Tony Roma’s Inspired BBQ Chicken

Tony Roma's BBQ Chicken - Sticky, tangy, sweet tomato based BBQ sauce is slathered over chicken and caramelized in the oven.

The final post in our Tony Roma’s throwback meal, the BBQ chicken is the easiest part of the whole meal. Sticky, tangy, sweet tomato based BBQ sauce is slathered over chicken and caramelized in the oven. When we would go to the restaurant as a kid, my dad and my brother would order the ribs, while my mom and I would order chicken. I think it was our attempt at staying on the healthier side since we were eating a giant loaf of onion rings and french fries with the main course. I have to say, sometimes I long for the days when you’re a kid and menus mean nothing to you.I don’t remember prices on there, or deciding on whether or not to have a starch with the meal. There was no nutritional content printed next to the meals shaming you from ordering things (I genuinely would not want to see what the nutritional content is for the onion loaf, but I am guessing they made one order serve 20 to bring down the numbers, haha). It was such a period of innocence. Innocence that leads to these delicious food memories. These days we reserve this meal for a once in a while type dish or we make altered versions of it. I usually make the bbq chicken with white meat, or pork tenderloin. The cole slaw is regularly made with light mayo (spoiler alert, it still tastes great!) and the onion rings are made in one small mini loaf pan to be shared by everyone. You’ve gotta enjoy life, even during the summer when swimsuits are the clothing of choice!

Add the first 8 ingredients (all of them until you get to the chicken) into a saucepan and whisk until combined. Bring to a boil, then simmer on low for 45 minutes. Set oven to 400 degrees. Season chicken with salt and pepper and cool for 35-40 minutes, or until nice and crispy. Tony Roma's BBQ Chicken - Sticky, tangy, sweet tomato based BBQ sauce is slathered over chicken and caramelized in the oven.
Coat with BBQ sauce, then put under broiler for a few minutes. Put the pan on the top rack under the broiler.
With the oven door open watch the sauce as it begins to bubble and caramelize.
When it is browned to your liking, take out. This chicken was under the broiler for 2 minutes.Tony Roma's BBQ Chicken - Sticky, tangy, sweet tomato based BBQ sauce is slathered over chicken and caramelized in the oven.


Alternatively, you can cook the chicken in a slow cooker on low for 7 hours, skin side up with only salt and pepper added. NO liquids. I made the chicken both ways for this recipe. Here is the slow cooker chicken before covering with BBQ sauce.Tony Roma's BBQ Chicken - Sticky, tangy, sweet tomato based BBQ sauce is slathered over chicken and caramelized in the oven.
Remove chicken gently from slow cooker and follow the rest of the directions.Tony Roma's BBQ Chicken - Sticky, tangy, sweet tomato based BBQ sauce is slathered over chicken and caramelized in the oven.

Serve with Onion Loaf, Cole Slaw, and lots of extra BBQ sauce!

Tangy, sticky, sweet, BBQ chicken with homemade bbq sauce!

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Tony Roma's Inspired BBQ Chicken

Tangy, sweet BBQ Chicken that made Tony Roma's famous!
Yield 2 cups
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Course Main
Cuisine American
Author Sabrina Snyder

Ingredients
 

  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1 cup vinegar
  • 1/2 cup corn syrup
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
  • 8 pieces chicken of your choice - skin and bone on (preferably)
  • salt and pepper

Instructions

  • Add all the ingredients into a saucepan and whisk until combined.
  • Bring to a boil, then simmer on low for 45 minutes.
  • Set oven to 400 degrees.
  • Season chicken liberally with salt and pepper.
  • Cook chicken for 35-40 minutes.
  • Coat with BBQ sauce, then put under broiler for a few minutes.
  • Put the pan on the top rack under the broiler.
  • With the oven door open watch the sauce as it begins to bubble and caramelize.
  • When it is browned to your liking, take out.
  • Alternatively, you can cook the chicken in a slow cooker on low for 7 hours, skin side up with only salt and pepper added. NO liquids.
  • Remove chicken gently from slow cooker and follow the rest of the directions.
  • Serve with onion loaf, cole slaw, and lots of extra BBQ sauce!

