Sugar free sweet tea makes an amazing brine for grilled chicken. So tender and juicy, with a beautiful golden brown finish. Definitely a must make for late summer grilling. This post is sponsored by Lipton Iced Tea.
It’s hard to believe the summer is drawing to a close already and the kids are heading back to school. Late summer has always been one of my favourite times of the year. There’s something about the light on a late summer evening that fills me with peace. It’s more golden, more beautiful, tinged with that sense that something is ending and something new is beginning. That little chill in the air in the mornings that hints at fall’s arrival. But it’s not quite time yet to give up the fun and freedom of summer, so you have to make the most of what’s left. You start packing in the family fun and adventures to hold you over until next summer.
For me, this has always been a time for being close with family. We have one last family camping trip ahead of us, to the Oregon coast. And we will have friends and family over on Labor Day, the day that always feels like the REAL end of summer. We will grill and hang out and just be together, reveling in the sun’s remaining warmth but cherishing the changes in the seasons.
I made some sweet iced tea earlier this summer and the kids went wild for it. They haven’t really been iced tea drinkers heretofore but it was such a hit, I found myself making it over and over again. It’s such a refreshing drink and one that is perfect for sipping whilst hanging out with friends and family. It brightens the moments you share together.
Lipton asked me to create a reimagined recipe, a twist on a family classic that pairs well with Lipton iced tea. We eat grilled chicken all summer long in various forms. Everyone loves the informality of eating chicken with your fingers; it has a casual, comfortable, relaxed feel to it. While any grilled chicken recipe pairs well with iced tea, I thought why not go a step further and combine the two? Brining in a sweet Lipton iced tea marinade gives the chicken a summery flavour and a lucious golden glaze. And it locks in the juiciness.
And of course now it pairs even more perfectly with a glass of freshly brewed iced tea! Lipton has great tips on how to make the perfect pitcher of iced tea to share with friends or family. I made a slightly stronger version for the marinade but here’s their brewing advice:
For the individual cup-sized tea bags, use 6 tea bags per 2 quarts of water. Pour boiling water over tea bags in a heat-proof pitcher. Steep 3 to 5 minutes, then remove tea bags and sweeten to taste. Add 6 cups of ice and stir until melted. Keep refrigerated.
For more creative twists on summer meals, check out the Food Network Lipton Bright Bites page!
Sweet Tea Brined Chicken
- 4 cups water
- 4 Lipton Cup Size Black Tea Bags
- 1/2 cup confectioner's Swerve Sweetener
- 1/4 cup sea salt
- 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 2 cloves garlic chopped
- 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
- 2 tsp freshly ground pepper
- 2 cups ice
- 3 lbs chicken thighs and drumsticks
- In a large saucepan, bring water to a boil. Remove from heat and add tea bags. Cover and steep 15 minutes.
- Stir in sweetener and salt until dissolved. Add lemon juice, garlic, rosemary, and pepper. Add ice and stir until melted and marinade is cool to the touch.
- Place chicken in a large resealable bag and pour marinade over. Refrigerate overnight.
- Preheat grill to medium on one side, leaving the other side unlit for indirect heat (pile charcoal on only one side of your grill, if using a charcoal grill). Remove chicken from marinade and place skin side down over lit side of grill. Replace grill cover and cook about 7 minutes, until nicely browned and grill marks appear. Flip over and grill another 7 minutes, until nicely browned.
- Transfer chicken to indirect heat and cook until internal temperature reaches 165F on an instant read thermometer, 15 to 20 more minutes.
Total fat: 21.01g
Calories from fat: 189
Total dietary fiber: 0.52g
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Lipton. The opinions and text are all mine.