Spicy Honey Chicken

CATEGORIES: Grill, Poultry

This Spicy Honey Chicken is one of my family’s favorite meals. Both kids and adults gobble it up every time I make it.  I love the combo of a savory spice rub combined with a sweet, tangy honey glaze and it doesn’t hurt that it’s pretty quick and easy either! You don’t have to think ahead about marinating because you’re just throwing together a spice rub and, after the spices have grilled into the chicken, you just slather on a honey glaze. Even though it has the word spicy in the title, it’s actually pretty mild and you can always cut the chipotle in half if you’re worried about it. 

Grilled chicken on rack

How to Make Spicy Honey Chicken

  1. Make a spice rub. This recipe starts with a simple spice mix. Mix them all together in a bowl, then toss chicken with oil and spice rub to coat all sides well. Use your hands and get in there, then pop it on the grill!

    bowl full of spices

  2. Mix up the glaze.  While chicken is cooking, warm the honey in the microwave so it’s not so thick. Add the vinegar and combine well. Reserve 2 tablespoons of the honey glaze for serving. (In fact, the sweet, tangy honey glaze is so good that I usually double it to ensure plenty for drizzling on before serving!)

    mixing bowl with whisk

  3. Take the rest and brush on the chicken (both sides) in the final moments of grilling. I recommend a silicone basting brush like one of these that can withstand the high heat of the grill. I’m gonna warn you that this can make a hot mess, literally. It’s sugar, and it’s gonna drip. But the smelly smoke is worth it for a minute or two. Just leave your grill on for a few minutes after the chicken is done to burn off any excess glaze. It’s totally worth it once you taste this stuff.

     

 

Make a Spice Rub

This recipe starts with a simple spice mix. Mix them all together in a bowl, then toss chicken with oil and spice rub to coat all sides well. Use your hands and get in there! The chicken gets done quickly, grilling for just 3-5 minutes on each side, until cooked through.

basting brush chicken

If you don’t have a BBQ, try it on an indoor grill pan or use your broiler. Just be sure to open a window in case you burn your glaze!

Grilled chicken on rack

Serving Suggestions

Serve with a side of rice and your favorite veggie. Try it on a sandwich or in my personal favorite, my  Spicy Honey Chicken Salad.

FAQs

  • My family is very sensitive to spicy food. Can I just leave the chipotle out completely? There are lots of spices here that will still be delicious if you decide to leave the chipotle out completely. It does bring a nice depth of flavor, though, so I’d recommend at least trying half of what’s called for!
  • Can I make this ahead of time? This recipe is quick and easy. It is best made and eaten fresh.

Did You Make This?

I’d love to hear from you! Snap a picture and tag me on Instagram, and then come back and give this recipe a rating!

Print
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Grilled Chicken

Spicy Honey Chicken

  • Author: Sara Wells
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes

Description

The best chicken thighs! This recipe combines a savory spice rub with a sweet honey glaze for a crowd-pleasing favorite.


Ingredients

Ingredients:
8 boneless skinless chicken thighs, about 2 pounds
2 teaspoons vegetable oil

Rub
2 teaspoons granulated garlic
2 teaspoons chili powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon coriander
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon chipotle chili powder

Glaze
1/2 cup honey
1 tablespoon cider vinegar

Instructions

Combine the rub spices in bowl and mix well.

Use kitchen shears (or a pair of clean scissors) to trim off any excess fat from the chicken pieces. Pat dry. Drizzle oil over chicken and rub in with your hands to lightly coat all the pieces. Then toss chicken with the spice rub to coat all sides well. Use your hands and get in there! Grill chicken for 3-5 minutes on each side, until cooked through.

While chicken is cooking, warm honey in the microwave so it’s not so thick. Add the vinegar and combine well. Reserve 2 tablespoons honey glaze for later. Take the rest and brush on chicken (both sides) in the final moments of grilling.

Drizzle chicken with reserved glaze before serving.


Notes

If you don’t have a barbecue grill, try it on an indoor grill pan or use your broiler.

 

 

157 comments

  1. Angie- no grill or broiler, you poor thing! lol, jk. Ya know, I've never made it this way, but a friend of mine always makes it on the stove top. Just follow the same directions but saute the chicken in a skillet. Throw the glaze on in the last few minutes of cooking and it should still taste really yummy. I'm usually a stickler about using thighs for this recipe, but if you're doing it on the stove top, boneless/skinless breasts might work better for ya. Let us know how it goes!

  2. No broiler or grill (wish I did). So, how would you make this on the stove or in the oven? I noticed someone above said they made it on the stove.

  3. I made this the other night and my husband loved it! My neighbor was outside doing yardwork while it was grilling and he said, “seriously, that smells delicious I need that recipe!” I made extra and we had the salad the next day for lunch- yummy! Thanks, love your site!

  4. I made this tonight and we LOVED it! It was our first try at chicken thighs and they turned out fantastic. Thanks for another great recipe!

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