Nutrition

Calories: 424kcal | Carbohydrates: 101g | Protein: 2g | Cholesterol: 3mg | Sodium: 1741mg | Potassium: 378mg | Sugar: 95g | Vitamin A: 615IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 38mg | Iron: 0.5mg
Keyword: barbecue chicken, copycat recipe, Tony Roma's Inspired BBQ Chicken

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the upcoming cookbook: Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients which is being published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

Dinner, then Dessert, Inc. owns the copyright on all images and text and does not allow for its original recipes and pictures to be reproduced anywhere other than at this site unless authorization is given. If you enjoyed the recipe and would like to publish it on your own site, please re-write it in your own words, and link back to my site and recipe page. Read my disclosure and copyright policy. This post may contain affiliate links.

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Comments

  1. Can Splenda or any other sugar substitute diet used. If so would the amount still be the same 2 tsp..

    Thankyou

  2. This looks delicious, but I am just wondering if you think that honey would work as a substitute for the corn syrup. Thank you!

  3. I have not made this BQ chicken yet but I’m giving you 5 stars because all of your cole slaws (and I now have made them all) are delicious. I want to try this BQ chicken to go with your slaw recipes. I usually prepare both thighs and breasts but I remove skin because my family won’t eat it. Will I be sacrificing flavor if I remove skin? Thank you for providing such a professional website. I use it so often with much success.

  4. This was absolutely delicious, the chicken was so moist and scrumptious, thanks so much for the recipe, will make this over and over again.

  5. I just want to thank you! I am a breastfeeding mama who’s baby is allergic to dairy, egg, wheat and coconut. I am so grateful I came across your site because there are so many recipes I can try and also love all the crock pot options!

  6. I have only eaten at Tony Roma’s once. I honestly don’t remember what I ate, but I know it was good! I won’t miss an opportunity to eat a recipe inspired by it!

  7. I love Tony Roma’s. Especially the BBQ chicken! That’s one of my favorite recipes there! I will be trying this one at home!

  8. That looks delicious. You wouldn’t think I just ate dinner. This has my tummy grumbling… #greedy

    1. Haha that is awesome. When I put up the post in the mornings I crave what I am posting. So this week it has been a lot of interesting foods that I am craving before the sun even comes up.

  9. i have never been to Tony Roma’s we don’t have one near here. But I love making BBQ chicken however I just use my oven I do not use slow cookers. 🙂

  10. Your blog is impressive, thanks to the quality of your recipes & other content. We would be glad if you would participate on Contestchef so that your quality recipes can contest with other such bloggers/ recipe creators and win accolades from various players in the global food industry.

    Contestchef is a global forum for food/ recipe bloggers to showcase their skills to the world. This is a one of a kind concept and backed by food conglomerates around the world. Several recipe creators/bloggers are already contesting on Contestchef.
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  11. Another great Tony Roma’s recipe!! Now people can enjoy the meals without leaving home!

  12. I know using the broiler is key for that outside crispy crunch. I will have to make this and pay Tony Roma’s a visit to compare.

  13. Mmm that barbeque would be so good right now. I’d definitely have to try it with the slow cooker first!

  14. You’ve made it sound so easy! I need to try this recipe. I am a huge fan of my slow cooker, so I’ll definitely try it that way too.

    1. I miss it too! That’s why I had to figure out a way to have more. Now if I could only find the recipe to Pioneer Chicken!

  15. Is Tony Roma’s a restaurant? Because if so, and this is the kind of food they serve, we need one here in Boston!

    1. Yes! It was hugely popular in the 80s and 90s. It still exists but it isn’t the destination restaurant it used to be sadly.

  16. This is one of the best dish series I’ve seen in a while. Everything on this plate is spectacular!