Grilled Chicken with Herb Rub

Main Course

Recipe courtesy of the Williams-Sonoma Cookbook

Serves 4

  • Olive oil or canola oil for coating
  • 2 Tbsp sweet paprika
  • 2 Tbsp ground sage
  • 1 Tbsp dried rosemary
  • 1 Tbsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp cayenne pepper
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 chicken, 3-4 pounds, cut into serving pieces: 4 bone-in or boneless chicken breast halves; or 12 bone-in or boneless chicken thighs
  • 1 large handful wood chips or chunks, soaked for 30 minutes and drained

Grilled Chicken with Herb Rub

Grilled Chicken with Herb Rub

Click image to enlarge




Build a fire in a charcoal grill and let the coals burn until covered with white ash. Using tongs, spread the coals on both sides or around the perimeter of the fire bed and place a drip pan in the center. For a gas grill, preheat on medium-high heat. Keep one burner on medium-high, turn off the other burner(s), and place a drip pan below the rack on the' cool side. Oil the grill rack. 

To make the herb rub, mix together the paprika, sage, rosemary, garlic powder, cayenne, 1 1/2 tsp salt, and 1 tsp pepper in a small bowl. Coat the chicken with oil and sprinkle generously with the herb rub. 

Sprinkle the wood chips on the coals. Or, for a gas grill, wrap a large piece of heavy­duty aluminum foil around the chips and perforate the top of the packet with a fork or the tip of a knife. Place the packet directly on the ceramic bricks, lava rocks, or metal baffles above the burners. Grill the chicken directly over medium-high heat, turning often, until the pieces are well browned, 6-10 minutes total. 

Transfer the pieces to the unheated portion of the grill, cover the grill, and cook. After 15 minutes, check for doneness by inserting an instant-read thermometer into the thickest part of the breast or thigh (but not touching bone); the meat should register 160ºF in the breast or 170ºF in the thigh, and the juices should run clear. Continue cooking the chicken as needed, up to 10 minutes longer. As the pieces finish cooking (the breasts and/or boneless pieces will be done first), transfer them to a platter and cover loosely with aluminum foil until ready to serve.


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