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There’s nothing quite like sweet, sticky homemade BBQ sauce slathered over juicy grilled chicken legs! This quick and easy-to-master recipe makes the best, most flavorful chicken you’ll ever sink your teeth into. Grilled BBQ Chicken Legs are the ultimate in summer cookout food and perfect for picnics, parties, and family gatherings.
This recipe has been in the Southern Soul recipe files for years. I originally came up with this homemade BBQ sauce recipe over 10 years ago and was actually kind of an afterthought when I put it on my site. Little did I know that it would become a fan favorite!
With all the love that folks have shared over these grill chicken legs, I decided it was time to give this post a makeover. After all, it deserves it!
Why You Should Make These Grilled BBQ Chicken Legs…
- they are easy to make and don’t need any extra time to prepare since there’s no marinating required.
- chicken legs are inexpensive so feeding your family or a crowd won’t break your budget.
- the homemade BBQ sauce is made with just a few simple ingredients and produces an amped-up flavor that’s so crazy delicious.
- they are juicy, smokey, sweet, and sticky. All you need is a stack of napkins!
Ingredients For This Recipe
- Chicken Legs
- Brown Sugar
- Worchestershire Sauce
- Dijon Mustard
- Hot Sauce
- Southern Soul House Seasoning or your favorite rub
Helpful Tools To Make Grilled BBQ Chicken Legs
Using the right tools when cooking makes things easy, safe, and efficient. That goes for grilling, too. For this recipe, here are my tried and true grilling tools:
How To Make Homemade BBQ Sauce
Making homemade BBQ sauce is super simple! All of the ingredients are pantry and fridge staples and when simmered together make an incredible sauce that will become a family favorite.
All that’s needed to make BBQ Sauce is one pot and about 10 minutes of time. Add all the ingredients to the pot and whisk them together. Bring the sauce up to a boil then reduce and simmer for 15 minutes. Let the sauce cool and you are ready to serve.
These chicken legs are great with the classic BBQ sauce in this recipe but they are also amazing when grilled with Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce.
How To Grill Chicken Legs
- Preheat the grill, either gas or charcoal for 2-zone (direct and indirect) grilling. The grill should be around 400 degrees.
- Season the chicken legs with my homemade House Seasoning. You can also use your favorite rub or salt and pepper. The key here is to make sure you season all sides of the chicken.
- Place the chicken legs on the direct heat side of the grill. Cook them, turning about every 5 minutes for about 30 minutes until the internal temp reaches 160 degrees.
- Move the chicken legs to the indirect heat side of the grill and slather on the BBQ sauce. Turn and baste the chicken until the sauce gets thick, sticky, and caramelized.
Cooking Times and Temperatures For Grilled Chicken Legs
These chicken legs take about 30 to 35 minutes to cook over direct heat and an additional 10 minutes over indirect while you are basing them with the BBQ Sauce. The chicken will be fully cooked when the internal temp reached 165 degrees.
Let the chicken rest for 5 minutes before serving.
What To Serve With Grilled BBQ Chicken Legs
- Caprese Pasta Salad
- Pineapple Slaw
- Air Fryer Potato Wedges
- Macaroni Salad
- Instant Pot Pepper Jack Macaroni & Cheese
- Tomato Cucumber Salad
Last But Not Least…
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BBQ Chicken Legs
- 8 – 10 chicken legs
- 2 cups ketchup
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
- 2 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 3 tablespoon honey
- 1 tablespoon Texas Pete
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 tablespoon House Seasoning or your favorite barbecue rub
- Add all ingredients to a sauce pan and bring up to a boil.
- Reduce heat to medium low and simmer for 15 minutes.
- Let cool slightly then transfer to a clean jar. Will keep in the fridge for about 3 weeks.
- Preheat grill to approximately 400 degrees.
- Arrange chicken pieces in a large baking dish. Sprinkle chicken on both sides with house seasoning. Let stand at room temperature for 15 minutes while the grill is heating.
- When ready to cook, oil the grill grates. Place the chicken legs skin side down and cook on direct heat turning every 5-8 minutes until internal temperature reaches 160 degrees. At this point, the chicken should be crispy and brown.
- Turn the grill to medium-low or move the chicken legs to the indirect heat side and brush the chicken with the BBQ sauce. Turn chicken and brush the other side with sauce. Continue to baste the chicken legs until the sauce has caramelized. The chicken will be done when an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the meat reads 165 degrees.
- Remove from grill and let rest for 3 to 5 minutes. Enjoy!