School is out and summer is right around the corner! Now who doesn’t love a good summer barbecue? These are my favorite social events of the summer. Barbecues bring friends and family together to listen to good music and eat amazing food. Unfortunately, the weather does not always cooperate with your party plans, especially living in the Midwest. Just the other day it was a steamy 80 degrees out, and in a matter of minutes, the sky was hailing! So if the weather decides to “rain on your parade”, then you can make this simple barbecue chicken in your kitchen, no problem!
I am excited to say that this was my first, successful chicken dish! I always thought that raw chicken seemed a little gross and intimidating. So I did a little research on how to cook the perfect chicken, and I found this awesome webpage: How to Cook Moist & Tender Chicken Breasts Every Time. I’m telling you, this is fool proof!
However, since I was going to cook the chicken in the oven to get the barbecue sauce nice and caramelized, I tweaked the steps a little bit.
First, season the chicken to your liking. I just salt and pepper each side to keep things simple for my first experiment. Next, I browned the chicken breasts in a skillet for about 30 seconds-1 minute on each side. Remove the chicken from the pan. I decided to chop up about half a white onion and sauté it with olive oil in the skillet to give the chicken a little more flavor. Once the onions are close to caramelization, return the chicken to the skillet. Add water to the skillet, put the lid on, and steam the breasts for 10 minutes.
Transfer the chicken breasts to a sheet pan covered with foil. It is best to use a pan with sides incase the sauce decides to run off the foil.
For the barbecue sauce I mixed my favorite Jack Daniel’s Barbecue Sauce, Hickory Brown Sugar, with a little honey. I used about a cup of sauce for 4 strips of chicken. You kind of have to eye ball it and make a little extra incase. Then, use a grilling brush to baste one side of each strip with your sauce. Bake at 350 degrees for about 20-25 minutes. Continue turning each breast every 5-10 minutes or so and continue basting with the sauce. I broiled the chicken breasts for the last 5 minutes to get a crispier skin.
The hardest part about this recipe is not drying out the chicken! So watch it carefully and enjoy your barbecued meal!