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how long can leg quarters and turkey legs stay wrapped in cooler safely?

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

Hi - I'm a newbie and I'm about to use my MES 40 smoker for the 2nd time. (First time was ribs and brisket, with a lot of help from you folks.) I want to smoke some chicken leg quarters and some turkey legs tomorrow. I was planning to brine them overnight, then dry them and let them sit in the fridge for a couple of hours, then season and then smoke. My problem is that my kiddo has an orthodontist appt at 3, so I was hoping I could cook them and then wrap them by 2:30 and let them sit in the cooler until 6 for dinner.

 

Is that too long to let poultry sit in the cooler?

 

I suppose I could wait until Friday, but I'm anxious to do another smoke!

 

Thanks in advance for your advice!
Claudia

post #2 of 8

I would say that if you cook the poultry to 165*, foil and wrap tightly in towels in the cooler, you should be fine for that time frame.  you don't want meat to rest long enough to hit <140* (danger zone) again, so it is a matter of temp more than time.  re-check your IT right b4 dinner; if it drops below 140*, reheat to be safe.

post #3 of 8

What James said.

post #4 of 8
Thread Starter 

Thanks!

post #5 of 8

Another way to keep the temp up is to wrap a brick or two in a towel after heating them up in the oven or smoker.

post #6 of 8

I put a hot water bottle in the box

post #7 of 8

3½ hrs might be pushing it.

Unless you do like Scar and Meat suggested.

 Keep the temp up or refrigerate later.

Just my 2¢

post #8 of 8

Leaving chicken for that long, the skin is going to be like rubber.

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