We love the flavors of classic buffalo sauce paired with pretty much any part of the chicken (wings, obviously) but to be honest, our favorite piece of the bird to "buffalo" has got to be chicken thighs. Sure, they are a little less meaty than a breast but the meat that is there is so rich and flavorful. Besides, when you cook chicken thighs you get to eat more than just one! And I promise, you'll want to eat more than just one.
These particular chicken thighs get the royal treatment. Soaked in buttermilk and eggs before getting a quick toss in seasoned panko breadcrumbs, these juicy little morsels are then baked to wood-fired perfection on the Traeger. If that isn't good enough, we drizzle these crispy beauties with an AMAZING brown sugar buffalo sauce. I kid you not, this sauce will have you licking your fingers, licking the plate, and then running to the saucepan for any remaining drops left at the bottom. We make a double batch and put it on everything from ribs to burgers. Dip the chicken thighs in ranch if you'd like to temper the heat of the buffalo flavor, otherwise just eat them as-is and enjoy!
Crispy Chicken Thighs with Brown Sugar Buffalo Sauce
Prep Time: 15 minutes (plus 2 hours for the chicken to marinate)
Cook Time: 15-20 minutes
Recommended Pellets: Hickory, Apple, Cherry, Pecan
2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs
1 cup buttermilk
1 egg, beaten
2 cups panko bread crumbs
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
For the Sauce:
2 cups dark brown sugar
1/2 cup Frank's RedHot Buffalo Sauce
5 Tablespoons water
In a gallon zip top bag, combine the buttermilk, egg and chicken thighs. Seal the top and refrigerate for 2 hours.
Start the Traeger on Smoke for 4-5 minutes with the lid open to establish the fire. Close the lid and turn the temperature setting up to 375 degrees. Allow the grill to preheat for 10-15 minute while you bread your chicken.
On a large plate, gently combine the Panko breadcrumbs, garlic, salt and pepper.
Using tongs, remove the thighs from the buttermilk mixture one at a time and place them into the seasoned breadcrumbs. Make sure to cover all areas of your chicken with the breadcrumbs. Place on a baking sheet lined with foil or parchment paper.
Bake the breaded chicken for 15-18 minutes, or until the internal temperature reads 175 degrees. While the chicken is baking, make the brown sugar buffalo sauce.
In a medium saucepan, combine the brown sugar, buffalo sauce, and water over medium-high heat. Bring to a rolling boil, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes then remove from the heat. Transfer to a pitcher or measuring glass with a pourable spout.
When the chicken is finished, drizzle with the brown sugar buffalo sauce. Serve immediately. Dip in ranch dressing, if desired.
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Crispy Chicken Thighs with Brown Sugar Buffalo Sauce.docx (14.17 kb)