The weather here in DC has been all over the place.  We have had snow one day and a sunny 65 degree day the next.  Who knows what it is going to look like tomorrow.  When it is nice, I like to take advantage of it, you never know when it is gonna snow.  It just so happened that earlier this week we had a 65 degree day.  So I immediately began planning a barbecue.  It has been so long since I fired up the Weber that I did not know what to cook.  So I researched a good barbecue recipe.  I finally came upon a barbecue sauce recipe from Giada that used balsamic vinegar as the base.  I was intrigued.  So I made.

Was I ever happy that I made this sauce, it is amazing!!

Balsamic Barbecue Sauce – (From Giada DeLaurentis)

  • 1 cup (250 ml) balsamic vinegar
  • 3/4 cup (175 ml) ketchup
  • 1/3 cup (75 ml) brown sugar
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tbs (15 ml) Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tbs (15 ml) Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 tsp (2 ml) kosher or fine sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp (2 ml) freshly ground black pepper

BBQ Chicken

  • 1lb (454 g) chicken – your favorite pieces – I prefer bone-in breasts
  • Balsamic Barbecue Sauce (recipe above)

Barbecue Sauce

Combine all the ingredients in a saucepan and stir until all the ingredients are incorporated.  Simmer over medium heat until reduced by 1/3, about 15 to 20 minutes.  Stir frequently.

BBQ Chicken

Preheat your grill to medium/high heat.

While your grill is preheating, season the chicken with salt and pepper.  I prefer to grill bone-in meat with skin.  Granted this has a little more fat, but it tastes so much better.  Chicken is bland as it is, no need to take away the only flavor that it has.

If using skin-on chicken, place the skin side down onto the grill.  This will allow the skin to get crispy and the skin also allows the chicken to cook without drying out too much.  If you are using boneless skinless breasts, just place them on the grill.  Doesn’t matter.

Grill the chicken for about 6-8 minutes on each side.  When you flip the chicken coat the cooked side in barbecue sauce.  There is no need to sauce the chicken before it is cooked as the juices will cause the sauce to fall off.  Further the sauce is high in sugar and will cause the outside of the chicken to burn before the inside is cooked.

Coat and flip

Flip the chicken again and coat the second side of the chicken with the sauce.  Since this sauce is high in sugar, make sure to flip the chicken to keep it from burning.  By placing the sauce side directly over the heat you are going to set the sauce and make it stick to the chicken.  This is the key to getting show stopping, finger licking, barbecued meat.

Once you have set the sauce and checked the internal temperature for doneness (165 F/74 C).

Remove from the grill and tent in aluminum foil for 5 minutes before serving.  This will allow the chicken to come to finish temperature and allow the juices to redistribute throughout the chicken.

Ready to eat

This sauce was excellent.  It had some sweet notes and a nice little twang from the vinegar.  I totally recommend this one.  I might even have to try it on pulled pork.  The sauce is a little darker than most bbq sauces, however, the flavor is spot on.

Rex is an avid griller, barbecuer and bacon enthusiast. He is the Pitmaster for the Rex BBQ competition team. Rex was also featured on the TV show American Grilled. If you have any questions or wish to have Rex decode your favorite dish, click on the ASK REX link in the menu above.


  1. I love balsamic vinegar as a marinade for chicken, so I bet this would be great too! We've had weather like that lately – last week was in the 70s, and today it's raining nonstop, tomorrow will be 35. You gotta take advantage of those nice days when you can!

    • Alta – In January it is nice to have an awesome day every once in a while. Balsamic BBQ sauce was amazing. The only problem is that it is a tad on the pricey side.

  2. Resisting any comments about Giada's saucy breast recipe.

    You gave some great tips (bone in, skin side down) in this post. You rock, Rex.

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