breast vs. bone-in? Just wondering what I may adjust the cooking time/temp to…

    1. We haven’t tried this dish as a freezer meal, and freezing chicken in marinades isn’t something we do very often. Since we haven’t tried this method, I hesitate to give you any specific suggestions that may not be successful. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t give it a shot! If you do, let us know how it goes. Good luck! ~ Marion :)

    1. Greek yogurt has quite a bit less moisture than regular yogurt, so you might find that it coats the chicken too thick.

    2. I’ve always used Greek yogurt, the first time by accident, without issue. Turns out perfectly moist every time! I’ve been using this recipe for years and come back to it every time.

    1. Well, that was almost ten years ago, but it was just at my local supermarket (in New Orleans). You can see the packages with the price tags in the step by step photo section.