While the chicken was barbecuing, a deep and smoky scratch-made BBQ sauce was made. This was quite easy and surprisingly fast, but did require a lot of ingredients. So I’ll give you the scratch way – and also an even faster 3 ingredient way.
But first, I’d like to clarify something….
This is a recipe for BBQ Chicken, not “grilled chicken”. There is a difference. 🙂
Grilled Chicken (usually boneless, skinless breasts) is typically grilled hot and fast. In contrast, BBQ chicken, (usually thighs, legs and wings, skin-on and bone-in) if done well, will take at least an hour or two on the grill, because it needs to be cooked on a lower heat, to get the meat tender.
The secret to good BBQ chicken, is to moderate the heat, however possible. If using coals, set them on the side of the grill so you have a cool spot, or try putting the chicken on the upper rack of the grill. If you have a gas grill, turn the heat down to medium low or low, after the initial hot sear. Slow and steady makes the best BBQ chicken.
Remember: Barbecuing is low and slow. Grilling is hot and fast.
BBQ Chicken with Chipotle
BBQ Chicken with Chipotle, smoky, spicy and sweet, cooked low and slow on the barbecue, with a scratch-made Chipotle BBQ sauce (and a quick “cheater” version).
- Prep Time: 30
- Cook Time: 80 mins
- Total Time: 1 hour 50 minutes
- Yield: 6 1x
- Category: Chicken, main, Grilled
- Method: Grilled
- Cuisine: Southwest
- 12 pieces skin-on, bone-in Chicken (thighs and legs work best)
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1/2 onion, diced
- 4 smashed garlic cloves
- 2 T oil
- 2 T butter
- 1/4 C tomato paste
- 1/3 C whiskey or bourbon
- 1 Cup ketchup
- 1 small can Chipotle peppers in Adobo sauce ( use 2 peppers, 3 Tablespoons adobo sauce)
- 3 T Worcestershire
- 2 T balsamic
- 1/2 C honey
- 3 T molasses
- 1 tsp soy sauce
- 1/2 cup water
- cracked pepper
- Pre-heat Grill to High heat.
- Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper on both sides.
- Make the BBQ SAUCE : ( See notes for fast version) In a medium pot, saute diced onion and smashed garlic in oil and butter on medium high heat until tender. Add tomato paste and stir constantly, frying in the oil, about 2 minutes. De-glaze with whiskey. Simmer for 1 minute, add the remaining ingredients -ketchup, chipotles and adobo sauce, Worcestershire, balsamic, molasses, soy sauce, honey, cracked pepper and water. Simmer on low for 10 minutes. Blend with an immersion blender or in a blender (careful to cover blender lid with a towel, and hold lid down firmly while starting on lowest speed- to prevent a blender explosion that occurs with hot liquids). Return to pot, cover, and keep on low heat until ready to use. Taste, adjust salt, heat and sweetness to your personal preference.
- Lay the chicken, skin sides down on a hot grill for a 5-7 minutes, turning as needed to give all the skin a good sear, being careful not to burn. Once you have a good sear, lower heat or move pieces to a cooler spot on the grill, or turn grill to medium low heat.
- Cover and let cook for 20 minutes. Turn them over and baste them with BBQ sauce, cover and grill for 20 more minutes. Turn over and baste other side with BBQ sauce, covering for another 20-30 minutes or until thigh registers 170 F. Turn grill up to high and give skin side one last hot sear to crisp them up. Let rest few minutes before serving.
- Calories: 375
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