Basic BBQ Chicken

Basic BBQ Chicken

Prep Time Prep: 1h Total Time Total: 1h40m

Yield: 4 servings

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Dinner, Weeknight Dinner, Main Dish

  • 1 1/2 cups ketchup
  • 1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 3 medium garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons paprika
  • 3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon celery salt
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 3 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts or bone-in, skin-on chicken pieces
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, plus more for coating the grill
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  1. For the sauce:
  2. Combine all of the ingredients in a small saucepan over high heat. Bring to a boil, stirring until completely incorporated. Reduce the heat to low and gently simmer until the flavors have mingled and the sauce has thickened enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 30 to 40 minutes.
  3. Remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature. If not using right away, cover and refrigerate the barbecue sauce for up to 2 weeks.
  4. For the chicken:
  5. Heat a gas or charcoal grill to medium (about 350°F to 450°F) and rub the grates with a towel dipped in oil. Meanwhile, if you’re using chicken breasts (either boneless or bone-in), cut them in half crosswise. Pat the chicken pieces dry with paper towels and place them on a baking sheet. Coat them on all sides with the measured oil, and season with salt and pepper.
  6. When the grill is ready, place the chicken on it (skin-side down if using skin-on), close the grill, and cook until grill marks appear on the bottom of the chicken pieces, about 5 minutes. Flip the chicken over, close the grill, and cook until grill marks appear on the second side, about 5 minutes more.
  7. Reserve 1 cup of the barbecue sauce in a separate bowl. Flip the chicken again and brush about a quarter of the remaining sauce on the chicken pieces. Close the grill and cook for 5 minutes. Flip and brush the chicken, and continue to flip and brush every 5 minutes, until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest piece reads 160°F to 165°F and the meat near the bone is no longer pink, about 10 to 15 minutes more (about 25 to 30 minutes total cooking time). Remove the chicken to a clean serving platter and serve immediately, passing the reserved bowl of barbecue sauce on the side.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups ketchup
  • 1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 3 medium garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons paprika
  • 3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon celery salt
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 3 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts or bone-in, skin-on chicken pieces
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, plus more for coating the grill
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. For the sauce:
  2. Combine all of the ingredients in a small saucepan over high heat. Bring to a boil, stirring until completely incorporated. Reduce the heat to low and gently simmer until the flavors have mingled and the sauce has thickened enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 30 to 40 minutes.
  3. Remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature. If not using right away, cover and refrigerate the barbecue sauce for up to 2 weeks.
  4. For the chicken:
  5. Heat a gas or charcoal grill to medium (about 350°F to 450°F) and rub the grates with a towel dipped in oil. Meanwhile, if you’re using chicken breasts (either boneless or bone-in), cut them in half crosswise. Pat the chicken pieces dry with paper towels and place them on a baking sheet. Coat them on all sides with the measured oil, and season with salt and pepper.
  6. When the grill is ready, place the chicken on it (skin-side down if using skin-on), close the grill, and cook until grill marks appear on the bottom of the chicken pieces, about 5 minutes. Flip the chicken over, close the grill, and cook until grill marks appear on the second side, about 5 minutes more.
  7. Reserve 1 cup of the barbecue sauce in a separate bowl. Flip the chicken again and brush about a quarter of the remaining sauce on the chicken pieces. Close the grill and cook for 5 minutes. Flip and brush the chicken, and continue to flip and brush every 5 minutes, until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest piece reads 160°F to 165°F and the meat near the bone is no longer pink, about 10 to 15 minutes more (about 25 to 30 minutes total cooking time). Remove the chicken to a clean serving platter and serve immediately, passing the reserved bowl of barbecue sauce on the side.