This post may contain affiliate links. We participate in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites at no extra cost to you.
Smoked Chipotle Mango Chicken Thighs are boneless and skinless, smoked in a chipotle mango rhubarb tequila marinade, that doubles as a sauce, to provide a smokey yet vibrant dish that is perfect for summer BBQs.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
You can find smoked chicken thighs anywhere. So I wanted to bring you something a little different, and a recipe that makes use of the garden produce ready for harvest now.
We don’t have mangos on our homestead but they’re plentiful at the local grocer right now and very ripe. Our garden does have an abundance of rhubarb and cilantro though, so we’re making great use of those with Rhubarb Cobbler and other Mexican dishes.
Why these Smoked Chicken Thighs are so dang good!
You guys know Mexican-inspired food is my absolute favorite! I can’t get over the flavor combinations and the vibrancy you often get from the cuisine. So today I’m pairing up my love of smoking (a new section of recipes to Cast Iron!) and Mexican recipes.
These pellet grill smoker combos are perfect!
Ingredients & Variations
- Chicken Thighs: These could be skin-on and bone-in. We just happened to have boneless, skinless thighs on hand, so I used that.
- Mango and Rhubarb: The mango will bring a sweetness to the overall dish and a vibrancy that just can’t be matched! You could substitute pineapple if you do not have mango and get the same citrus kick. The rhubarb, while not as juicy as the mango, will give us a tang that balances out the heat and sweetness in our marinade.
- Agave: You can use agave or honey. I chose agave for this marinade because we are using Tequila as the liquid base portion. The flavors will complement each other well since Tequila is made from the agave plant.
- Tequila: Use good Tequila, I used gold. The Tequila acts as both a floral component and a solvent that helps to combine and dissolve spices that water and oil may not otherwise be able to. The alcohol will burn off both in the smoking and the reduction of the extra marinade to make the dipping sauce. If you do not have or want to use Tequila, you can use a splash of water, rose water, or cactus juice instead.
- Lime Juice: Adding more of that acidic, citrus, culturally known flavor.
- Cilantro: Fresh, vibrant, and soothing. This cilantro, though minimal, really ties it all together. If you do not like cilantro, you can add a pinch of cumin or omit it.
- Salt: To enhance all the flavors.
Instructions for how to make Smoked Mexican Chicken Thighs
- Make Marinade: Combine marinade ingredients into a food processor or blender on high, until smooth.
- Combine with chicken thighs: Add chicken thighs and 1 cup of marinade to a gallon-sized Ziploc bag, remove air, close, and massage to completely cover the chicken. Refrigerate until ready to smoke.
- Reduce sauce: Add the 3/4 cup of leftover marinade to a 1-quart sauce pot and simmer covered for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. This will cook off the alcohol and create a thick dipping sauce. Remove from sauce pot and set into dipping dishes until ready to serve.
- Smoke the chicken: Use tongs to place the chicken directly on the smoker grate for 45 minutes at 225F.
- Serve: Serve chicken once rested with reserved sauce, a sprinkle of cotija cheese, and more fresh cilantro.
- Traeger Smoker Pellet Grill
- Blender (or food processor)
- Gallon-Sized Ziploc Bag
- 1-quart Saucepot
- Mixing Bowls
Don’t forget to check out my shop for some of my favorite products!
Get the goods!
Want more? Check out our app, ebook, and more!
FAQ’s about Marinated Smoked Chicken Thighs
Smoke boneless, skinless chicken thighs for 1 hour at 300F. Bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs require a minimum smoking temperature of 275F for 45 minutes. Smoked at 225F, will take about 2 hours or more.
The smoking times and temperatures are guidelines. Use an instant-read thermometer to ensure your chicken gets to 170-175F. Then allow to rest for 10 minutes covered with tinfoil before serving.
A minimum of 1 hour, up to 24 hours.
Yes! If you find you would like more marinade for dipping, do a straight double of the recipe. You will still only need 1 cup of marinade per 3 pounds of chicken.
- Refrigerate in an air-tight container for up to 7 days.
- Wrap cooled chicken in plastic wrap within an air-tight container before freezing for up to 3 months.
- Reheating chicken is as easy as microwaving on high for 1 minute per chicken thigh, as long as the chicken is fully thawed.
What to serve with Chipotle Mango Chicken
Chips, Mexican Rice, served as a taco, or on top of a salad – this smoked chicken thigh recipe tastes very reminiscent of BBQ and the sauce has a cool relish quality. I had mine as is with the dipping sauce and paired it with a Sparkling Mezcal Margarita. The recipe can be found on the Cast Iron Recipes app!
Hey, if you want to catch all my videos, be sure to subscribe to my YouTube Channel. You’ll be notified each time I share a new video!
If you love this recipe, please leave a ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ rating!
Smoked Chipotle Mango Chicken Thighs
- Traeger Smoker Pellet Grill
- Blender (or food processor)
- Gallon Sized Ziploc Bag
- 1 quart Saucepot
- 3 pounds chicken thighs boneless, skinless
- 1 mango skin removed, diced
- 2 rhubarb stems roughly chopped
- 3 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
- 1/2 cup agave or honey
- 1 cup tequila
- 2 limes juice of
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 Tablespoon salt
- 1 bunch cilantro optional
- Combine marinade ingredients into a food processor or blender on high, until smooth.
- Add chicken thighs and 1 cup of marinade to a gallon-sized Ziploc bag, remove air, close, and massage to completely cover the chicken. Refrigerate until ready to smoke.
- Add the 3/4 cup of leftover marinade to a 1-quart sauce pot and simmer covered for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. This will cook off the alcohol and create a thick dipping sauce. Remove from sauce pot and set into dipping dishes until ready to serve.
- Use tongs to place the chicken directly on the smoker grate for 45 minutes at 300F. Brush with the remaining marinade in the bag as necessary to ensure all chicken is covered.
- Serve chicken, once rested, with reserved sauce, a sprinkle of cotija cheese, and more fresh cilantro.