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Smoking Bone-In Chicken Breasts - Questions

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

A friend of mine asked me to smoke some pork butts for a family party he's having.  However, his wife is not a fan of pork and has requested that I smoke some bone-in chicken breasts for her.  I have yet to smoke chicken and everything I found in a forum search was in regards to smoking full chickens. 


Does anyone have any recipes that they would like to share for chicken breasts or point me in the right direction.  Any info. is appreciated.




post #2 of 8

If you can convince her to do thighs they are much more forgiving but if not look thru here to see what you like - Lots of ideas and posts to help you

post #3 of 8

Take the bone in breast pieces and inject with melted butter.  (I mix a little Yoshida's and Smoked chipotle tobasco in mine, but it's not necessary)  Rub with your favorite rub, and smoke in the hotter spot of your smoker.  275° is about optimum.  Smoke until internal is 160° and wrap / rest. Internal should come up to 165°   


You can glaze or sauce in the last 20 minutes as well.  Up to your or her preferences.

post #4 of 8

 You have got some good advice, But if all else fails try this.


post #5 of 8

I think an injection or a good brine will help. Thighs would be easier though as already said.

post #6 of 8



I usually cold smoke & sear smaller pieces on a charcoal grill, but when I hot smoke, I run a lower smoke temp than I would for whole birds, as I would with a butt or brisket in the 225-235* range.


For average size breasts (from a 4lb bird), I just dry rub and smoke for 1.0-1.5 hours depending on the intensity of smoke flavor your looking for. Small pieces take on a lot of smoke in a relatively short exposure time.  Then, pan & tent with a pat or two of butter and a dash of lemon juice and sometimes a dash of soy sauce. This will add flavor and moisture in the container to allow them to steam for 45-60 minutes to finish, and, makes a tasty dipping sauce when served. Even if they get over done, they'll still be moist. White meat is not my best friend when it comes to smoking, but with this method it's hard to screw 'em up.


Single chicken breasts are pretty small to try and get an accurate temp reading in, so you can try to get 'em up to about 135-140* with a couple attempts to get a reading, then pan/tent or foil to finish. The problem with getting temp readings on several small pieces is that you've got the smoke chamber door open the whole time and losing tons of heat, so I choose to take temps after they've had a ride in the foil. You can grab the foiled meat out and close the door while you check temps, and not lose too much heat from the package you're handling if you have everything ready and close at hand.


I guess with one or two pieces, you could stab a prob into one and watch the temp on it while you're smoking. When it gets close, check the other one. I just have a hard time getting accurate temp reads on those smaller pieces, especially when the probe is left in the meat.


Hope this gives you a bit more insight before you take the plunge.


Have a great smoke!



post #7 of 8
Thread Starter 

Thanks Eric for the detailed information and thanks to everyone else that replied with their suggestions, much appreciated.  I was a little reluctant to do this since the pieces are small and his wife is very picky about her food, but I'll just tell her to have a backup plan if need be.  I certainly can't improve my technique if I'm not willing to try, so I'll give it a whirl and see what happens.  I'll take plenty of Qview of my smoke and share the outcome.  Thanks again.




post #8 of 8


One thing that I have tried a couple of times here is just throwing different meats into the smoker naked. I did a small party the other night in Staten Island and I didn't have my normal spice rack to chose from and I just threw the wingsinto the smoker with some moink balls and some sbt's and they came out tasting WOW really good. I don't know if it was the air or the other foods in the smoker or what?? Now alot of the folks asked about them and I just told them there smoked. So heck give everything a try once heck twice you never know what you will happen into.

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