Skinless, boneless breasts are the easiest part of the chicken to grill. Because they’re so lean, you don’t get the flare-ups associated with whole chicken or legs and you can grill them directly over high flames. But the lack of fat can also be a drawback: Chicken breasts must be generously basted with oil or melted butter during grilling to keep them from drying out.
1. Preheat the grill to high.
2. Rinse and drain the chicken breasts under cold running water, then drain and blot dry with paper towels.
3. When ready to cook, oil the grate. For extra smoke flavor, toss a few soaked wood chips on the coals, lava stones, or inverted V bars before grilling. Arrange the breasts all going in the same direction on the hot grate. Grill for 2 minutes, then, using tongs, rotate the breasts 45 degrees and grill for 2 to 4 minutes more. This creates an attractive crosshatch of grill marks. Generously baste the breasts with oil, melted butter, or marinade as they cook. (However, if using a sugar-based barbecue sauce, apply it only during the last 2 minutes of grilling on each side.)
4. Turn the breasts with tongs and grill the other side, again rotating each breast 45 degrees after 2 minutes. The total cooking time for a skinless, boneless chicken breast will be 4 to 6 minutes per side.
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