I don’t know about you, but I love chicken. Now, I don’t love it in the “feathers, beady eyes, and evil intentions” kind of way, but in a “roasted, succulent and juicy” kind of way. We eat a lot of chicken around here, mainly because it’s a healthier alternative to red meat. We also eat it to save money, since I enjoy pretending I’m an enormous cleaver-wielding kitchen boss (for my tutorial on how to cut up a whole chicken, click here
). I will never forget my hospital stay after my daughter was born. Wait a minute . . . what are we doing talking about hospitals? I thought this was supposed to be about BBQ chicken! I want my money back! Wahhhhhh . . . .
Now hold on a second. I’m getting to that. Hold your horses.
Anyway, while I was in the hospital, one of the meals they served me was BBQ chicken. Generally, when it comes to hospital food, you’re getting bland, cafeteria-style generic canned stuff. However . . . on this occasion, I was pleasantly surprised. Not only was the chicken amazingly delicious, but it literally fell off the bone, chock-full of flavor on moist, delicate meat. It was fantastic. I knew that I had to recreate it, and I spent those first few sleepless nights rocking my newborn on the scratchy, noisy hospital bed, pondering chicken.
I have tried this with homemade BBQ sauce (which I make to cut down on sodium), as well as with store-bought sauce– both with great success. I am also convinced that the key to sticky, flavorful BBQ chicken that is also moist is to use bone-in chicken. To get that sticky, delicious “glazed” look, you need to cook the chicken about 1.5 hours. Boneless breasts or tenderloins can never stand up to this kind of heat. So try this recipe with bone in chicken– and you’ll be rewarded by a face and hands so sticky you’ll have to use 2-3 napkins to clean off all the glory.
What are we waiting for? Let’s do this!
Easy BBQ Chicken
1 whole chicken, cut into pieces (may remove skin if desired but leave bones in)
1/2 cup flour
Salt and Pepper to taste
1 bottle of your favorite BBQ sauce
Cut up chicken and set aside (tutorial on how to cut up a whole chicken here
). Place your flour into a separate bowl, and dump your BBQ sauce into a third bowl. Place a greased 13×9 baking dish on the far right, so it will be ready to catch your little chickies when they come out of the BBQ sauce bath. 🙂 Using one hand for “wet” ingredients and one hand for “dry” ingredients, salt and pepper the chicken, if desired, and dip the chicken pieces in flour and then in BBQ sauce. You may have to use your fingers to “plop” some extra BBQ sauce on top of the chicken. Grab the chicken pieces without letting the sauce fall off and place chicken in baking dish. Add about 1/3 cup of water to the pan, around the chicken pieces, so the sauce doesn’t dry out during cooking. Bake at 350 for roughly 1.5 hours, until chicken juices run clear, basting with pan juices/sauce during the last half hour of cooking.
Now, in pictures! 🙂
This meal is great for a busy day. You can make it the night before, cover your dish, and throw it in the fridge. Then, when you’re ready, you just shove the whole ‘shebang in the oven. Amazing, succulent, fall-off-the-bone chicken meal done. Zero effort. Mom wins again!
You can use any kind of BBQ sauce that you like. I have used higher end sauces, and cheapie, walmart sauces, and they both work fine.
Place your chicken on a plate and salt and pepper it to taste. You can also dust with a little cayenne if you like a little more heat.
Roll your chicken pieces in flour. Keep one hand for “dry” ingredients, and one hand for “wet” ingredients. It’s a lot easier that way. I line up my station like this: Salted/peppered chicken on the left. Then a bowl of flour. Then a bowl of BBQ sauce. Then my cooking-spray sprayed pan. That way I can use my left hand for grabbing the chicken and flouring it, and my right hand for “saucing” it and placing it into the waiting 13×9. Quick, quick, quick is the name of the game. (“Mommy, is it suppertime yet??????? How much LONGER????????”)
After your chicken pieces are covered in flour, roll them in BBQ sauce. It probably goes without saying, but obviously don’t re-use the flour or BBQ sauce that the chicken has touched. Throw away any “chicken stuff” when you’re finished. And wash your sink and counters with clorox, too– we don’t want chicken germs in our kitchen.
You may need to use your hands to plop (how’s that for a scientific term?) a little extra sauce on top of the chicken, since it likes to slither out of the sauce without getting covered.
Place your chicken pieces into the pan and pour about 1/3 cup water into the pan, also. This will keep the sauce from drying out as it reduces in the oven. Do NOT cover your chicken with foil. Covering it will cause the pan to become a steam bed and make the sauce roll off the chicken (You’ve heard of “water off a duck’s back? Not to be outdone, this is “sauce off a chicken’s back). And we don’t want our little chickees naked! Squeeeee!!!! Hide me!!!!
Leave that chicken uncovered.
Bake at 350 for roughly 1.5 hours. During the last 1/2 hour, take the chicken out and baste it. Basting just means that you use a spoon to take the pan juices and spoon over the chicken pieces. Make sure that you evenly distribute the liquid (sometimes a random corner will run out of juice, and if you don’t slide some water in there, it will burn). Your oven may be hotter than mine and be done a little sooner. Just keep basting and checking, and use a meat thermometer to tell when the meat is done, if you’re not sure. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.
Another great thing about this meal is that it can be made ahead of time and stored in the fridge. I LOVE meals like that– I can make them the night before when my hubby is home to help babysit, and then a delicious supper is waiting for me just to shove in the oven on a busy day.
Today, I am pairing this with baked macaroni and cheese
, a vegetable, and homemade biscuits
. The chicken, mac and cheese, and biscuits can all be made ahead and placed in the fridge (cover biscuits with plastic wrap so they don’t dry out). Seriously, folks. This is a fantastic, homemade meal that smells and tastes like it took all day, with just a few minutes’ prep on your part. It just doesn’t get any better than that.
You are so amazing. And I won’t tell anyone that it only took you 10 minutes 😉 It will be our secret.
You did it. And I’m just so proud of you.
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