Big Jim's BBQ Chicken 4.000
Jun 14, 2006

From a very early age, Walter Scheib's younger son Jim has enjoyed a little bit of fire in his food. Hot wings, spicy barbecue and a variety of pepper sauces have always been are among his favorites. "He never really took to the sweet tastes of many commercial sauces, so my wife and I developed this rub and sauce to fit his taste," Scheib says. "It is a little hot with enough sweetness to keep its balance." Scheib says it's important to cook the chicken slowly over medium heat so it is completely cooked but not charred on the outside, which would make it taste bitter.

The barbecue sauce can be made up to 1 week ahead.

Servings: 4
  • For the spice rub
  • 1 tablespoon ground allspice
  • 2 tablespoons chopped garlic
  • 1/2 jalapeño chile pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • For the chicken
  • 4 each bone-in, skin-on chicken breast halves, legs and thighs
  • For the barbecue sauce
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup diced onion
  • 2 tablespoons chopped garlic
  • 1/2 jalapeño chile pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 2 tablespoons spice rub
  • 1/2 cup mango nectar
  • 3/4 cup ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons molasses
  • 2 teaspoons cider vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons Creole mustard
  • 1 tablespoon hot pepper sauce, such as Tabasco, or to taste


For the spice rub: In a small, resealable plastic food container, combine all ingredients and mix well. Refrigerate if not using immediately.

For the chicken: Pat the chicken pieces dry with paper towels and place in a large baking dish. Set aside 2 tablespoons of the spice rub for the barbecue sauce and spread the remaining rub over the chicken pieces. Let stand at room temperature for 2 to 3 hours, or cover and refrigerate overnight.

For the barbecue sauce: In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, heat the oil. Add the onion, garlic and jalapeno chili pepper and cook until softened, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons spice rub and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. Add the remaining sauce ingredients, reduce the heat to medium and cook, with bubbles just breaking the surface, for 15 minutes. If not using right away, let cool, cover and refrigerate.

When ready to cook, prepare the grill. If using a gas grill, preheat the grill to medium. If using a charcoal grill, start the charcoal or wood briquettes. When the briquettes are ready, distribute them evenly under the cooking area for direct heat. Lightly oil the grate.

Place the chicken pieces on the grill with the bone side down. Cook for 20 to 25 minutes, turning frequently, until the chicken is cooked through (the breast meat will cook faster than the dark meat). Baste the chicken with some of the barbecue sauce and cook 5 more minutes, turning each piece after basting. Serve hot or warm, with additional sauce at the table.

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Recipe Source

Adapted from former White House chef Walter Scheib.

Tested by Michael Taylor.

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