This lemon balm chicken is delightfully fragrant, with the fresh citrus flavour of herbs and a touch of garlic. It has just a few ingredients, cooks in your skillet in just 20 minutes and makes for a delicious weeknight meal!
Love lemon balm? Perhaps you would like to see my lemon balm pesto too!
With lots of pots of herbs in my back yard, I've been loving to cook with these fresh and fragrant pops of flavour. If you love herby recipes too then you may like to see my rosemary chicken fillets (most popular chicken recipe on the site!) and my coriander pesto pasta. Both fragrant and delicious!
And for a fruity chicken dinner, I think you will love my nectarine basil chicken recipe!
This lemon balm chicken makes the most of this flavourful herb, with its lemony fresh taste. We make a simple marinade, then simply pan fry in a skillet. Pair with fresh salads such as my mango slaw for a light and tasty dinner.
⭐ Why this recipe is so good
Fresh and flavourful. Using fresh herbs along with a hint of garlic gives so much flavour, and the apple juice helps keep the chicken tender.
Few ingredients. A short list of ingredients and quick cook time makes this perfect for an easy weeknight meal.
Lemon flavour without lemon. I think my low histamine readers will love the citrus flavours, without actually using citrus!
All the ingredients and their quantities are set out in the recipe card below.
Some pointers on a few of them:
- Chicken fillets - I suggest that using ready prepared skinless chicken fillets (plain, without any flavouring) is better than whole chicken breasts for this recipe. You can also slice chicken breasts lengthways before use.
- Lemon balm - the fresh leaves rather than dried for a lighter flavour.
- Garlic - adjust the quantity to taste preference!
📖 Swaps and variations
Dice chicken breasts yourself. If you can't get hold of chicken fillets at the store, simply slice a chicken breast into smaller pieces before use.
Add a squeeze of lemon juice. If it is suitable for you, then adding a hint of lemon juice will further bring out the citrus flavours.
Adjust the amount of lemon balm. The recipe gives a nice hum of fragrant flavour, but you can always add a few more leaves for an even punchier taste!
🔪 Step by step instructions
Just a few easy steps to make this herby chicken:
Prepare the lemon balm marinade. Finely dice or mince the garlic, and dice the lemon balm leaves (image 1).
Marinate the chicken. Pour the apple juice and olive oil into a bowl or container that can be sealed, then add the lemon balm, garlic, salt and black pepper along with the chicken fillets (image 2). Use your hands or a spoon to coat the chicken in the marinade. Cover and set aside for 30 minutes up to a few hours.
My low histamine readers may wish to see the note below on marinating time.
Step 3 & 4
Pan fry the chicken. Heat the olive oil in your skillet and then use tongs to place the chicken. You will likely need to fry the chicken in two batches to avoid over-crowding the skillet (images 3 and 4). Fry for 3-4 minutes each side, or until they reach an internal temperature of 165F at their deepest point.
💭 Recipe tips and notes
- If using chicken breasts, slice into a couple of pieces lengthways so you have smaller chicken fillets.
- Adjust the marinating time to preference.
- Like a really punchy marinade? Simply add more herbs or garlic!
- Cook time will vary slightly depending upon the size of the chicken fillets.
- Always check that you have an internal temperature of 165F at the deepest point of the chicken. Using a meat thermometer takes the guess work out of this process.
📋 Frequently asked questions
Fresh lemon balm leaves have a really lovely citrus aroma, and an equally lemony taste when cooked.
Yes, this can easily be cooked on the BBQ! As always, make sure it is cooked through and use a meat thermometer to check.
Simply give them a wash (especially if picking yourself!) then finely dice with a sharp knife.
You can easily add other herbs such as fresh mint.
🍽 What to serve with this skillet chicken
Fancy something a bit more comfort food style? My roasted vegetable pasta salad is always a crowd-pleaser!
🥬 Lemon balm as an antihistamine
While lemon balm isn't mentioned on the SIGHI food compatibility list, it is is rated as low histamine on other lists. Interestingly, it has reputed antihistamine effects (Ramanauskiene et al, 2015 - note that was in relation to topical preparations). It is also recommended to drink as a tea for insomnia for those with histamine intolerance to help with histamine and mediator release (SIGHI).
📖 Marinating time
In terms of marinating time for the chicken, my low histamine readers may wish to skip this step if they are sensitive to histamine formation. The chicken will still be flavourful if cooked right away!
🍽 More tasty chicken recipes
Find so many ideas on my chicken recipes page, including these recent recipes:
Lemon Balm Chicken
- Dice the lemon balm leaves and finely dice or mince the garlic.
- If using chicken breasts, I suggest slicing lengthways into 2-3 fillets depending upon their size.
- Pour the apple juice and half the olive oil into a large bowl (or tupperware), then add the lemon balm, garlic, chicken fillets, salt and black pepper. Stir or use your hands to coat the chicken in the marinade. Set aside in the fridge to marinate.
- Heat the remaining olive oil in your skillet then use tongs to transfer the chicken fillets. Cook for 3-4 minutes each side or until they have an internal temperature of 165F. The cook time will vary slightly depending upon the size of the chicken pieces.
- If using chicken breasts then I suggest to slice them lengthways into smaller chicken fillets.
- Use fresh lemon balm leaves rather than dried lemon balm for this recipe.
- Adjust the amount of garlic and herbs to preference.
- Always check the internal temperature of the chicken at its deepest point for a reading of 165F.
- My low histamine readers may wish to see the note on marinating time in the post above.
- Please note that nutritional information is offered as a courtesy. It is auto-generated and should be understood to be an estimate not a guarantee.
- lemon balm isn't rated but is stated to be low histamine on other lists.
- garlic, which scores 1.
- black pepper, which scores 2.