Honey Chipotle Apple “BBQ” Sauce Chicken

Seemed appropriate that we follow up a pulled pork recipe with a good sauce that could be made easily too.  Ok the sauce is killer (especially the next day) but the chicken is freaking awesome. 

This is really not BBQ because to me BBQ is low and slow cooking but everyone closely associates BBQ sauce as having a majority of the ingredients that are used in this dish so… “BBQ” it is.

Oh yeah and for the record I think we had to set a new record.  We decided hey it is fall and I have a passion for burning stuff (not like creepy arson guy and I just realize there is absolutely no way I can make that previous statement sound right so pray I never get arrested on arson charges because that statement would end me in jail.  However; the spin off Blog He Shanks She Cooks would be awesome).  Anyways back on track… so we build this killer fire pit and are having a blast with friends over drinking beer and b.s.ing.  Next thing we know the joyous Fire Department shows up saying someone is complaining about a smoke nuisance.  Now according to the fire department (who were polite and even turned down the offer of s’mores) even though the fire pit is legal if someone complains we have to put it out.  However; they cannot fine so from here on out the fire pit is going to be constantly running in hopes of annoying neighbors because that is what we do……

With this recipe we busted out our secret stash of booze, dug deep, and found Honey Crisp by Crispin.  Awesome drinking cider but everything is better with chipotles……

For this recipe you will need:

  • 2 cups of Honey Crisp (regular cider would work too but try to find the Honey because it adds an awesome flavor and the added bonus is you will have a cup leftover for consumption)
  • 1 cup of ketchup
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 teaspoons ancho chili powder
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • salt/pepper
  • small dash cayenne pepper
  • 1 onion finely diced
  • 3-4 cloves of garlic
  • 2 chipotle in adobo diced
  • teaspoon of fresh thyme
  • teaspoon of Worcestershire sauce
  • teaspoon of paprika
  • Canola oil and a tablespoon of butter

Steps to chicken success:

  1. Pre-heat your oven to 400 degrees.
  2. In a large pot over high heat melt the butter and oil.
  3. Salt and pepper the chicken thighs and then brown them in the oil/butter.
  4. Remove and set aside.
  5. Drain all but one tablespoon of oil/butter goodness.
  6. Add in the onion and cook until softened (about 3-5 minutes).
  7. Add in the garlic, chili powder, paprika, and chipotles and cook for 30 seconds.
  8. Add in the cider and bring to a boil scraping the bottom.
  9. Add in the ketchup, thyme, Worcestershire, paprika, cayenne, sugar, and chicken.
  10. Throw in 400 degree oven uncovered until chicken is done.
  11. If you want the sauce to be a little thicker once the chicken is done remove it and set aside.  Put the pan over a high burner and boil violently for a couple of minutes.

Serve and enjoy!

Cooked up by Jeff


  1. 4
    October 14

    That sounds scrumptious! Especially the cider bit. I do not mean to encourage, but I would keep a smoldering, smokey fire going, just cuz ;-)

  2. 3
    October 13

    What a great sauce & we love cooking with Crispin too!

  3. 2
    October 13

    If I did not have the chipotle in adobo, what is a good sub? Looks so delicious. I was thinking of making a BBQ sauce today since I am out at home.thanks!

  4. 1
    October 13

    Making me hungry! Love the cider base–brilliant! (said like the guys in the Guinness commercials)

    And wtf? What kind of neighbors complain about a fire pit? Geez…

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