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Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
I am going to smoke some Chicken breasts, with some fatties of course. The breast are only half to three quarter inches thick. I was planning to have the smoker at around 250 and i am going to have the chicken in for about 2 and half hours or less. Anybody have advice for me on this one. Will i dry the breast out if they are in too long and if so how long is too long? Should I spread them with olive oil or butter to help them from drying out? Thanks Kevin
post #2 of 15
You may want to brine them.
post #3 of 15
Thread Starter 
They are Brining right now
post #4 of 15
i have done some boneless skinless chicken breasts before. all i did was make a mop of worcestershire sauce, cayenne pepper, black pepper, garlic powder, cinnamon, and some brisket juice. i smoked them at 225°, smoking them for 2.5 hours- flipping half way through. i mopped them every 30 minutes or so. they came out good. i didn't brine them first, and they were not dry.
post #5 of 15
Why don't you smoke some skin on breasts and just send me the smoky skin?icon_rolleyes.gificon_redface.gif

A little oil either in the baste or rubbed in before the smoke would probably be good for flavor and texture as well as to help keep them moist. I know Chris knows what he's doing, but I can't imagine that a 1/2" thick piece of yardbird would take 2 1/2 hrs to cook, but then, I'm bad about not cooking clux any longer than absolutely necessary.

Tim
post #6 of 15
Dang ease up there a little Chris. You are about to let the cat out of the bag. If you replace the brisket juice with lemon juice and a couple of dashes of poultry seasonong and you have got my super guarded, extremely secretive fajita marinade & you know I wouldn't give that out to anyone.
post #7 of 15

countryclassic

I scored very high with my boneless, skinless chicken breasts at the last bbq cook-off of the year here last December. All I did to keep them from drying out was to make a slit with a thin-bladed knife (like a boning knife) into the thick end of the breast about as deep as I could without coming out the other end and then stuffing butter into the cavity. About a standard pat and a half to each piece. Cold butter is best. Can't tell you the rub or finishing sauce (you understand), but the butter did the trick.
post #8 of 15
I'm no expert, but that sounds like a long time to cook chicken breasts. icon_eek.gif Do you use a meat thermometer?

Anything past 165 degrees is too long. Chicken breasts, especially, will be really dry if you overcook them. Cook them just until done, and not a single degree further. cool.gif
post #9 of 15
That's not a bad idea. You could even use a flavored butter.
post #10 of 15

That sounds good.  Never thought about sliding butter into the breast.  I love this site for tips like this.  Thanks.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by countryclassic View Post

I scored very high with my boneless, skinless chicken breasts at the last bbq cook-off of the year here last December. All I did to keep them from drying out was to make a slit with a thin-bladed knife (like a boning knife) into the thick end of the breast about as deep as I could without coming out the other end and then stuffing butter into the cavity. About a standard pat and a half to each piece. Cold butter is best. Can't tell you the rub or finishing sauce (you understand), but the butter did the trick.


 

post #11 of 15

As usual, all great suggestions, BUT, there is only 1 great way to do boneless, skinless chicken breasts. After you take them out of the brine and they have been rinsed, cut a pocket in the thick side and insert you favorite cheese, then wrap them in bacon (bacon makes everything taste better) and dust them with your favorite rub. Should only take 90 minutes at 250, but make sure the internal is 165. Put them on a high heat grill (indirect) to crisp up the bacon. This method will put your chicken in hog heaven.

post #12 of 15

So the wife showed up with boneless skinless today and asked that i grill them. Well i've converted the Chargrill to a smoker so it's smoking time. Based on time i didn't have time to brine them before cooking she's use to me just slapping stuff on the grill but those days are over since i found SMF. So 30 minutes in i found this thread and cut them open and shoved a slab of butter in them and decided to take the drippings from smoking a few whole chickens the other day and mix them with EVOO and use as a baste about an hour in when they were 145 degrees internal. hopefully things turn out ok (fingers crossed)

post #13 of 15
What's a good Brian I could whip up to put the chicken breast in
post #14 of 15

Great ideas everyone.  I've had my MES for a couple of years now but haven't used it a lot.  Smoked two pork buts about 6 months apart and cold smoked some cheese last winter.  Everything turned out way better than I expected, actually everything turned out unbelievably fantastic.  However trying to follow recipes to the TEE that I have found has been very tedious to me.  (I'm NOT a COOK)  That is why I really haven't used it much.  However I got this huge urge to smoke something yesterday and started looking up recipes.  Found Jeff's "Delicious Beer Brined Smoked Chicken" recipe and used it as a guide only for the cooking times and temperature.   I'm sure if I would have done all that he did in his recipe they would have been tastier but I wanted to experiment with simple and easy.   So all I did was start the MES to get it up to temp before I put the chicken in.  Then I skinned five large chicken breast (these must have been related to Mae West because they were huge) washed them in cold water (don’t know if that was even necessary but I did it anyway) and then generously coated them with a Fajita seasoning (store bought) put them in a gallon zip lock bag to rest for an hour or so.  Once MES was at temp 275* I added some apple wood chips to the smoker then I removed the breasts from their bag and put them on the racks.  Inserted my temp gauge probe in the middle of the fattest breast, closed the door.

 

Poured myself a glass of Crown Black gathered a magazine and began the ordeal of watching the temp gauge.  Yes life is hard here in southern Texas. 

 

The recipe said the chicken would take an hour or a little more depending on the temp of the smoker but in about 45 minutes the temperature alarm on the gauge went off (165*f) so I scooped them up and took them in the house. 

 

OMG!  I could not believe how juicy and tasty these were.  Wife (aka SWMBO :77: She Who Must Be Obeyed) had made some mashed potatoes and a nice garden salad that went perfect with the Fajita flavored smoked chicken.    Incredibly delicious and moist chicken breasts…  NO BRINING Involved!

 

Me thinks (but like I said I’m no cook) they were so juicy was the high temp (relatively) they reached doneness (165*f) in short time, not allowing them time to dry out.   The surface of the chicken was a medium brown and dry to the touch.  Maybe the salt in the Fajita seasoning had some to do with retaining moisture by drying out the surface meat keeping juices inside.  Whatever the reason/cause I will be doing this again soon to prove to myself it wasn’t a freak happening. 

 

Cheers all.  Vajinyan

 

post #15 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Abigail4476 View Post

I'm no expert, but that sounds like a long time to cook chicken breasts. icon_eek.gif Do you use a meat thermometer?

Anything past 165 degrees is too long. Chicken breasts, especially, will be really dry if you overcook them. Cook them just until done, and not a single degree further. cool.gif

 

I echo this 110%... Your most important moisture enhancement is a good meat thermometer! I find this to be especially true with poultry. That said, I do like to brine, and I do think brushing with some oil is always a good idea.

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