Smoked chicken thighs are a great way of enjoying chicken in your backyard. It is a straightforward recipe that you can make at your home on any of your favorite smokers or the smoker that is available at your home. You can have a perfect weekday dinner with a smoky flavor.
#1. Smoked Chicken Thighs Simple Recipe
Chicken Thighs taste incredibly delicious when you marinate them with Sweet Rub. It is an ideal combination of brown sugar and six savory spices, including paprika.
You will use the following ingredients to make smoked chicken thighs.
|Chicken Thighs (Must be Skin-on)||2 lbs|
|Sweet Rub||2 tbsp|
|BBQ Sauce||1/2 Cup|
Step 1: First of all, preheat the smoker at 275 degrees F.
Step 2: In the second step, prepare your chicken. Always remove the excess skin and the thin chicken present around the edges of the bones. Cut the chicken pieces into uniform shapes.
Step 3: Now dip all the sides with Sweet Rub. Just use enough amount of Sweet Rub that completely covers the chicken.
Step 4: Finally, place the chicken thigh pieces on the smoker. Always place them in a way that the skin side is up. After this, close the smoker’s lid and cook the thigh pieces until the temperature rises to 165 degrees F. This process will take almost 45 minutes to 1 hour and 10 minutes, depending on the size of the thigh pieces. If they are big, then it will take more time to cook them properly.
Step 5: Now pour your favorite BBQ sauce while cooking the thigh pieces and let them cook for some more time.
Step 6: At last, remove the grill and let it cool. It will take 5-10 minutes. Serve them to everyone and enjoy the delicious meal.
Important Note: Remember that the time taken by the thighs to cook thoroughly will depend on the amount of heat of your smoker. It also depends on the thickness of the thighs. Remember to keep an internal meat thermometer handy until the thighs reach are thoroughly cooked, or they reach an internal temperature of 175 degrees F. Always cook the thighs according to temperature and not to the time.
#2. Spicy Smoked Chicken Thighs Recipe
It is a basic rub spicy smoked chicken recipe. In this recipe, we will be using Cayenne pepper and BBQ sauce to make it a bit more spicy and delicious. You can glaze them with much salt and pepper according to your taste, but make sure the amount of spice that you are adding to the recipe is eatable.
The number of ingredients profoundly affects the taste of your recipe; therefore, it is crucial to use the correct amount of ingredients while making the spicy smoked chicken recipe. Below are the ingredients that are used in making spicy thighs ;
To cook Spicy Smoked Chicken Thighs, you will need the following equipment ;
- A Smoker: There are various smokers available on Amazon. The best smokers are; Masterbuilt Charcoal bullet smoker, Char-Broil American Gourmet offset smoker, and Char-Griller tabletop smoker.
- Wood Chips
|Chicken Thighs ( Skin-on)||6 pieces|
|Olive Oil||2 tbsp|
|Chill Powder||2 tbsp|
|Cayenne pepper||2 tbsp|
|Garlic Powder||1 tbsp|
|Salt and Pepper||1tbsp|
Note: Cayenne pepper, salt, and pepper should be added according to the taste you like. You can lessen the amount of Cayenne pepper or Chili powder if you think it will be too spicy. If you don’t have Cayenne pepper you can use a Cayenne pepper substitute.
Method of Making Spicy Smoked Chicken Thighs
Step 1: In the first step, you will have to light the smoker. Once you light the smoker, then allow it to reach a temperature of 200 degrees. If the smoker is not heated correctly, the food will take more time to be cooked properly. Therefore preheat the smoker first.
Step 2: In the second step, mix all the dry spices or the dry ingredients thoroughly in a bowl. Mix them well. Be very careful about the quantity of the ingredients.
Step 3: Now in the third step, you will have to rub olive oil thoroughly over the chicken. Olive oil should cover the edges adequately. Thoroughly coat the thigh pieces with olive oil.
Step 4: Now in the fourth step, marinate the chicken pieces with the spices mixture properly. Rub them in such a way that the spices are fully coated on the Chicken pieces. It is a significant step as it develops the taste and, therefore, coat the chicken pieces properly with the spices mixture.
Step 5: Now lay the thigh pieces on the smoker rack and add the smoker wood pieces into the smoker. Pecan and Cherry wood pieces are the best for this purpose.
Step 6: Ensure that there are enough wooden pieces in the smoker every hour. At least smoke the thigh pieces for 2 hours. Make sure that you rotate the chicken pieces to cook them properly.
Step 7: The time spicy smoked chicken thigh pieces take to be appropriately cooked is almost 3-4 hours. The time depends on the size of the thigh pieces as well as the temperature of the smoker.
Sometimes it takes more time to cook; therefore, always check if the chicken pieces are properly cooked or not. Once ready, Serve them with BBQ sauce and enjoy the delicious meal.
