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Kansas City Barbecue Chicken Thighs
and coleslaw / cheesy corn / watermelon

Active: 50 Total: 50

Our take on Kansas City barbecue is perfect for a summer evening. Thanks to some quick side dishes, this meal fits right in on a weeknight or a weekend celebration. 
Smarts: Cheesy baked corn is a Kansas City specialty. It's quite rich, so we've kept the portions small. We prefer the flavor and texture of canned corn here, but feel free to use fresh or frozen corn if you prefer.
Cooking methods: This recipe includes instructions for using the grill or stovetop. Select your preferred method.

Tags
Proteins
Cuisines

Ingredients

Metric
Servings:
4
Watermelon:
  • Watermelon - 1 lb , cubes or wedges
Kansas City Barbecue Chicken Thighs:
  • Brown sugar - 1 Tbsp
  • Paprika, smoked - 1 tsp
  • Chili powder - 1 tsp
  • Garlic powder - 1 tsp
  • Salt - 1 tsp
  • Onion powder - 1/2 tsp
  • Black pepper - 1/2 tsp
  • Chicken thighs, boneless and skinless - 1 1/2 lbs
  • Oil, cooking - 1 Tbsp
  • Barbecue sauce, gluten-free - 1/2 cup , plus extra for serving
Coleslaw:
  • Mayonnaise - 1/4 cup
  • Yogurt, plain or Greek - 2 Tbsp
  • Vinegar, apple cider - 1 Tbsp
  • Honey - 1 tsp
  • Coleslaw mix - 12 oz
Cheesy Corn:
  • Garlic - 1 clove , chopped
  • Cheese, cheddar - 2 oz + 1 oz , shredded
  • Corn, canned (15 oz / 497 g) - 1 can , drained (sub ~2 cups fresh or frozen corn)
  • Butter - 1 Tbsp
  • Flour, gluten-free - 1 Tbsp
  • Paprika, smoked - 1/4 tsp
  • Black pepper - 1/4 tsp
  • Milk, any type - 3/4 cup
  • Sugar - 1/2 tsp
  • Mayonnaise - 1 Tbsp

Choose Cooking Method

Prep

  1. Make spice rub - (If prepping right before cooking, get grill / oven heating before continuing with prep.) Combine brown sugar, smoked paprika (portion for chicken), chili powder, garlic powder, salt, onion powder, and black pepper (portion for chicken). (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)

  2. Garlic / Cheese - Prep as directed. Store separately. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)

  3. Watermelon - Slice into wedges or cubes for serving. (Can be done up to 2 days ahead)

  4. Chicken - Tenderize chicken with a fork. Season on all sides with spice rub.

  5. Make coleslaw - Stir together mayonnaise (portion for coleslaw), yogurt, apple cider vinegar, and honey in a large mixing bowl. Season to taste with some salt and pepper. Add coleslaw mix and fold everything together until evenly combined. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

  6. Corn - Drain.

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Make

  1. Heat grill to 450F / 232C degrees. Clean grates and brush with cooking oil. While the grill is heating, preheat the oven’s broiler.

  2. Grill chicken, turning every few minutes until chicken reaches 165F / 74C degrees, 8 to 12 minutes. During the last few minutes of cooking, generously brush chicken on both sides with barbecue sauce, repeating several times.

  3. When chicken is finished cooking, transfer to a plate and cover with foil to keep warm.

  4. Place an 8” to 10” (20 cm to 25 cm) broiler-safe skillet over medium heat and add butter. When butter is melted, add garlic and saute until fragrant, about 1 minute.

  5. Add corn and continue to cook until corn is warmed through, about 1 to 2 minutes.

  6. Add flour, smoked paprika (portion for corn), and black pepper (portion for corn) and stir until no dry spots remain.

  7. Slowly pour in milk and stir until smooth. Continue to cook until thickened and bubby, 2-3 minutes more.

  8. Remove from heat (direct heat will turn the cheese grainy) and stir in sugar, mayonnaise (portion for corn), and first portion of cheese. Stir until cheese is melted. You can add another splash of milk here if the mixture seems too thick. Season to taste with some salt.

  9. Sprinkle second portion of cheese over top and place the pan under the broiler. Broil 4-5 minutes or until bubbly and beginning to brown in spots.

  10. Remove coleslaw from refrigerator and give it a stir.

  11. Serve chicken with some extra barbecue sauce. Enjoy with coleslaw, cheesy corn, and watermelon on the side.

Prep

  1. Make spice rub - Combine brown sugar, smoked paprika (portion for chicken), chili powder, garlic powder, salt, onion powder, and black pepper (portion for chicken). (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)

  2. Garlic / Cheese - Prep as directed. Store separately. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)

  3. Watermelon - Slice into wedges or cubes for serving. (Can be done up to 2 days ahead)

  4. Chicken - Tenderize chicken with a fork. Season on all sides with spice rub.

  5. Make coleslaw - Stir together mayonnaise (portion for coleslaw), yogurt, apple cider vinegar, and honey in a large mixing bowl. Season to taste with some salt and pepper. Add coleslaw mix and fold everything together until evenly combined. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

  6. Corn - Drain.

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Make

  1. Heat a skillet or grill pan with oil over medium heat. While the pan is heating, preheat the oven’s broiler.

  2. Sear chicken until golden brown on both sides. Continue to cook until chicken reaches 165F / 74C degrees, 8 to 12 minutes. During the last few minutes of cooking, generously brush chicken on both sides with barbecue sauce, repeating several times.

  3. When chicken is finished cooking, transfer to a plate and cover with foil to keep warm.

  4. Place an 8” to 10” (20 cm to 25 cm) broiler-safe skillet over medium heat and add butter. When butter is melted, add garlic and saute until fragrant, about 1 minute.

  5. Add corn and continue to cook until corn is warmed through, about 1 to 2 minutes.

  6. Add flour, smoked paprika (portion for corn), and black pepper (portion for corn) and stir until no dry spots remain.

  7. Slowly pour in milk and stir until smooth. Continue to cook until thickened and bubby, 2-3 minutes more.

  8. Remove from heat (direct heat will turn the cheese grainy) and stir in sugar, mayonnaise (portion for corn), and first portion of cheese. Stir until cheese is melted. You can add another splash of milk here if the mixture seems too thick. Season to taste with some salt.

  9. Sprinkle second portion of cheese over top and place the pan under the broiler. Broil 4-5 minutes or until bubbly and beginning to brown in spots.

  10. Remove coleslaw from refrigerator and give it a stir.

  11. Serve chicken with some extra barbecue sauce. Enjoy with coleslaw, cheesy corn, and watermelon on the side.


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