Besides helping raw chicken to thaw more quickly, lemon juice also has other benefits. If you have had the foresight to thaw your chicken ahead of time, that’s all well and good, but after a day or two it can start to smell and taste a little too chickeny. Squeezing some fresh lemon over the chicken and rubbing it into the skin can help to neutralize any off-putting odors or flavors, however. Rubbing a little lemon juice into your chicken may possibly help to kill off harmful bacteria, as well, as per a study cited in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.
One of the main reasons to squeeze fresh lemon juice over your uncooked chicken, of course, is to impart some fresh and tangy flavor. Lemon juice is frequently used in marinades such as the one Giada De Laurentiis uses for her chicken thighs. There is one caveat to using this acidic ingredient, however, in that chicken should not be soaked in lemon juice for more than two hours. Any longer and the meat will go beyond the point of tender and start to get mushy or possibly rubbery, This just goes to show that even with such a perfect pairing as chicken and lemon juice, you can still have too much of a good thing.