Smoked Chicken Leg Quarters on a Weber Charcoal Grill

Chicken leg quarters are an inexpensive treat that are absolutely delicious when smoked on a charcoal grill.  Smoked chicken quarters are great for making pulled chicken sandwiches or smoked chicken salad.

Let me show you how I smoke chicken quarters on a Weber charcoal grill!

Smoke to 185F


Important Tips on Smoking Chicken Leg Quarters

We are going to smoke the quarters “Low and Slow” to make pulled chicken.  This means the meat needs to hit an internal temperature of about 185F so it pulls easy.  This is a higher temperature than you would use for smoked bone in chicken breasts or some grilled chicken quarters where we are not trying to shred the meat.

Tip #1: Make sure you brine the quarters so they stay juicy at this high internal temperature.

Tip #2: The skin is going to have a tough, leathery texture.  Don’t worry about it.  The skin can be used in stock or makes a great dog treat.

The Process

Start by brining the leg quarters overnight.  Here is a link to a great Basic Brine recipe.

After the chicken has brined rinse it under cold water and pat dry with paper towels.

Season the thigh portion of the quarters under the skin.  Here is a link to a Basic Chicken Rub.

Season Under the Skin

Fill a charcoal basket with unlit charcoal or simply bank some unlit coals on one side of the grill.

Place the chicken quarters on the opposite side of the grill from the charcoal.

Arrange Quarters for Indirect

Light one side/corner of the charcoal bed.  I used a propane torch but a paraffin wax cube also works great.

Add a handful of wood chips (hickory, pecan and apple are great choices) on top of the charcoal.

Set the bottom air vents to halfway open and keep the top vent fully open.

This configuration will typically create a temperature of around 275F at the cooking grate level.

Let the chicken smoke for about two hours until an internal temperature of 185F is reached.

Smoked Chicken Quarters

Remove the quarters, allow to cool and shred the meat to create a huge pile of pulled chicken!

You can use the meat for smoked chicken salad, sliders, quesadillas, chili or any of the other great leftover bbq chicken recipes on this site.

Pulled Chicken Quarters


Another delicious and inexpensive dinner idea are these Chicken Legs Cooked on a Pellet Grill.

Smoke to 185F

Smoked Chicken Leg Quarters {Great for Pulled Chicken!}

Chicken quarters are brined and seasoned then smoked with indirect heat to an internal temperature of 185F. This is a great technique for making pulled chicken for sandwiches.
Prep Time 4 hours
Cook Time 2 hours
Total Time 6 hours
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Calories 275 kcal


  • 4 large chicken leg quarters
  • Basic Brine
  • All Purpose Rub


  • Brine the leg quarters for at least four hours up to overnight.
  • Rinse and dry the leg quarters and season the outside and inside of the skin with All Purpose Rub.
  • Set up your grill for indirect heat with hickory smoke wood.
  • Smoke for two hours until an internal temperature of 185F is reached.
  • Allow quarters to slightly cool and pull/shred meat away from the bones and skin.
  • Save bones and skin for making smoked chicken stock.


This technique will provide delicious smoked, shredded chicken meat. You can add some Alabama White Sauce for some amazing chicken sliders or use the meat in a creamy chicken salad.
The chicken skin will usually not be desirable to eat as it will often be chewy. The skin can be saved, along with the bones, to use in making stock.
Keyword Smoked Chicken Leg Quarters