Grilled BBQ Chicken Kabobs

Spiced chicken, peppers, pineapple, onions and bacon are skewered, basted with bbq sauce, and grilled to perfection! Best chicken kabobs ever!

This Grilled BBQ Chicken Kabob recipe is one of those that we love to make since it’s so customize-able.  We also love easy summer recipes like my Classic Pasta Salad and Easy Baked Beans.  This is one of my Summer recipes I know you’ll want to keep on hand!

holding a skewer of grilled chicken with pineapple and peppers

CHICKEN KABOB RECIPE

If you think chicken kabobs are dry and tasteless, then you need to give these a try first.  The spice rub on the chicken and veggies is tantalizing, then they’re basted with your favorite bbq sauce.

Plus I share my tip for how to keep bacon on the kabobs, and tips for how to cook kabobs when grilling isn’t an option!

Grilling season is amazing, because there are endless options for what you can have for dinner.  I’ve always loved a great kabob, because it’s fun to eat meat off sticks, and you truly get a little bit of everything on one skewer!

Not much makes my mouth water more than juicy grilled chicken with a little fabulous char on it, slathered in bbq sauce!  Plus that crispy bacon, seared pineapple and crisp red onion?  Perfect with some corn on the cob and potato salad.

basting kabobs with bbq sauce

HOW TO MAKE

  1. Make rub.  Just combine all the spices in a small bowl and stir with a fork to mix.
  2. Season the meats.  Add chicken, bacon, and drizzle of oil to a bowl and add 2/3 of your rub mixture.  Use your hands to massage the spices into the meats.
  3. Season the veggies/fruit.  Add pepper, onion and pineapple to another bowl and toss with remaining 1/3 of the rub mixture.  
  4. Assemble skewers.  Wrap the bacon pieces around the chicken, then thread bacon-wrapped chicken, pepper, onion and pineapple onto skewers.
  5. Prepare grill.  Lightly oil grill grates and heat over MED HIGH heat.
  6. Grill.  Grill kabobs 8-11 minutes, turning every few minutes until cooked through and lightly charred on all sides.
  7. Baste.  Brush with bbq sauce on all sides and cook an additional minute or two to caramelize.

These ultimate chicken kabobs (with bacon!) are PACKED with flavor, from both a spice rub and the bbq sauce.  Plus, tips for how to skewer bacon, and how to cook these kabobs when grilling isn't an option. #chicken #kabobs #kebabs #skewer #bbq #grilling #grilled #easyrecipe #summer

ADDITIONAL COOKING TIPS

SKEWERING BACON

I’ve been struggling with how to skewer bacon for a LONG time, and I’ve finally got it.  The trick is to not try to skewer just the bacon.  If you wrap it around something, like the chicken, it stays in place and cooks beautifully!  I use center cut bacon, but you can use whatever your favorite kind is.  Cut the bacon into thirds, which should fit around a bite-sized piece of chicken.  The bacon will form a “C” shape, with the chicken being in the middle.

COOKING KABOBS WITHOUT A GRILL

We’ve all been there.  You plan a great grilling recipe, and the clouds roll in and rain starts to fall.  Or maybe you’re out of gas or charcoal.  Or just plain don’t have an outdoor grill.  We’ve got ya covered!  There are two great options here:

  1. First, you can use a stove-top grill pan and grill as the recipe states.  If you do this though, you may want to open some windows and turn on a fan, because it can get pretty smoky.
  2. Secondly, you can use your broiler.  This is my preferred indoor cooking method because it’s way less smoky, and so easy.  Broiling these kabobs take about 10-15 minutes, plus a minute or two to caramelize the BBQ sauce.  I have all the details in the recipe towards the bottom of the page!