#3. Apple Wood Smoked Chicken Thighs Recipe
This recipe is exceptionally delicious, and you can enjoy it at your home. The ingredients that we are going to use in this recipe are readily available at any store. Following is the list of the ingredients that we are going to use in this recipe;
- Applewood Logs: You would need small applewood logs if you cook using a smoker or small applewood chunks if you are using a grill for making the recipe.
- Aluminum Cooking tray
- Cooking Rack: The cooking rack should be made of stainless steel. The cooking tray must fit into the rack; therefore, choose the one that fits the tray easily.
|Chicken Thighs (Skin-on)||8 pieces|
|Brown Sugar||1/4 cup|
|Chili Powder||2/3 cup|
|Onion Powder||4 tbsp|
|Black Pepper||1 tbsp|
|Garlic Powder||4 tbsp|
|Cayenne Pepper||1 tbsp|
|Melted Butter||4 tbsp|
|Water Mixed with Apple Juice||2 cups each|
Method of Making Apple Wood Smoked Chicken Thighs
Step 1: First of all, put the kosher salt and the poultry season in a sealable container or a plastic freezer bag. Add the pieces of thighs into it and add water to soak the chicken into it. Seal the box and shake it well. After this, place this bag into the refrigerator. Let the chicken impregnate into the salty water for more than 45 minutes. If you brine it for more time, then it will make the thighs’ skin crispy. If you like more crispy chicken pieces, then you can soak them for a longer time.
Step 2: Now set your smoker while the chicken pieces brine and start the smoker. Make sure to control the temperature of the smoker and allow the heat to reach 250 degrees F. On the other hand, if you are using a grill, then use a single burner and place the chicken pieces on the other side of the burner. Set the wood chunks directly on the grill grates. When the grill heats, the wood will eventually heat up too. Keep checking the wood pieces if they are correctly burning or not.
Step 3: In the third step, take a small bowl and add chili powder, sugar, salt, onion powder, garlic powder, black pepper, paprika, and Cayenne pepper. Now mix all these ingredients properly. Mix the ingredients very well.
Step 4: Now in the fourth step, take out the chicken from the refrigerator and pull it out of that brine solution and let it dry. Now cut the excess skin present at the edges of the thigh pieces. You can use shears for this purpose. Now apply the spices rub on the thighs. You should apply the mixture first at the bottom and then at the top. Make sure that the mixture goes inside the skin of the thighs. In this way, the spices will evenly spread on the Chicken pieces.
Step 5: Now in the fifth step, you have to place your rack into the cooking tray. Now put the chicken pieces evenly into the tray and place them so that they do not touch each other. The cooking tray is used to lift the chicken off the aluminum pan so that smoke goes underneath the chicken skin too. If you are cooking on a metal grill, you can add a water apple juice mixture to the aluminum pan to cook directly instead of water.
Step 6: Note the timing, and it should not exceed two to two and a half-hour. The timing is dependent on the temperature of your cooking apparatus. If you are bored, you can read a book or make your favorite beverage during this time. Don’t try to open the cooker while they are on fire. You can control the temperature of the smoker using a thermometer.
Step 7: After one hour of cooking, spritz the chicken skin lightly with butter. It will not let the chicken skin pull off immediately as you bite it; instead, it will allow you to enjoy your chicken piece with the crispy skin-on.
Step 8: After two hours, take a quick temperature check. The internal temperature of the smoker should be 165 degrees F. Keep checking the temperature of your dish at regular intervals after this point. If you cook them at 165 degrees F, then the skin will become crispy. Therefore, they become more tasty and crispy.
Step 9: When you see that the chicken thigh pieces are now in good shape and look crispy, add your favorite sauce over the chicken pieces. Most people like to use BBQ sauce as it gives the pieces a more smoky taste. Another way to the sauce is to take a bowl and pour the sauce in it. Grab a tong and open the smoker, grab one Chicken piece in the tong, dip it in the sauce and then return it to the pan. Repeat the same process with other pieces too.
Step 10: Once the sauce dries a bit, then remove the pan from heat and let it dry for some time. Therefore, in this way, the chicken will have a more crispy look. Some people like to place hot chicken directly on the grill, but that’s not the right idea. Be very sure that you follow the recipe correctly. Never try to overcook the thighs because they will either burn out or dry entirely and become hard. You have spent too much time cooking them, therefore, be very careful in this case.
Step 11: Finally, pull the chicken off the pan and serve. You don’t need any sauce as you have used the sauce while cooking them. But, if you like to eat them with sauce, you can use sauce too. It entirely depends on your taste and choice.
The recipes mentioned above are the best recipes for making smoked chicken thighs at your home quickly and enjoying them with your family. Hence, just stay very patient while cooking them as they might take some more time.