Grilled Chicken Caprese

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Summertime food at its best! This Grilled Chicken Caprese is super easy to make and packed with flavor. It’s also a one-and-done dinner thanks to the added grilled zucchini. Everything is cooked on the grill, so there’s virtually no cleanup and only a few minutes of prep work. It’s popular with both kids and adults, and even better it’s an easy showstopper for entertaining as well.

Balsamic Grilled Chicken topped with Caprese Salad on a pottery plate with basil sprigs around it and a blue and white striped linen next to the plate.

Is there anything better than vine-ripe tomatoes so full of flavor they’re bursting at the seams, (sometimes quite literally)? I never get enough homegrown tomatoes. Their season is so short, and the flavor is incomparable.

Not that I don’t buy out-of-season tomatoes or anything, (because I do, but they just can’t compare!). I just really appreciate the real thing when I have it. And… as a side note when you are buying out-of-season tomatoes, cherry tomatoes always have the most flavor and best texture.

One of my favorite ways to celebrate tomato season is the classic Caprese Salad. This time I’ve taken my usual recipe, and transformed it into a topping for a simple grilled chicken with some garden zucchini.

Two pottery plates of Balsamic Grilled Chicken topped with Caprese Salad with a blue and white striped linen on the side with basil sprigs around the plates.

Watch how to make Grilled Chicken Caprese

And can we talk zucchini for a minute? We’re finally getting to that stage where the zucchini is taking over the garden. I mean it’s sending out vines in all directions, and they’re all bearing fruit. If you’re having similar ‘problems’ be sure to check out my zucchini post below!

Do you have too much zucchini too? Check out my 35 Healthy Zucchini Recipes or my 5 Ways to Use Up Large Amounts of Zucchini!

But… back to the topic at hand. This simple meal with minimal prep and all the best flavors of summer has quickly become a household favorite. With all the bright colors, it makes for a great presentation if you’re having company over. But true to my usual style it’s so simple you could make it on a weeknight.

Now let’s jump in and make this recipe step by step

Marinating Balsamic Chicken in a glass bowl on a wooden cutting board.

Step 1: I like to marinate the chicken overnight for the best flavor. But I also tried it out with a 2 hour marinade and that worked as well. It’s really important to control the heat when you’re grilling chicken that’s been marinated.

If the grill gets too hot the chicken will burn before it cooks all the way through.

Cherry tomatoes, mozzarella balls, basil, sea salt, and olive oil in pottery bowls on a wooden cutting board.

Step 2: I always like to let my Caprese salad ‘marinate’ a bit before serving it. I just think it tastes a bit better once the olive oil has had a bit of time to soak in.

You can also add the chopped basil if the salad topping is only sitting for 15 minutes or so.

Cut up tomatoes and mozzarella with sliced basil on a wooden cutting board.

But if you’re storing it in the fridge for any length of time be sure to add the basil before serving (it has a tendency to turn brown quickly). I also like to cut the mini mozzarella pearls in half for more bites of mozzarella.

Another quick tip is to make sure the salad is at room temperature for serving because the flavor will be much more intense. In the ideal world, the tomatoes would never set foot inside the refrigerator and just go straight from sun-warmed to salad!

Caprese Salad in a mixing bowl with sliced zucchini on a wooden cutting board.

Step 3: After you’ve mixed together the Caprese salad, set it aside and preheat the grill, then slice the zucchini in half.

Balsamic marinated chicken on the grill with the zucchini.

Step 4: Grill the chicken and zucchini over medium to medium-high heat until the chicken is ready to turn over, about 8-12 minutes depending on size.

Also if your zucchini is on the small side, it might be ready to turn in as little as 5-6 minutes.

Balsamic marinated chicken and zucchini turned over on the grill with grill marks.

Step 5: After turning the chicken and zucchini, grill until the zucchini is tender and the chicken is done about 8-10 more minutes.

Balsamic Grilled Chicken topped with Caprese Salad on a pottery plate with basil sprigs around it.

Step 6: Serve everything family-style, or slice the chicken and plate with the Caprese salad and zucchini. For a final flourish, I like to drizzle the whole plate with a balsamic reduction and a sprinkle of flaked finishing sea salt.

If you’re interested in making your own balsamic reduction, I gave a quick run down on my Watermelon Feta Spinach Salad.

Ways to serve this

Tips & Tricks

  • If you can’t find mozzarella balls, get any fresh mozzarella available and cut it up into bite-sized pieces.
  • When you can, marinate the chicken overnight for the deepest flavor. You can also use chicken thighs here, just be aware they cook faster.
  • Make sure your grill is clean and oil the grates to make sure the chicken doesn’t stick. If your grill is well-seasoned and clean, you shouldn’t need to worry about it. Also, it’s important to keep the temperature within range of what I’ve listed so the chicken cooks through without burning on the outside.
A straight down view of two plates of Balsamic Grilled Chicken topped with Caprese Salad on a white background with basil sprigs around it.

The little finishing touches make a dish seem special, (and they really add to the flavor). But it only takes a couple of extra seconds to achieve a gorgeous restaurant-worthy plate! I really hope you enjoy this super simple summer meal.

