Crispy Grilled Chicken Thighs

Total Time:
1 hr 5 min
35 min
30 min

4 servings

  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • Kosher salt
  • 8 skin-on, bone-in chicken thighs (about 2 1/4 pounds)
  • Vegetable oil, for brushing
  • 1 1/2 cups breadcrumbs
  • 3 large tomatoes, halved crosswise
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Combine the mayonnaise, chili powder, cayenne and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a large bowl. Add the chicken and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours or overnight.

Preheat a grill to medium low. Brush the grill grates with vegetable oil. Place the breadcrumbs in a shallow dish, then add the chicken, turning to thoroughly coat. Grill the chicken, turning once, until golden brown and cooked through, 20 to 25 minutes per side.

Meanwhile, brush the tomatoes with vegetable oil and season with salt and black pepper. Place cut-side down on the grill and cook until marked, about 4 minutes per side. Serve with the chicken.

Per serving: Calories 570; Fat 35 g (Saturated 7 g); Cholesterol 122 mg; Sodium 535 mg; Carbohydrate 25 g; Fiber 2 g; Protein 35 g

Photograph by Yunhee Kim

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    I absolutely LOVED this recipe. I was in need of an easy dinner and found that I had everything on hand for it, so I figured I'd try. I've been frying chicken for years, so I was surprised to find that the breading stuck wonderfully despite being grilled. The meat was tender and there was just enough spice to add a lovely flavor. While it took a good forty-fifty minutes to cook over indirect heat, I think it was worth it. 
    The only deviations I took from the recipe were to use 2/3 cup of mayo instead of one, I added lemon juice, and I mixed panko with Italian bread crumbs. It was delicious and I wished there was more. Making this again later this week. 
    If the grill is too hot or the chicken is too close to direct heat, it will blacken the coating, so just a warning if you have some of the skin hanging down a bit over the grill. But it wasn't a big deal with my chicken. The flavor was still great and my parents loved it.
    I love this recipe! So flavorful. I use Duke's mayo, Panko bread crumbs and chipotle flavored cayenne pepper.
    I love this recipe. Have made it grilled and in the oven. Has been perfect every time. On the grill cook it low and slow. Time may vary due to grill temp. Have used thighs and drumsticks. I always brush the grill with a little oil to keep it from sticking. Wouldn't change a thing except not using tomatoes on them!
    The chicken is awesome! I actually marinated boneless chicken breast for a couple hours. I then lined a cookie sheet with parchment paper. I dip the marinated chicken pieces in the panko bread crumbs and then put the tray in the fridge for a couple hours. I made sure my grill was set at medium and did not mess with turning it until it had cooked for a while on the first side. It did start to get too brown so I just turned it down. I plan on using yogurt instead of mayo to save some calories. If you like this chicken you have got to try it on the grill!
    My 8 chicken thighs weighed 3.5 pounds, so I doubled the mayonnaise mixture and marinated in a Zip-lock bag overnight. 
    At cook time, it was raining, so I skipped the breading and grilling, and baked the chicken on a rack in a 350-degree oven, 33 minutes per side. 
    It was delicious, juicy and tender. A slight dab of heat from the seasonings really notched it up!!
    Really good! Baked it on the oven at 350 for 20 mins each side. Have made it 3 times now!
    Great recipe for THE OVEN, but as far as the outdoor grill???? No way this was going to cook through and come out like the photo from the chicken skin dripping into the flame. 
    This was a no-brainer from the get-go....over fried is the way to go with this one. I also prefer panko or cornmeal for that serious crunch we all go for.
    This recipe doesn't work. First, the recipe calls for a cook time of 30 minutes, but upon reading the recipe, it says cook for 20-25 minutes per side. Where does that math come from. Also, everyone liking the recipe bakes in a 350 or 400 degree oven. Try it on the grill as written for a fr***ing undercooked gooey mess. Enjoy! Whatever happened to cooks who understand how the chemistry of the kitchen works?
    Huh, weird because I grilled it and it turned out fine. Making it again, too, because it was so good.
    This was delicious! I took the skin off the chicken, and baked it in the oven at 400.
    Very easy, we did end up baking ours in the oven at 350 for 20m each side due to the fact that it is winter and our grill couldn't maintain a temp. Did not think the spice was too much, tomatoes were EXCELLENT, can't wait to try them like this when they are in season!!
    EPIC 4-Alarm Failure. I followed this recipe to the letter and came out to my grill to find fully engulfed chicken. I have no idea where I went wrong. Beyond dissapointed with this recipe.
    Try indirect heat on the grill.
    Very easy, but even at that, not worth the effort. The taste of chili is too over powering and the heat was too much for my liking. IF you want chili and heat, stick with a pot of chili, and save the chicken for another recipe.
    Made this first time last night. It was a family pleaser! I will be making this again!! Very tasty. the mayo and chili powder is key. Kids loved it!! I baked it at 350 degrees for 25 min each side. Moist and delicious!!! This will be a staple recipe in my house.
