Chicken Injection Recipe (2024)

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Flavorful blend of melted butter, lemon juice, chicken broth and spices bring the juiciness of roast chicken to another level.

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This quick and easy to make chicken injection recipe adds incredible flavor to a whole roast chicken and makes the meat moist and tender. It is as easy as whisking together melted butter, fresh lemon juice, chicken broth and spices. Inject the flavorful marinade all over the chicken, let rest for 30 minutes and roast in the oven until cooked through. Using this simple but rewarding injection technique, you can turn every roast chicken into an incredible meal that your family will love.

Table of Contents

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What is Chicken Injection Marinade?

Chicken injection marinade is usually a butter based mixture that can also contain chicken broth, lemon juice, garlic powder, pepper or other seasonings. Using a meat injector (syringe), the marinade is directly injected into the meat to add flavor and keep the meat juicy and moist during cooking. It is especially helpful to keep breast meat of whole chickens and turkeys from drying out while roasting. Use as a chicken injection for rotisserie chicken or a chicken injection for oven roasted chicken or even a chicken injection for smoked chicken.

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Why You’ll Love This

  • Notable: chicken meat turns out moist and tender with a yummy lemon and garlic flavor
  • Main Ingredients: low sodium chicken broth, unsalted butter, lemon juice, garlic powder and black pepper
  • Cooking Method: no bake
  • Cooking Time: 5 minutes prep time and 10 minutes rest time
  • Pairs well with: whole roast chicken
  • Diets: keto friendly, gluten free
  • Special Equipment Needed: mixing bowl, whisk, meat injector syringe
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You may have all of these chicken injection ingredients in your refrigerator or pantry and not need to make a trip to the grocery store. See recipe card below for ingredient amounts and print the recipe.

  • Pantry Ingredients: low sodium chicken broth
  • Refrigerated/Frozen Ingredients: unsalted butter
  • Produce Ingredients: fresh lemon juice
  • Spices: garlic powder, black pepper
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WHAT TO MAKE NEXT: If you love roasting whole chickens then you’ll love Stef’sHerb Roasted Chicken Recipe. This flavor-bursting one-dish meal will fill your home with the most delicious aroma and is a must have for your recipe box.


This section shows how to make a chicken injection mixture, with step-by-step photos and details about the technique. For full step-by-step instructions, photos and nutritional information see the recipe in the recipe card below. You can print the recipe with or without photos.

PREPARE THE MARINADE: Firstly, whisk together the melted butter, lemon juice and chicken broth in a small bowl. Next, add garlic powder and black pepper and stir. Then let rest for 10 minutes. Before using, whisk thoroughly once more.

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INJECT THE CHICKEN: Prepare the chicken by patting it dry with paper towels. Then load marinade into the meat injector, and slowly inject into multiple spots in the chicken. We gently lifted the chicken skin so we didn’t have to pierce the skin. Be sure to really work the breast meat. Discard any leftover marinade.

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CHILL: Cover the injected chicken with plastic wrap and refrigerate. Marinate chicken in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes or up to 6 hours.

WHAT TO MAKE NEXT: Combine this flavor boosting injection technic with our delicious Convection Oven Roast Chicken recipe. Inject the whole chicken with the lemon butter blend, then season with a homemade spice rub to produce the most delicious roast chicken dinner.

Meat Injector Syringe – This recipe requires a meat injector. We used a stainless steel injector as it is easy to use and comes apart for quick and thorough clean up.

Make Ahead

You can make the marinade and inject it into your chicken up to 6 hours ahead of time. Make sure you cover the chicken tightly with plastic wrap and store it in the refrigerator until ready to use.

Stef says….

I love roasting whole chickens, because they are easy to make and taste wonderful. But even after the yummy meat is eaten you can still make the most flavorfulHomemade Chicken Stockusing the leftover bones.

Andrea says….

This simple injection technique makes a huge difference in how juicy the meat of a roast chicken turns out. But not only does it add moisture, it also adds just the right hint of lemon flavor to the chicken. It really turns a plain roast chicken into a spectacular meal!

Recipe Tips

Follow these tips to make the best chicken injection recipe.

  • Tip: Use fresh lemon juice. We prefer freshly squeezed lemon juice, because it adds a more intense flavor and tastes fresher than bottled lemon juice.
  • Tip: Make sure the marinade is smooth. If the butter is not completely melted or there are any larger bits of spices in the marinade the injector needle might clog.
  • Tip: Inject the marinade into the breast meat multiple times. Breast meat has a tendency of drying out during cooking, injecting marinade helps prevent that.
  • Tip: Allow more resting time. The chicken absorbs more of the marinade when it rests a bit longer. (up to 6 hours)
  • Convection Oven Roast Chicken

  • Fresh Green Beans In Air Fryer

  • Instant Pot Chicken Thighs with Lemon Butter Sauce

  • Air Fryer Asparagus

How To Store

We recommend preparing this chicken injection recipe fresh, right before using. It is not suitable for storage. Do not safe any leftover injection mix.

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Common Questions

Can I save any leftover marinade for a later use?

Unfortunately that is not possible. While injecting the chicken with marinade the injector needle touches raw chicken and therefore comes in direct contact with unsafe bacteria, like salmonella for example. The bacteria is then transfered from the poultry to the marinade when you reload your meat injector. It is therefore very important to discard any leftovers.

What other spices can I add to the marinade?

