Recipe Cupcake/Muffin Tin Thighs

Discussion in 'Outdoor Cooking and BBQs' started by CraigC, 20 Feb 2018.

  1. CraigC

    CraigC Über Member

    SE Florida
    I will be making these as one entry for the Chicken Challenge. I will provide pics of the different steps. This isn't a difficult recipe as the rub, vinegar sauce and hickory sauce can be made well in advance. I make extra recipes to keep on hand.

    All recipes and technique are courtesy of Myron Mixon's book "Smokin".

    12 medium skin-on, bone-in chicken thighs
    1 recipe Basic Chicken Rub(recipe to follow)
    3 1/4 cups chicken broth
    Salt, to taste
    Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

    For The Sauce
    1 Cup Basic Vinegar Sauce (recipe to follow)
    2 Cups Basic Hickory Sauce (recipe to follow)
    1 Cup ketchup
    1 Cup honey
    1 Cup pure maple syrup
    1-1/4 Cups seedless blackberry preserves
    8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature

    What You’ll Need
    Poultry shears
    1 silicone cupcake mold, with holes punched through each cup (or an aluminum cupcake pan, also with holes punched through each cup)
    1 13 x 9-inch aluminum baking pan
    1 aluminum baking sheet

    Note: I have made a reusable aluminum cupcake pan and baking pan.

    1) Heat a smoker to 300˚F. I use the BGE since the pit requires much more fuel.
    2) Using poultry shears, remove the knuckle on each end of each chicken thigh bone.
    3) Then trim the excess fat off the skin and meat of each thigh until the pieces are 3 to 4 inches wide, leaving about 1/4 inch of excess skin at the edges of the meat.
    4) Apply the chicken rub evenly to both sides of the thighs.
    5) In the cupcake mold, place each thigh, skin side down, in an individual cup. Sit the mold in the baking pan, and pour the chicken broth into the pan, being careful not to pour it directly on top of the chicken.
    6) Place the pan in the smoker and cook, uncovered, for 1 1/2 hours.
    7) Remove the baking pan from the smoker. Gently flip the thighs onto the baking sheet. Season the tops of the thighs with salt and pepper. Return the thighs to the mold cups, skin side up, and put the baking pan back in the smoker. Cook for 45 minutes.
    8) Meanwhile, make the sauce: Put all the sauce ingredients into a blender and blend until thoroughly combined. In a medium pan over medium heat, warm the sauce until it is hot but not boiling. Set aside.
    9) Remove the pan from the smoker, and unmold the chicken thighs onto the baking sheet, skin side up. Brush the thighs lightly with the warm sauce. Place the baking sheet in the smoker and cook for 30 minutes to allow the sauce to caramelize into the chicken skin.
    10) Remove the baking sheet from the smoker, and serve the cupcake chicken immediately.

    Basic Chicken Rub
    2/3 cup chili powder
    1/2 cup sugar
    4 tablespoons kosher salt
    4 tablespoons onion powder
    4 tablespoons garlic powder
    1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

    In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients thoroughly. You can store this rub in an airtight container indefinitely.

    Basic Vinegar Sauce
    2 cups cider vinegar
    1 cup ketchup
    1/2 cup hot sauce
    2 tablespoons salt
    2 tablespoons coarsely ground black pepper
    1 tablespoon red pepper flakes
    1/2 cup sugar

    1) In a stockpot over medium heat, combine the vinegar, ketchup, and hot sauce. Stir together.
    2) Pour in all the remaining ingredients and stir to dissolve. Do not boil.
    3) When the spices are thoroughly dissolved, take the pot off the heat.
    4) Let cool and funnel the sauce into a bottle. The sauce will keep, refrigerated, for up to 1 year.

    Basic Hickory Sauce
    2 tablespoons onion powder
    2 tablespoons garlic powder
    2 cups ketchup
    2 tablespoons smoked sweet paprika
    2/3 cup cider vinegar
    2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
    1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
    2 tablespoons honey
    2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
    2 tablespoons kosher salt
    2 tablespoons freshly ground black pepper

    1) Combine all the ingredients in a blender and pulse until thoroughly combined.
    2) Pour into a medium pot, and stir continuously over medium heat until heated through. Do not allow it to boil.
    3) Remove and use while hot.
    4) If reserving for later use, allow the mixture to cool; then pour it into a large bottle or container and store, refrigerated, for up to 1 year.

    These are my designated pans for these thighs.

    Here is a better shot of the actual cupcake/muffin tin with the holes in each cup.
    Prepping the thighs requires the removal of the "knuckles" at both ends of the bone and trimming the skin to just fit the thigh. Some folks remove the bone completely, but I think it helps keep the shape better.
    Prepped Thighs
    Rub ingredients
    Finished Rub
    Rubbed thighs in the tin
    BGE with lump charcoal and pecan chunks
    Charcoal chimney with lit coals that will be used to start the coals in the BGE
    This is the color smoke you want, thin blue
    Thighs ready to flip
    Finished thighs
    Last edited: 5 Mar 2018
  2. morning glory

    morning glory Obsessive cook Staff Member

    Very interesting! I look forward to the images of the steps...:)
    ElizabethB and CraigC like this.
  3. morning glory

    morning glory Obsessive cook Staff Member

    Excellent step by step images - once again I am struck by BGE jealousy! For anyone who doesn't know, that is the big green egg shaped outdoor smoker/BBQ in the photos. The chicken looks very sticky and delicious. :thumbsup:
  4. flyinglentris

    flyinglentris Active Member

    Looks like a possible winner. I envy you your food prep tools. :chef:
    morning glory and CraigC like this.
  5. CraigC

    CraigC Über Member

    SE Florida
    Thanks! Going south of the border for our last entry. Ole'.
    morning glory and flyinglentris like this.
  6. medtran49

    medtran49 Über Member

    SE Florida
    Actually dear, you forgot about the third chicken dish we are having this week that is mine. :D
  7. flyinglentris

    flyinglentris Active Member

    You're going south of the border. I'm going north of the border and by sea.
    CraigC likes this.
  8. CraigC

    CraigC Über Member

    SE Florida
    My bad! Looks like the Tchopitulas is back in!:hungry: Probably won't want chicken for awhile after this challange.:eek:
  9. flyinglentris

    flyinglentris Active Member

    I've got left over Salmon and a T-Bone in the fridge.
    CraigC likes this.
  10. CraigC

    CraigC Über Member

    SE Florida
    We've got a few non poultry items to work with. Vaca Frita comes to mind.
  11. flyinglentris

    flyinglentris Active Member


    I thought this looked like a winner.

    CraigC likes this.
  12. Kenmiller

    Kenmiller Member

    Thanks for sharing a piece of detailed information, each and everything is properly conveyed.
    TodayInTheKitchen and CraigC like this.
  13. CraigC

    CraigC Über Member

    SE Florida
    Thanks @Kenmiller! These thighs are excellent and well worth trying. Myron Mixon is the winningist man in competition BBQ in this country. He is self promotive, out spoken and arrogant, but the man knows his BBQ.

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