Matt’s Springfield Chicken 2009

This recipe took 8th Place in the Springfield Days BBQ Comp

Meat Ingredients

  • 1 Family Pack of Chicken Thighs (Hy-Vee)

Basic Directions

  • Marinade thighs
  • Heat Smoker using favorite rig and fuel source
  • Season Chicken, recipe follows
  • Pan Chicken, recipe follows
  • Season Chicken again, recipe follows
  • Sauce Chicken, recipe follows

Smoke @ 300 degrees F on Weber Kettle grill

Place the thighs in an extra-large re-sealable plastic bag (or divide between two smaller bags) and pour the dressing over the top. Squeeze out any excess air from the bag, and roll to coat all of the meat. Refrigerate for 3 hours

Combine the seasoning blend ingredients and grind together in a coffee or other small grinder that is dedicated to spices. Depending on the size of the grinder, it may need to be done in batches.? In two disposable aluminum pans, preferably 13 1/2 x 9 5/8 x 2 3/4-inch lasagna pans that will hold the thighs in a single layer, spread the butter (2 tablespoons in each) in the bottom. Divide the water, salt, and Accent, if using, between the pans.

Remove the chicken from the dressing, letting any excess remain in the bag, and lightly pat dry with paper towels.? Place the chicken, skin side down, in the pans, keeping in a single layer.? Using about 1 teaspoon of the seasoning blend on each thigh, sprinkle over the top flesh side with the blend. Cover each pan with heavy-duty aluminum foil, and crimp the edges to seal.

Place the thighs in the cooker, stacking the pans on top of each other, if needed, to fit in the cooker, and rotate them from top to bottom halfway through the cooking. Cook for 45 minutes.

Remove the thighs from the cooker and let rest in the pans, covered for 15 minutes.

Transfer the thighs to a work surface and lightly pat them dry with paper towels. Season all sides with the seasoning blend; there will be some unused blend.? Place back in the cooker, skin side up, and cook for an additional 45 minutes.

Remove the thighs from the cooker and carefully dip each one in the sauce, dredging to coat on all sides and making sure that the skin side, especially, is evenly coated.? Be sure to tuck the skin taut, place the thighs back in the cooker, skin side up, for 30 minutes.

Transfer to a plate, cut as desired and serve.

What to drink: Lots of Beer

Seasoning Blend:

  • 3/4 cup mild chile powder
  • 3/4 cup sweet paprika
  • 1/2 cup raw sugar, or other turbinado sugar
  • 2 tablespoons garlic salt
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano, preferably Mexican
  • 2 teaspoons Old Bay Seasoning

Combine all ingredients in a bowl, reserve, refrigerated, for later use.

Pan Ingredients:

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons Accent

Spread half the butter in each pan, pour half the water in each pan and sprinkle half the accent and salt in each pan

Barbecue Sauce:

  • 2 1/4 cups APL BBQ Sauce (recipe follows), or your favorite BBQ sauce
  • 3 tablespoons apricot preserves
  • 3 tablespoons pineapple preserves
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Accent

Combine all ingredients in a bowl, reserve, refrigerated, for later use.


– makes about 7 cups –
Adapted from Serious Barbecue by Adam Perry Lang.


1/2 cup canola or vegetable oil
5 garlic cloves, peeled and coarsely chopped
1 medium sweet white onion, coarsely chopped
1 green bell pepper, coarsely chopped
2 teaspoons kosher salt, plus additional if needed
1/4 cup bourbon
3 tablespoons chili powder
1 tablespoon coarsely ground fresh black pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice, plus additional for seasoning
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves, plus additional for seasoning
1 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
2 cups water
2 cups ketchup
1/2 cup unsulfured blackstrap molasses
1/2 cup prepared yellow mustard
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar, plus additional as needed
2 teaspoons hot sauce
1/2 cup apricot preserves
1 jalapeno chile, grated on a Microplane grater, stopping before the seeds
1/2 Granny Smith apple, grated on a Microplane grater.


1. Pour the oil in a large saucepan and place over medium heat until it starts to simmer. Stir in the garlic, onion, bell pepper and salt. Cook, stirring occasionally until the vegetables have softened, about 10 minutes.

2. Pour in the bourbon and cook until the alcohol has cooked off, about 5 minutes. There will no longer be the strong smell of alcohol.

3. Combine the chili powder, black pepper, allspice and cloves and add to the pan. Cook, stirring continuously, until fragrant, about 3 minutes.

4. Stir in the water, brown sugar, ketchup, molasses, mustard, vinegar, hot sauce and preserves. Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring occasionally to be sure that nothing sticks to the bottom and burns. Continue to simmer, stirring often, about 45 minutes.

5. Add the jalapeno and apple. At this point the sauce can be left chunky or blended in a blender (blend in small batches since it will still be hot), or in a bowl using an immersion/stick blender until smooth.

6. Season to taste with additional allspice, cloves, salt, and vinegar to taste

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