Barbecued Sumac Chicken

Barbecued Sumac Chicken

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This barbecued sumac chicken recipe is the bomb! It’s very straightforward, and best of all, you don’t need any cooking skills to succeed! But don’t let that detail fool you, it’s definitely not just another barbecued chicken recipe. 

As a matter of fact, my husband, Scott, said this is the best chicken he’s ever had! If you’re following a Keto or Low Carb lifestyle, this chicken recipe fits in both categories!

sumac chicken

Sumac Chicken

I came up with this recipe not too long ago, and I’m so pleased that I did! The combination of lemon, garlic, and thyme make this chicken recipe extra special! Not to mention, the addition of sumac powder, which adds a unique flavor of its own. Sumac can be found in most Middle Eastern markets. But if you don’t have access to one, you can order it from Amazon.

chicken in marinade bag

What is Sumac and How is it Used?

Sumac is a small, low tree, or shrub, that grows in East Asia, Africa, and North America. “Sumac” means “red” in Arabic, and similarly, in Assyrian, the word for “red” is “smuka.”

The flowers (fruit) of this sparsely-leaved plant are called “sumac bobs.” The fruit of some of the species is ground into a sour, crimson-colored powder. This powder, known as “sumac”  is used in many Middle Eastern recipes. For this reason, you’ll see it on a regular basis in my recipes.

You want my advice? Just go ahead and purchase some now, you’ll need it often! To learn more about sumac, check out the following article.

sumac plant

Sumac Chicken Serving Suggestions

This barbecued sumac chicken goes great with just about everything! I like to serve it with Tasty Mashed Potatoes (Merchanos), Vermicelli Rice, and Tabouli. However, it goes just as well with some grilled corn on the cob or Potato Salad.

How you serve it will depend on what you’re in the mood for. Because this is not really a “traditional Middle Eastern recipe,” you don’t have to limit the sides to Middle Eastern options. Another great idea is to drizzle the chicken with some Balsamic Vinegar Glaze.

For other great chicken recipes, check out my Easy Marry Me Chicken recipe!

Do you Pinterest? Please do this girl a favor by pinning and sharing!

bbq chicken

If you love this Sumac Chicken recipe, please give it a 5-star rating!

4.8 from 5 votes
sumac chicken
Barbecued Sumac Chicken
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
30 mins
resting Time
4 hrs
Total Time
45 mins

The best chicken marinade you’ll ever try!

Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: Assyrian, Middle Eastern
Servings: 4 people
Calories: 614 kcal
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 2 tsp sumac
  • 4 cloves crushed
  • 1 serrano pepper minced (or 1 tsp. crushed pepper flakes)
  • 8 chicken thighs
  1. Mix all the ingredients, except the chicken, and pour into a large plastic ziplock bag.
  2. Defrost the chicken, if frozen, and rinse thoroughly.
  3. Add the chicken to the marinade bag, making sure all the pieces are immersed in the marinade. Marinate for at least four hours, or overnight.
  4. Barbecue chicken until cooked through, turning the chicken pieces a few times to make sure they cook evenly. The skin should be nice and crispy, but not burned.
Nutrition Facts
Barbecued Sumac Chicken
Amount Per Serving (2 pieces)
Calories 614 Calories from Fat 432
% Daily Value*
Fat 48g74%
Saturated Fat 12g75%
Cholesterol 190mg63%
Sodium 1144mg50%
Carbohydrates 4g1%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 0g0%
Protein 38g76%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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