And if you do get a chance to make it, I hope you’ll leave me a comment/rating below. I always love hearing from you here! And if you’re looking for more fresh meals, try my 70 Light Summer Dinner Ideas.

Balsamic Grilled Chicken topped with Caprese Salad on a pottery plate with basil sprigs around it.

Grilled Chicken Caprese

5 from 4 votes
Author: Kari Peters
Total Time 35 minutes
Yield: 4 servings
Course: Dinner


Balsamic Grilled Chicken:

  • 1.5 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts - 2-3, see notes
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup - I used Grade A
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt

Caprese Salad Topping:

  • 1 pound of cherry tomatoes - halved equaling 4 cups
  • 6 ounce fresh mozzarella pearls - drained and halved
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 8 large leaves of basil - 1/4 ounce
  • Flaked finishing sea salt to taste
  • Balsamic reduction or balsamic vinegar


  • For the grilled zucchini I used 8 ounces per person for a total of 2 pounds. Slice off both ends and split in half down the middle.


  • Place the chicken breasts in a glass container and add the marinade ingredients. Mix everything together well, cover and refrigerate overnight or at least 2 hours.
  • After the chicken is marinated, preheat the grill over medium high heat.
  • While the grill heats prepare the Caprese Salad Topping by mixing together the cherry tomatoes, mozzarella pearls, and olive oil.
  • Slice the basil by stacking all the leaves together. Then roll them up and slice them as thinly as possible to create a chiffonade. Mix the basil into the salad and let it sit while the chicken cooks.
  • When the grill temperature has reached 400ºF, place the chicken on the grill and immediately lower the heat to medium. Discard any leftover marinade.
  • Grill for 8-10 minutes or until the chicken loosens up from the grill and is easy to turn over. Continue cooking for another 8-10 minutes or until the chicken is no longer pink in the center. The cooking time will always vary depending on the size of your meat.
  • When the chicken is done remove it from the grill and let it set for a couple of minutes on a cutting board. Slice the chicken and serve it topped with the Caprese Salad. Drizzle the whole plate with balsamic reduction and sprinkle to taste with the finishing sea salt.
Bonus StepIf you made this recipe, please leave a rating/comment. Ratings really help us continue to bring you high-quality free recipes. Rate This Recipe!


Mozzarella balls/pearls are tiny balls of mozzarella sometimes called by their Italian name, Bocconcini. If they’re not available you can substitute any good quality fresh mozzarella cut or torn up into small bite-sized pieces.
I usually grill the chicken breasts whole, then cut them in half to make 4 servings. You can also use 4 small chicken breasts, or cut 2 large chicken breasts in half lengthwise and reduce the cooking time.
Category: Dinner
Cuisine: Italian
Keywords: Chicken Caprese, Chicken Caprese Recipe, Grilled Caprese Chicken, Grilled Chicken Caprese Recipe

nutrition facts

Calories: 480kcal | Carbohydrates: 18g | Protein: 48g | Fat: 25g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Trans Fat: 0.02g | Cholesterol: 124mg | Sodium: 553mg | Potassium: 1500mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 14g | Vitamin A: 1101IU | Vitamin C: 69mg | Calcium: 221mg | Iron: 2mg
DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE?Tag @get.inspired.everyday on Instagram or hashtag #getinspiredeveryday

This post was originally published in 2015 but has been updated with new photos, new tips and information, and nutritional facts.

16 thoughts on “Grilled Chicken Caprese”

  1. 5 stars
    I made a similar dish to this for Thanksgiving and it was delicious!!! Slicing the garlic super thin and letting it dissolve in the olive oil was just an added bonus to a beautiful dish. Thank you and enjoy the holidays!!

    • Yes you can definitely bake the chicken, it’s usually around 30 minutes at 400ºF for chicken breasts, or until a thermometer reads 165ºF.

  2. Just made this. It was so delicious and super easy to make. Loved it! And I so loved the zucchini. I don’t think I ever tried grilling it before. It was delicious! Thanks for the great recipe!

    • I’m so glad you enjoyed it, this is one of my favorite ‘date night’ or entertaining recipes in the summer because it’s so easy and impressive! If you loved the grilled zucchini, try grilling other veggies like asparagus, I think you’ll absolutely love what the grill does to veggies!

  3. This is exactly the type of meal I love to make on weekday evenings. The marinating can be done in advance and so it’s really quick to then throw together at dinnertime.

    • It’s my idea of a perfect weekday meal too, especially when it’s too hot to use the slow cooker and you just want some super fresh tasting!

  4. What a stunning dish Kari. I love that you topped grilled chicken with caprese salad, such a winning combo.

    PS If you don’t know what to do with your zukes send them my way 😀

  5. There’s pretty much nothing not to love in this recipe ~ just the word caprese tickles my culinary senses. And yes, tomatoes = favorite food ever. So delish. I’m embarrassed to say I was craving tomatoes out of season in December maybe, got to the checkout and realized I just spent $15 on tomatoes, and didn’t get all that many! You just proved healthy doesn’t have to be boring =)

    • I love tomatoes so much I always end up buying them at the store, even though they pale in comparison to the Farmer’s Market or garden variety!

5 from 4 votes (1 rating without comment)

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