Whether it be a grilled breast, an oven-roasted chicken, or pan-seared thighs, this Smoked Chicken Rub is sure to make any meal a flavorful creation. 

Make a chicken seasoning dry rub that everyone will be talking about! This homemade chicken smoker rub recipe uses just a few simple but flavorful ingredients. Brown sugar is added for a touch of sweetness, and paprika, garlic, onion powder, and a surprise dash of lemon pepper, for a bit of spice. Make it in batches and share it with lucky guests at BBQs and picnics!

taking a spoonful of Smoked Chicken Rub out of a jar

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Smoked Chicken Rub Recipe!

  • This chicken smoke rub is so flavorful when it is applied to a whole chicken, or parts like leg quarters, thighs, breasts, and wings.
  • Add it to sour cream as a quick and easy dip for chips and veggies!
  • Barbecued, smoked, grilled, oven-roasted, or air-fried, this bold smoked chicken rub adds a rich spice flavor to chicken no matter how it’s prepared! 

seasonings in bowls to make Smoked Chicken Rub

What’s in Chicken Smoke Rub?

SWEET: Choose more or less brown sugar for the perfect, personalized flavor profile. Sugar-free Stevia or Monkfruit sugar alternative will work, too.

SAVORY: Garlic, onion powder, paprika, and kosher salt are the savory components. But, lemon pepper is what makes this recipe next level bright and tangy. No lemon pepper? Simply use 2 tablespoons of freshly cracked black pepper and 2 tablespoons of dried lemon zest.


Make a signature rub that everyone will ask for! Add a dash of mustard powder, red pepper flakes, or cayenne pepper to make it spicier or more brown sugar to make it less spicy.

PRO TIP: For best results, add about ½ teaspoon of corn starch to the finished recipe. This will help the smoked chicken rub spice cling to the meat since it expands as it absorbs moisture.

process of mixing together seasonings to make Smoked Chicken Rub

How to Make Chicken Smoke Rub

It is so easy to make this ahead of time and have it ready to add to all kinds of chicken dishes. 

  1. Thoroughly combine all ingredients (as per the recipe below).
  2. Store in a mason jar or container with a tightly fitting lid.

jar of Smoked Chicken Rub with a spoon

How to Store Smoked Chicken Rub

Add all of the ingredients in the container you’ll store it in and simply shake it thoroughly. No need to wash a bowl!

Write the current date on the lid of the container or on a piece of tape and affix to the container. Replace after 6 months.

close up of jar full of Smoked Chicken Rub

More Rubs and Seasonings


mixing Smoked Chicken Rub with a whisk
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Smoked Chicken Rub

Perk up almost any chicken dish with this versatile smoked chicken rub.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Servings 64 servings
Author Candace



  • In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients very well.
  • Store in a mason jar with a lid or another air tight container.


  • Makes about 32 Tablespoons = 2 cups
  • Use about ½-1 Tablespoon per chicken breast
  • *Replace lemon pepper with 2 Tablespoons freshly ground black pepper and 2 Tablespoons dried lemon zest.
  • Store seasoning in a sealed container, in a dry and dark area for up to 6 months.
    • PRO TIP: Mark the day it was made on the container for easy reference.
5 from 11 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
Or to leave a comment, click here!

Nutrition Information

Calories: 10 | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 885mg | Potassium: 38mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 421IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 8mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information does not include optional ingredients or garnish and is an estimate. It may change based on actual ingredients and cooking methods used.

Course Seasonings
Cuisine American

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spoon of Smoked Chicken Rub with writing


mixed Smoked Chicken Rub in a spoon with a title

jar of Smoked Chicken Rub with writing

Smoked Chicken Rub before and after mixing together spices with a title
close up of spoon full of Smoked Chicken Rub
close up of Smoked Chicken Rub with a title


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About the author

I am a wife, mother of two, and professional accountant. I love fantastic food, and it is so often the center of our lives, from everyday dinner, to family gatherings, and special evenings at fabulous restaurants. I have always loved cooking and baking, with my mom and grandma, and now, with my daughter and son. I love trying new recipes while enjoying my favorites too. I’m so happy to share them with you.
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