This post may contain affiliate links.

Who doesn’t love some smoky barbequed Chicken Legs with homemade rub? This recipe is always a hit at our house, especially when we have family gatherings or just a casual weekend BBQ.

Chicken Legs that have been grilled with bbq sauce on parchment paper

Let’s talk about one of our all-time favorite summer recipes – Chicken Legs.

You should see Lily devour these things! There is nothing more adorable than a little girl with barbecue sauce all over her face, haha!

This chicken drumsticks recipe is a major crowd-pleaser. It features a perfect blend of spices and a smoky, caramelized BBQ sauce.

I love to marinate my chicken. This recipe calls for a couple hours of marinating time, though you can skip it if you like. Just know that it does bring a lot of extra flavor!

One little pro tip: I like to cook my chicken legs and thighs just a bit longer than the recommended 165 degrees. They won’t dry out since they’re dark meat and they get real tender that way.

This recipe is super easy to make and uses simple ingredients you probably already have in your pantry. Plus, you get that delicious crispy skin everyone loves.

So, let’s get started on these mouth-watering Chicken Legs! I promise, once you try it, you’ll be making these chicken legs again and again!

Chicken Legs basted with bbq sauce on the grill

WHY THIS RECIPE WORKS:

  1. Flavorful Spices: The seasoning blend of garlic powder, onion powder, smoked paprika, and more makes these incredibly tasty.
  2. Crispy Skin: Cooking at a higher temperature ensures the chicken skin gets nice and crispy.
  3. Easy and Versatile: With simple ingredients and minimal prep time, this recipe is perfect for any occasion.

INGREDIENTS NEEDED (SCROLL TO THE BOTTOM OF THIS POST FOR THE FULL RECIPE CARD):

  • Light brown sugar
  • Garlic powder
  • Onion powder
  • Smoked paprika
  • Salt
  • Black pepper
  • Ground mustard
  • Chicken legs
  • BBQ sauce
  • Water
ingredients needed to make Chicken Legs

HOW TO MAKE CHICKEN LEGS:

  1. In a small bowl, stir together the brown sugar, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, salt, pepper, and ground mustard.
  2. Place the chicken legs in a large bowl and toss with all of the spices. Cover and place in the fridge for 2 hours to marinate, or use immediately.
  3. Stir together the bbq sauce and water until combined.
  4. Preheat the grill to medium heat and oil the grates. 
  5. Place the chicken legs on to the grill and allow them cook, turning every few minutes until an internal temperature reaches 130-140°F. Time will depend on the size of the legs, but this should take 15-20 minutes.
  6. Baste the legs on both sides with the sauce, and continue to cook until an internal temperature reaches at least 165 degrees F about another 10 minutes or until your desired doneness (180-190°F results in fall-off-the-bone meat). I like to rotate the legs every minute or so and baste with the bbq sauce each time so the sauce will caramelize.
  7. Once they hit your desired temperature, serve immediately.
collage of images showing how to make bbq Chicken Legs on the grill

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT THIS RECIPE:

No, you don’t have to use chicken legs.

You can use other cuts like chicken drumsticks, chicken thighs, or even chicken quarters.

Just adjust the cooking time accordingly to make sure the chicken reaches the proper internal temperature.

Yes, you sure can!

If you’re short on time or have a favorite store-bought rub, feel free to use it instead of the homemade spice mix.

It will still have so much flavor!

For perfectly juicy chicken, cook until the internal temperature reaches at least 165°F.

However, for fall-off-the-bone tender meat, I like to cook my chicken legs to a higher temperature, around 180-190°F.

This higher temperature ensures the dark meat stays juicy and flavorful.

up close image Chicken Legs on parchment paper with bbq sauce

Are you ready for crispy chicken? That’s probably my favorite part.

I personally like skin-on chicken thighs for that very reason.

  • Lemon juice: Add a splash for a zesty flavor.
  • Cayenne pepper: For a bit of heat.
  • Fresh herbs: Like parsley or cilantro for garnish.
  • Soy sauce: Mix with BBQ sauce for an umami boost.
  • Honey: Add to the BBQ sauce for a sweeter glaze.
  • Chili powder: For extra spice.
  • Apple cider vinegar: Adds tang to the BBQ sauce.
  • Lemon pepper: As an alternative seasoning.

This recipe would be great for chicken wings too!

