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Over Smoking Chicken

Andres1388

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I have read that you can over smoke food, especially chicken. I am brand new to smoking and am just curious how long I should smoke at 225 compared to the 3 hours it will take. I have heard an hour and a half is perfect.
 

tag0401

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I usually smoke chicken around 300 so I have bite through skin. I also use a mild wood such as cherry or apple. I use a stick burner and feed wood splits the entire smoke and I have not had any that I consider over smoked.
 

thirdeye

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Yes, you can over-smoke food, or make some foods unattractive to your tastes. But others might like it. I like a fair amount of smoke on my chicken, and other people only like the flavor of lump charcoal and don't add any flavor wood at all. I don't think it's so much time, but amount and quality of smoke. Chicken is so inexpensive you can practice to see what's best for you. 225° is a pretty low pit temp, but I've cooked some great thighs and legs at 250° which takes 2 to 3 hours. I wouldn't cook white meat that low.
 

Jonok

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If you’re going to smoke thighs low and slow, scrape the fat off the inside of the skin and re-apply. Smoke at 225-250 for enough time to get to 170, pull and rest under cover for a while. Skin bites through, meat stays moist.

On the other hand, I just inject them with a little butter mixed with rub and smoke them at 300, and they actually get kinda crispy.

If you’re doing a whole bird Rub it with salt and baking powder pre-smoke. Smoke it to 140, pull it and finish it in a 500 degree oven to 160 at the center of the breast.

The skin will shatter.
 

smokerjim

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i usually start my chicken around180- 200 with smoke for an hour then stop the smoke and crank up the heat to 350 to crisp up the skin. i remember when i did my first chicken on my offset, i had the smoke billowing out of the stack thinking that was a good thing at the time smoked that sucker for 2 or 3 hours i sort of forget exactly how long, took one bite and spit it out thinking to myself how can people eat this stuff. then i joined smf and learned what not to do!
 

Andres1388

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i usually start my chicken around180- 200 with smoke for an hour then stop the smoke and crank up the heat to 350 to crisp up the skin. i remember when i did my first chicken on my offset, i had the smoke billowing out of the stack thinking that was a good thing at the time smoked that sucker for 2 or 3 hours i sort of forget exactly how long, took one bite and spit it out thinking to myself how can people eat this stuff. then i joined smf and learned what not to do!

I was gifted a smoker and the bottom temp can only go to 275 but there is an upper grill. I am thinking about smoking at 200 for an hour and a half lightly, then turning it up to 250 with the broil grill on high to crisp up the skin.
 

Bearcarver

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I have found on most meats:
A short time of Heavy Smoke can be a Bad Thing.
However a Very long time of Light to Medium Smoke is a good thing.

Bear
 

SecondHandSmoker

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I tried smoking a chicken once and couldn't keep the dang thing lit! :emoji_laughing:

Seriously, everyone above gave you outstanding advice.
 

hoity toit

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250-275 till the internal gets to 160, check it with a thermometer in the thickest part, then pull it off and wrap for 15-20 mins and let rest while you prepare the rest of the meal. It'll be fine and juicy.
 

tallbm

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I was gifted a smoker and the bottom temp can only go to 275 but there is an upper grill. I am thinking about smoking at 200 for an hour and a half lightly, then turning it up to 250 with the broil grill on high to crisp up the skin.
Hi there and welcome!
This plan should work.
As long as you arent getting a lot of heavy smoke you can smoke a chicken for 3-4 hours no issue. If you have a LOT of smoke and/or thick heavy smoke for too long then you may have issues.
Good smoke no problem for your time period and no problem with your approach.

Since you are talking chicken, be sure you hit 140F internal temp before 4 hours. If you smoke for 200F for 4 hours and the Internal Temp doesnt hit 140F + then I feal like that's the same as leaving a chicken in the car on your dashboard in the summer time with the windows rolled up for 4 hours. I don't think you would look at that chicken and be like "Wow I am gonna go home and throw this thing in the oven and it is going to be amazing!" hahha.
 

Bearcarver

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I tried smoking a chicken once and couldn't keep the dang thing lit! :emoji_laughing:

Seriously, everyone above gave you outstanding advice.

Really hard to hold between 2 fingers too!!
But Try Smoking a 300 pound Pig !!!

Bear
 

SmokinAl

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It depends on you & your families taste.
Some like a lot of smoke & others like just a wisp of smoke.
It is an experiment & will take several tries to get it where YOU & YOUR FAMILY like it. My advice would be to take detailed notes on each smoke & when you get it right, you will be able to follow it every time.
Al
 

Murray

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SmokinAl suggestion is what I did and am still doing. My suggestion is start light with the smoke and slowly increase the smoke duration until you find what you and your family like. Cheese and bacon I don’t take notes anymore since I’ve done enough batches and I know exactly what we like.
 

Andres1388

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I would like to report my chicken turned out 6/10. I cooked to low so it did not crisp up like I was hoping. All of your comments did help and I learned a lot :)
 

tallbm

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I would like to report my chicken turned out 6/10. I cooked to low so it did not crisp up like I was hoping. All of your comments did help and I learned a lot :)
That's good to know things are improving!
The nice thing is that as long as it isn't disgusting you can eat your less than stellar results and repurpose it like for chicken soup :)
Also chicken is the least expensive meat so you can keep on experimenting.

The rubbery chicken skin issue is a real thing. If you want to hit a homerun then smoke some boneless skinless chicken thighs and take them to an IT of 180F and you can figure out smoker behavior, gain smoke amounts knowledge, try different smoke flavors, etc.

Boneless skinless is simple. You season them up and toss them on. No skin to warrant need of higher temps. No need to brine cause dark meat is juicy and flavorful. You can toy with different seasoning/rub combos. You can play with different smoker temps to see how your smoker behaves and get good food in the end., Etc,etc,etc.
 

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