Chef John's Barbecue Chicken
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Chef John's Barbecue Chicken

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Chef John 23728

"When it comes to barbecued chicken, everyone wants that nice thick glaze of sauce attached to the skin, and the only way to do it, is brush it on as it cooks. Therein lies the problem. Because of the sugar content, it only takes a minute for a barbecue sauce to go from brick-red to solid black. I just 'mark' the chicken's vulnerable skin side, then cook it all the way through in a closed grill, brushing on the glaze as it cooks."
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2 h servings 464 cals
Serving size has been adjusted!

Original recipe yields 6 servings



  • Calories:
  • 464 kcal
  • 23%
  • Fat:
  • 24.2 g
  • 37%
  • Carbs:
  • 10.6g
  • 3%
  • Protein:
  • 47.5 g
  • 95%
  • Cholesterol:
  • 149 mg
  • 50%
  • Sodium:
  • 1583 mg
  • 63%

Based on a 2,000 calorie diet

See full nutrition

Nutritional Information

1 Serving
Servings Per Recipe:
Amount Per Serving
  • * Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
  • ** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.
  • (-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.


  • Prep

  • Cook

  • Ready In

  1. Cut 1/2-inch deep slashes in the skin-side of each chicken half; 2 cuts in each breast, 2 in the thigh, and 1 on the leg; remove wing tips.
  2. Whisk rice vinegar, barbeque sauce, and garlic together in large bowl. Place chicken in bowl and turn to coat chicken in the marinade. Arrange chicken halves, cut-side down, in the bottom of the marinade bowl, cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  3. Preheat an outdoor grill for medium-high heat and lightly oil the grate.
  4. Remove chicken from bowl, pat chicken dry with paper towels, and discard marinade. Place chicken halves, skin-side up, on a plate and season with salt, pepper, paprika, onion powder, and cayenne pepper.
  5. Cook chicken, skin-side down, on the preheated grill for 3 to 4 minutes. Turn chicken over, close the lid of the grill, and cook, basting with remaining barbeque sauce ever 6 minutes, until no longer pink at the bone and the juices run clear, about 35 minutes. An instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh, near the bone should read 165 degrees F (74 degrees C).


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Rack up another hit for Chef John! We woke up Memorial Day morning, looking for a simple grilled bbq chicken recipe..... This Is It! Super-Simple and Tasty. A Big Hit at our celebration. This re...

The chicken was good, but preparing it with the marinade is more complicated than necessary. Not sure the marinade contributed much, but if you are concerned about burning the barbecue sauce the...

Really liked this and will use it again. Did it per the recipe and video other than I used leg and thigh quarters. My only adjustment I will make the next time is to cook the skin side down long...

Took quite a bit longer than 35 minutes but it was worth the wait.

Really good. To make a bit healthier, I removed the skin before the initial marinade. Other than that, followed exactly. The best pieces were the chicken thighs. I recommend using bone in (n...

I made this as directed, except I didn't have any rice vinegar so I used the red wine vinegar that I had. I took longer than 35 minutes, but it was the juiciest grilled chicken I've ever made! ...

I cooked this for my wife and I, and we loved it. Simple, and really, really good !

So finger-licking good! Made this on a whim at 9:00 p.m. and it was just fantastic. I prepped this exactly as directed and it was perfect. Flavorful, juicy, and exactly what you want in BBQ chic...

Another great recipe from my favorite chef.

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