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Frozen Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
My wife buys the frozen boneless skinless chicken breasts from Costco and wants me to smoke some. Since they are frozen, is it necessary to brine them first. Can I smoke them frozen? Should I thaw them and then brine them? Or should I just buy some not frozen and brine and smoke those and save the frozen ones for the grill?


post #2 of 14
They seem to be brined already. I recall defrosting them only to find them swimming in a pool of "juice."

With chicken breasts, I'd suggest NOT smoking. I don't think they have enough fat for the smoker. Instead, I'd grill them (I like to marinate chicken breasts in Italian dressing).
post #3 of 14
Agreed. I smoked some a few weeks back and they are usually so small, as compared to a big ol hunk of pork, that they cook very very quickly and seem to be a bit rubbery and dried out. Just my two cents...

post #4 of 14
If you're wife wants the "smoke" flavoring on the chicken, you might try to put a few pieces of wood-of-choice in some aluminum foil, poke some holes in it, and stick it down near the grilling grate to generate that smoke. Might give it a touch of smokey-goodness PDT_Armataz_01_28.gif
post #5 of 14
I find that the grilling over charcoal (lump or briquets) adds a nice smoky flavor and works better for chicken breasts, steaks & fish.
post #6 of 14
Thaw and cook or you can brine if you want. But like they say they can dry out. I rub on OO then a rub, wrap in bacon and that helps keep them more moist. Not the best piece of bird to smoke skinless.
Now try smoking boneless, skinless thighs and you will not think about smoking another breast ever again.
post #7 of 14
Next time try and get bone in and skin on, brine and they will not be as dry.
post #8 of 14
I smoke them quite frequently. Just fashion some "chicken boats" out of foil. These basically just cover the bottom and most of the sides of each breast. Coat them with EVOO and a good chicken rub (or just salt, CBP, garlic powder, and chili powder). Lay them in the boats with a strip of bacon across the top. Smoke them at 225°-250° until the internal temperature is no higher than 165°. I pull them at 160°, but you must be the judge of what is safe for you and your family. Wrap them in foil and let rest for 30 minutes.
post #9 of 14
i like that boat idea!!! sometime when i grill some chicken(with wood on the coals) just put season all and rub it in, evoo and grill. baste everal times with evoo while grillling. good stuff!!!
post #10 of 14
I prefer to smoke chicken in a foil pan too. Then I'll glaze and finish without the pan.

I've pretty much gotten away from chicken breasts altogether.
post #11 of 14
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all of the suggestions.

Lots of new ideas to try. I like the boat idea. I'l have to give that a whirl. PDT_Armataz_01_37.gif

post #12 of 14
Agreed, I always grill on my weber kettle unless time is just too much of a concern and then I'll use the weber gasser. For boneless chicken breast (wife requested, I like thighs) I brush on EVOO and coat kosher salt, coarse ground pepper, and chopped garlic. Sometimes I'll coat with a rub like Billy Bones.
post #13 of 14

Add some onions!

Oh yes........skinless chicken breasts are awesome, smoked or grilled........

My best method is in a tumbler basket on a rotisserie, THICK slice some sweet white onions and add to the basket. You can even thaw the chicken breasts and slice into long thick fish stick shapes 1" x 1" x 4-5"
to help with a quicker cooking.

Marinade in italian dressing, the sweet onion, and some cilantro, YUM!
post #14 of 14
HeapOmeat, I smoke them all the time as well. They are great if not overcooked. I like to EVOO them, season them (Arthur Bryants poultry rub is my fav), smoke them & then shred them, then vacuum pack the shreddded meat. We use the shredded breasts for salads, tacos, nachos, sandwiches, enchiladas, everything!....My kids love it on crakers with cream cheese (I really like that also, with Tabasco Chipotle hot sauce). They can be a bit dry if overcooked, but I think they are totally underated & probably more healthy than the majority of the stuff I (probably you also) smoke & cook. I would like to hear some other ideas on using smoked chicken breasts.
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