How Long To Cook Boneless Chicken Breast On Charcoal Grill?

Place the chicken breasts on the hot side of the grate, directly above the coals. Sear the breasts for about three to four minutes per side, turning only once, until golden brown. If the grill flares up, temporarily move the chicken away from the coals.

I believe a charcoal grill is the best way to grill chicken when it comes to flavor, whether you’re on the team of propane or charcoal. The chicken is given a smoky flavor by the charcoal that propane simply cannot match.

Nevertheless, grilling chicken to perfection over charcoal can be challenging. You run the risk of having undercooked or overcooked chicken if you don’t know how long to cook chicken on a charcoal grill. Your chicken will be dry and tough if you overcook it. The grill’s temperature is another issue to consider. Too hot and you’ll get burnt chicken. Too low and your chicken will take forever to cook.

Here, I’ll share some of my best advice for grilling chicken on a charcoal grill with you, including how long to cook chicken thighs and breasts as well as some recipes to try.

You must be familiar with grill setup if you plan to use charcoal. This entails lighting and bringing the coals to the proper temperature.

How Long to Cook Chicken on Charcoal Grill?

The answer largely depends on the thickness, cut, and temperature of the chicken as well as the grill.

Whether you are using a charcoal grill or a gas grill, the cooking times are the same.

For the best results, each component of the chicken cooks using a slightly different time and technique. Dark meat generally requires more time to cook through than white meat. Additionally, bone-in takes longer to cook than a boneless piece.

Reduce the cooking time specified for a thick chicken breast by up to 50% if you use a meat mallet to pound your boneless chicken breasts to 12-inch thickness before grilling. The thinner piece of chicken will cook much faster.

The rich, smoky flavor that grills produce improved the taste of the chicken. To assist you in grilling the ideal chicken each and every time, we have created a chicken grilling chart.

How Long To Cook Boneless Chicken Breast On Charcoal Grill?

chicken grilling chart

Cut of Chicken Cooking Time Temperature Type of Heat Cooking Technique
Boneless Chicken Breast 8-12 Minutes Medium-High (400° F) Direct Heat 5-6 Minutes per Side Turning every 3 minutes
Chicken Tenderloin 4-6 Minutes Medium-High (375° F) Direct Heat 2-3 Minutes per Side
Chicken Thighs Skin on (Bone-In) 30-40 Minutes Medium-High (400° F) Direct Heat then Indirect Heat Sear chicken skin side until golden brown, about 3 minutes. Flip and grill 3 more minutes. After searing move to indirect heat. Medium-Low (300˚F) Continue grilling 25-30 minutes
Boneless Skinless Thighs 14-16 Minutes Medium-High (375° F) Direct Heat Flip every 3 minutes
Drumsticks 30 Minutes Medium-High (400° F) Direct Heat Flip every 3 minutes
Chicken Wings 15 – 20 Minutes Medium (350˚F) Direct Heat Flip every 3 minutes
Whole Chicken 50 Minutes Medium-High (375° F) Indirect Heat Butterfly Chicken. Place skin side up over indirect heat and turn once during cooking

What’s the Best Temperature to Grill Chicken At?

You’ll want to aim for a temperature of 350-375˚ Fahrenheit. This will be the temperature directly above where you will be grilling, not necessarily over the coals. Use an infrared grill thermometer to check the temperature of your grill before adding the chicken.

This hand temperature test can be used to determine the heat if you don’t have a grill temperature.

How Long To Cook Boneless Chicken Breast On Charcoal Grill?

How Long To Cook Boneless Chicken Breast On Charcoal Grill?

The chicken thighs and skinless chicken breasts that I grill or barbecue the most are the two types of chicken that you should cook once your grill is set up. White meat from the breasts is leaner, but I prefer the flavor of the thighs’ dark meat. That’s just my opinion though. The tips below work for either one.

Note: If you want great tasty free-range chicken, give Butcher Box a try. I’ve been a happy customer for years!

Here are some of my recommendations for cooking chicken on a grill and for how long. when using charcoal briquettes or using a gas grill:

  • Once your coals are ready, it’s time to add the chicken. Instead of applying olive oil directly to the grill, I like to add a little oil directly to the chicken. This will help to prevent sticking and help prevent flare-ups.
  • Over indirect heat on the grill, place the chicken skin-side down.
  • As you add the chicken to the grill, make sure that you don’t overcrowd it. This will make it harder to get evenly cooked chicken.
  • Flip the chicken over and continue grilling until the chicken is cooked through (internal temperature of 165˚F.)
  • The best way to tell if your chicken is done is to use a meat thermometer. I like this digital one because it’s quick and easy to use.
  • Once the chicken is cooked through, remove it from the grill and let the chicken rest for 3-5 minutes before cutting into it. This resting time is important as it allows the juices to redistribute throughout the meat, making for juicier chicken.
  • The best way to grill brats, with choices for side dishes and toppings

    Pro Tips on How to Cook Chicken on a Charcoal Grill

    Here are my suggestions for grilling chicken successfully.

    Don’t overcrowd the grill. When there is space for the heat to circulate around the meat, the chicken will cook evenly.

    Start on direct heat and move to indirect heat. The meat will get those lovely grill grate marks from the direct heat that will help seal in the juices. By switching to indirect heat, the meat can be cooked at a slightly lower temperature without experiencing a change in flare-ups. This will help keep the juices in too.

    Heat to the correct temperature. To ensure that the chicken is cooked through to an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit, use a digital meat thermometer.

    Let the chicken rest. Remove the cooked chicken from the grill and allow it to rest for three to five minutes before slicing it. This resting time is important. Juicier chicken results as a result of the juices being redistributed throughout the meat.


    How long do you grill boneless chicken breast on the grill?

    Cooking time for boneless, skinless breasts should be 10 to 12 minutes on high heat. In order to toss the salad or grab a platter before flipping the food over to cook the other side, you have no more than five minutes.

    How long should you cook chicken on a charcoal grill?

    It’s a good idea to cook chicken quarters for a total of 30 minutes at 350 degrees, about 15 minutes on each side. We begin by cooking the meat for 10 minutes on each side, and then continue cooking it over indirect heat until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees.

    How long do you cook chicken breast on a Weber charcoal grill?

    Brush the cooking grates clean. Grill the chicken breasts over direct medium heat, with the lid closed, for 8 to 12 minutes, turning the meat once or twice, or until it is firm to the touch and no longer pink in the center. After taking the food off the grill, rest it for 3 to 5 minutes. Serve warm.

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