You can also try adding paprika, smoked paprika, onion powder, or for a spicy twist, add some chili powder or cajun seasoning. Additionally you can try Worcestershire sauce or finely ground dried herbs such as thyme, rosemary, basil or oregano. Make sure there are no large bits though, as they might clog the needle of your flavor injector.

How long does an injected chicken need to rest before roasting in the oven?

We recommend letting the chicken chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes or up to 6 hours.

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5 from 6 votes

Lemon Butter Chicken Injection Recipe

Author Andrea + Stef

Course Main Dish

Cuisine American

Prep Time 20 minutes minutes

Total Time 50 minutes minutes

1 chicken

Flavorful blend of melted butter, lemon juice, chicken broth and spices bring the juiciness of roast chicken to another level.


  • mixing bowl

  • whisk

  • meat injection syringe


  • 1 cup low sodium chicken broth
  • ½ cup unsalted butter melted
  • 1 lemon juiced
  • 2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper


  • In a small bowl, whisk together melted butter, lemon juice and chicken broth.

  • Add garlic powder and black pepper and stir. Let stand for 10 minutes, and stir through once more before using.

  • Prepare the chicken by patting dry with paper towels. Load marinade into the meat injector, and slowly inject into multiple spots in the chicken. We gently lifted the chicken skin so we didn’t have to pierce the skin. Be sure to really work the breast meat. Discard extra.

  • Cover and refrigerate. Marinate chicken in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to 6 hours.


Calories: 877kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 94g | Saturated Fat: 59g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 25g | Trans Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 244mg | Sodium: 87mg | Potassium: 328mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 2847IU | Vitamin C: 0.1mg | Calcium: 50mg | Iron: 1mg

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Chicken Injection Recipe (2024)


What is good to inject into chicken? ›

Infuse chicken with a punch of flavor and moisture by using a chicken injection right before cooking. This chicken injection recipe features butter, chicken broth, lemon juice, and fresh herbs.

What do farmers inject chickens with? ›

Plumping, also referred to as “enhancing” or “injecting,” is the process by which some poultry companies inject raw chicken meat with saltwater, chicken stock, seaweed extract, or some combination thereof.

How long before cooking do you inject a chicken? ›

Use an injection sauce whether you plan to roast, smoke, or deep-fry your poultry. You should plan on using this injection marinade several hours before you start cooking. If you have the time, inject the bird the night before roasting.

What is the best injection for poultry? ›

Veterinary Injections & Poultry-stanex
1TETRANEX-LAOxytetracycline Dihydrate Injectable Solution/LA
2TYALONEX-200Tylosin Injection I.P.(Vet)
3GENETANEXGentamicin Injection I.P.
4VITAPLEX-LIVVitamin B-Complex with Liver extract Injection
3 more rows

How to infuse chicken with flavor? ›

Use a brine

Brining your chicken is a foolproof way to not only add flavour to your roast but also to ensure you don't overcook the meat. Essentially a mix of salt, sugar and water, we love adding herbs, garlic or whole spices such as fennel and cumin to flavour the brine.

Does injecting chicken work? ›

Brining and injecting both have the desired effect of adding moisture and flavor to whatever you are cooking. Turkey and chicken benefit greatly from this practice, but pork, beef, lamb and even fish can benefit from one of these two treatments.

What do they inject into rotisserie chicken? ›

Again, this is because most rotisserie chickens contain an “injection solution” of sugars, sodium, and other processed ingredients. Because they are injected into the meat, these additives, salts, and sugars are distributed throughout the chicken—so you can't avoid them by not eating the skin.

How do you keep a whole chicken moist when smoking? ›

"I use a brine to impart moisture in my poultry," says Traeger Pro Matt Pittman. "I keep it simple with an old school salt brine. You can use 1/2 cup salt and sugar plus a tablespoon of your favorite BBQ sauce mixed in a gallon of water."

What makes chicken bigger? ›

Genetic selection and improved nutrition are the main reasons poultry producers are able to produce a much larger bird than they were 50 years ago. However, there are many other factors that positively affect growth. For example, better environmental control helps to lessen stress on birds through the grow-out phase.

Do chickens need injections? ›

Vaccination is used in commercial poultry flocks to control disease which would otherwise devastate the laying flocks throughout the World. Commercial flocks are therefore protected as a matter of course for the key poultry diseases during their rearing period, the time before they get to the laying farm.

What is the best food for chickens to grow fast? ›

Starter Diet is a complete vegetarian diet, high in protein for growing chickens with added vitamins, minerals and probiotics. Cereal grains are used mainly to satisfy the energy requirement of poultry. wheat is the predominant supplier of dietary energy for poultry diets.

Is it better to brine or inject a chicken? ›

It's an enzyme that will break down the meat, tenderizing it and absorbing the flavor at the same time. Injecting solves the problems of a marinade or brine not getting deep into the meat in a timely fashion.

What is the method of injection in poultry? ›

Best practices in injectable poultry vaccine administration

Intramuscular or subcutaneous injection of vaccine is a common practice of administration, especially for some live and adjuvanted vaccines, and is performed mostly in the breast and lower neck.

How to know if chicken is injected? ›

Check the labels. They must declare anything that has been added to the meat,such as "a solution of water, salt, and sodium phosphate" injected to help keep the food moist, tender, and tasty during cooking.

What is injected in chicken to grow faster? ›

Myth #1: Broiler chickens are pumped with hormones and steroids. Fact: Federal regulations prohibit the use of added hormones and steroids in all poultry. You may have heard some chatter about chickens being given hormones or steroids throughout their lives to make for larger birds, but that's just not the case.


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