rosemary garnished smoked chicken thighs

When it comes to having chicken for dinner, many people turn up their noses. Too often, chicken can be boring. Or worse, it turns out rubbery. But recipe developer and food photographer Petar Marshall is here to change that reputation with this recipe for smoked chicken thighs.

"Smoking chicken thighs on a Traeger, or another other type of smoker, immediately gives them more flavor," says Marshall. "To take it even further, these thighs are marinated with a sweet and herbaceous marinade for a juicy, flavorful dish."

It only takes 10 minutes to prepare these chicken thighs for cooking. You’ll have to prep a bit ahead of time as they need to sit in the marinade overnight, but Marshall assures us it’s well worth the wait. Once you pull the cooked chicken thighs off the smoker, you’ll have beautiful golden skin and succulent chicken that’s jam-packed with flavor. Enjoy them on their own, or pair these smoked chicken thighs with rice, mashed potatoes, or even a medley of smoked veggies for a lovely dinner.

Gather the ingredients for smoked chicken thighs

ingredients for smoked chicken thighs

To get started on making these smoked chicken thighs, you’ll need to grab all of the ingredients. For this recipe, you’ll need 6 chicken thighs, sweet vermouth, 1 container fresh rosemary, 5 sprigs fresh thyme, 1 shallot, 1 whole piece of garlic, olive oil, brown sugar, onion powder, and garlic salt and pepper, to taste.

Mix the marinade

mixing marinade in a bowl

The first step to making these smoked chicken thighs is to prepare the marinade. In a large bowl, whisk together the sweet vermouth, rosemary, thyme, shallot, garlic, olive oil, and brown sugar. Set the marinade aside while you season the chicken thighs.

Season the chicken thighs

chicken with seasoning on it

Remove the chicken thighs from their packaging. Season them generously with garlic salt, onion powder, and pepper, to taste.

Marinate the chicken

chicken sitting in marinade

With the chicken seasoned and the marinade ready, it’s time to marinate the chicken. Place the chicken thighs in a baking dish and pour the marinade over the top. Place the baking dish in the fridge to allow the chicken thighs to marinate over night.

Smoke and cook the chicken thighs

chicken smoking on a traeger

After marinating overnight, preheat the Traeger or other smoker to 200 F. Remove the chicken thighs from the fridge and place them on the Traeger. Put the baking dish underneath the chicken, with the juice it in it, to catch any drips while the chicken smokes. "Spooning the marinade over the chicken thighs periodically will help keep them super moist," says Marshall. Smoke the chicken thighs for 1 ½ hours.

Crank the heat up on the Traeger to 400 F. Cook the chicken thighs for 30 minutes, turning them halfway through. "Be sure to check the temperature before pulling off the meat," says Marshall. "The internal temperature should reach 165 degrees."

Once cooked, pull the chicken thighs off the smoker. Garnish the smoked chicken thighs with minced rosemary before serving.

  • 6 chicken thighs
  • 3 cups sweet vermouth
  • 1 container rosemary, minced
  • 5 sprigs of thyme, minced
  • 1 shallot, diced
  • 1 whole garlic, minced
  • 1 ½ tablespoons olive oil
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ½ tablespoon onion powder
  • pinch garlic salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  1. To mix the marinade, whisk together the sweet vermouth, minced rosemary, minced thyme, diced shallot, minced garlic, olive oil, and brown sugar.
  2. Season the chicken thighs with onion powder. Add garlic salt and pepper, to taste.
  3. Place the chicken thighs in a baking dish. Pour the marinade over the top. Put the chicken thighs in the fridge to marinate over night.
  4. Preheat the smoker to 200 F.
  5. Place the chicken thighs on the smoker and smoke for 1 ½ hours. Put the baking dish underneath, with the juice in it, to catch the drips. Spoon the juice over top of the chicken thighs periodically.
  6. Turn the heat up to 400 F and cook the chicken thighs for 30 minutes, turning halfway through.
  7. Once cooked, remove the meat from the smoker and garnish it with minced rosemary.