Beginner’s Guide for Grilling Drumsticks at Home

Beginner’s Guide for Grilling Drumsticks at Home

Grilling drumsticks is a fundamental skill for any aspiring grill master. These versatile pieces of chicken offer a blank canvas for flavour exploration, while also being surprisingly simple to cook. This guide is designed specifically for those new to grilling drumsticks, providing a step-by-step approach to ensure perfectly cooked, juicy results with a satisfyingly crispy skin.

We’ll delve into essential preparation techniques, explore key grilling methods, and equip you with the knowledge to achieve that restaurant-worthy finish. By following these straightforward instructions, you’ll gain the confidence to master grilling drumsticks and become an expert in this fundamental grilling technique.

Grilling Drumsticks Recipe for BeginnersGrilling Drumsticks Recipe for Beginners

Grilling drumsticks is a simple and flavorful way to cook chicken. They require minimal prep and cook relatively quickly on the grill. You can achieve delicious results with just a sprinkle of salt and pepper, or get creative with marinades and rubs to add tons of flavour.

Preparation Time

60 min


  • 6 Grilling Drumsticks
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 cup barbecue sauce


  • Preheat the barbecue to medium-high heat.
  • In a bowl, mix olive oil, salt, pepper, paprika, garlic powder, and onion powder.
  • Rub the mixture onto the drumsticks, coating them evenly.
  • Place the drumsticks on the barbecue and grill for 20-25 minutes, turning occasionally, until cooked through.
  • Brush barbecue sauce onto the drumsticks during the last 5 minutes of grilling.
  • Remove from barbecue and let them rest for 5 minutes before serving.


  • Total Calories: 400 kcal
  • Carbs: 10g
  • Proteins: 40g
  • Fats: 20g

What Perfect Side Dishes Will Complete Your Grilled Drumstick Feast?Side Dishes for Grilled Drumstick Feast

Grilling drumsticks are a versatile main course that can be paired with a variety of side dishes. Here are some ideas to consider, depending on your taste and what else you have on hand:

Light and Refreshing

  • Salads: A simple green salad with a light vinaigrette is a great way to balance out the richness of the grilled chicken. You can also get creative with chopped vegetables, fruits, or nuts.
  • Grilled vegetables: Take advantage of the grill and throw on some zucchini, bell peppers, onions, or asparagus for a smoky and flavorful side.
  • Quinoa or brown rice: These whole grains provide a healthy and filling base for your meal.

Classic BBQ Sides

  • Baked beans: A sweet and savoury option that’s perfect for a backyard barbecue.
  • Coleslaw: Creamy or vinegar-based, coleslaw adds a cool and crunchy counterpoint to the chicken.
  • Corn on the cob: Nothing says summer cookout like fresh corn on the cob.

Heartier Options

  • Mac and cheese: This ultimate comfort food is always a crowd-pleaser. You can even kick it up a notch by adding smoked cheese or bacon.
  • Roasted potatoes: Roasted potatoes are a classic side dish that can be dressed up with herbs, spices, or a cheese sauce.
  • Mashed sweet potatoes: A sweeter twist on mashed potatoes, this side dish is both delicious and nutritious.

Think about the flavour profile of your grilled drumsticks when choosing sides. If you’ve used a sweet and smoky barbecue sauce, a lighter side like a salad or grilled vegetables might be a good choice. If your drumsticks are more savoury, a mac and cheese or roasted potatoes would be a great complement.

Tips for Success

  • Don’t overcrowd the grill: Leave space between the grilling drumsticks for even cooking.
  • Resist the urge to peek: Constantly opening the lid lets heat escape and slows down cooking.
  • Let them rest: After removing the drumsticks from the grill, tent them with foil and let them rest for 5-10 minutes. This allows the juices to redistribute for a more flavorful and tender result.

Flavour Inspiration

While salt and pepper are a classic choice, you can experiment with different seasonings. Here are some ideas:

  • Spicy: Chili powder, smoked paprika, cayenne pepper
  • Herbal: Italian seasoning, thyme, rosemary
  • Smoky: Smoked paprika, chipotle powder


Fire up the grill and get ready to enjoy restaurant-worthy chicken drumsticks right in your backyard! With these simple steps, you’ll be a grilling pro in no time. So grab your favourite marinade, crank up the heat, and get ready for juicy, flavorful drumsticks that everyone will love.


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