Favorite BBQ Chicken Recipes


Chicken recipes are versatile and often quick to make. The potentially bland taste of chicken can easily be enhanced with BBQ rubs, marinades, or sauces and techniques like barbecue smoking.

Whole chicken can be roasted on an appropriate type of barbecue, i.e. using a lid with indirect heat.

So, as well as grilling various chicken pieces, why not barbecue or even smoke your Christmas goose or Thanksgiving turkey? Here is a list of all the BBQ chicken recipes I have tried over the years - and there's quite a diverse range of flavors.

The Recipes

barbeque chicken recipe

Barbecue Chicken

bbq chicken satay recipe

BBQ Satay

bbq chicken wings

BBQ Chicken Wings

beer butt chicken

Beer Can Chicken

bbq bourbon chicken recipe

Bourbon Chicken

smoked chicken recipe

Smoked Chicken

bbq chicken yakatori recipe


Chicken and Other Poultry

Poultry is the term given to all birds reared for cooking. They are always in season and are versatile to cook with: the relatively subtle taste, in particular of chicken and turkey, can easily be enhanced with rubs, marinades and sauces.

Organically reared birds tend to have more flavor, and I always think its nicer to buy from a farmers market anyway - it just feels better giving a bit more money to a small scale farmer, who is passionate about what they do.

Turkey, quail, pheasant, goose or duck can't be barbecued in the same way as you would a whole chicken.

Food Safety

At the risk of patronizing, food safety is more improtant with chicken than any other meat.

Here are 6 good basic tips on food safety - read on below for some related but more specific tips on handleing chicken.

Storing Poultry

Just as a general rule, fresh poultry should refrigerate immediately in a loose fitting bag; without any tight packaging to allow air to circulate. It should be eaten within 3 days or so.

Fresh frozen poultry will keep for up to a year, or if it was bought ready frozen, use it within a few months.

Thawing Poultry

Frozen poultry must be thawed completely before cooking. This means it needs to be left either in a refrigerator or at room temperature to thaw - not defrosted in a microwave oven.

I have never had any problems defrosting chicken pieces in a microwave oven, but expert sources usually don't advise this. A big chicken or modest sized turkey probably won't fit in the average microwave oven anyway.

So some forward planning is need in preparing to barbecue frozen poultry and thawing time factored in.

A small whole chicken, will defrost in 8 - 10 hours at room temperature. Chicken pieces, take something like 3 hours.

Duck or goose should take around 12 hours to thaw.

Turkey takes much longer, due to shear size; 2-4 days in a refrigerator (not room temperature!), depending on size.

As a rule thawing in a 'fridge takes something like twice as long as room temperature.

How to Grill or BBQ Chicken

There are several ways to check whether a whole chicken is properly cooked:

  1. If possible cut into a chicken breast and check the color - if it's slightly pink and translucent, it's probably not done. If the meat is white and slightly flaky it probably is.
  2. If you have a whole chicken, try pulling one of the legs, if the leg pops out of it's joint with little or no resistance - and while your at it check the color of the juices, they need to run clear, not pink - it's done.
  3. Use a meat thermometer to be sure, preferably a digital one - the internal temperature should be 160-170F.

See this separate page on how to grill chicken safely. And here is a great page with tips on cooking chicken safely.

Storing Cooked Poultry

Assuming there's any left after your BBQ, chicken will keep for a couple of days in a 'fridge.

More BBQ Chicken Recipes and Related Recipes

For more inspiration for your BBQ chicken recipes, visit the following pages:

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