Spache the Spatula

Cola-Barbecue Chicken

Cola-Barbecue Chicken

So here’s a question: When you are going to be making a meal, usually involving a bunch of meats, outdoors, on a grill, and invite people to it, what do you call it? You see, in the south, we know this as a “grill-out” or “cook-out.” But, apparently, to those outside of the Southeast United States, its is a “barbecue.” To myself (and countless others, no doubt), a grill-out MUST have food with actual barbecue sauce on it, served with baked beans, cornbread, and the like, to be referred to as a “barbecue.”

Well, no matter, because if you cook this chicken and invite some friends over, you can probably get away with calling your little shindig a barbecue no matter where you reside :]!

So, what’s so special about this barbecue chicken? The sauce is made with cola! Yep, your favorite soft drink is glazing this chicken breast. Okay, let’s get serious for a moment. Guys, I am addicted to Diet sodas. As I always say, Diet Coke is my life blood. I have been given pitchers with straws in them at restaurants due to my voracious drinking of the stuff. In most circumstances it would be complete and utter blasphemy to suggest I ever choose the “real” stuff over the likely-serious-illnees-causing fake syrup I cling to like white on rice; HOWEVER, in this one instance, you simply must use the real thing. It’s actually even better if you can get the kind with real cane sugar in it as opposed to the HFCS one. The sugars in the soda caramelize in this sauce leaving the beautiful black grill marks you see, and adding a delicious caramelized flavor!

The barbecue sauce actually only has a handful of ingredients aside from the cola, but it’s mighty tasty. It’s sweet, but with a savory depth, just enough sourness, and a kick of heat right on the back. It’s also super quick and easy to throw together, which is always a plus :]

Cola-Barbecue Chicken
Cola-Barbecue Chicken

Cola-Barbecue Chicken

recipe slightly adapted from here


  • 1 tbsp grapeseed oil
  •  1 1/2 tbsp freshly grated white onion
  • 1-2 garlic cloves, grated
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp paprika
  • 1 cup cola (preferably the kind made with real sugar)
  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • garlic powder, paprika, salt, pepper, and brown sugar to sprinkle on chicken
  1. In a medium sauce pan, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add in the onion and garlic, and cook for 3-4 minutes. Add in the spices, and stir for about a minute. Add in the cola, ketchup, vinegar, and Worcestershire sauce and cook for 20-30 minutes over medium heat until thickened. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  2. Heat your grill, or a greased grill pan, over medium-high heat.
  3. Pat the chicken breasts dry, and sprinkle each breast, back and front, with a pinch each of garlic powder, paprika, salt, pepper, and brown sugar. Place the chicken on the grill, and mop the revealed side of the chicken with the barbecue sauce. When the chicken easily pulls from the grill, flip it and mop the other side. Continue doing this until the chicken is cooked through.
  4. When the chicken is done, bring the remainder of the sauce to a boil to kill any bacteria from the raw chicken. Remove it from heat and serve on the side.

Cola-Barbecue Chicken


2 Responses to “Cola-Barbecue Chicken”

  1. Pingback: Spicy-Sweet BBQ Sauce

  2. Pingback: Cafe Rio-Style Sweet Pork Barbacoa | Spache the Spatula

Leave a Comment