Chicken/ Main Dishes

Baked Chicken Thighs Marinated in Alabama White Barbecue Sauce

chicken thighs marinated in white barbecue sauce on a red and white plate

White barbecue sauce is well-known to Alabamians, but new to me. I came across a reference to it in a cookbook, and Googled it.  A man named Big Bob Gibson created white barbecue sauce  in 1925 as an alternative to ordinary red barbecue sauce. It’s still used in its creator’s namesake restaurant in Decatur, Alabama, to coat freshly roasted whole chickens.

I don’t need vats of the stuff for dipping whole chickens, as they do at Big Bob Gibson’s, so I use the sauce as a marinade for chicken thighs, then brush more sauce on the thighs right after they come out of the oven. I’m sure this sauce would work fine with chicken breasts, wings or whole chickens, but I’ve only tried it with chicken thighs.

If you have time, wash, pat dry, and salt the chicken thighs the night before making this dish. In the morning, take them out, pat them dry, and marinate them in a 1/2 cup of white barbeque sauce until you’re ready to cook them.  I let the thighs marinate for at least an hour, but 4 or more hours is better.

Baked Chicken Thighs Marinated in Alabama White Barbecue Sauce

By Springhouse Turtle Serves: 4-8
Prep Time: 30 minutes Cooking Time: 25 minutes Total Time: 55 minutes

The hardest thing about making this dish is remembering to salt the chicken the night before and to marinate the chicken at least 4 hours before baking it. The rest is simple, and the results delectable.


  • 2 pounds chicken thighs (bone-in or boneless)
  • Salt
  • 1 cup dairy-free Alabama white barbecue sauce, divided (the recipe is on



The night before making this dish, wash, pat dry and salt the chicken thighs all over. Cover and refrigerate.


At least 4 hours before you plan to cook the chicken thighs, remove them from the fridge and coat them with 1/2 to 3/4 cup white barbecue sauce.


Cover and return to the fridge for at least 4 hours.


When ready to cook, preheat oven to 350 degrees F.


Remove the chicken thighs from the fridge and place them in a baking dish.


Bake, uncovered, for 25 minutes.


Remove from oven and brush more barbeque sauce over the tops of chicken thighs.


Garnish with chopped parsley or chives and serve immediately.

Springhouse Turtle Eats

Marinate the chicken thighs in white barbecue sauce before baking them for the best flavor.

Brush the baked chicken thighs with another coating of white barbecue sauce before serving.

Springhouse Turtle Eats


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