3 Spice Rubs for Chicken

Karen Frazier
sweet smoky spicy chicken rub
Chicken with sweet, smoky, and spicy rub

Using a poultry seasoning rub is a great way to add flavor to chicken. Make your chicken dinners more flavorful with these tasty rubs.

Lively Chicken Spice Rubs

For best results, use dried herbs and spices to make the rub. Store the rubs in a zipper bag, glass jar, or plastic container that seals tightly. When tightly sealed and kept in a cool, dry place, these rubs will last for up to six months.

Sweet, Smoky, and Spicy Rub

If you like the flavor of barbecue chicken, but you want to make chicken in the oven, then this rub is for you. It imparts the sweet smokiness of barbecue without having to venture outdoors. This rub works well on chicken parts -- legs, thighs, breasts, and wings.

Yields about 3/4 cup


  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground chipotle chili
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper


  1. In a small bowl, mix all the ingredients together.
  2. Use a generous amount of the rub on chicken parts. Rub it into the skin and seal it in a container. Refrigerate for four to eight hours before baking the chicken in the oven.

Garlic and Herb Rub

Use this rub on an entire chicken before you roast it. It imparts a delicious garlic and herb flavor that can't be beat.

Yields about 1/2 cup


garlic and herb chicken rub
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons dried rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 2 teaspoons dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes


  1. Put all the ingredients in a food processor or spice grinder. Pulse for 20 one-second pulses to grind and mix all the spices together.
  2. Rub on the outside of a whole chicken and wrap it in plastic. Refrigerate the chicken for four to eight hours before roasting.

Mediterranean Rub

This dry rub invokes flavors of the Mediterranean with warm spices, minty herbaceous notes, and a lemony finish. Use it on bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs that you grill or bake.

Mediterranean chicken rub

Yields about 1/4 cup


  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon lemon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon marjoram


  1. In a small bowl, combine all ingredients.
  2. Rub the spices on the chicken thighs and refrigerate them in a tightly sealed container or zipper bag for four to eight hours before baking or grilling.

Flavorful Chicken

Rubs are one of the best ways to add flavor to chicken. Likewise, they are quick to make and easy to use. Liven up your family's chicken dinner tonight with a flavorful spice rub.

3 Spice Rubs for Chicken