pile of grilled chicken kebabs

VARIATIONS OF THIS RECIPE

  • SPICY – if you like a little more heat, add some cayenne pepper to the rub and/or use a spicy bbq sauce!
  • OTHER MEAT – I’ve used chicken breasts here because my kids prefer white meat, but boneless chicken thighs would be amazing, and even juicier!  Cubed pork tenderloin would be another amazing option, as would shrimp!
  • OTHER VEGGIES – the sky is the limit on what veggies you can add.  Peppers and onions are a pretty common variety, but zucchini, yellow squash, tomatoes, etc are also delicious!  Mango would also be amazing used in place of the pineapple.
  • SEPARATE MEAT AND VEGGIES – while it’s pretty to have the alternating chicken, fruit and veggies, it can be a little tricky to make sure the meat is fully cooked and the veggies and fruit aren’t burnt.  If you’re new to grilling, or simply want this meal to be even easier, do separate skewers of chicken/bacon, and veggies/fruit.
  • STORE-BOUGHT RUB – there are so many great pre-made rubs out there nowadays, and you can certainly use one of those if you’d rather not make your own.
  • HOMEMADE BBQ SAUCE – if you’d rather use a homemade bbq sauce, you can absolutely go for it!  I really love my Bourbon BBQ sauce on these kabobs.

brushing extra bbq sauce on kabobs

MAKING CHICKEN KABOBS AHEAD OF TIME

Good news!  While I don’t recommend grilling them ahead of time then reheating to serve (I just think grilled foods taste best fresh), you can assemble these kabobs ahead of time.

Go ahead and proceed through step 5 of the recipe, then cover tightly with plastic wrap/foil/airtight container and refrigerate for 1-2 days.

STORAGE

Leftovers should be stored in an airtight container and consumed within 4 days for best flavor.

SPECIAL EQUIPMENT FOR THIS RECIPE

  • Basting Brush – this is the brush used in these photos, but I’m partial to this silicon version that have detachable heads for easier cleaning!
  • Metal Skewers – I prefer to use metal skewers since they’re reusable and don’t require soaking.

BE SURE TO SCROLL DOWN TO CHECK OUT OTHER READERS’ COMMENTS FOR TIPS AND REVIEWS.

AND DON’T FORGET, IF YOU’VE MADE THIS RECIPE, LEAVE A COMMENT AND PLEASE GIVE IT A STAR RATING LETTING ME KNOW HOW YOU ENJOYED IT!

This post was originally sponsored by Head Country Bar-B-Q Sauce, and posted in 2017.  It has been updated in 2020 with additional information, but the recipe remains the same.

holding a skewer of grilled chicken with pineapple and peppers

Grilled BBQ Chicken Kabobs

Spiced chicken, peppers, onions and bacon are skewered, basted with bbq sauce, and grilled to perfection!
5 from 16 votes
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Servings 6 servings
Calories 346

Ingredients
  

SPICE RUB

  • 2 tsp brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp dried minced onion flakes - (or onion powder)
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • heaping 1/4 tsp black pepper

CHICKEN KABOBS

  • 2 lbs chicken breast, cut into 1/2 - 1 inch pieces
  • drizzle of olive oil
  • green bell pepper, cut into 1/2 -1 inch pieces
  • red onion, peeled and cut into 1/2 - 1 inch pieces
  • fresh pineapple, cut into 1/2 - 1 inch pieces
  • 8-12 slices center cut bacon, cut into 3 shorter pieces
  • 1/2 cup your favorite bbq sauce
  • minced fresh parsley, for garnish
  • pinch of black pepper, for garnish

Instructions
 

  • If using metal skewers, no prep is needed.  If using wooden skewers, soak them in water for at least 30 minutes so they don't burn too much.
  • Combine spice rub ingredients in a small bowl and toss to combine.  
  • Add chicken pieces, bacon and oil in a mixing bowl and toss with about 2/3 of the rub. I like to use my hands to really massage the rub into the meat.
  • To another mixing bowl, add green pepper, onion, and pineapple. Toss with remaining rub.
  • Wrap bacon pieces around the chicken, in a "C" shape, with the chicken inside.  Thread bacon wrapped chicken, peppers, onion, and pineapple onto kabob skewers, alternating as desired.

TO GRILL:

  • Lightly oil grill grates and heat over MED-HIGH heat.  Grill kabobs 8-11 minutes, turning every few minutes, until cooked through and lightly charred on all sides.  Baste with bbq sauce on both sides and cook 1 additional minute on each side to caramelize.  
  • Once cooked (using either method), sprinkle kabobs with a bit of fresh parsley and extra black pepper (if desired). Serve with extra bbq sauce and enjoy!

