Steak is a treat, pork chops are fine and we’ll never say no to a burger. But if we’re being honest, all we really want for dinner is chicken—especially since it pairs so well with the bounty of fresh summer produce that will soon be taking over our fridge. From crowd-pleasing sandwiches to easy marinated kebabs, here are 50 summer chicken recipes to eat for lunch, dinner and beyond.
1. Chicken Kebabs with Garlic Lemon Yogurt
With so few ingredients, you’d be surprised at how flavorful this recipe really is. It’s all thanks to baharat, a Middle Eastern spice blend used in the chicken’s marinade.
2. Grilled Curried Chicken Thighs
We found the secret to maximizing flavor on the grill, and it’s all in the baste. Here, it’s with a savory blend of curried coconut milk that also creates a crackly-brown crust.
3. Barbecue Pineapple Chicken Kebabs
Sticky, spicy-sweet chicken begs to be devoured outdoors. And these brown up right on the grill, so you’ll get to cook and eat in the yard. All you need now is a cold drink. (Might we suggest rosé?)
4. Slow-Cooker Pulled Chicken
Barbecue sammies without touching an oven or grill? Genius. This one’s proof that your trusty slow cooker can—and should—be used year-round. This will take seven hours to get fork-tender, so set it and forget it a morning or day ahead.
5. Basil Chicken Saltimbocca with Marinated Tomatoes and Burrata
Pan-fried, prosciutto-wrapped cutlets get the special treatment with a marinated tomato and basil topping. And if that doesn’t have you drooling already, there’s also burrata.
6. Grilled Barbecue Chicken Pizza
Your grill’s latest masterpiece is a thin, crispy pie. Corn, cherry tomatoes and a heaping of cilantro? CPK’s got nothing on you. (Thanks, Coterie member Gaby Dalkin.)
7. Grilled Sticky Honey-Sriracha Drumsticks with Slaw
Who said breasts and thighs had to be the stars of the show? This spicy honey-lime glaze makes a mean case for legs. Serve with basmati rice and lime wedges. Oh, and pass the napkins.
8. Pasta Florentine with Grilled Chicken
With a creamy sauce and tender spinach, pasta Florentine is already great. But when you add smoky grilled chicken, it’s transported to another level.
9. Grilled Jerk Chicken Cutlets with Mango Salsa
A fruity, sweet salsa is a natural foil to the cinnamon-y, spicy jerk seasoning on the chicken. And guess what? It takes only 35 minutes from start to finish.
10. Green Bowl with Chicken, Citrus and Herbs
We heard you were meal prepping, so we got you a present: It’s this Mediterranean-esque chicken bowl, which is packed with protein to keep you full all day long. You’re welcome.
11. 30-Minute Creamy Chicken, Corn and Tomato Skillet
12. Chicken Tinga Tacos
No one needs to know that you used store-bought rotisserie chicken for these. And with a host of fun toppings (avocado! onion! cotija!), they’ll be none the wiser.
13. Slow-Cooker Chicken Piccata
Bust out the Crock-Pot for this light and zesty dinner. We should also mention that it comes together with just ten ingredients, and goes great with one-pot, 15-minute pasta limone. Out of capers? Try these substitutes.
14. Crispy Grilled Chicken
As Ina Garten would say, we’re going back to basics. The secret to the crispiest chicken ever? Mayonnaise.
15. Cheater’s Grilled Whole Chicken and Vegetables
By removing the backbone (aka spatchcocking), you can flatten a whole chicken right onto those hot grill grates. Gorgeous char marks, here we come.
16. Grilled Lemon-Herb Chicken and Avocado Salad
The best part of a salad is obviously the toppings, so we’re piling this one high with barley, tomatoes and a lemon-mustard dressing.
17. Skillet Roast Chicken with Peaches, Tomatoes and Red Onion
You know it’s really summer when you’re finding an excuse to put peaches in everything. This one-hour, one-pan meal is just the ticket.
