Years ago, when we first moved here to Highlands Ranch, Colorado, a family from church invited us over for dinner that first week. They invited over two other families as well. You can imagine it was a crowd, with many kids running around. It was so much fun, and we began some wonderful friendships that night.

It was July, and Sarah, who is a fantastic cook, grilled up a huge pile of these chicken legs with this dry rub she made herself. It is SO simple, but so SO good! Now this has become one of my go to crowd pleasers in the summertime.

In fact, I ALWAYS double this recipe. I buy the large family packs of chicken legs at Sam’s Club.

Start by spreading out and patting dry all the chicken legs on a baking sheet. Then blend together the Kosher salt, black pepper, garlic powder and paprika.

It is best to use your hands to sprinkle, smother and rub the spice blend into the chicken till they are all completely rubbed and coated with the spice blend.

We always spray or rub a little oil onto the grill rack before placing the chicken on so they don’t stick and tear.

Heat up the grill on high, with the lid closed. Then place the legs on. Turn the burners down to medium, close the lid and try to keep the temperature of the grill at about 400 degrees.

Open the lid and check on them about every 5 minutes. Turn them to cook them evenly and leave slightly charred on all sides.

Serve up on a platter and eat them hot!

Some of my FAVORITE side dishes for these chicken legs are –

  • Homemade Mac & Cheese
  • Pasta Salad
  • Roasted or air fried potatoes
  • Roasted or grilled green beans or asparagus
  • Fresh fruit or fruit salad
  • Green leafy salad
  • Buttermilk biscuits

Grilled Chicken Legs with Dry Rub

Chicken legs smothered with this homemade dry rub, and then grilled to perfection are fast, easy and cheap. Such a great leftover, I alwaus DOUBLE this recipe!
Check out recipe notes for instructions on cooking without a grill.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Course dinner, easydinner, Lunch, Main Course, Party Food
Cuisine American


  • 3 pounds chicken legs, thawed
  • 2 Tbsp Kosher salt
  • 1 Tbsp black pepper, ground
  • 1 Tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 Tbsp paprika


  • Spread the chicken legs out on a baking sheet, and use paper towels to pat each one dry.
  • In a small bowl blend together the spices.
  • Use your hands to sprinkle, spread and rub the spice blend all over the chicken legs. Rub it in under the skin, then smooth the skin flat over the meat, then rub the spice blend on the outside of the skin. Keep going till the legs are completely coated.
  • Heat up the grill, on high, with the lid closed.
  • Before placing the legs on, we like to spray the grill with a little oil, be careful it is flammatory. This keeps the legs from sticking.
  • Place the legs on the grill. Close the lid, and turn the burners down to a medium temp. Try to keep the temperature about 400°.
  • Check on them, and turn about 5 minutes.
  • Press on a thick meaty part, to check for firmness, and see if the juices run clear to check for doneness.
  • Serve up on a platter.


If you do not have a grill, or it is wintertime, do not fret! Grease or lightly spray a baking dish. Cover with foil and bake in a 400 degree oven for 25-30 minutes. 
Keyword chicken, grilling