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Basic BBQ Grilled Chicken

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One of my favorite weeknight meals is this basic BBQ grilled chicken. This grilled chicken recipe is full of tangy and sweet flavor thanks to your favorite BBQ sauce and the dry rub that gets sprinkled on beforehand! You’ll wonder how something so easy is so darn tasty!

I genuinely love cooking at home but I’ll admit, sometimes it’s just so much easier to place an online order and pickup something from a restaurant. However, with the prices of everything going up, it’s really hard to justify spending $60+ for the two of us for one meal when I can get a week’s worth of groceries for $100ish.

With that said, I like buying family packs of boneless skinless chicken thighs and making a simple recipe such as this basic BBQ grilled chicken. Now, hear me out – it is basic but it’s so flavorful and juicy/tender. It makes for a great meal prep item as well. You can grill all the chicken thighs at once and have some for dinner but you can also chop them up and put them on top of salads or put them in a wrap, whatever!

I’m telling ya, this basic BBQ grilled chicken is anything but basic. It’s labeled as basic because of how easy it is but it is actually quite versatile for what you get! You’ll definitely want to add this to your weekly meal prep!

Everything you need

  • Basic BBQ rub – this is my ultimate favorite to put on chicken!
  • Boneless, skinless chicken thighs – dark meat, ftw. It retains moisture so much better than chicken breasts and I am a diehard fan of dark meat. You gotta try it!
  • Your favorite BBQ sauce – my favorites are the classic Sweet Baby Ray’s and also Stubb’s Sweet Heat.

You’re reading that ingredient list right – that’s all you need!

How to make basic BBQ grilled chicken

For more detailed instructions, scroll to the bottom of this post.

You’ll first want to generously sprinkle your chicken thighs with the dry rub on both sides. Give it a good pat.

Then it’s time to grill! Grill one side of the chicken thighs then use a brush to brush on bbq sauce on before flipping to cook the other side. When the chicken is flipped, brush the bbq sauce onto the remaining side.

Common questions

Can I omit the dry rub? No, you’ll want the dry rub to give it extra flavor as it gets seared into the meat right when it hits the grill. It makes it so tasty!

Can I use chicken breasts? As I mentioned above, I am a huge fan of dark meat and wholeheartedly think that it will yield the best results. However, if you really dislike dark meat, you may use white meat. Just keep it mind that it dries out faster so you may have to adjust your cooking time.

What kind of BBQ sauce is best for this? That is entirely up to you! Use your favorite one since you will be the one eating this chicken! If you’re looking for recommendations, I love the classic Sweet Baby Ray’s and I love Stubb’s Sweet Heat. Those two are the bottles I always have on hand. I’m definitely more of a Kansas City style BBQ girl.

Can I make this on the stovetop or oven? You can but it really won’t yield as great results as the grill does in terms of flavor.

How long can I store this for? In an airtight container in the refrigerator, this can be stored for up to five days.

Looking for more grilling recipes? I’ve got you covered!

Grilled Steak with Herb Scallion Topping

Grilled Cabbage

Grilled Baja Shrimp Skewers

Turkey Spinach and Feta Burgers

Basic BBQ Grilled Chicken

A simple yet flavorful grilled chicken dinner that is great for meal prep and to put in a variety of dishes!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Author: Julie Chiou
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  • Basic BBQ rub
  • 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • BBQ sauce like original Sweet Baby Rays

The default measuring system for this website is US Customary. Unit conversions are provided for convenience and as a courtesy only. While we strive to provide accurate unit conversions, please be aware that there may be some discrepancies.



  • Preheat outdoor grill to high.
  • Mix together all ingredients for the dry rub.
  • Pat dry the chicken and spray a light coat of avocado oil on chicken thighs.
  • Sprinkle dry rub generously onto chicken thighs on both sides, gently pressing the mixture into the chicken.
  • Once the grill is hot, put the chicken down onto the grates on one side. Let cook for 3-4 minutes then use a brush to brush on bbq sauce on before flipping to cook the other side. When the chicken is flipped, brush the bbq sauce onto the remaining side.
  • Cook chicken until internal temperature is 160 °F.
  • Serve chicken with additional bbq sauce brushed on top and a side of bbq sauce of dipping, if desired.


Serving: 1 serving | Calories: 270 kcal | Protein: 44 g | Fat: 9 g | Saturated Fat: 2 g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2 g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3 g | Trans Fat: 0.04 g | Cholesterol: 215 mg | Sodium: 202 mg | Potassium: 556 mg

This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition information can vary for a variety of reasons. For the most precise nutritional data use your preferred nutrition calculator based on the actual ingredients you used in the recipe.

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: grilled chicken, grilled chicken dinner ideas, grilling recipe
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Wednesday 29th of June 2022

Do I close the bbq lid for the entire cooking time?

Julie Chiou

Wednesday 29th of June 2022

close the grill lid while it's cooking for 3-4 minutes, open it to flip and brush the sauce on, then close again to finish cooking :)