Make these Savory Grilled Chicken Quarters with Apricot Barbecue Sauce for your next cookout! Juicy chicken with a savory dry rub and a sticky sweet homemade BBQ sauce.

Chicken leg quarters are usually the most affordable cut at the grocery store! I love to smoke chicken quarters, but when there’s warmer weather, I’ll usually throw chicken quarters on the grill instead!

a photo of a grilled chicken quarter

This grilled chicken leg quarters recipe calls for a simple homemade spice rub packed with brown sugar, paprika, garlic powder and onion powder. I also include a simple homemade barbecue sauce recipe, but you can of course use your favorite BBQ sauce instead!

I love serving this grilled chicken with a wholesome side dish like this Bacon Ranch Pasta Salad or Italian Potato Salad!

Grilled Chicken Quarters with Apricot Barbecue Sauce

I used a charcoal grill, but you can also use a gas grill. Either way, you’ll need to prepare the grill temperature to medium-high heat (350 to 400 degrees Fahrenheit), with at least one zone prepared for indirect grilling.

I use my Apricot Barbecue Sauce to baste the chicken in the last 5 minutes of grilling. This homemade sauce is super easy to make. It uses apricot jam as a starter ingredient!

Adding the sauce while the chicken is still on the grill will get you some nice caramelization on the chicken skin and make it nice and sticky.

You can use your favorite barbecue sauce instead of the homemade sauce included in the recipe. It promise it will be great!

Grilled Chicken Quarters with Apricot Barbecue Sauce

What is a chicken quarter?

Chicken quarters consist of two parts: chicken drumsticks and chicken thighs, and they’re still connected at the leg joints.

If you love juicy dark meat chicken, chicken quarters will absolutely give you the most bang for your buck! I’ve been able to find them for under $1 a pound recently, as low as 60 cents per pound!

In this economy, that’s a steal!

Grilled Chicken Quarters with Apricot Barbecue Sauce

FAQ: Can I use other chicken cuts?

You can absolutely use other cuts of chicken for this recipe, but you will have to adjust your grilling time. Here’s a few suggestions below:

  • Chicken Leg Recipe: Use chicken legs and adjust grill time down to 15-20 minutes.
  • Chicken Breast Recipe: Use bone-in skin-on chicken breasts and plan for roughly the same amount of grilling time, 45 minutes.
  • Chicken Wings: Use chicken wings and adjust grill time to 12-15 minutes.
  • Chicken Thighs: Use bone-in skin-on chicken thighs and adjust grill time to 15-20 minutes.

Recommended Side Dishes for Grilled Chicken Quarters

There’s nothing better than grilled chicken with a few fresh side dishes! The following recipes pair perfectly with this recipe:

Or check out this list of The 25 Best Fresh Side Dishes for Grilled Chicken!

For dessert, consider something sweet and fresh for summer like this Crustless Rhubarb Pie or Deep Dish Strawberry Pie!

Grilling Chicken Over Indirect Heat

Chicken quarters are a large cut, and they do need to be grilled over indirect heat, ideally in the 325–350-degree Fahrenheit range.

Grilling over direct heat will often be too intense and leave you with torn, burnt chicken skin. No good!

If you have a gas grill, this grilling over indirect heat is easy to achieve. But if you’re grilling with charcoal, you’ll need to do one of the following things:

  • Pile all of the charcoal on one half of the grill and cook the chicken on the other side, opposite from the hotter side of the grill.
  • Use a stainless-steel insert like this one to corral all of the charcoal, then place the chicken on the outside rim. This is what I use: Charcoal Whirlpool available on Amazon.
Grilled Chicken Quarters with Apricot Barbecue Sauce

Cooking at a lower temperature requires that you really monitor and pay attention to your vents. I usually start with an partially open bottom vent and open lid vent, and then adjust as needed throughout cook time to maintain temperature.

a photo of chicken quarters on the grill grates

Grilled Chicken Quarters with Apricot BBQ Sauce

Yield: Serves 5
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Additional Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes

Make these savory Grilled Chicken Quarters with Apricot Barbecue Sauce for your next cookout! Juicy chicken with a savory dry rub and a sticky sweet sauce.


  • 3 teaspoons olive oil
  • 5 pounds chicken quarters

For the chicken rub:

  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 1.5 tablespoons smoked paprika
  • 1.5 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)

For the homemade BBQ Sauce


  1. Remove chicken from refrigerator and allow to rest on counter for 20-30 minutes to remove the chill.
  2. Prepare grill to medium-high heat with both indirect and direct cooking zones. Clean and oil the cooking grate.
  3. In a small bowl, combine ingredients for the spice rub.
  4. Pat chicken dry with paper towels to remove excess moisture from the skin.
  5. Brush olive oil on to the chicken skin, then sprinkle chicken with spice rub. Rub spices onto chicken, making sure it's completely covered on all sides.
  6. Position chicken skin side down on grill grates over indirect heat.
  7. Grill chicken over indirect heat for 20-25 minutes, then flip and grill the other side for an additional 20-25 minutes over indirect heat.
  8. Finish the chicken by grilling it for 2-3 minutes per side on the hotter side of the grill over direct heat. generously basting with the barbecue sauce. If you notice the skin beginning to burn, pull the chicken towards the cooler side of the grill.
  9. Using an instant read meat thermometer, probe the chicken in the thickest part of the meat. Pull from the grill when the internal temperature of the chicken registers 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
  10. Allow to rest for about 5 minutes before serving to allow the juices to redistribute. Serve warm with any leftover barbecue sauce.
Nutrition Information
Yield 5 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 1152Total Fat 65gSaturated Fat 18gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 40gCholesterol 444mgSodium 3196mgCarbohydrates 20gFiber 3gSugar 14gProtein 117g

The nutrition for this recipe is calculated by an app, and may be incorrect.

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