Keep an instant read thermometer on hand to make sure you don’t overcook.

  • Chicken thighs: Use instead of chicken legs for a different cut.
  • Turkey legs: For a larger portion – cook time will vary.
  • Honey BBQ sauce: Instead of regular BBQ sauce.
a hand holding up bbq Chicken Legs in air

Refrigerator: Store any leftover chicken legs in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

They will last for 3-4 days.

Reheat in the oven or microwave until heated through.

Freezer: You can freeze cooked chicken legs for up to 3 months.

Place them in a freezer-safe container or bag.

Thaw in the refrigerator before reheating.

DANA’S TIPS AND TRICKS:

  • Use a Meat Thermometer: An instant-read thermometer is the best way to ensure your chicken is cooked to the right temperature.
  • Pat Dry: Before seasoning, pat the chicken legs dry with paper towels to remove excess moisture. This helps the skin get crispy.
  • Oil the Grill Grates: Prevent sticking by oiling the grates before cooking.
  • Marinate Longer: If you have time, marinate the chicken legs for a few hours or overnight for more flavor.
  • Rotate and Baste: Rotate the legs and baste with BBQ sauce frequently for a caramelized glaze.
  • Let it Rest: Allow the chicken legs to rest for a few minutes after grilling to let the juices redistribute.
stacked Chicken Legs with a bite taken out

There you have it, folks! A simple, delicious recipe for Chicken Legs that will have everyone coming back for seconds.

This recipe is perfect for summer cookouts, family dinners, or anytime you want a tasty and easy meal.

So fire up the grill, get your ingredients ready, and enjoy some mouth-watering BBQ Chicken Legs with your loved ones. 

If you’ve tried these CHICKEN LEGS, let me know how it turned out in the comments! You can follow me over on PINTEREST, INSTAGRAM OR FACEBOOK to find some more of our mouthwatering recipes! 

This Silly Girls Kitchen Logo
5 from 1 vote

Best Grilled BBQ Chicken Legs Recipe

Author Dana at ThisSillyGirlsKitchen.com
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Who doesn’t love some smoky barbequed Chicken Legs with homemade rub? This recipe is always a hit at our house, especially when we have family gatherings or just a casual weekend BBQ.
Servings 4 servings

Ingredients
  

Instructions

  • In a small bowl, stir together the brown sugar, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, salt, pepper, and ground mustard.
  • Place the chicken legs in a large bowl and toss with all of the spices. Cover and place in the fridge for 2 hours to marinate, or use immediately.
  • Stir together the bbq sauce and water until combined. (If your bbq sauce is thin already and easy to brush on, then you can skip this step.)
  • Preheat the grill to medium heat and oil the grates.
  • Place the chicken legs on to the grill and allow them cook, turning every few minutes until an internal temperature reaches 130-140°F. Time will depend on the size of the legs, but this should take 15-20 minutes.
  • Baste the legs on both sides with the sauce, and continue to cook until an internal temperature reaches at least 165 degrees F about another 10 minutes or until your desired doneness (180-190°F results in fall-off-the-bone meat). I like to rotate the legs every minute or so and baste with the bbq sauce each time so the sauce will caramelize.
  • Once they hit your desired temperature, serve immediately.

Notes

  • Use a Meat Thermometer: An instant-read thermometer is the best way to ensure your chicken is cooked to the right temperature.
  • Pat Dry: Before seasoning, pat the chicken legs dry with paper towels to remove excess moisture. This helps the skin get crispy.
  • Oil the Grill Grates: Prevent sticking by oiling the grates before cooking.
  • Marinate Longer: If you have time, marinate the chicken legs for a few hours or overnight for more flavor.
  • Rotate and Baste: Rotate the legs and baste with BBQ sauce frequently for a caramelized glaze.
  • Let it Rest: Allow the chicken legs to rest for a few minutes after grilling to let the juices redistribute.

Nutrition

Calories: 348kcal | Carbohydrates: 17g | Protein: 22g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 120mg | Sodium: 769mg | Potassium: 363mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 13g | Vitamin A: 323IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 28mg | Iron: 1mg
Nutrition Disclaimer
Course Main Course
Cuisine American

Love This Recipe?

Follow @ThisSillyGirlsKitchen on Instagram and @danadevolk on Pinterest for more!

5 from 1 vote (1 rating without comment)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating




This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Similar Posts