Spiced-Rubbed and Sauced Barbecue Chicken with Meadow Creek Rubs and Sauces
We all stop to watch a recipe on Facebook, Instagram or television based on how it looks. You have probably heard the expression, “You eat with your eyes,” but what we all want is to eat something that tastes delicious. It’s the flavor of a dish that keeps us coming back for more.
Building Flavor with Rubs and Sauces
There are a variety of ways to build flavor into a dish and that process starts before anything is cooked and continues right up until the food is served. Rubs, marinades, bastes, brines, injections, sauces, and butters are commonly used to create flavor in a dish. Steven Raichlen even authored a whole book about it, Barbecue Sauces, Rubs, and Marinades. More than one technique can be utilized in the same dish. One elaborate example involves pork butt. Pork butt is often injected or brined, and then it is seasoned with a spice rub, mopped with a thin mop sauce while cooking, and then sauced to serve. A simpler example might be adding a slice of a compound butter to a well-seasoned grilled steak.
One of the factors I consider when deciding how to best season a dish or how I want to build flavor is time. If you are like me, you don’t have hours to prepare a meal on a worknight. One of my go-to techniques to build flavor when cooking is utilizing a spice rub and finishing with a sauce. The process is quick, easy, and it works. Applying a rub and a sauce to dish doesn’t require advanced planning or brining or marinating overnight.
To highlight how simple it is to build flavor with a rub and a sauce, I recently used Meadow Creek’s barbecue rub and hickory barbecue sauce. Meadow Creek rubs are gluten-free and come in a resealable bag to maintain freshness and eliminate fading. Their barbecue sauces are made without high-fructose corn syrup.
Meadow Creek offers a variety of spice rubs that include Barbecue, Zesty, Spicy Barbecue, TX Brisket, and Brisket. They also offer four different sauces: Original, Apple, Spicy, and Hickory Barbecue Sauce.
To ensure even coating when applying a rub, sprinkle from 8 to 10 inches above the food. Some foods require a binder to help the rub adhere to the food. Oil, mustard, mayonnaise, and hot sauce are commonly utilized as binders. Spice rubs can be applied right before cooking or the day before to create a dry marinade.
To prevent burning, apply your barbecue sauce towards the end of the cooking process. The sugars in the sauce can scorch when cooking over higher heat. Heating your sauce before basting your food prevents streaks and promotes a uniform look to the food. Sauces can be used ahead of time to marinate food, but to avoid potentially dangerous cross-contamination, do not use the sauce the raw food was in on cooked food.
Barbecue Spiced-Rubbed and Sauced Chicken
Here is a speedy weeknight dinner flavored with spice rub and sauce that you can replicate at home. I set up my gas grill for direct grilling and heated it to high. I placed two wood chunks in the smoker box to create wood smoke. Next, I sliced chicken breasts into 1-1/2 to 2-inch pieces and seasoned them with Meadow Creek’s Barbecue rub. I skewered the spice-rubbed chicken on flat metal skewers. (Flat skewers keep the chicken from spinning when turning the chicken on the grill.) I prepared veggie kebabs to accompany the chicken.
The chicken was direct grilled for 2 to 3 minutes per side. Once there were grill marks on each side, I basted the chicken with Meadow Creek’s Hickory barbecue sauce and cooked each side for an additional minute.
The chicken developed a textured outside due to the Barbecue rub and the high heat of the grill. The quick sear on the chicken helped the inside of the chicken remain juicy. The Hickory barbecue sauce added a sweet and smoky flavor to the chicken. I also sprinkled Brisket rub over my grilled veggies before grilling. I served the chicken and veggies family-style with rice pilaf.
Applying a spice rub or a sauce to meat is a classic way to incorporate flavor, but don’t forget to use Meadow Creeks rubs and sauces on your seafood and veggies. I used Meadow Creek’s Zesty rub and Spicy barbecue sauce to make a grilled shrimp appetizer. The Brisket rub was great on my grilled veggies. Finish your next grilled burger with the Hickory barbecue sauce and skip the ketchup. Try their barbecue sauce as the base for your next grilled pizza. The combinations and uses of Meadow Creek rubs and sauces are only limited by your imagination.
Thanks to Meadow Creek for sending me samples of their spice rubs and sauces to enjoy!
Is there a rub or sauce that you love? Let us know on Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, or Instagram!