This easy recipe for Traeger grilled chicken thighs is the best for bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs. Use it for any wood pellet grill.
This year, I’ve been really testing out different recipes to see what works on my wood pellet grill. Of course, you can smoke meat on your wood pellet grilled but you can also grill and make these Traeger grilled chicken thighs.
SO many people love these smoked chicken thighs…and for good reason! They’re juicy, flavorful and super tender. But, when I’m craving a fast meal, sometimes smoking meat for a long time doesn’t quite fit into my schedule.
If you’re looking for a SUPER fast way to use up chicken thighs, my sheet pan dinner recipe video is below. Enjoy!
I love grilling on my Traeger because I can keep the temperature really steady. My Pro 575 goes up over 450F when it’s really hot, which is about equivalent to medium-high on a gas or charcoal grill.
Important things to know when grilling chicken thighs
There are a few important things to know when you’re grilling chicken thighs that are bone-in and skin-on that are really important, no matter what grill you’re using. I prefer bone-in skin on chicken thighs to boneless skinless chicken thighs ANY day. They have more flavor and you absorb so many nutrients by cooking something on the bone.
If you’re wanting to make Traeger Smoked Chicken Thighs, check out this recipe. Ironically, I find that boneless skinless work best for this method.
I call these the holy grail of grilled, bone in chicken thighs:
A marinade is important
While chicken thighs are much more flavorful than chicken breasts, they can get boring. So, a good marinade is important. It doesn’t have to be anything fancy or complicated. Some olive oil, acid, spices, and seasoning will do the trick. Get my recipe for the Traeger grilled chicken thighs ultimate marinade in the printout below.
Cook them skin side down first, for at least 15 minutes
When I’m putting my thighs on the grill, I cook them skin side down first and for longer than I cook the other side. There’s nothing like crispy skin with a kiss of smoke and char.
Don’t over cook them
I use a digital read meat thermometer to make sure I’m cooking meat perfectly. For these Traeger grilled chicken thighs, they’re done when the middle of the thickest part of the chicken next to the bone reaches 165F. Once you hit that, immediately remove them from the grill.
Let them rest before serving
Once the chicken is cooked, let it rest before serving for about 10 minutes. This helps the juices to draw back into the meat, giving you more flavor and moisture!
Ingredients for Chicken Thighs on the Traeger Grill
This recipe for bone-in chicken thighs couldn’t be more simple. It uses a well-balanced blend of the following ingredients:
- bone-in chicken thighs with the skin on
- olive oil
- lemon juice
- Dijon mustard
- sea salt
- black pepper
- dried thyme
All you need to do is use a whisk to combine the ingredients and marinate the chicken thighs before they go on the grill grates.
Tips for Serving & Leftovers
When I make these chicken thighs, my family goes CRAZY for them. It’s such an easy dish to whip up but everyone always loves the crispy chicken skin and juicy meat. When you use your Traeger as your smoker and grill, I feel like it’s so easy to make sure things come out perfect because you can control the temperature which ensures an even cook.
When it’s time to serve I like to do a variety of things:
- Serve them as they are with some grilled veggies. Bonus if you make dessert on the Traeger, too!
- Create yummy chicken thigh bowls and drizzle a bit of my hot honey sauce from this recipe over them. It acts as this crazy good glaze.
- Make delicious, slightly smokey chicken salad. I like this recipe.
- Create a delicious salad topped with the Traeger gilled chicken
- Make my Traeger pizza recipe & tear up the chicken and use it as a topping
If you somehow have leftovers, package them up in an airtight container and the chicken will be good in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Love grilling & smoking? Check out my Traeger Beer Can Chicken recipe! It’s a great recipe for the summer!Print
Traeger Grilled Chicken Thighs (bone in)
This easy recipe for Traeger grilled chicken thighs is the best for bone in, skin on chicken thighs. Use it for any wood pellet grill.
- Prep Time: 5 minutes + 1 hour marinade
- Cook Time: 30 minutes
- Total Time: 35 minutes + 1 hour marinade
- Yield: 4–6 servings 1x
- Category: Main
- Method: Grill/Wood Pellet Grill
- Cuisine: American
- Diet: Gluten Free
- 2.5 lbs. bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
- 3 Tbsp. olive oil
- 3 Tbsp. lemon juice
- 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
- 1 and 1/2 tsp. sea salt
- 1/2 tsp. dried thyme
- 1/2 tsp. paprika (I love smoked paprika)
- Add the chicken thighs to a zip-top bag or bowl with a lid.
- Whisk together the remaining ingredients to make the marinade.
- Pour the marinade over the chicken and allow it to marinate in the fridge for at least 1 hour and up to 4 hours.
- When you’re ready to grill, pull the chicken from the fridge and let it come to room temperature for about 20 minutes while you preheat the grill. This is safe to do and ensures even cooking.
- Preheat your Traeger or wood pellet grill to 450F.
- Remove the chicken from the marinade and place it skin side down on the grill. Don’t rinse or wipe off the marinade.
- Grill for about 20 minutes skin side down before flipping the chicken and cooking for an additional 10+/- minutes, or until the chicken is fully cooked and reaches an internal temperature of 165F at the thickest part of the thigh.
- Rest the thighs for about 10 minutes before serving!
- Serving Size: 1 thigh
- Calories: 324
- Sugar: 0 g
- Sodium: 958 mg
- Fat: 21 g
- Saturated Fat: 6 g
- Unsaturated Fat: 13 g
- Trans Fat: 0 g
- Carbohydrates: 0 g
- Fiber: 0 g
- Protein: 30 g
- Cholesterol: 112 mg
Keywords: chicken, grilled chicken, traeger, smoker, wood pellet grill, chicken thigh
This recipe was originally published in 2019 and has been updated to improve user experience.