Perfect for summer barbecues and backyard cookouts, these easy and flavorful Grilled BBQ Chicken Legs will be a huge hit any day of the week!
Family cookouts and backyard barbecues are always a great way to gather friends and family while enjoying the amazing summer weather. It’s also a great time to enjoy amazing seasonal flavors like Grilled BBQ Chicken Legs and grilled peaches! Making delicious grill chicken drumsticks is the ultimate cookout staple for any gathering.
GRILLED BBQ CHICKEN LEGS
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BBQ chicken legs or BBQ chicken leg quarters are a fantastic grilling option, especially if you’re feeding a crowd! They’re relatively cheap, kid-friendly, and really easy to grill in batches or all at once. These BBQ chicken drumsticks on the grill are even better because I use my own homemade Honey Barbecue Sauce!
BBQ CHICKEN LEG INGREDIENTS
Chicken- For this BBQ chicken legs recipe you can use either chicken legs or chicken leg quarters depending on availability.
Rub- You can throw together the perfect BBQ rub with what you already have in your cupboards! Just use some brown sugar, chili powder, cumin, salt, pepper, and olive oil.
BBQ Sauce- For my homemade honey barbecue sauce all you need is ketchup, white vinegar, molasses, honey, salt and pepper, dry mustard, paprika, garlic powder, and onion powder. This recipe will make enough to coat your chicken legs and leave some extra for dipping or saving for later.
HOW TO GRILL BBQ CHICKEN LEGS
- First, whip up a batch of this delicious Honey Barbecue Sauce to have on hand for these Grilled BBQ Chicken Legs. (YOu can also use your favorite store-bought sauce if you prefer.)
- Next, preheat your gas grill to medium-high or start the coals for your charcoal grill.
- While the grill is heating, mix together the BBQ rub ingredients (brown sugar, chili powder, cumin, salt, pepper, and olive oil) in a small bowl and coat each piece of chicken by hand.
- Place the coated legs on the grill, with the meaty ends closest to the heat source.
- Cook the legs on medium-high heat for about 5 minutes on each side. Turn your legs about 3-4 times to evenly cook them through. Apply a layer of BBQ sauce after each turn. The chicken should reach an internal temperature of at least 165 degrees F before pulling it off the grill.
- Once the chicken is cooked, let it rest for 5 minutes on a baking sheet before serving warm with extra barbecue sauce for dipping.
HOW LONG TO GRILL BBQ CHICKEN LEG QUARTERS
Cooking time may vary depending on the size of your chicken legs and the temperature of your grill. Factors, such as whether you are using a charcoal or a gas grill could affect how long it takes for your meat to be finished.
Generally, it will take about 40-60 minutes. The key is to cook your chicken leg quarters over the most direct heat on your grill.
Any chicken you cook should have the internal temperature reach 165 degrees F before removing it from the grill. It is also important to let your chicken rest for 5 minutes before digging in. If you do not have an instant read meat thermometer, another way to tell if the chicken is done is whether or not the juices run clear when you cut into the meat.
HOW DO YOU KEEP CHICKEN LEGS FROM STICKING TO THE GRILL?
There are a few things you can do to help your chicken legs not stick to the grill.
- First, start off with a clean grill. Food is more likely to stick to the grate if it has leftover residue from a previous cookout.
- Preheat your grill, but make sure the temperature isn’t too high! Putting your meat on once the grill has reached its target temperature will create steam and help to deter the meat and metal from getting too attached.
- Placing a thin layer of oil on the chicken will help reduce the likelihood of it sticking to the grill. You can also oil the grill grates as an alternative solution. Just use a high smoking point oil for the best results.
DO YOU PUT BBQ SAUCE ON CHICKEN BEFORE GRILLING?
If you put BBQ sauce on chicken prior to grilling you are most likely going to end up with burnt BBQ sauce. If that happens to be the flavor you are going for, then more power to you! I know plenty of people who like their BBQ a little on the charred side. However, I typically wait until further along in the cooking process to start applying the BBQ sauce.
Because BBQ sauce has a high sugar content, it will most likely burn if exposed to the heat for the entire grilling time. If you begin coating your chicken about 10-15 minutes before taking it off the grill, the sauce will reach a beautiful caramelization without burning. Just make sure to keep turning the chicken to sauce on all the sides!
TRY THESE OTHER COOKOUT FRIENDLY RECIPES
- Super Simple Grilled Summer Veggies
- Apricot Glazed Grilled Pork Chops
- Honey Mustard Chicken Kabobs
- Hawaiian Grilled Salmon Filets
- Aunt Patti’s BBQ Baked Beans
- More SIDE DISH recipes…
TOOLS USED TO MAKE THESE GRILLED CHICKEN LEGS WITH BBQ SAUCE
Grill Basting Brush: This brush helps me achieve that perfect coat of sauce on all of my grilled masterpieces!
Grill Tongs: These are the only tongs I trust when I’m working over a hot grill!
*This post originally posted on 06/06/2016.
- Preheat a gas grill to medium-high or start the coals on a charcoal grill.
- While the grill is heating, mix together the rub by combining the brown sugar, chili powder, cumin, salt, pepper, and olive oil in small bowl.
- Using your hands, coat each chicken leg generously with the rub. Place the seasoned chicken legs on the grill, with the meaty end closest to the heat source.
- Cook on medium-high heat for 5 minutes per side. Brush the chicken legs with barbecue sauce each time you turn them. Turn the legs 3 to 4 times, for a total cooking time of about 18-20 minutes. The chicken is done when it reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.
- Remove the chicken from the grill and let rest for 5 minutes before serving with additional bbq sauce for dipping.