This baked BBQ chicken recipe gives you all the flavor of barbecue without having to leave your kitchen. The meat is tender, smoky, and spicy, and it’s so easy to make.
There’s no doubt that BBQ chicken is one of the most popular foods around. And it’s not hard to understand why! Unfortunately, sometimes it can be a lot of work to make. That’s why I love this baked BBQ chicken recipe. It’s everything you love about barbecue, with all the convenience of a simple roast chicken.
This recipe uses a smoky spice rub with a kick of heat and a bunch of barbecue sauce. Those ingredients replicate all the flavors of chicken cooked on the smoker or barbecue, even though you don’t have to leave the house. You won’t believe how easy and flavorful this recipe is.
Why This Baked BBQ Chicken Breast Recipe Is the Best
I still head outside to barbecue meat from time to time. But lately, I find myself staying in the kitchen to make this baked barbecue chicken in the oven. Here’s why I know you’ll love it.
- No-hassle BBQ. Everyone loves the flavor and smell of a barbecue, but there’s no denying that it’s a lot of work. You have to stand outside in the sun and prepare some wood, charcoal, or a propane grill. It’s hot and smoky, and easy to burn or overcook the meat. This recipe takes all the hassle out of grilling but keeps the flavor you love.
- So easy. This recipe couldn’t be easier. It only has a few steps, and it takes just 40 minutes to make. You can easily throw this oven-baked BBQ chicken together on a weeknight.
- Mess-free. I’m a huge fan of limiting mess in the kitchen, and this recipe is great for that. The only things you need are a plastic bag, a baking dish, and a pair of tongs or a spatula. Your kitchen will be totally clean when you’re done cooking.
- Versatile. This baked BBQ chicken can be eaten in so many ways. You can serve it alongside your favorite barbecue side dishes, or just as an entree. You can cut up the chicken and put it in a salad, taco, or wrap, or use it to make a sandwich. The possibilities are endless!
- Super juicy. It’s usually so easy to dry out a piece of chicken when you cook it. But this recipe has a ton of barbecue sauce in it, which helps the meat stay juicy and tender.
Here are all the ingredients that you’ll need to make this smoky and tender BBQ chicken breast recipe. Scroll to the recipe card at the bottom of the page to see the exact amounts for each ingredient.
- Chicken breasts – Boneless breasts are best for this recipe.
- Olive oil
- Chili powder
- Black pepper – Make sure to use freshly cracked pepper.
- Garlic powder
- Onion powder
- Cayenne pepper
- Barbecue sauce – Use your favorite brand.
How to Make Baked BBQ Chicken
Here’s how to make this BBQ chicken in the oven. It’s so easy, and only takes 40 minutes from start to finish.
- Prep. Preheat your oven to 375F.
- Season the chicken. Place the chicken in a resealable plastic bag, and add the olive oil and all of the dry spices.
- Shake. Seal the bag, and shake until the chicken is well coated.
- Place in a dish. Put the chicken in an oven-safe baking dish.
- Add barbecue sauce. Pour half of the barbecue sauce over the top of the chicken.
- Bake. Place the chicken in the oven, and bake for 15 minutes.
- Add the rest of the sauce. Flip the chicken breasts over, then pour the rest of the barbecue sauce over the top.
- Finish baking. Put the chicken back in the oven and bake until cooked through. This should take 15-20 minutes.
Tips and Variations
Here are some tricks and tips to help you make the best oven-baked BBQ chicken.
- Use a pre-made dry rub. If you want to save time when making this dish, you can use a spice rub instead of adding the ingredients individually. I always keep a batch of the Best Dry Rub in my pantry, and I think it’s perfect for this recipe.
- Bake in a single layer. Make sure that you place the chicken in a single layer in the baking dish. You don’t want pieces of chicken stacked on top of each other or else they won’t caramelize properly, and won’t cook evenly.
- Use a thermometer. It’s really easy to overcook chicken breasts. The best way to avoid doing this is to buy an instant-read thermometer, so you can remove the chicken from the oven as soon as it’s cooked through. You want to cook chicken breasts until they reach an internal temperature of 165F.
- Let the meat rest. After removing the chicken from the oven, let it rest for 5-10 minutes before you eat it. This allows the meat to reabsorb all of its juices, which helps it stay juicy and tender. If you cut into the chicken as soon as it’s done cooking, the juices will spill out and the meat will become try and chewy.
- Use thighs. If you prefer the taste of chicken thighs, or if they’re what you have around, you can use them instead. Feel free to use bone-in or boneless thighs, though you’ll need to add more cooking time if the bone is in. I recommend using skinless thighs.
I like to keep it simple and serve this juicy chicken dish with some traditional sides that you might serve with barbecued meat or roast chicken. Here are a few of my favorite side dishes to eat with baked BBQ chicken breasts.
How to Store and Reheat Leftover Baked BBQ Chicken
Leftover BBQ chicken can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for at least 3 days. To reheat, place the chicken in a pot or dish and cover with a tight lid or aluminum foil. Bake in a 325F oven for 10 minutes, or until warm throughout. I also love to use leftover chicken straight from the fridge in salads, Barbecue Chicken Nachos, sandwiches, and these BBQ Chicken Wraps.
Can I Freeze This Recipe?
Yes, you can absolutely freeze leftover baked BBQ chicken. Store the meat in an airtight container and place it in the freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge before reheating.
More Easy Chicken Dinners
If you’re looking for more chicken recipes that are as easy as this one, then don’t worry. I’ve got you covered with some more great chicken dinners to make.
- Grilled Chicken Sandwiches
- Jerk Chicken
- Buffalo Chicken Sliders
- Fiesta Lime Chicken
- Margarita Grilled Chicken
- Chicken Lo Mein
- 1-1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
- 1 1/2 teaspoons paprika
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 cup barbecue sauce
- Preheat your oven to 375F.
- Add the chicken, olive oil, and dry spices to a sealable plastic bag.
- Close the bag and shake until the chicken is evenly coated with the spice rub.
- Arrange the chicken in a single layer in the bottom of an oven-safe baking dish.
- Pour half of the barbecue sauce over the chicken.
- Bake the chicken for 15 minutes.
- Flip the meat over, then top with the remaining barbecue sauce.
- Bake for an additional 15-20 minutes, until the meat is cooked through.
- You can replace the dry spices with my Best Dry Rub recipe.
- If you prefer, you can use chicken thighs instead of chicken breasts.
- Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for 3 days, or in the freezer for 3 months.
- Reheat in a pot or baking dish covered with a lid or aluminum foil in a 325F oven for 10 minutes, or until heated through.
Amount Per Serving Calories 442Total Fat 10gSaturated Fat 2gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 7gCholesterol 145mgSodium 1675mgCarbohydrates 31gFiber 2gSugar 24gProtein 54g
Nutrition Disclaimer: All information presented on this site is intended for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and any nutritional information shared on dinnersdishesanddesserts.com should only be used as a general guideline.
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