Authentic Southern Spicy Sweet Barbecue Chicken Thighs
I’m not sure what’s the best part about this barbecue chicken thighs recipe, or the insanely delicious homemade barbecue sauce? The truth is, the whole is greater than the sum of the parts. Our incredibly flavorful, juicy and crispy chicken thighs get marinated in a mouthwatering barbecue spice blend before being grilled to perfection and basted in copious amounts of sauce.
It doesn’t get much better than this, folks. A perfect end of summer meal to enjoy the rest of the outdoor grilling season. Blackstrap molasses gives the sauce an authentic Southern flavor, but if you can’t find it feel free to substitute honey or agave syrup.
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Our Chicken Comes From A Co-op Of Family Farms
At Beck & Bulow, we get a lot of satisfaction from converting people away from eating factory farmed meat. It’s good for the planet, our emotional well-being, our health and our future. We believe eating meat is essential for humans to function at optimal health, but this can only be the case if it’s raised and processed the right way. When it comes to chicken, it’s necessary to use the highest discernment in sourcing. We’re proud to provide delicious chicken from a co-op of family farms, locally raised in sunny Colorado.
Happy Chickens Raised Without Antibiotics
These birds are humanely raised and cage free, with plentiful space to roam freely in cozy, well-ventilated barns with access to the outdoors. They enjoy unlimited access to water and nutritious vegetarian food supplemented with enzymes, essential oils and vitamins. The chickens frequently relax in their cozy beds made of wood shavings and rice hulls.
They are a Cobb Hubbard hybrid breed, carefully selected for the great flavor and consistency of the meat as well as their docile temperament. The barn attendants are trained in chicken behavior and take care to make the environment as naturally supportive as possible.
For the barbecue seasoning:
- ¼ cup smoked paprika (you can sub regular if you must… but it won’t have the same flavor. Get the smoked kind if you can find it!)
- 2 tablespoons coconut sugar
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 ½ teaspoons cayenne pepper
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For the chicken:
- 8 bone in, skin on chicken thighs (4 packages)
- 2 lemons
- Sea salt
- 5 tablespoons of your homemade barbecue seasoning (divided)
- 1 tablespoon bison tallow or avocado oil, plus more for grilling
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 3 cloves of garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons coconut sugar
- ¾ cup ketchup
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 2 tablespoons blackstrap molasses (you can sub honey if you want but the molasses gives a rich and unique flavor)
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon hot sauce of choice
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
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The Most Delicious Barbecue Chicken Ever
- Let the chicken thighs thaw in the refrigerator overnight.
- Whisk together the smoked paprika, chili powder, garlic powder, cayenne and coconut sugar in a small bowl. You will have extra after preparing the chicken, which can be stored for about a month in an airtight container with the rest of your spices.
- Combine the chicken, 4 tablespoons of the barbecue seasoning and sea salt to taste in a large bowl. Add in the juice and zest of the two lemons. Toss to coat thoroughly. Cover and refrigerator for a minimum of two hours, or overnight if time permits.
- Remove the seasoned chicken from the refrigerator to sit at room temperature for approximately 20 minutes before cooking. Meanwhile, make the sauce.
- Heat 1 tablespoon of bison tallow or avocado oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat. First cook the onion and garlic until softened, approximately 3 minutes. Add in the coconut sugar and cook until the mixture turns a little darker, approximately two minutes. Stir in the remaining tablespoon of barbecue spice mixture. After about 30 seconds, stir in the ketchup and cook for another two minutes. Add in the apple cider vinegar, blackstrap molasses (or honey), Dijon mustard, hot sauce and Worcestershire sauce. Bring the sauce to a boil and stir for about two minutes. Let it cool for a few minutes and then pour into a high speed blender and purée until smooth. Set the sauce aside.
- Fire up the grill with medium high on one side only so you can access direct heat on one side and indirect heat on the other side. Lightly grease the grill with bison tallow or avocado oil. Place the chicken thighs over the direct heat and sear, turning every minute or so, for about five minutes. They should form a nice brown crust on all sides. Then move the chicken to the other side of the grill and cover, uncovering to flip every five minutes for about 20 minutes - a meat thermometer should read 140-145 degrees Fahrenheit. Open the grill and finish off the chicken by cooking for about 10 minutes longer, coating them thoroughly with barbecue sauce and flipping occasionally. When finished the internal temperature should have reached 165 degrees Fahrenheit