Our BBQ chicken marinade is made not only with bbq sauce but with garlic and a handful of spices making it saucy and ultra flavorful.
It doesn’t get better than grilled chicken made with a bbq sauce chicken marinade. It’s my go-to summer marinade for chicken. Ours is simple and made with pantry staples such as spices, minced garlic, and your favorite bbq sauce.
Combine the ingredients for your bbq chicken marinade and then transfer it into a container or gallon-size bag. Submerge your chicken into the marinade and let marinate for at least 30 minutes or up to overnight.
What You Need for this BBQ Chicken Marinade
- BBQ sauce: Any kind will do! Grab your favorite BBQ sauce or whatever you have on hand in the fridge.
- Olive oil: The perfect amount of olive oil will help keep this chicken moist and delicious during the marinating and cooking process.
- Smoked paprika: Smoked paprika gives this marinade a delicious smokey flavor.
- Chili powder: Give your BBQ marinade a little savory kick!
- Garlic cloves: Don’t skimp on the garlic, friends! We keep a tube of minced garlic in the fridge at all times.
- Salt and pepper: So simple, but adds such great flavor!
How Long to Marinate BBQ Chicken?
We recommend marinating your chicken for at least 30 minutes. We’ve found the sweet spot for flavor infusion to be around 2 hours, but you can also let it sit overnight in this marinade.
- Garlic cloves: Don’t have fresh garlic on hand? Use minced garlic or sub half the amount of garlic powder.
- Smoked paprika: Regular paprika will work or omit for less of a smokey flavor.
- Olive oil: Prefer avocado oil or vegetable oil? Most oils will work in this marinade.
A few marinating tips
- Feel free to use either a baking dish or gallon-size plastic bag to marinate your chicken in.
- Make sure your chicken is fully submerged in the marinade. If you’re using a baking dish, flip your chicken halfway through.
- Make sure to marinate your chicken in the fridge and not on the countertop to prevent food-borne illness.
Ways to Cook BBQ Chicken
- Oven: Follow our easy baked chicken tutorial for directions on how to bake the most perfect marinated chicken!
- Grill: Use our Grilled BBQ Chicken recipe as a source
- Instant Pot: Plop your chicken and marinade right into your Instant Pot and in no time, you’ve got dinner!
- Slow Cooker: Easily whip up our Crock Pot BBQ pulled chicken recipe for the most tender BBQ shredded chicken recipe!
- Sous Vide: Want super tender chicken? Use your sous vide to get perfect marinated chicken every time.
One of our favorite things to do with marinated chicken is to prep and freeze them for later. For example, you can make 3 or 4 batches of this BBQ chicken marinade and freeze it for another time. Here’s how to do it:
- Place the BBQ chicken marinade along with 1 to 1.5 lbs. of raw chicken chicken breast into a freezer-safe gallon-size bag.
- Remove as much air as possible and then seal.
- Write “BBQ Chicken” on the front of the bag along with the date. Freeze for up to 3 months.
How long does frozen chicken last? Your frozen BBQ chicken will last up to 3 months in the freezer.
More Ways to Use BBQ Chicken Marinade
Other Cuts of Meat: Use this marinade to flavor other cuts of chicken (like these BBQ chicken thighs!) or even other meat such as pork!
BBQ Chicken Marinade
- Place all ingredients for the bbq chicken marinade(minus the chicken breast) into a medium bowl and whisk to combine.
- Place chicken breast into a glass container or gallon-size bag. Then, pour the marinade on top of the chicken, making sure it is covered.
- Let chicken marinate in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes or up to 2 hours. You can let your chicken sit overnight as well.
- Grilling Directions: grill over direct heat at 450ºF for around 4-5 minutes on each side or until the internal temperature reaches 160ºF. Let rest for 5 minutes and enjoy.
- Baking Directions: bake at 375ºF for 20-25 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 160ºF. Let rest for 5 minutes and enjoy.
Tips & Notes
- Nutrition is for 1 lb. chicken