BBQ Chicken Skewers are tender, juicy, and easy to throw together at the last minute. Create mouthwatering flavor with just a few ingredients!
BBQ Chicken Skewers
Chicken pieces are coated in a spicy bacon paste and brushed with a drunken barbecue sauce to create a flavor that is out of this world!
I know, I know – pureed bacon? Trust me, you’ll never want to make grilled chicken any other way after you try it.
The paste keeps the meat tender and moist, and you don’t have to worry about flare-ups from fat dripping off of strips.
In the mood for more skewers? Check out my Grilled Peach Basil Caprese Sausage Skewers!! They’re incredibly tasty and unique!
Love the bourbon BBQ sauce? Try my Jack Daniel’s Double Kick version next time. It’s got a sweet, smoky flavor with some extra heat from red chili peppers.
Ingredient Notes and Substitutions
- Chicken – Breast meat works best for skewers since it can be sliced into uniform pieces. This ensures that your BBQ chicken kabobs are evenly cooked.
- Barbecue sauce – I like to use my homemade version for bourbon BBQ chicken, but feel free to use your favorite!
- Bourbon – Maker’s Mark is my preferred brand.
- Spices – A combination of sweet and smoked paprika, plus salt and black pepper, are all you need to add to the sauce.
You can easily swap the smoked paprika for more of the sweet variety if you prefer less heat.
Cooking BBQ Chicken Kabobs Without A Grill
There’s nothing worse than heading outside to fire up the grill, only to see rain clouds rolling in! Or you may not own an outdoor grill to begin with!
Don’t worry, you can easily change course and still enjoy this grilled bourbon chicken for dinner.
- Use a grill pan
Either a stovetop or electric countertop grill will work!
Follow the recipe as directed, checking the internal temperature of the bourbon BBQ chicken to ensure it’s done.
Keep in mind that things can get a bit smoky with this method, so turn on your exhaust fan or crack a few windows!
- Use the broiler
Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil while you heat your broiler to High.
Place the BBQ chicken kabobs on the pan and broil for 10-15 minutes, turning every 5 minutes until cooked through.
Finally, brush extra sauce on both sides and broil for an additional 1-2 minutes, until caramelized.
Tips for Making Bourbon BBQ Chicken
- Get a bolder flavor. If you have time, coat the chicken with the bacon puree and let it marinate in the refrigerator overnight.
- Don’t use cold meat! Poultry fresh out of the fridge tends to dry out and cook unevenly.
Instead, let it warm on the counter for about 15 minutes before transferring your BBQ chicken skewers to the grill.
- Soak your skewers. These should sit in water for an hour or so to prevent them from catching fire over the flames.
- Check the temperature. Ensure your grilled bourbon chicken is done with a digital meat thermometer. Chicken is done when it reaches an internal temp of 165°F.
- Tip for alcohol-free alternative: Most of the alcohol will cook off between the grilling and boiling on the stove.
However, you can omit the bourbon and vinegar altogether and just use the barbecue sauce by itself.
Bourbon Grilled Chicken FAQ
Absolutely! In fact, I like to make a big batch of my homemade recipe on a regular basis so I always have some on hand.
Mix everything together at once, or keep the base in the refrigerator for up to a month and add the bourbon and vinegar when you start this recipe.
With love, from our simple kitchen to yours.
Other Grill Recipes
Bourbon BBQ Chicken Skewers
- 16 ounces barbecue sauce, I used my homemade sauce
- 1/4 cup bourbon whiskey, I prefer Maker’s Mark
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 5 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1”x1” pieces
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon fresh black pepper
- 1/4 cup sweet paprika
- 3 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
- 6 slices bacon, cut into small pieces (uncooked)
- 8 12 inch wooden skewers, soaked in water for an hour
- In a medium bowl combine barbecue sauce, vinegar and whiskey. Whisk to combine. Set aside and allow flavors to meld.
- Add bacon to the bowl of your food processor and blend until bacon becomes a paste. Add salt, pepper, paprikas, and sugar. Pulse until well combined.
- Pat chicken with a paper towel to dry. Add bacon paste mixture to chicken; mix with hands until chicken is completely coated. Place chicken on skewers.
- Place on preheated grill. Cook on each side for 2-3 minutes. Brush cooked surface with barbecue sauce and cook each side (coated in sauce) for 1 additional minute.
- Remove kebabs from grill. Pour remaining barbecue sauce into a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Pour into a serving container and serve barbecue sauce along side kebabs. Enjoy!
All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe’s nutritional value will vary depending on the ingredients used, measuring methods, and portion sizes.
Originally published June 2012, updated and republished April 2023
Disclosure: Posts may contain affiliate links. If you purchase a product through an affiliate link your price will remain the same and The Slow Roasted Italian will automatically receive a small commission. Thank you for supporting us, it helps us keep creating new recipes.