    OK....I am REALLY confused!!!! I followed the recipe to a T....had the grill on LOW and within 15 minutes the thighs were BLACK!!!!! VERY well done inside as well. It seems as if every recipe from Food Network is not very good.....I am considered a very good cook and baker.......I know I must have done something wrong here, but how could these be that far off????
    I can't believe this recipe actually worked, but indeed, it did! I didn't even marinate the chicken for long... I looked this recipe up at the last minute because I was bored with all of my other chicken thigh recipes. Regardless, the chicken turned out beautiful: crispy skin on the outside, tender and juicy on the inside. In short, it was just like fried chicken. My husband and two pre-schoolers were equally impressed and gobbled it up. I was shocked at how easy it was. Definitely keep an eye on the grill temperature-- I kept mine between 325 and 350 degrees. 20 minutes per side turned out to be just right.  
    I will absolutely use this recipe again.
    I only used 3 huge thighs because it's just me and the hubby. Marinated the chicken all day yesturday,I didn't have any breadcrumbs,so I crushed some jalapeno lime tortilla chips. They were awsome. Since they were so big it did take about 50 mins but, so worth the wait. They were so moist and flavorful served with Paulas creamest mac & cheese and the Neeley's sweet & spicy cole slaw, the perfect Saturday meal. I want to try this method with pork chops this week. Thanks foodnetwork!
    Didn't think it would work but had to try it and sooooo very glad I did! DELICIOUS juicy chicken with crispy coating and a mild taste of heat from the cayenne. Will definitely make again! We cooked on the grill over indirect heat 20 minutes each side and then put over direct low heat for 3-5 minutes each side at end to get a nice crunch and it came out perfectly !!
    Love these. Making them again tonight. Yum. Using cajon seasoning this time.
    I'd never heard of breaded grilled chicken thighs but this worked! The mayonnaise mixture made it moist and flavorful. 20 minutes on each side was perfect. I agree with another reviewer - keep the temp low enough or they get a little too crispy. My family loved them.
    Fabulous!...cooked it on the green egg at 300 for 25-30 per side...let it sit in oven(off for 10 minutes....moist and delicious ! Also used panko.
    Very good and certainly different - who would have thought that grilled breaded chicken could work! I took another reviewers suggestion and made "chicken fingers" and also used panko bread crumbs --- the chicken was very crunchy and moist. The only thing was that it did not get golden brown. I added a little oil to help it brown and it worked to a point. I served the chicken on top of a salad and it worked well. I can see how the leftover chicken can be used in a variety of ways and a good "dipping" sauce would be great with this. I would recommend giving this recipe a try, especially if you are looking for a change to traditional grilled chicken.
    I am so sorry I have to give credit where credit is due. The Food Network Magazine was responsible for this delicious recipe and I thanked alton. So thank you Food Network Magazine for the terrific job you all do bring us new and exciting recipes.
    I was hesitant because I hate mayo. But I tried it anyway and I have to say 
    it was great. Very moist and crispy. I used the boneless chicken thighs and it 
    was really good. Did not take long to cook at all. I followed the recipe to the T. 
    Very good I will make this again. I did marinade over night. Thanks for a Good Recipe!! 
    I made this the other day and it was great. I was surprised that it came out so crispy bt we all loved it. No more shake and bake at this house.
    My family loved this! It was different to have fried chicken on the grill. I used panko bread crumbs and for the most part they stayed on the chicken. I marinated the chicken while I was at work and rolled them in the breadcrumbs when I got home and them put them on the grill on indirect heat. I then went off to water the garden and was able to cook the chicken while I was doing something else!
    Like several other reviewers, I was skeptical about grilling breaded chicken. We had chicken breast on hand so I sliced it into "finger-sized" pieces before marinating and grilling. Even on low heat, the pieces cooked in under 20 minutes. And they were delicious! I cut out a bit of the spice because I'm a wimp, but I'll probably add it back for the next time I make it. The chicken was crispy like it was fried, but really tender, and felt healthier than pan-fried chicken. This seems like an excellent recipe to play around with!
    Make sure you put the chicken INDIRECTLY on the grill. The mayonnaise could potentially catch fire.
    Absolutely fantastic! I had never cooked with chicken thighs and I wanted to try them out, so this recipe sounded intriguing, although I had my doubts. Nothing but "Mmmmm's" from my family! A real keeper and company worthy. Indirect heat is crucial-I think you really neeed to know your grill's "hot spots." Great flavor-like smoky fried chicken.
    Even though it will take you a lot of time to make this recipe, it's worth the wait. The taste is perfectly delicious. And I want to add something, if want blogging and learn more about chicken and its uses you can see it at WIKICHICKEN
    Amazing! Never would have thought to do breaded chicken on the grill and we really didn't think it would work. We made with boneless chicken breasts (had it thawed already and it was fantastic! The breading didn't fall off, burn or stick to the grill. Will absolutely be making this all summer. Thanks!!
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