Cornell Chicken Barbecue (Cornell Formula Sauce)


Seriously, THE EASIEST grilled chicken you can make this summer and it’s SO TASTY, too. This is a tried and tested formula!



Last year, one of our friends from church invited as over for dinner. I watched as she masterfully grilled the chicken which we would have for dinner. I knew it would be a wonderful dish as the aroma coming from the grill smelled wonderful. It was amazing – the most tender, juicy and flavorful grilled chicken we have had in a long time. I am sure, I ate quite a few pieces.



This week she kindly invited us again for another meal at their house and I was hoping she would make the same dish we had last year. It was my lucky (for lack of a better term!) day as once again I saw her grilling these chicken pieces. After dinner, I didn’t hesitate to ask her for the recipe and her techniques on how she made these fantastic chicken. She kindly obliged. She mentioned it was her favorite dish of all time (I can understand why) and that this recipe is famous in her town in Upstate New York where it originated from. It’s the recipe invented by a professor from Cornell University hence the name Cornell Formula. I am just glad I learned to make this chicken. For summer, I won’t do grilled chicken any other way.



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Chicken Pieces (recipe is good for up to 10 halves)
1 Egg
1 cup vegetable Oil
2 cups Vinegar
3 Tablespoons Salt (up to 1/4 cup or to taste)
1 Tablespoon Poultry Seasoning (get a good quality one!)
1 teaspoon freshly ground Pepper


Mix all the ingredients (except chicken) in a blender and process until smooth.

Marinate the chicken pieces in the sauce for at least 3 hours or overnight, if preferred.

Chicken can also be parboiled and then marinated for a quicker cooking time. My friend actually boils the chicken pieces until they’re tender and then marinate them for at least 3 hours. This way you only need to grill the chicken for a short time as it’s pretty much cooked through (just long enough to get that lovely grill marks).

Otherwise, grill the chicken until fully cooked (time depends on the chicken pieces you are using) and baste frequently with the marinade. Serve immediately. You will then have the most flavorful and tender chicken!

If you have left-overs, then these chicken pieces taste even better the next day. I just grill them again (on low heat) so it’s crispy outside but still moist and tender inside but feel free to use them in your favorite recipes that call for left-over chicken!

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Last updated on June 20th, 2020 at 11:35 pm


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