Grilled Sassafras Chicken 5

grilled sassafras chicken

As I considered making this for dinner, one question hung ominously in the kitchen, above all others. What if it tastes like root beer chicken? There was only one way to find out.

I’m told by reliable sources that something called ‘dr. pepper chicken’ not only exists, but is quite tasty. I was not excited to be involved in any soda flavored chicken concoction, but I went ahead with my experiment.  If it failed, I had nothing else planned for dinner, so we’d probably have been stuck with nothing but brussel sprouts. ha.

Luckily for us, it did not taste whatsoever like root beer soaked chicken! Using a small amount of sassafras in the marinade gives it a nice hint of flavor.  It just adds that elusive “je ne sais quoi” quality, which is awesome.



3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (14 oz total)
¼ c white wine
½ c olive oil
1 tsp grated lemon zest
2 Tbsp lemon juice
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 tsp sassafras bark
1 tsp dried sage

Zest and juice a lemon, then crush up one clove of garlic.

zest a lemon

Here is my teaspoon of sassafras bark.

sassafras bark

Put the chicken in a large zipper bag, mix all the ingredients together and pour it into the bag with the chicken. Zip the bag closed while squeezing out as much air as possible. Smoosh it around so the marinade evenly covers the chicken, and then put it into the fridge. I like to put it inside a bowl in case of leaks. I think conventional marinade wisdom tells us to let it sit for at least 30 minutes, but I wanted to really bring out the flavors, so I prepped it really early and let it marinate for 6 hours!

marinading chicken

When dinner time arrived, Austin started the grill, and we took out the chicken and let it come to room temperature while we peeled and chopped the brussel sprouts.

chicken ready to grill

Now comes my favorite part. Austin takes everything out to the grill and magically turns it into dinner.

sassafras grilled chicken

Grilling season is now officially OPEN!


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