ingredients
  • Chicken breasts 4 boneless, skinless
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Barbecue sauce 1/2 cup

Barbecue chicken is one of the great joys of summer, especially when it's cooked to tender, juicy yet crispy on the outside perfection. This super simple recipe takes very little time and doesn't require hours spent marinating your chicken. Just pick up your favorite barbecue sauce, and away you go! Whether you opt to cook your chicken on the grill or bake it in the oven, this recipe offers a flawless way to get incredibly moist, tender chicken on the inside, and a beautifully browned crispy skin on the outside. Don't be surprised if this becomes your go-to BBQ chicken recipe.

How to Make the best BBQ Chicken

Here are the steps for making BBQ chicken on the grill as well as in the oven.

How to cook BBQ chicken on the grill

Preheat the grill to about 450°F then brush down the grates to ensure your grill is clean.

Rub the olive oil into the chicken breasts and season liberally with salt and freshly cracked black pepper.

Place the chicken on the grill. Cover and grill for 5 minutes, flip, then cook for another 5. Brush the chicken breasts with barbecue sauce for 2 minutes, then repeat on the other side. Using your instant-read thermometer, check to see if the internal temperature is 160°F, then remove from the heat.

Plate the chicken and cover it, allowing it to rest for 5 minutes. This will ensure it stays moist and juicy. Serve with a little extra barbecue sauce.

How to cook BBQ chicken in the oven

Preheat your oven to 450°F.

Rub the olive oil into the chicken breasts and season liberally with salt and freshly cracked black pepper.

Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil then bake the chicken for 15 minutes.

Remove the tray from the oven and brush the chicken breasts with barbecue sauce. Bake for another 5-8 minutes, depending on your oven. The chicken should begin to char. Using your instant-read thermometer, check to see if the internal temperature is 160°F, then remove the tray from the oven.

Allow the chicken to rest for 5 minutes so the internal temperature can rise to 165°F. Serve with a little extra barbecue sauce.

What's the difference between boneless and bone-in chicken for barbecuing?

Boneless chicken cooks much faster than bone-in. If you're looking for a quick, effortless dinner, boneless is the way to go.

How long do you cook BBQ chicken?

To make sure your chicken is cooked through and safe to eat, it needs to heat through to an internal temperature of 165°F. Exactly how long will depending on the size of your chicken and whether or not it has bones. Baked chicken takes 20-30 minutes for boneless and 30-40 minutes bone-in. Boneless chicken breasts take 10 minutes on the grill, while bone-in takes about 35-45 minutes. Your best bet is to buy an instant-read thermometer.

Whichever method you go for, wait to add the barbecue sauce until the chicken is just about done. This will help prevent the sauce from burning.

Instructions

For the grill

Preheat it to about 450°F then brush down the grates to ensure your grill is clean.

Rub the olive oil into the chicken breasts and season liberally with salt and freshly cracked black pepper.

Place the chicken on the grill. Cover and grill for 5 minutes, flip, then cook for another 5. Brush the chicken breasts with barbecue sauce for 2 minutes, then repeat on the other side. Using your instant-read thermometer, check to see if the internal temperature is 160°F, then remove from the heat.

Plate the chicken and cover it, allowing it to rest for 5 minutes. This will ensure it stays moist and juicy. Serve with a little extra barbecue sauce.

For the oven

Preheat your oven to 450°F.

Rub the olive oil into the chicken breasts and season liberally with salt and freshly cracked black pepper.

Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil then bake the chicken for 15 minutes.

Remove the tray from the oven and brush the chicken breasts with barbecue sauce. Bake for another 5-8 minutes, depending on your oven. The chicken should begin to char. Using your instant-read thermometer, check to see if the internal temperature is 160°F, then remove the tray from the oven.

Allow the chicken to rest for 5 minutes so the internal temperature can rise to 165°F. Serve with a little extra barbecue sauce.