I think it is SAFE to say that grilling/smoking season is finally here. Yay! Today was a beautiful day outside.  I came home from work and fired up the smoker for these chicken thighs and asparagus. It has been so dry here lately, that I’ve been afraid to turn on the smoker or grill. There’s fire hazard warnings posted all over the state and they don’t want people starting fires. One did break out by the Canadian border the other day ago

smoked chicken thighs 002thumb

My favorite chips to smoke with are applewood. That might have something to do with applewood smoked bacon. I’ve tried other wood chips and applewood is always what I end up going back to. These chicken thighs smoke on a low heat from 200 to 25o degrees for 4 hours. They can probably go longer than that too. The longer something smokes, the better it gets and you know it’s really good when you can see the smoke line in the piece of meat. I did not use any barbeque for this because the chicken thighs were tasty by themselves. Next time, though…. use some barbeque sauce for dipping. If you’re going to smoke or grill chicken of any kind it needs SOME kind of rub on it.


  • 6 chicken thighs with the skin on
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon thyme
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons cayenne (see notes)
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 2 tablespoon black pepper


  1. Light your smoker and allow it to come up to a temperature of 200-220 degrees.
  2. Mix all dry rub seasoning ingredients thoroughly.
  3. Rub olive oil to fully coat the chicken thighs.
  4. Sprinkle the mixed seasonings all over the chicken thighs to ensure they are fully coated with rub.
  5. Lay your chicken thighs on the smoker rack and add smoker wood chips at the same time you add the meat. Apple, pecan, or cherry wood is ideal for this recipe.
  6. It is recommended to ensure there is enough wood every hour. Smoke your chicken thighs for 2 hours and rotate them to ensure they cook evenly.
  7. Total cooking time is 3 to 4 hours total depending on a variety of factors such as size of the thighs, temperature of the grill and outside, how windy it is, and how often you open the smoker lid which will let the heat out. Use an instant-read meat thermometer to check for an internal temperature of 165 degrees.


Recipe adapted from www.smokegrillbbq.com