Courtesy of Martin Jakobsen

Courtesy of Martin Jakobsen

One of my absolutely favorite things to do is to take a marinade preparation and turn it into a smoking masterpiece.  Peaches and Basil come together to elevate the average bird to something really special.  You can follow the recipe using a grill, or you can use an entire bird and place it on a vertical non-stick chicken roaster.  Norpro sells these for less than $8

Norpro Non Stick Coated Vertical Poultry Turkey Chicken Roaster 8 Pounds 269

Norpro Non Stick Coated Vertical Poultry Turkey Chicken Roaster 8 Pounds 269

A quick google search will yield several sources for you to acquire one of these beauties.  The wonderful thing about this product is it allows the smoke to get at the meat from all angles and the dripping collection tray at the bottom.  It allows for a placement for a can of beer for beer can chicken cooking methods and placement of key herbs that will make your chicken just to die for.

Alright, getting back to the Bird. When you are going to smoke the whole bird, double the recipe.  This way you can coat your entire bird and have enough for the reserve basting amount called for in the recipe.  It is crazy how much that basting liquid really adds that extra umph (technical term) to the final product.

If you find that your bird is getting a little dry on the smoker/grill – I would suggest you brine the bird first for a couple of hours.  Here is my basic brine for any bird:

  •  1 Gallon Water
  • 1 Cup Sugar
  • 1 Cup Salt

Place the above ingredients in a food save container and Stir to combine until the salt and sugar have dissolved. Place the chicken in the brine and weight it down with a heavy plate with a large can over the top to ensure the bird stays submerged for the full time.

When you get done, the bird will have taken in the requisite amount of moisture.  Then I would proceed with the Marinating instructions below and then – smoke it baby!  When you peal that chicken apart and you see that amazing smoke ring on that moist bird – my friend, your life will have changed for the better.  Never again will you have a dry bland bird.


Peach & Basil Grilled Chicken

Serves 4
Prep time 15 minutes
Cook time 30 minutes
Total time 45 minutes
Meal type Main Dish, Marinade
Misc Gourmet, Serve Hot
Occasion Barbecue


  • 4 Boneless Skinless Chicken
  • 1/2 cup Fresh Basil Leaves (chopped)
  • 4 Peaches (halved with pit removed)
  • 1/2 cup Olive Oil
  • 1/4 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons Lemon Juice
  • 2 Tablespoons Dijon Mustard (Whole or Course Grain)
  • 1 clove Garlic (crushed)
  • dash Franks Hot Sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon Kosher Salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon Fresh Cracked Black Pepper


  • 1/2 cup Peach Preserves


If you are smoking this, I recommend a fruit wood such as Apple or Cherry.  My favorite combination is 1/2 Apple and 1/2 Mesquite.

This recipe does take some marinating time.


Double this recipe if you are going to marinate a whole chicken.


Step 1
Wash and rinse your chicken and pat dry with kitchen paper, and set aside.
Step 2
Lightly spray your peaches with the olive oil, and set aside.
Step 3
Combine the marinade ingredients in a medium bowl and whisk to combine. Reserve about 1/2 cup for basting.
Step 4
Place the chicken in a zip lock type bag and the remaining marinade and place in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours.
Step 5
Remove the chicken from the marinade and discard the marinade.
Step 6
Grill your chicken at 350 degrees F or to a medium fire.
Step 7
Once the grill is to temp, add the chicken and peaches to the grill. Turn the chicken once about halfway through your cooking time.
Step 8
Base the chicken with the reserved marinade for about the last 5-7 minutes of the cooking time.
Step 9
Test with an internal thermometer. Your chicken is done when it reaches 170 degrees F. This will take about 25-30 minutes. The Peaches only need to heat through, so pull these off sooner. When you pull the chicken off, dash them with the fresh basil and allow the chicken to rest for at least two minutes.

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