Next level BBQ chicken in a serving dish

Next level BBQ chicken

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Prep: 30 mins Cook: 1 hr plus 1 hr marinating


Serves 4

Discover how to cook BBQ chicken like a pro. The meat falls off the bone, and the marinade has a lovely balance of sweet, salty and spicy flavours

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition: Per serving

  • kcal528
  • fat22g
  • saturates6g
  • carbs33g
  • sugars31g
  • fibre2g
  • protein48g
  • salt3.4g


  • 2 red chillies, tops removed and reserved for the smoke mix (see below)



    Part of the capsicum family, chillies come in scores of varieties and colours (from green…

  • 8 spring onions, roughly chopped
    Spring onions

    Spring onion

    sp-ring un-yun

    Also known as scallions or green onions, spring onions are in fact very young onions, harvested…

  • thumb-sized piece of ginger, peeled and roughly chopped



    Mainly grown in Jamaica, Africa, India, China and Australia, ginger is the root of the plant. It…

  • 8 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 2 tbsp chopped thyme


    This popular herb grows in Europe, especially the Mediterranean, and is a member of the mint…

  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • ½ tsp paprika



    A spice that's central to Hungarian cuisine, paprika is made by drying a particular type of…

  • 3 tbsp dark brown soft sugar
  • 4 tbsp soy sauce
    Soy sauce

    Soy sauce

    soy sor-s

    An Asian condiment and ingredient that comes in a variety of of varieties ranging from light to…

  • 4 limes, 2 juiced, plus 2 halved to serve



    The same shape, but smaller than…

  • 1½kg mix of chicken drumsticks and wings, lightly scored



    While it's the traditional Christmas bird, turkey is good to eat all year round, though…

  • 200ml ketchup

For the smoke mix (optional)

  • handful of thyme sprigs
  • handful of bay leaves
  • 1 tsp ground allspice
  • reserved chilli tops (see above)


  1. To prepare the meat, tip all the ingredients, except for the chicken and ketchup, into a blender or mini processor. Add a pinch of salt and blitz to a rough paste. Tip two-thirds of the paste into a large bowl with the chicken, and massage the marinade into the meat. Cover and leave for at least 1 hr at room temperature, or up to 48 hrs in the fridge.

  2. Meanwhile, make the barbecue sauce. Tip the remaining paste into a small saucepan and bring to a simmer. Cook for 5 mins until it thickens and becomes darker, then add the ketchup and cook for 5 mins until sticky. Tip into a container and set aside.

  3. Light the barbecue, ensuring the coals are piled up at one end and leaving only a couple of coals on the other side. Lay the chicken on the emptier side. If you’re making the smoke mix, carefully scatter all of the ingredients directly onto the piled-up coals. Cover the barbecue (with the vents open) and cook the chicken for 20 mins. Remove the lid and turn the chicken, then cover again and cook for a further 20 mins.

  4. Remove the lid and move the chicken across the grill so it’s above the piled-up coals, then baste with some of the barbecue sauce, keeping enough aside, in a separate container, to serve later. Cook for 10 mins, adding a few more coals if you need to and turning often, until nicely charred and cooked through – a digital thermometer inserted through the thickest part of the meat should read at least 65C.

  5. Put the lime halves on the grill, over the coals, cut-side down for 3-4 mins until charred. Serve the chicken with the lime for squeezing over and reserved barbecue sauce for dipping.

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