How To Grill Chicken Perfectly Recipe

  • Author: Christine Pittman
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 70 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings 1x
  • Category: Entrée
  • Method: Grilled
  • Cuisine: American


This grilled chicken is pre-cooked in the oven (low and slow) before hitting the grill.  That way, you know it’s fully cooked and juicy so you can relax and enjoy your guests without worrying about feeding them under-cooked or dry chicken.


Units Scale
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. pepper
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 2 Tbsp. brown sugar
  • 6 lbs. skinless bone-in dark meat chicken (drumsticks and/or thighs)
  • BBQ sauce


  1. Preheat oven to 300°F.
  2. In bowl combine salt, pepper, garlic powder, and brown sugar. Rub on chicken and then arrange in a single layer on a large rimmed baking sheet. Bake for 1 hour. Double-check that the chicken is cooked by cutting into the thickest part and making sure it’s not pink inside or using a meat thermometer to check that it’s reached 165°F.
  3. Let cool for 15 minutes. If your chicken is skin on, carefully remove the skin before grilling. For skin that is attached to the bone, cut it off with kitchen shears.
  4. Brush each piece with about 2 tablespoons of sauce. Cover and refrigerate up to 36 hours.
  5. 15 minutes before eating, prepare grill for direct cooking over medium-high heat.*
  6. Add chicken pieces and cook until grill marks appear on underside, 4-5 minutes. Flip and cook until heated through, another 4-5 minutes. Baste with more sauce halfway through if desired but this isn’t necessary and doing so can hide your beautiful grill marks.

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*Note: You can instead broil the chicken. Put the sauced chicken on a pan that is safe under your broiler. Pre-heat the broiler. Put the chicken on the pan under the broiler, about 6 inches form the heat. Broil until dark spots are appearing, then flip the chicken and broil the other side until dark spots are appearing. Taste some chicken to make sure it’s heated through. It should take about 8-12 minutes total (4-6 minutes per side).