Grilled BBQ Chicken

$8.95 recipe / $2.23 serving
by Jess - Budget Bytes
5 from 1 vote
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I’m no scientist, but I’m sure there must be data about the gravitational pull at cookouts that brings everyone to the hot plate of juicy BBQ chicken breasts, sizzling and saucy straight from the grill. My grilled BBQ chicken is always the first protein to disappear! I’ve compiled all the best tips and tricks for how to make BBQ Chicken the star of any Summer get together.

overhead view of 2 grilled bbq chicken breasts on a white plate.

I’m trying to make your life easier with this super simple recipe, but I fear I’m making the grill master at your house put in overtime because, I promise you, this chicken is going to disappear immediately. Look for a value pack and scale this recipe up, because it’s summer and that means it’s grillin’ time!

Ingredients

Here’s what you’ll need to make grilled BBQ chicken:

  • Chicken Breasts: I like large boneless skinless chicken breasts for this recipe. They’re easy to divide in half and pound nice and thin for a tender bite. I grabbed a 2-pack that weighed in at 1.61 lbs. so there was plenty of chicken for everyone.
  • Olive Oil: Helps the spices stick to the chicken.
  • Salt and Pepper: Enhance the natural flavor of the chicken.
  • Smoked Paprika: Adds a delicious smoky flavor to the chicken.
  • Brown Sugar: Adds texture and ensures you’re going to get those grill marks that make everyone salivate. I find that the extra sugar also helps tenderize the meat.
  • BBQ Sauce: Adds moisture and tangy BBQ flavor!

Serving Suggestions

I like to serve this grilled BBQ chicken with extra BBQ sauce for dipping, some fresh okra, grilled cabbage, and a side of pasta salad!

Tips and Notes

  • I used a Ninja Indoor Smokeless grill for this recipe, so, as an option, if you use an indoor grill too, you can put the chicken breasts on the grill while it’s preheating. This way, the inside will get to a safe temperature quicker but the outside of the chicken won’t burn.
  • If I’m having a big get-together, sometimes I will slice the chicken breasts if they are massive when I put them out on the buffet line. It helps stretch my budget a little further and it’s easier for people to try a little bit of everything.

Storage Instructions

I recommend storing leftover grilled BBQ chicken in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. To freeze, wrap individual chicken breasts in plastic wrap or aluminum foil and place them in a Ziplock bag to store for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating in the microwave or on the stovetop over medium-low heat.

sliced grilled bbq chicken breast on a wood cutting board.
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Grilled BBQ Chicken

5 from 1 vote
This perfectly charred grilled BBQ chicken breast, fresh off the grill, glistening with sauce is sure to be the star of any cookout!
overhead view of 2 grilled bbq chicken breasts on a white plate.
Servings 4 (1/2 chicken breast each)
Prep 30 minutes
Cook 10 minutes
Total 40 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts* ($8.03)
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil ($0.36)
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt ($0.01)
  • 1/2 tsp freshly cracked black pepper ($0.11)
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika ($0.16)
  • 2 tsp brown sugar ($0.03)
  • 1/4 cup BBQ sauce ($0.25)

Instructions 

  • Preheat the grill to 450°F.
  • Place 2 chicken breasts into a heavy-duty baggie and tenderize with a meat mallet or rolling pin, flattening the meat to 1/2-3/4 inch thickness.
  • Rub olive oil over each chicken breast, covering the entire surface area. Rub salt, pepper, brown sugar, and smoked paprika all over each and set aside. Allow chicken to come to room temperature.
  • Place each chicken breast on the hot grill, preheated to 450°F, and grill on each side for 6 minutes, until they easily move and do not stick to the grates.
  • Baste each breast with BBQ sauce after the first flip. Cook an additional 2 minutes on each side, or until the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 155-160°F.
  • Remove the chicken breasts from the grill and allow to rest for 5 minutes, covered with aluminum foil. The breasts will continue to cook in their own juices and reach the safe, mandatory temperature of 165°F.

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Equipment

Notes

*For this recipe, 1 serving = 6.4 ounces per person. 3-4 ounces is a typical serving size for chicken, but I was generous and went with 6 ounces per person for this recipe… so you could easily stretch it further if you needed to!

Nutrition

Serving: 6.4ouncesCalories: 309kcalCarbohydrates: 10gProtein: 39gFat: 12gSodium: 686mgFiber: 0.4g
Read our full nutrition disclaimer here.
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overhead view of a serving of grilled bbq chicken with okra and grilled lettuce.

how to make Grilled BBQ Chicken – step by step photos

pounding chicken breasts in a ziplock bag with a rolling pin.

Preheat the grill to 450°F. Place 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts into a heavy-duty baggie and tenderize with a meat mallet or rolling pin, flattening the meat to 1/2-3/4 inch thickness.

seasoned raw chicken breasts on an orange cutting board.

Rub 2 Tbsp olive oil over each chicken breast, covering the entire surface area. Rub 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp black pepper, 2 tsp brown sugar, and 1 tsp smoked paprika all over each and set aside. Allow chicken to come to room temperature.

grilled chicken breasts on an indoor grill.

Place each chicken breast on the hot grill, preheated to 450°F, and grill on each side for 6 minutes, until they easily move and do not stick to the grates.

basting grilled chicken breasts with bbq sauce on an indoor grill.

Baste each breast with 1/4 cup BBQ sauce after the first flip. Cook an additional 2 minutes on each side, or until the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 155-160°F.

tenting grilled bbq chicken breasts with foil.

Remove the chicken breasts from the grill and allow to rest for 5 minutes, covered with aluminum foil. The breasts will continue to cook in their own juices and reach the safe, mandatory temperature of 165°F.

a serving of sliced grilled bbq chicken on a white plate with pasta salad and okra.

Tender and juicy grilled BBQ chicken is sure to be the star of any cookout!

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Comments

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  1. I love the BBQ Sauce recipe! I also love not having to use my oven on a hot summer day! ❤️