Last modified on December 22nd, 2017 at 11:57 AM

The Secret for the Best Grilled BBQ Chicken

Find out the secret for how to make tender and juicy grilled BBQ chicken! No long brining steps, just a simple grilling method for perfect BBQ chicken.

3 pieces of grilled BBQ chicken on a white plate.

Grilled BBQ chicken is one of those things that can either be fantastic, or dry and disgusting. As I’ve said before, I’m not a big fan of cooking meat and then slathering it in BBQ sauce. It just isn’t right! This recipe takes the ease of grilled BBQ chicken but changes up the method so that you end up with tender and juicy chicken that’s infused with the flavor of your sauce.

The secret to getting juicy grilled BBQ chicken is a combination of slower cooking, and consistent basting in with the sauce. I use a low heat on the grill, in fact I completely turn one side off. If you have a really nice grill, you may be able to adjust the heat low enough you won’t need to turn one side off. I use a pretty old grill that tends to overheat so leaving one side on and turning one side off really evens out the temperature to the perfect medium low.

Use the cooking time I reference in the recipe to know if your grill is the right temperature. You shouldn’t see any definite grill marks or charring until the last 5-7 minutes of cooking. If you see them before that, it’s too high. The cooking time will of course vary based on the size of your chicken breasts, so don’t worry if you need to practice a few times!

I also turn the grilled BBQ chicken and baste it in the sauce frequently during cooking. This does two things. First, it keeps the chicken from drying out by always having a “protective” coating of sauce on it. Second, it really helps infuse the BBQ sauce flavor into the chicken instead of just having it sit on top of the meat. You can actually call this grilled BBQ chicken, not chicken with BBQ sauce!

I spent a lot of time thinking about how to get this recipe right, can you tell?! Let me know how it turns out for you! Grilling can be a little more challenging than regular cooking because gauging your grill’s temperature isn’t always very accurate. Just get out there and practice, no one will complain about you grilling more frequently!

3 pieces of grilled BBQ chicken on a white plate.
5 from 1 vote
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The Secret for the Best Grilled BBQ Chicken

Find out the secret for how to make tender and juicy grilled BBQ chicken! No long brining steps, just a simple grilling method for perfect BBQ chicken.

Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword bbq grilled chicken, best bbq grilled chicken
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 4 people
Calories 190 kcal

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup BBQ sauce your favorite
  • 4 chicken breasts boneless, skinless

Instructions

  1. Preheat your grill by turning it on as high as it will go for a few minutes.
  2. After it's heated, turn one side off and one side on medium low or low.
  3. Clean the grates and lightly dip a paper towel in oil and brush the grate, holding the paper towel with tongs.
  4. Using a pastry brush, brush one side of the chicken with a light layer of BBQ sauce and place that side down over the heated part of the grill.
  5. Brush the top side with BBQ sauce.
  6. Cook with the lid down until grill marks are just starting to appear, if your grill is the correct temperature this should take about 5 minutes.
  7. Brush top with another light layer of BBQ sauce, flip and brush again.
  8. Continue this process of brushing with BBQ sauce and flipping the chicken about every 5 minutes until the internal temperature reaches 160 degrees F. This will take about 20 minutes.
  9. When the internal temperature is 160 degrees, brush with a final layer of BBQ sauce and turn the grill off.
  10. Let rest for 5 minutes with the lid down on the side of the grill where the heat was off originally. After 5 minutes, the internal temperature should register 165 degrees F.
Nutrition Facts
The Secret for the Best Grilled BBQ Chicken
Amount Per Serving
Calories 190 Calories from Fat 27
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 3g 5%
Cholesterol 72mg 24%
Sodium 498mg 21%
Potassium 501mg 14%
Total Carbohydrates 14g 5%
Sugars 11g
Protein 24g 48%
Vitamin A 2.3%
Vitamin C 1.9%
Calcium 1.7%
Iron 3.6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
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Find out the secret for how to make tender and juicy grilled BBQ chicken! No long brining steps, just a simple grilling method for perfect BBQ chicken.

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3 Comments

  • Reply
    Katy
    December 1, 2018 at 1:44 AM

    Thank you for this yummy recipe

    • Reply
      Alli
      December 2, 2018 at 8:29 PM

      You’re welcome, Katy!

  • Reply
    Sammi Windley
    December 30, 2017 at 7:19 PM

    Good barbecue chicken recipes are so hard to find, but I’ve found the best one right here!

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