18. Roasted Chicken Thighs with Strawberry Avocado Salsa
When you want something quick and easy (but still satisfying), chicken thighs are your best friend. They can handle high heat without getting dry…and don’t get us started on that crispy skin.
19. Chopped Thai Chicken Salad
When it’s 80 degrees and the humidity is at 100 percent, this crunchy, slaw-like chicken salad is just what dinner calls for. It’s spicy and filling without weighing you down.
20. Summery Kale Salad with Grilled Chicken, Toasted Bread, Mint and Strawberries
Kale salad? Been there, done that—until you add grilled chicken and all the seasonal produce our hearts can handle.
21. Chicken Satay with Peanut Sauce
OK, you get it. We have a thing for skewers…but for good reason. They’re a fun, foolproof way to get golden-brown chicken at lightning speed, like with this spicy peanut satay.
22. Mexican Street Corn Chicken Bowl
If your go-to chicken bowl and an elote had an incredibly delicious baby, it’d be this fresh and festive lunch. Level up by making homemade taco seasoning for the chicken.
23. Za’atar Chicken and Veggie Kabobs
With its lemony vibes and Middle Eastern kick, za’atar transforms even humble chicken breasts into a midsummer dinner’s dream. Just wait until you see what it can do to grilled zucchini.
24. Herbed Chicken Salad with Mango-Mustard Dressing
Coterie member Aida Mollenkamp knows the way to our hearts, which is a tangy, mustard-based dressing and expertly seasoned chicken. Swoon.
25. Spiced Spatchcock Chicken with Peach Barbecue Sauce
You had us at “peach barbecue sauce.” And the addition of fresh mint and tarragon doesn’t hurt, either. Thanks, Coterie member Carlene Thomas.
26. Chicken Pesto Focaccia Sandwiches
Craving a chicken sammie that’s not a total snooze? Swap the bun for focaccia, add some pesto and feta and voilà—you’re a chef-level sandwich-maker.
27. Weeknight Saucy Pineapple Barbecue Chicken Bowls
Good news: This mouthwatering chicken isn’t just for bowls. Pile the leftovers on a bun for tomorrow’s lunch…that is, if you have leftovers.
28. Lemongrass Chicken Lettuce Wraps
What’s more fun than filling a cup of lettuce (or, in this case, radicchio) with impossibly crispy chicken and Thai-inspired toppings? We’ll let you know when we think of the answer.
29. Sheet Pan Indian-Spiced Chicken
Turmeric! Mustard seeds! Cumin! Nigella Lawson’s recipe for warm-spiced thighs is just the dose of cozy you need after a long day. The potatoes roast right next to the chicken, so you can spend less time doing dishes and more time eating dessert.
30. Potato-Chip ‘Fried’ Chicken
No one will ever guess that these babies are baked. See ya, messy oil. But the best thing about them is *obviously* the potato chips. A whole 16-ounce bag of ’em goes into the breading. You can’t go wrong with plain, but we’re feeling sour cream and onion or barbecue tonight.
31. Parmesan-Ranch Chicken Thighs
Nothing comes in handy last-minute like a packet of ranch seasoning. Combined with Parmesan cheese, flour and black pepper, it gives plain old chicken a zap of flavor. Serve it in the backyard with a side of light and tangy coleslaw.
32. Spicy Yogurt Marinated Chicken Legs
Whole chicken legs strike a delicious balance between simple and impressive. And these come together in less than an hour. The marinade has creamy brightness from Greek yogurt and lemon juice, as well as heat from chili and curry powders. Roast, serve and let the accolades roll in.
33. Honey Mustard Sheet-Pan Chicken with Brussels Sprouts
Did you hear that? That’s the sound of immaculately-crunchy chicken skin, golden-brown and roasted in a honey-mustard sauce. And the Brussels? *Chef’s kiss.*
34. Spinach and Cheese Stuffed Chicken
We took chicken breasts and said, "bye-bye, boring." This is a baked take on chicken Parmesan that’s packed with wilted spinach, sautéed garlic, mozzarella and Parm. Make a big batch of the from-scratch sauce so it’s good to go on your next pasta night.