TO BROIL (OVEN):

  • Heat broiler to HIGH, line a baking sheet (with a rim) with foil.  Line up kabobs and broil 10-15 minutes, turning every 5 minutes, until cooked through.  Baste with bbq sauce on both sides and broil 1-2 minutes on each side to caramelize.
  • Once cooked (using either method), sprinkle kabobs with a bit of fresh parsley and extra black pepper (if desired).  Serve with extra bbq sauce and enjoy!
Author The Chunky Chef
Tried this recipe?Mention @the_chunky_chef or tag #thechunkychef!

 

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Recipe Rating




29 comments on “Grilled BBQ Chicken Kabobs”

  1. I have pinned this for later and will be making these kabobs this weekend. I am loving the flavor of the spices that you have combined!

  2. The spice rub makes all the difference!

  3. Yummy! So easy and so fancy! The perfect summer dish!

  4. This would be perfect for weekend grilling! Looks so good!

  5. know for sure this Grilled BBQ Chicken Kabob would be a huge hit in my house!

  6. I love grilling season because of meals like this! I love everything about this. The bacon! That spice rub! Yummmm!

  7. Oh my goodness this looks so delicious! Can’t wait to make these! My husband will be so excited to try these!

  8. I must say I was skeptical about the reviews on this kebab recipe.
    What a surprise! They came out amazing. Really tasty and the whole family loved the spices. Definitely a keeper.
    Thank you for this great recipe.

  9. Made these a month ago and family RAVED about them! They begged me to make them again this weekend and as I was looking for the print out of this recipe, I realized I had thrown it out. After a good hour of scouring the web, I HAVE FOUND IT! So so so excited to make THE BEST chicken kebabs. Amanda, you may name me the official spokes person for this recipe, I will gladly advertise for you. 

  10. These are just gorgeous – quick to make and so so tasty – I served ours in a toasted tortilla wrap! 
    PS personally I’d leave off the bacon – doesn’t add much as the bbq sauce is Smokey! 

  11. These are my favourite kebabs ever! We’ve made them several times and they never disappoint. It’s even become a weeknight favourite (we have a gas grill so it’s easy to get fired up!)

    I’ve even omitted the meat (replaced with mushrooms for a savory element) and they make an amazing veggie side.

  12. My kids will surely love this! They love kabobs!

  13. These kabobs were the hit of our graduation party this weekend! So delicious; I’ll be saving this recipe to serve all summer long!

  14. Now I know what I will make for dinner tonight! Looks fabulous!

  15. These are mouth watering! These would disappear in our house!

  16. Made these tonight and they were delicious! Thanks for a simple and yummy recipe to add to my list of keepers.

  17. Kabobs are one my my favorite things to grill! These looks awesome!

  18. I prepared these the day before we went camping and we threw them on a grill over the camp fire.  Everyone loved them and I didn’t even wrap the chicken with bacon.  I imagine it would have been even better with the bacon.  The leftovers made a good breakfast burrito the next day too.  

  19. Wow! This is really good. We had it yesterday and my family loved these grilled bbq chicken kabobs. I would have to agree that this is tastiest bbq sauce.

  20. The kebabs look so juicy! My mouth is watering. I wish I could just take a bite off from my screen!
    Thank you for sharing such an amazing recipe. Definitely trying this out!

  21. I love chicken kabobs! These look heavenly!

  22. My mouth is watering, just by looking at these pictures!

  23. These look crazy good! Perfect for a weekend BBQ. 🙂

  24. These are looking absolutely DELICIOUS! We have yet to make kabobs this summer…..time to change that!

  25. This is such a great summer recipe!

  26. Must grill all the things!!! While we still can!! Totally and completely obsessed. For real.

  27. Yes, we do have a favorite BBQ sauce BUT you have never steered me wrong so I’m definitely giving this one a try! Thanks for the suggestion! These kabobs looks delicious!

  28. These kabobs are what absolutely everyone dreams of when they go to a barbecue! That meat! Those veggies! That sauce! A complete winner!