Healthy BBQ & Grilled Chicken Thigh Recipes

Find healthy, delicious BBQ and grilled chicken thigh recipes, from the food and nutrition experts at EatingWell.

Staff Picks

Chicken, Quinoa & Sweet Potato Casserole

Rating: 4.18 stars
10
This protein-loaded chicken and sweet potato casserole dish is made with multicolored quinoa, a blend of white, red and black varieties, but any color will work.

25-Minute Chicken & Veggie Enchiladas

Rating: 5 stars
2
These chicken enchiladas are great for using up any veggies you have lingering in your fridge. Our chicken enchilada recipe calls for zucchini, squash and onion, but you could easily swap in spinach, onions or potatoes.

Mediterranean Chicken Skillet

In this one-skillet Mediterranean chicken recipe, chicken thighs are infused with lemon, garlic and herbs and paired with orzo that's perfectly al dente. Charred tomatoes and onions add full flavor to complete this easy Mediterranean dinner.
By Liv Dansky

Southwestern Vegetable & Chicken Soup

Rating: 4.5 stars
12
Who wouldn't want to eat their vegetables when they're tucked into a fragrant broth with bits of tasty chicken and spiked with a shot of fresh lime and cilantro? This healthy chicken vegetable soup seems even richer with the smoky flavor from roasted poblano peppers and garlic. Serve this healthy chicken soup recipe with tortilla chips.

Chicken Hummus Bowls

Rating: 5 stars
1
The spiced chicken atop these bowls is ready fast with the help of the broiler. Serve with warm whole-wheat pita for scooping up extra hummus at the bottom of the bowl.

Herb-Grilled Chicken Frites

Rating: 4.5 stars
4
We combine fresh herbs, capers, lemon juice and olive oil along with the juices collected from the chicken as it rests to make a simple sauce that livens up this take on poulet frites, or chicken and fries.

Grilled Chicken Thighs with Summer Corn Salad

Chicken thighs are easy on the budget and great for grilling because they stay moist in the heat. Here, they are paired with a fresh corn and tomato salad for a simple summer dinner. When grilling skin-on chicken thighs, watch for flare-ups. Move the chicken away from the flames and reduce heat, if necessary, to keep it from charring.

Broiled Ginger-Lime Chicken

Rating: 4.25 stars
7
Flavored with cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and lime, this marinated chicken recipe is a favorite in the EatingWell Test Kitchen. Serve with rice or couscous and black beans.

Turkish Chicken Thighs

Rating: 4.13 stars
8
The acidity of the yogurt helps tenderize the chicken and keep it moist. If you can't find hot paprika, substitute 2 teaspoons sweet paprika and 1/4 teaspoon cayenne.

Jerk Chicken with Coconut Rice & Peas

Rating: 4.67 stars
6
Add some flavor of the Caribbean to your weeknight dinners with this healthy and easy jerk chicken recipe. The chicken is cooked on a grill pan rather than an outdoor grill--make sure the pan is well-heated before adding the chicken to achieve the crisp char you would get from an outdoor grill. A simple side of coconut rice and peas completes this satisfying and nutritious meal.

Chicken Yakitori with Broccoli

Rating: 5 stars
1
Yakitori--chicken skewers common in Japan--get a thick soy glaze before and after grilling for maximum flavor in this healthy dinner recipe. Double or triple the recipe for a fun party appetizer. Serve with steamed short-grain brown rice or over rice noodles drizzled with the extra sauce.

Spicy Tamarind Chicken

This marinade is best on quick-cooking cuts of meat like this spicy grilled chicken, as the sugars in it can burn if on the grill for too long. Use the grill to cook the rest of your meal, too--Japanese eggplant and shishito peppers would be nice.
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Inspiration and Ideas

All-American BBQ Chicken Thighs

In this healthy chicken thigh recipe, bottled barbecue sauce--often loaded with sodium and high-fructose corn syrup--is replaced with a homemade barbecue sauce recipe. Use the barbecue sauce to baste the chicken thighs while cooking--but if you want to also serve the barbecue sauce at the table, separate some before grilling to avoid cross-contamination.

Caribbean Chicken & Pineapple Kebabs with Banana Salad

Rating: Unrated
4
A Caribbean-inspired marinade for these chicken-and-pineapple kebabs is flavored with pineapple juice, soy sauce, plenty of spices and spiked with rum. It's moderately spicy from the use of jalapeño, but not nearly as spicy as the well-known jerk marinade, which uses the extremely hot Scotch bonnet chile. If spicy-hot is not your thing, leave the jalapeño out or use half. The creamy banana salad is a soothing counterpoint, but skip it if you like.

Grilled Chicken Thighs with Jerk Sauce

Jamaican jerk sauce traditionally uses Scotch bonnet peppers; here, we substitute jalapeños for a milder flavor. The jerk sauce serves as both a marinade and a sauce for meaty grilled chicken thighs. This healthy grill recipe takes just 30 minutes of active time, so as long as you plan ahead and factor in the marinating time it's perfect for a quick weeknight dinner or easy weekend BBQ.