BBQ “Fried” Chicken

Here’s the problem. I love fried chicken. I hate the mess that fat frying makes. She Who Must Be Obeyed doesn’t want me to eat fried food. It seems my choices are limited.

I have tried oven versions before but they never seemed to have the really crisp skin I was looking for. I went to work and have developed a “fried” chicken you can make on a gas grill, an oven or a smoker if it will heat up to 400 F.

The first step is to brine the chicken. You know that I am not big on brining chicken if you have followed my blog. This recipe is an exception. I will be cooking the chicken with high temperatures to get a very crisp skin and that could tend to dry the meat so I wanted to brine the chicken.

I suggest you use chicken thighs. They are smaller, cook faster, stay moister and have a great flavour compared to breasts.

Make up a brine by mixing:

  • 750 ml (3 cups) water
  • 25 ml (2 tablespoons) Sriracha (you can substitute 15 ml hot pepper sauce).
  • 15 ml (1 tablespoon) sugar
  • 15 ml (1 tablespoon) salt

Put 500 grams (1 pound) of chicken thighs in the brine and refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours.

Mix the following together for a dredge in a shallow casserole or large plate:

  • 175 ml (3/4 cup) flour
  • 5 ml (1 tsp) your favourite barbecue rub (see Basic Barbecue Rub if you want to make your own).
  • 3 ml (1/2 tsp) salt
  • 3 ml (1/2 tsp) garlic powder
  • 3 ml (1/2 tsp) onion powder

Take the thighs from the brine and put them on a plate. Don’t dry them or try and shake the excess liquid off. You want them damp.

One at a time, put a piece of chicken in the dredge with one hand. With the other hand, shovel the dredge over the thigh. Lift it out and put it on a rack. Repeat with each piece of chicken.

If you are using a smoker or oven, preheat it to 400 F. If you are using a barbecue, set it up for indirect heating. Adjust it to get the temperature in the barbecue to 400 F.

For a smoker, put the chicken on one of the racks. If using a barbecue, make sure it is over indirect heat (the burner under it is turned off or there are no coals under it). If cooking in an oven, put it on a rack over a tray. In all methods, put the chicken on the rack skin side up.

I used my pellet smoker preheated to 400 F.

Cook for 30 to 40 minutes. The reason for the differing cooking times depends on the device you are using to cook. Some ovens and smokers have a lot of air movement that cook faster. Start checking at 30 minutes. You are looking for the flour to be set and starting to brown.

Brush the chicken with 25 ml (2 tablespoons) vegetable oil. Do NOT turn the chicken.

Cook for 30 to 40 minutes, until the internal temperature is 180 F and the chicken is crisp and brown.

Let it sit for 5 minutes and serve.

The Verdict

This turned out just the way I wanted. It has a nicely seasoned crisp skin. The chicken is moist and tender like fried chicken. I love it!

The Old Fat Guy

BBQ “Fried” Chicken

BBQ “Fried” Chicken

Ingredients

  • 500 grams (1 pound) chicken thighs
  • 750 ml (3 cups) water
  • 25 ml (2 tablespoons) Sriracha sauce
  • 15 ml (1 tablespoon) salt
  • 15 ml (1 tablespoon) sugar
  • 175 ml (3/4 cup) flour
  • 5 ml (1 teaspoon) barbecue rub
  • 3 ml (1/2 teaspoon) salt
  • 3 ml (1/2 teaspoon) onion powder
  • 3 ml (1/2 teaspoon) garlic powder
  • 25 ml (2 tablespoons) vegetable oil

Instructions

  1. Mix water, Sriracha, 15 ml (1 tablespoon) salt and sugar to dissolve.
  2. Put the chicken in the mixture and refrigerate for 2-3 hours.
  3. Mix flour, barbecue rub, salt, onion powder and garlic powder together in a low casserole or a large plate.
  4. Take the thighs from the brine mixture and put it on a plate. Do not dry or shake off excess liquid.
  5. With one hand, put a piece of chicken in the flour. With the other hand, scoop the flour over the chicken.
  6. Put the chicken on a rack and repeat with the remaining chicken.
  7. If using a smoker, preheat the smoker to 400 F. Put the chicken in the smoker, skin side up.
  8. If using an oven, preheat the oven to 400 F. Put a rack on a tray and put the chicken on the rack, skin side up, and put it in the oven.
  9. If using a barbecue, set it up for indirect heat and let the temperature in the barbecue settle at 400 F. Put the chicken over indirect heat with the skin side up.
  10. Cook for 30 to 40 minutes, until the flour is set and is just starting to brown.
  11. Brush the chicken with the oil. Do not turn the chicken.
  12. Cook for 30 to 40 minutes until the chicken skin is crisp and brown. The internal temperature should be about 180 F.
  13. Let sit for 5 minutes and serve.
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