Summertime calls for these Smoked Chicken Legs! On the exterior, the chicken is covered with a homemade dry rub, then roasted in aromatic smoke until the interior is juicy and tender. Of course, everyone will want seconds of the smoky, crackly skin, which is loaded with excellent taste.
It’s summer, and you’ll need chicken legs for your lunch! To take these to the next level, cook them on the smoker. These wonderful Smoked Chicken Legs are really tasty and simple to prepare.
They’re smoked after being drizzled with olive oil and seasoned with a homemade BBQ seasoning. You could stop there and get incredible results. However, if you really want that thick sweet taste, smother them with BBQ Sauce, smoke them for another 10 minutes, and they’ll be finger-licking good. These are great for digging in and eating with your hands!
For a summer lunch, picnic, or party, make these quick Smoked Drumsticks!
How to Cook Chicken Legs in a Smoker
- Preheat Smoker — Set your smoker to 275 degrees Fahrenheit, as directed by the manufacturer.
- Prepare the chicken legs by drizzling them with olive oil and sprinkling them with BBQ Chicken Rub afterward. Make sure the chicken legs are well coated with the rub.
- Smoke – Set drumsticks on the prepared smoker, shut the lid, and smoke for 60 to 90 minutes, or until the core temperature of chicken legs reaches 175°F. This will vary greatly depending on the size of your drumstick and the amount of meat on it.
- Baste – Drizzle BBQ sauce over the chicken legs. Close the cover and smoke for another 10 minutes. If you don’t want to use the BBQ sauce, that’s OK. We want our chicken legs to be between 180 and 190 degrees Fahrenheit. This will prevent any bloody flesh from forming around the bone.
- Rest – Take the meat from the smoker, set it aside for 5-10 minutes, and then eat!
Smoked Chicken Legs FAQs
How long do chicken legs need to smoke?
This will change based on the size and thickness of the chicken leg. It will take between one and one and a half hours to one hour and thirty minutes.
What is the ideal internal temperature for a chicken thigh?
The thickest section of the drumstick should be cooked to 165 degrees F. To keep track of this, ensure you have a computerized meat thermometer or a probe with a built-in thermometer. We really cook them to a temperature of 175-180 degrees Fahrenheit. They’re still incredibly soft and juicy, but there aren’t any bleeding areas around the bone this way.
Is it required to brush Smoked Chicken Legs with BBQ sauce?
No, the BBQ sauce isn’t required for smoked chicken legs. They’ll be flavorful enough without the rub, but we enjoy the sticky, sweet touch.
What is the best way to store extras?
Refrigerate any room temperature leftover chicken legs for up to 3 days in an airtight container.
What is the best way to reheat chicken legs?
You could reheat them in the microwave; however, the skin will get leathery, and they may dry up. Set your oven to 400 degrees F as another option. Put the legs on a wire rack over a baking tray. Bake for 15 minutes or until an internal temperature of 165 degrees F is reached. Another alternative is to prepare an Air Fryer to 400°F and bake the chicken legs for about 5 minutes, or until well cooked.
To smoke chicken, what kind of wood chips or pellets are best?
A Mesquite Hardwood would be ideal for achieving a strong smoky taste. However, if you’re looking for a lighter flavor, an Apple Hardwood is the way to go. When uncertain, we turn to a competition blend wood chip.
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List of Ingredients
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp BBQ Chicken Rub or your favorite seasoning/rub
- ¼ cup BBQ sauce
- 2 lb. chicken legs
- Set your smoker to 275 degrees Fahrenheit, as directed by the manufacturer.
- Sprinkle olive oil over the chicken legs, then cover with BBQ Chicken Rub. Make sure the chicken legs are well coated with the rub.
- Place drumsticks on the prepared smoker, cover, and smoke for 1 hour – 1 1/2 hours, or until the internal temperature of chicken legs reaches 175°F. This will vary significantly based on the thickness of your drumstick and the amount of flesh on it.
- After that, brush the chicken legs with the BBQ sauce. Close the cover and smoke for another 10 minutes. If you don’t want to use the BBQ sauce, that’s OK. We want our chicken legs to be between 180 and 190 degrees Fahrenheit. This will minimize any bloody flesh from forming around the bone.
- Take the meat out of the smoker, set it aside for 5-10 minutes, and then eat!