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Chicken Cook

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

Hey all,


I cooked some chickens yesterday (spatchcock) and posted pictures of them for people to see on Facebook where, I am friends with numerous competition teams and people who have been cooking much longer than I have. I thought they came out great after cooking them at 250 for about 4 hours. I wake up this morning and see comments posted how one person wouldn't even try them based on the way they look and that I am cooking them wrong. I was told that I need to cook them between 350-375 for an hour. Now, I can see this and my question is this....does that advice hold merit and if it is indeed the case, should I think about injecting the breast with something like chicken broth to keep it moist since it is going to be cooking so hot and fast? Right now, chicken is the bane of my BBQ existence and I have a new found obsession to get it right. I picked up 2 more chickens to cook today to see if I can get it right.....


Any advice would be greatly appreciated....Thanks....usa.gif

post #2 of 9



Did you post q view here on the forum of your chickens? You said you smoked spatched chicken at 250 for 4 hours, but what else did you do to them, internal meat temp etc? Few more details and pics would be very helpful. 

post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 

I didn't brine my birds because I am still trying to figure out how I can do that since I don't have the fridge space to keep them cool. I rubbed them with an all purpose rub that I found here on SMF and gave it a go. 250 for 4 hours over applewood to an IT of around 175....this is my result...

I'm being told that low and slow doesn't work on chicken. Chicken is the bane of my existence. The skin is dark but the meat was tender and moist and although it didn't have much smoke flavor, I thought it was good. I picked up 2 more birds to give it another go today...(wife.gif ain't gonna like it) but until I get my chickens right, I am going to keep trying. I'm also being told that golden brown skin is the way to be not dark. I'm going to try and cook this new method but, if I am going to cook that hot and fast (350-375 for around an hour) then should I inject beef broth or stock into the breast to keep it from drying out? I thought I was doing good with chicken...until this morning....usa.gif

post #4 of 9

I used to cook my poultry low and slow, but four the last eight years or so I always crank up the heat. I typically smoke chickens running the smoker anywhere from 275*-325* (same for my turkeys now). I feel that they get plenty of smoke at this temp and the skin gets nice and crisp. I do not inject, spritz, or brine my chickens. I always have nice moist bird. I'll be doing another spatched chicken tonight, can't wait!


Here's a few of my chicken cooks at high temps:





post #5 of 9

First off, let me say I'm no expert with chicken by far!!!

Here's some leg qtrs I did quite a while ago. http://www.smokingmeatforums.com/t/118547/chicken-leg-qtrs-with-q-view

At the time, I was using an electric smoker and the max temp I could get was 230*. I always brine my chicken for a couple hours and yes you can brine without having room in the fridge. Mix up your brine, put the chicken and brine in a large resealable bag or two and you can sit the bag in a pan or something if you are worried about leaking, put it in a cooler and cover it with some ice. I only brine for a couple hours. Take it out, rinse, pat dry and apply your rub. You can also give it a good coating of olive oil before applying the rub.


You said you used an all purpose rub recipe found on here...does it have a lot of sugar in it cause that's my first thought in seeing how dark the chicken is. The sugar will caramelize and give you that dark color. You can inject if you want but I never have. I also spritz a bit sometimes with a bit of chicken broth. Don't know if it makes any difference but I also flip my whole spatched birds halfway through. 


You don't have to smoke as high as 350-375, but at least as high as 300 to get a crispy skin and of course they won't be in the smoker as long, so the skin shouldn't get as dark. They are done when breasts reach 165 IT and thighs/dark meat reaches 170. Another trick I found on here when doing whole birds is to expose the joint or cutting the bird in half. 

It's found Post 11 of this thread: 



Are you using a water pan or other liquid? I usually don't but I do put a pan underneath to catch the drippings. 


DirtSailor has some good advice too!


Hope this helps.

post #6 of 9

cool !

post #7 of 9

i like to run my chickens at around 310/315* and kick it up to 325* last few minutes or so to do work on the skin...i cant stand rubbery skin. and as for the color of your bird, yeh thats pretty dark and smokinhusker pointed out the same thing i thought when i saw it, looks like sugar was used. dont know what you used but i try and save any type of sugar based anything for the end. all my birds come out nice and golden brown and crispy as of late..icon14.gif.. dont let the color discourage you, theres always more birds to practice on..lol. thanks for sharing. sausage.gif

post #8 of 9

I am not an expert at anything but, from advice from this site, I have taken the chicken to almost done in the smoker and then crisped it up on my grill. I suspect that might be considered cheating, I love it. http://www.smokingmeatforums.com/t/139395/second-chicken-attempt-first-successful-qview#post_965944 is the post. I only refer you to it to consider grilling to crisp the skin. There are way better posts re bringing, rubs, sauces, smoking etc.



post #9 of 9

Vetemp. I think I see what everyone is up about. You said you left them in 4hrs.  @250*F ; that's o.k. if you want a drier/darker skin. (but it still won't be Crispy). We are used to cooking high temps. of 275*F to 325*F and for an Internal Temp. of 165*F in the Breast and Thighs. So everyone thinks you are drying them too much...


Cooking @ 275*F to 325*F will get a quicker and (IMHO) a juicier Bird. To crisp the skin , one must go extremely high at the last few minutes - OR - over a Grill on high.


We're not knocking your method, just seeing if we can find a comfortable resolution to your Woes.

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