Grilling Chicken Drumsticks- The Art of Drummies

Grilled Chicken Legs - The Art of Drummies from 101 Cooking For Two

Super easy, never fails, grilled drumsticks for the whole family. Just wash, dry, spice and cook over medium high heat. Then you will have crispy goodness for all.

The “art” of the grilled chicken legs (drumsticks)… that is what I have been working on for several weeks. All the recipes I looked at said things like until “fluid runs clear” or 30 minutes over medium high heat. I need more precise. Plus overnight marinades and lots of other magic cooking stuff. Not good for me.

My mistakes or at least the ones I remember. First I cooked them to 165 just like I love chicken breast. They weren’t done. They were tough and stringy. Then I went to 180-190, yep just the right temp. But I cooked it too fast on high heat. Burnt skin. Char is good, burnt is bad.

I tried several spice mixes and settled on the one below. Just some kosher salt, pepper, garlic powder and cayenne pepper (but not too much of kids but just enough for taste for adults).

Rating

An easy and tasty 5.


Notes: 

  • DO NOT SKIP THE WASH AND DRY or you will not have crispy skin.
  • Check the cut joint area for loose parts. You may be handing this to a child and don’t need loose bone aspirated.
  • You must use a thermometer to be sure you get to 185 plus. Do not guess.
  • Spice as you want. I frequently add the Cayenne but if you have little ones, skip it.
  • Scale to any amount you need
  • Skip the seasoning and brush with your favorite BBQ sauce the last 5 minutes to make great  BBQ drumsticks.

Update: (June 23, 2012) rbeland asked a question in a comment below. Specifically, what temp on the grill surface? Well I did a test cooking tonight on my new super-duper Weber which is a much “hotter” grill then my previous grill. I chose a surface temp of 450 which is what I estimated was the surface temp of my old grill. To get that stable temp on my Weber, the burners were at about 50%. The drummies were done in 32 minutes and were great. I now use a done temp of 190+ and they are fall off the bone tender with great skin. I have update the description to reflect there facts.

Preheat grill to get a surface temp of about 450. That is medium high on a standard gas grill and medium on a hot gas grill. Clean and oil. You must wash the drummies under running water and pat dry if you want crispy skin.
Trim of excess skin and any loose bones/tissue especially in the joint area.
Mix spices. 1 T kosher salt, 1 t pepper and garlic powder and 1/2 t cayenne pepper. You can also use my 7:2:2 spice mix. You may want to skip the cayenne if cooking for little ones.
Sprinkle chicken on all sides. Let rest at room temperature until grill is ready.
Check grill temp if possible and place chicken on grill.
Flip every 5-7 minutes until internal temp of  190 degrees. About 30-35 minutes.
Let rest for 10 minutes before serving. They are way too hot anyways.

Grilling Chicken Drumsticks- The Art of Drummies

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes

Serving Size: 6 drumsticks

Grilling Chicken Drumsticks- The Art of Drummies

Super easy, never fails, grilled drumsticks for the whole family. Just wash, dry, spice and cook over medium high heat. Then you will have crispy goodness for all.

Ingredients

  • 6 Chicken drumsticks
  • 1 T kosher salt
  • 1 t black pepper
  • 1 t garlic powder
  • 1/2 t cayenne pepper

Instructions

  1. You must wash the drummies under running water and pat dry if you want crispy skin. Trim of excess skin and any loose bones/tissue especially in the joint area.
  2. Now preheat grill to get a surface temp of about 450. That is medium high on a standard gas grill and medium on a hot gas grill. Clean and oil.
  3. Mix spices. 1 T kosher salt, 1 t pepper and garlic powder and 1/2 t cayenne pepper. You can also use my 7:2:2 spice mix. You may want to skip the cayenne if cooking for little ones.
  4. Sprinkle chicken on all sides. Let rest at room temperature until grill is ready.
  5. Check grill temp if possible and place chicken on grill.
  6. Flip every 5-7 minutes until internal temp of 190 degrees. About 30-35 minutes.
  7. Let rest for 10 minutes before serving. They are way too hot anyways.
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Updated
November 30 2013

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Comments

  1. says

    These look great! We use a charcoal grill, so getting our heat just right is a little harder. But looks like the results are well-worth it.

    Do you have a recipe for the grilled ears of corn?

    Thanks, as always! -Juli

  2. says

    Looks like a great recipe. Do you use a thermometer on the grilling surface to get a temp reading? Med and high are somewhat vague & vary between grills.

  3. says

    Good question. This is on my old grill and High on that would get to about 500. My new grill is 600 at times. If you are measuring, I would aim for 400 to 450. I need something for dinner tonight so I think I will try it and post an update.

  4. says

    The 450 is the right surface temp. I also have been using 190 as the finish temp for a while. I have updated the post to reflect these changes. Thanks for the comments.

  5. says

    Perfect!!! 425 to 450 degrees on our Weber for 35 minutes did the trick. Brushed on BBQ sauce and flipped twice in the last 10 minutes of cooking. Legs were crispy, juicy and full of flavor. Thank you for all the great tips.

  6. says

    I am so indebted to you and this recipe. I am really new to grilling and need details like you mentioned! These were seriously some of the best chicken legs I have ever had. I was a little reserved on my heat (guessed, no surface thermometer), so they took forever and a day. Next time I will crank it up a wee bit more. But WOW. Thank you!

  7. says

    Just BBQ’d drumsticks for the first time EVER and, following your recipe (with one added seasoning), they turned out PERFECT! Everyone loved them and they were so juicy with a just-right crispy skin. YUM! Thank you for your grilling advice. SO glad that I clicked on your link. I was always afraid to buy drumsticks because I wasn’t exactly sure what to with them. Now I do and I see many more drumsticks in the future. THANKS!

  8. says

    When I told my boys I was going to do chicken on the grill, one of them suggested “indian food chicken” instead, because the chicken on the grill is boring. Well I’d planned to grill, so that’s what I did, using your recipe. I made 12 drumsticks and left the two boys home while I drove my daughter to gymnastics. When I returned 20 minutes later, 4 drumsticks were left. Out of 12.
    The boys claim the dog got one of them, but I think they were so good they just couldn’t control themselves, even though my daughter, husband and I had yet to eat : 0 The grilled veggies are good, so we won’t starve, but this is the best grilled chicken I’ve made to date.

  9. Harry Newhall says

    We invited some great friends over for grilled chicken wings n legs.I will cook with your recipe tomorrow.Thank you very much.,,

  10. says

    I have never done wings on a grill but would think they would be faster and since they are “white meat” maybe a 165-170 end point.

    Good luck with the cookout

    DrDan

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