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Question about marinating chicken

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
I've read that chicken does not really absorb marinades or other sauces and because of this, it doesn't make much difference if you marinade the chicken for 2 hours or 24 hours. I'm guessing it partly depends on what is in the marinade.

Has anyone done any experimenting with the effectiveness of a long marinade for chicken?

Obviously, if you are talking about a brine, then its different (though you don't want to brine for too long).

Just curious to see how much of a benefit you really get from marinading chicken for a long time.
post #2 of 10
I frequently marinade, wings, leg quarters, breasts, thighs and drumsticks for periods of time ranging from a couple of hours to as long as 24 hours. The marinades I use (usually vinegar based, with lots of spice, or hot sauce in the case of the wings), seem to get stronger with time. Of course cooking method probably has something do with the end result. I usually like a quick sear, then a long, low smoke...the results are always fantastic!

I've not brined any bird yet, but suspect my marinades (at least the ones with salt) have a brine-like effect on the chicken anyway. Just MHO.icon_wink.gif
post #3 of 10
I always marinate my chicken in Italian dressing. It gives it a good flavor and they always come out juicy as heck.
post #4 of 10
I always apply either a marinade or a rub about 24 hrs. ahead of smoking time. Usually comes out super tasty, moist, and kids never leave me any left overs for luch then next day - little two legged vultures! biggrin.gif
post #5 of 10
Hey Peixegato try this:

1 part soy sauce
2-3 parts apple juice

Marinate over night. The chicken will absorb the marinade. Great with pork chops too. Enjoy! icon_smile.gif

post #6 of 10
I say try a 50/50 comparison, some "Caveman Style" and some "Marinade" and report back. With the right smoking the "Caveman Style" might be a surprise!
post #7 of 10
I think it depends on the 'acidity' of your marinade, I've marinated chicken quarters overnight in dark soy sauce and ended up feeding it to the cats because it was too salty. Then again I've had excellent results with overnight marinading using pineapple or tomato juice, that's the fun part of smoking, experimenting and finding out what works best for YOU.

You can find the Pineapple Marinade and Creamy Red Marinade in Paul Kirk's Championship Barbecue Sauces plus others that are very good, I have several books by the 'pros' and they recommend 2-4 hours of marinading time, my family found it bland like that, so I marinade longer.

Enjoy and have fun,

post #8 of 10
Hey!! I resemble that remark!!
post #9 of 10
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all of the suggestions. So many different ways to do things, how does anyone settle on one specific way of smoking anything?

Thanks for the tip MPH, I'll give it a shot.

What kind of wood do y'all use when smoking chicken? I would imagine hickory is a bit too harsh, but maybe not. Again, I guess it all depends on how much you use.
post #10 of 10
trial and error.....find what you like. when i first came here i was given all sorts of advice by friendly well intending people........unfortunately some of it was just not to my liking. i tried it and then went my own direction and now i like my flavor profile that i have developed and you will do the same.

as for the wood........ apple, cherry, and pecan are what i use.
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