Why Bobby Flay Recommends This Citrus Juice For Grilled Chicken

After years of being front and center on popular Food Network favorites, viewers have caught on to the fact that chef Bobby Flay and bright, citrusy dishes go hand-in-hand. Whether it's on Beat Bobby Flay or Worst Cooks in America, you can almost always guarantee that the esteemed chef will pull out some sort of sweet and zesty combo to steal the show.

While Flay is a long-time fan of using orange juice to help balance out some spicier recipes and tasty treats, he has another well-loved secret citrus weapon that pulls off a win time and time again: tangerine juice. This ingredient has led to many a tasty recipe, including spicy serrano popsicles inspired by the flavor-packed punch. His fans can even pinpoint his favorite citrusy ingredient. In 2018, Twitter user @adrienne_fein wrote, "You know it wouldn't be a Bobby Flay recipe if you did not have chili, pomegranate, & or tangerine juice." Hey, why fix what isn't broken, right?

If you're gearing up to grill this summer, then kick off barbecue season with the chef's Tangerine-Maple Glazed Chicken from Food Network. Made with tangerine juice, soy sauce, honey, and maple syrup, this thick glaze is a bold one that'll wake up your taste buds from a long winter of soups and stews. If you don't have tangerine juice, Flay recommends using orange juice with a splash of lime to bring that extra level of tartness to the chicken. That's why the star prefers tangerine over orange juice in the first place — it's an ingredient swap that really brings the flavor to the forefront.

Tangerine juice is part of Flay's tart and tasty take on barbecue

At first thought, you might think that tangerine juice might as well be interchangeable with orange juice, but Bobby Flay is adamant that the two offer different levels of flavor. Flay says in his Food Network video that the tartness of tangerine juice is unmatched in comparison, and according to the flavor profile of the fruit, he's not lying. Gardening Channel explains that while tangerines are typically smaller and a bit sweeter, they offer a more intense citrusy taste that really comes through in dishes like Flay's glazed chicken thighs. That's why you should add some extra lime juice to really amp up the citrusy flavors in your dish if you don't have any tangerine juice on hand.

Another pro tip? Flay also recommends using dark meat to really soak up all that added flavor and sweetness, resulting in a crispy, glazed skin and moist chicken (via Food Network). If you ask us, it's time to grab some tangerine juice and take the cover off the grill.