35. Garlic Breaded Roast Chicken Breast
We’re always down for lots and lots of garlic. Especially in a crunchy panko breading that refuses to quit. Even better, this recipe only uses nine ingredients, and they’re likely all in your pantry right now. Slice it over salad, have it with aioli on a roll or serve over spaghetti.
36. Buffalo Chicken Meatballs
The homemade sauce is so easy you’ll never want store-bought buffalo again. Six tablespoons of melted butter have that kind of power. The meatballs will keep for three days, so get ready to be the envy of the break room. (Buffalo-blue cheese wraps for lunch, anyone?)
37. Roasted Drumsticks with Tomatoes
Garden party on the horizon? This gorgeous one-pan wonder is as low-maintenance as it is elegant. Smashed garlic and cherry tomatoes bring tons of flavor and sweetness to these tender chicken pieces. Make a pretty green salad (like this sugar snap pea salad with Chèvre ranch) to serve them with and your job is done.
38. Bruschetta Chicken
Summer is this dish’s jam. Picture browned, seasoned chicken topped in homemade bruschetta, rich with plump tomatoes, garlic and basil. All she needs is a drizzle of balsamic and a sprinkle of Parm. Did we mention it all comes together in less than 30 minutes?
39. Honey-Lime Chicken and Veggies in Foil
Fire up the grill for its easiest project yet. Whether you’re having company or eating solo, this dish stays ridiculously simple and virtually mess-free, even despite the sticky honey-ginger sauce. No cleanup for the win.
40. Crispy Baked Chicken Tenders
"Ugh, chicken fingers again ?" whined no kid ever. Both picky eaters and grown-ups never get tired of munching on these. We swapped frying for baking, making this a totally grown-up and acceptable dinner you can feel good about. Now, who has the ketchup?
41. Avocado Chicken Salad
No summer picnic is complete without chicken salad. But we thought the dish was overdue for an upgrade, so we called on store-bought rotisserie chicken and buttery avocado to make the recipe easier and creamier than ever before.
42. Skillet Chicken Fajitas
Mix up Taco Tuesday with this mélange of bell peppers, onions and seared chicken. Bonus points for eating it al fresco with margaritas. (Oh, and don’t forget the guacamole…as if you needed a reminder.)
43. Chicken and Waffle Sandwiches
Sunday brunch never looked so damn epic. Think spicy buttermilk fried chicken meets savory cheddar cheese waffles.
44. Greek Chicken and Rice Skillet
Dinner for six in 40 minutes? Don’t mind if we do. Not only is this skillet bursting with zippy flavor, thanks to the olives, feta and lemon, but the rice also cooks right in the pan with the other ingredients instead of in its own separate pot.
45. Lime Chicken with Corn and Poblano Salad
This zesty number has summer written all over it. Feel free to trade canned corn kernels for fresh corn when it’s in season.
46. Greek Lemon Chicken Skewers with Tzatziki Sauce
Call it a barbecue appetizer, call it dinner for one. Either way, you’ll want to go swimming in the homemade tzatziki sauce. The chicken would also taste divine mixed into a Greek salad or served atop toasted pita.
47. Grilled Thai Chicken Lettuce Wraps
Put down the takeout menu and step away from the phone. You’re only 20 minutes away from sweet chili chicken and toasted peanuts wrapped in crisp butter lettuce leaves.
48. Tarragon Chicken Salad Sandwiches
Say it with us: Chicken salad doesn’t *need* to be boring. In fact, this one is straight-up begging for some Instagram love. Spice up the O.G. with homemade tarragon mayonnaise and zippy quick-pickled onions.
49. Baked Caprese Chicken Skillet
Summer tomatoes, it’s your time to shine. Do yourself a favor and pick up the best ones you can find at the farmers market. Feel free to go the extra mile by making the pesto from scratch instead of using store-bought, too.