Best Grilled Barbecue Chicken

by Alli

Grilled Barbecue Chicken is tender on the inside and crispy on the outside. It’s so easy to make! 

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My mom’s barbecue chicken was amazing. When I was growing up, she had a grill made from a 55-gallon drum, and her food was the best. 

I remember when I was single and living in Atlanta. I’d visit my family on the weekend and mom would always ask what I wanted for dinner on Friday night. It was always the same, Grilled Barbecue Chicken. And the bread has to be BBQ bread. It doesn’t matter about the other sides as long as I have my two favorites.

Grilled Barbecue Chicken

My husband is the grill master at my house and he’s also a pro when it comes to grilled barbecue chicken. During the summer, we grill up some fresh corn on the cob, make a salad, and try to find my favorite BBQ bread.

It’s getting harder to find. In case you’ve never heard of this type of bread, here you go. This was always mom’s signature bread whenever she made grilled barbecue chicken. And now it’s mine.

Grilled Barbecue Chicken There are as many different ways to grill chicken as there is to spell barbecue. My spelling happens to be the correct way and my husband’s grilled barbecue chicken is the best. The secret is to make sure the chicken is nice and tender on the inside and crispy on the outside.

Grilled Barbecue Chicken

Let’s Make Grilled Barbecue Chicken Leg Quarters

We all like dark meat in our family so we usually grill leg quarters. You can use any bone-in chicken you like. If you’re grilling chicken breasts, they don’t need to cook as long. Use an instant-read thermometer and when it reads 165º F, it’s done.

Preheat the grill on high and spray with a non-stick grill spray. Sear chicken for 2 minutes on each side. Turn the grill to low and cook chicken over direct heat for 30 minutes per side.

Grilled Barbecue Chicken

Ten minutes before the chicken is done, brush one side with barbecue sauce. Cook for five minutes and turn the chicken to baste the other side and cook for another five minutes. You’ll have tender, juicy chicken with a crisp skin on the outside. It’s finger-licking good!

How To Grill A Whole Chicken

Sometimes my husband grills whole chickens. He grills whole chickens differently than he grills chicken pieces. 

You’ll need a whole chicken, flattened (spatchcocked). You do this by cutting out the backbone and pressing down to flatten. Check out this post to see how to spatchcock a chicken.  

My husband uses poultry shears to butterfly the chicken. You can buy some good poultry shears here. 

You’ll want to cook a whole chicken over indirect heat. Turn on one side of the grill to 400º. You want to cook on the side that is not turned on (indirect heat).

Season chicken with your favorite seasonings and place on the grill, breast side down, and cook for 30 minutes. Flip and cook 30 more minutes. Turn the heat to low and move the chicken over direct heat and brown for about 5 minutes on each side. 

More Delicious Recipes

Yield: 4 servings

Grilled Barbecue Chicken

Grilled Barbecue Chicken

Grilled Barbecue Chicken is tender and juicy on the inside and crispy on the outside.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes


  • 4 Chicken Quarters (or chicken pieces of your choice)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • KC Masterpiece Hickory Brown Sugar Barbecue Sauce


  1. Heat grill to high. Spray with a non-stick grill spray.
  2. Sear chicken on both sides for two minutes.
  3. Turn grill to low and using direct heat, cook for 30 minutes on each side.
  4. Baste both sides with barbecue sauce during the last 10 minutes and cook for 5 minutes per side.

Nutrition Information



Serving Size


Amount Per Serving Calories 205Total Fat 11gSaturated Fat 3gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 7gCholesterol 80mgSodium 222mgCarbohydrates 4gFiber 0gSugar 4gProtein 20g

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