smoking a whole chicken

Discussion in 'Poultry' started by syncom, Jul 21, 2013.

  1. syncom

    syncom Fire Starter

    So today I am going to smoke a whole chicken. My first question is should I brine it or will it hurt it if I don't brine it. Reason I ask is because the family decided last night to smoke a chicken and I have to run to the store and get one. So if I need to brine it then I might want to smoke something else. Second whats a good rub for a whole chicken. I am wanting some with just a little kick.
  2. fwismoker

    fwismoker Master of the Pit

    What are you smoking it on?
  3. syncom

    syncom Fire Starter

    I am going to use my charcoal grill. But I do have a electric masterbuilt
  4. fwismoker

    fwismoker Master of the Pit

    I like cooking chickens hot so what ever would cook it the hottest...over 300 preferably, 325 seems to be ideal. 

    If you cook on charcoal then place your coals on one side and the bird on the other with foil down on the charcoal grate to catch the drippings. Going all charcoal you'll want to rotate the bird half way through. Charcoal does give some good flavor as you know. 

    If you use the electric then you could sear it  to crisp up the skin on the charcoal also. 

    Rubs... I use lots of different rubs but Tony C's with some Montreal chicken is really good.    Good luck, i'm sure it'll turn out fine!

    OBTW, brining isn't really necessary unless you're looking for certain flavor profiles...birds come out juicy on their own.
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2013
  5. I smoke chickens almost every time I use my smoker because relative to brisket and pork shoulder they're fast so I always throw one or two in. I've never brined a chicken although I have brined a turkey before frying. I dont think you need to brine your chicken if you are going to smoke it.

    I rub the chicken with dijon mustard and a low or no salt rub and smoke it with hickory till i get an internal temp of 160 or 165. I use a temp of 250 and i do 'beer can style' with some beer in a small mason jar in the large cavity of the chicken with the chicken standing up. Most friends and family say its the best chicken theyve ever had.

    Good luck!
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2013
  6. Forgot to add that i spray with 50/50 water apple juice after the first hour or so, once the rub has set and i dont have to worry about it washing off withe the water and juice.
  7. syncom

    syncom Fire Starter

    Thanks guys for the info. So one more question. So I am going to use the charcoal grill and I am going to use hickory wood chips. Should I only use the wood chips for the first couple of hours or should I cook with it the while time. And should I put the chips right on the coals or in a container on top of the coals
  8. fwismoker

    fwismoker Master of the Pit

    Use wood chunks, directly on the coals (don't soak)....  Smoke the whole time, also they don't take long to cook over 300 degrees.  A 5 1/2 bird yesterday took me less than 2 hours.  Granted i cooked on my mini which cooks a little faster with a more direct heat but even with indirect heat it won't take that much longer.

    Again depending on the size of your bird maybe 2-3 hours cooking time but cook to 165 IT.  
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2013
  9. oldschoolbbq

    oldschoolbbq Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Sounds good to me... I'll be watching for your next adventure... [​IMG]

    Have fun and . . .
  10. gerbs

    gerbs Newbie

    trying my first whole chicken today. It's 5lbs and in the fridge with a brine now. I plan to smoke it at 300 degrees. I want it to be ready to eat when my gf gets off work around 630. So I was wondering how long you guys think it will take to for the bid to smoke at 300 so I know when to start it up
  11. fwismoker

    fwismoker Master of the Pit

    I spatchcock birds over 5 lbs and they're done in an hour and half at 325....can't imagine yours would go much over 2.. 2 1/2 tops

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