This smoked chicken thighs recipe gives a really tender, full of flavor piece of chicken that can't be beat. Cooked low and slow in the smoker, the chicken is beautifully tender and delicious.
We like to pull this recipe out for any barbecue occasion really. Especially in these times, chicken thighs are an inexpensive cut of meat that the whole family enjoys and it's so easy to prepare them.
❤️ Why you'll love it
- Simple to prepare, very few ingredients and great flavor.
- Inexpensive, chicken thighs are one of the cheaper things you can barbecue or smoke these days.
- It'll be your new absolute favorite way to cook chicken.
- Chicken Thighs
- Red Pepper Flakes
- Lemon Juice
- Balsamic Vinegar
- Creole Mustard
- Avocado Oil
- Worcestershire Sauce
- Kosher Salt and black pepper
See recipe card at the bottom of this post for quantities.
- Step 1: First thing - Add all the ingredients to a large resealable bag, mix around to ensure it is combined.
- Step 2: Pat dry the chicken thighs with paper towels, then season liberally with salt and pepper. Then drop the chicken thighs into the marinade.
- Step 3: Move the thighs around so that they all get coated in the marinade then allow to sit marinating for 2 hours or more.
- Step 4: Heat your smoker to 225°F-250 (we use a pellet smoker) and arrange the chicken thighs on the grill, skin up. Cook for about 2-½ Hours (or until the chicken thighs reach an internal temperature of 165°F - as cooking time can vary). Crank up the heat to a higher temperature for the last 15 minutes to crisp the skin.
- Step 5: Remove and cover with aluminum foil for 15 minutes before eating.
Hint: Bring the chicken out to sit at room temperature to marinate for 1 hour before you put it on the grill/smoker.
🥗 Favorite Sides
🔄 Substitutions and Variations
- Olive Oil - instead of avocado oil, olive oil works just as well.
- Brown Sugar - instead of the honey you could add brown sugar for the sweetness.
- Cayenne Pepper - Add a pinch or two for added heat (personal preference).
- Onion Powder - just another flavor dimension.
- Garlic Powder - above.
- Other cuts of chicken - Chicken breasts, chicken wings, these will all work well with this recipe - you'll need to adjust the length of time for smoking though, according to the size of the meat. I find the thigh meat to be the tastiest though.
- Whole Chicken - you could even smoke a whole chicken using this same recipe. You'll need to adjust the smoking time accordingly though.
- Wood Chips (pellets) - We use Hickory, but you could also use apple wood, cherry wood pellets, to name but a few. The type of wood options are endless.
- Barbecue Sauce - Baste with your favorite barbecue sauce at the end.
- Injection Sauce - You should try injecting the chicken first, try my homemade injection marinade.
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You'll obviously need a smoker for this recipe. This is the type of smoker we use, we find it perfect for our small family and the small amounts of food we smoke (affiliate links):
820 Square Inches
Direct and Indirect Heat - This heavy-duty grill can reach low and slow temperatures of 180°F or hot and fast heat up to 500°F.
🍗 Other Chicken Recipes You Might Like
Once you have allowed the smoked chicken thighs to cool completely store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Expert Tip: Use a digital meat thermometer (or the probe on your smoker if you have one) to check the internal temperature on the chicken thighs. It needs to be 165°F.
Cooking the chicken at 225°F gives a beautiful soft and moist chicken, however you will most likely have rubbery skin. Crank up the heat for the last 15 minutes to get that crispy skin.
If you’ve tried this Smoked Chicken Thighs Recipe or any other great recipe on my site, let me know in the comment section below, how it turned out, we love hearing from our readers! If you love this recipe please give it 5 stars! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
- 8 Chicken Thighs
- ¼ Cup Avocado Oil
- ¼ Cup Worcestershire Sauce
- ⅓ Cup Balsamic Vinegar
- 2 Tablespoons Honey
- 2 Teaspoons Creole Mustard
- 1 Teaspoon Fresh Lemon Juice
- 3 Cloves Garlic, chopped
- 1 Teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes
- Salt and Pepper to Taste
- Add everything except the chicken thighs to a large resealable bag and mix around until completely combined.
- Using a paper towel pat completely dry the chicken thighs then season liberally with salt and pepper.
- Add to the resealable bag with the marinade and move the chicken thighs around in there until evenly coated.
- Place into the refrigerator and allow to marinate for at least 2 hours, longer if possible but no less than 2 hours.
- Add the hickory pellets to the smoker and turn on to 225°F.
- Place the chicken thighs onto the grill, skin side up, and close the lid. Allow to cook for about 2-½ Hours. Use a temperature probe for best results, the chicken should be 165°F to be cooked. Crank up the heat for the last 15 minutes or so of cooking to crisp up the skin.
- Remove and allow to rest 15 minutes before serving.
Remove the chicken thighs 1 hour before you intend to cook - allow to sit at room temperature.
If you smoke your chicken thighs at a lower temperatures the skin will not be crispy. Crank up the heat in the last 15 minutes just to crisp up the skin.
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Nutrition InformationYield 4 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 748Total Fat 50gSaturated Fat 12gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 37gCholesterol 333mgSodium 729mgCarbohydrates 17gFiber 0gSugar 14gProtein 61g