Was my chicken undercooked?

Discussion in 'Poultry' started by bobbydrake, Apr 22, 2010.

  1. bobbydrake

    bobbydrake Fire Starter

    So I got a really good deal on a vertical propane smoker this winter and decided to try it out finally. I butterflied, brined and injected a whole chicken and put it in the smoker. Temps held great at about 230 degrees the whole time. I took temp reading from the chicken in several areas. Finally when coolest thigh reached 175, I pulled it and foiled it for about 15 minutes. For the most part it tasted great and was super juicy. My wife hates white meat bucasue it is usually so dry, and this was the best white meat she ever had.

    But.... part of me just keeps thinking the chicken was undercooked. The texture of the meat just seemed different. Maybe because it was so juicy and I am just not used to that. Some of the juices were still pinkish as well. I just have this nagging feeling that something didn't seem right. Everything seemed to go perfect. Since this was my first smoked chicken, maybe I just wasn't sure what to expect. I am just looking for some opinions from others. Is smoked chicken normally like this? Should I have left in the smoker longer? Maybe taken the temps up to 190 or so? I don't think it would have made it too dry. Any information will be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.
  2. coco

    coco Fire Starter

    I'm cooking chicken now, and everything I read is that higher temps are needed...at least at the end; to keep it from being rubbery.

    My plan is to cook it just before proper chicken temp (it will then get there on it's own), and refridgerate it. Then, when we want chicken, give it a good, quick, higher heat grilling to "crisp" things up. We'll see how it goes. :)
  3. Brining and injected flavorings can often times change the texture of poultry and other meats ~~ Chicken is "safe" to eat at 165* in the thigh, wing, and breast...For personal preferences you may want to cook it to a higher temperature ~~~ Pink meat in Safely cooked chicken can be caused by the hemoglobin in tissues forming a heat-stable color. BBQing or grilling can cause this reaction. ~~ IMO, assuming your thermometer is calibrated and giving you a correct reading, at 175* your chicken was cooked! Your personal preference may require you to take it to 185* especially in the thigh however.....HTH

  4. bobbydrake

    bobbydrake Fire Starter

    Mine wasn't rubbery at all. Well the skin was, but I didn't eat that anyways. My grill is out of service at the moment or else I would have thrown them on the grill skin side down for a few minutes to crisp up the skin.
  5. caveman

    caveman Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Smoking chicken causes the meat to become pinkish. What some people presume is "Undercooked" chicken is just the smoke texture the bird took on while smoking. No one got sick, as you did not report & as long as your thermo's are calibrated correctly, your bird was done according to the temps as "Corn Cob" pointed out. Smoking your bird longer may have dried out your white meat which you commented your wife loved & of course we as smokers are always trying to keep the boss happy, so if she loved it, don't change it. Next time post that qview so we can all drool & marvel over your skills.

    Coco......higher temps, 275 - 300, are needed for crispier skin for a smoked bird. The skin is what becomes rubbery when you smoke poultry at low & slow temps. If one does not care for skin, then that is fine. Toss it & enjoy the smokey meat flavor.
  6. danielh

    danielh Meat Mopper

    If it was 175* everywhere, it was overcooked if anything..

    I like to get mine off by 165 at the coolest part if we're eating straight off the pit, or 160* if i'm wrapping in foil and resting. They will start to dry out a bit after that, although the brine will help in that respect.. You'll never taste a better bird than one thats been brined and smoked..

    Roughly how long was it on at 230*? Are you sure the thermo is right? Just a couple of thoughts..
  7. pandemonium

    pandemonium Master of the Pit

    I think your chicken was cooked as well, i think your just not used to the juiciness you get from a smoked chicken, its alot like a rotisserie chicken with soft and juicy meat, almost rubbery, i dont like that rubbery part either
    but maybe i need to crank up the heat at the end to crisp it up.
  8. bobbydrake

    bobbydrake Fire Starter

    This was much jucier than any rotisserie chicken than I ever had. Smoking it must have just changed the texture. It tasted great, but just seemed a little... off. I must not be used to it. I really wish I had done a Qview but it was my first smoke on the new smoker and I wasn't expecting much. The chicken was in the smoker for about 2 hours and when I finally opened it to check on it, it was a beautiful golden brown. I was actually thinking "I should take a picture of this."

    I will just have to learn from this for next time. If I let it go longer, I really don't think it would have dried out. The chicken was practice for when I decide to try a turkey this summer. I will have to practice a bit more first until I am completely satisfied with the turnout. Thanks for the input!
  9. caveman

    caveman Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    For a reference, this is my first Turkey smoke. http://www.smokingmeatforums.com/for...ad.php?t=88997

    Mine is in the begining. Check the Turkey at the end of this post. I strive to achieve that type of smoke. I am with you, I will be smoking practice Turkeys & posting all my qview whether I fail or not. So don't be dis-heartened on your first trials. Hell, you may even nail it the first time out. But since you don't do skin, it very well may work out for you.
  10. john3198

    john3198 Smoking Fanatic

    These are the temps I shoot for as well. Even in an oven roasted turkey. 165 is good for me
  11. chefrob

    chefrob Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    if yer thermo was right and you got 165 or above at the coolest part of the bird, what you are experiencing is a bird done right......something few people get.
  12. beer-b-q

    beer-b-q Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    2 hours at 230º doesn't sound right to me, a whole chicken should take around 4 hours at around 250º. JMHO
  13. I have smoked several chickens, including the beer butt chicken and the spatchcock chicken. I have brined some, injected some. Cooked at different temps, from 250* to 350*. In my opinion, I find the brine changes the texture of the meat. I have brined chicken from as little as an hour to as long as 4 hrs and I just don't care for the way it comes out. The last chicken I smoked was spatchcocked and I injected, rubbed w/EVOO and seasoned it. I smoked it at 300* until the breast hit 170*. The meat was tender, juicy & flavorful. No more brining for me.
  14. rbranstner

    rbranstner Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    If it was 175 you are in the clear. My chicken always gets a pinkish color after I smoke it. Kind of scares you at first or for people who have never eaten smoked chicken they think its not fully cooked.
  15. bamafan

    bamafan Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    My wife refuses to eat my smoked chicken because of the pinkish color, even though they are cooked past 165. It's just the reaction to my brine and all that smokey goodness. Everyone else in the free world loves it![​IMG]
  16. scubadoo97

    scubadoo97 Smoking Fanatic

    I smoked a batch of chicken thighs. Some on the bone and some boned out. The ones on the bone were so juicy, the juice was squirting out. The skin was dark and firm but no bite through. I did not brine them and frankly they were so juicy I don't see much need to brine. But these were thighs which do not dry out so quickly.
  17. rstr hunter

    rstr hunter Smoking Fanatic

    It should be juicy and cooked at 165. Also remember you injected moisture into this. When you are comparing it, the rotisserie chicken probably wasn't brined. I generally don't brine mine (just a personal preference) and they are still juicy and good. Good luck on your next smoke and make sure to post q-view.
  18. pops6927

    pops6927 Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Your chicken was more than cooked at 175°; I've pulled and eaten them at 150°-155° before. I pickle mine with a salt/sugar/nitrite brine so it has a definite pink hue and ham-type taste also, and just peel off the skin. Here's two we did in Florida that got started too hot and blackened the skin, but I skinned 'em anyways when they were done (someone else started the offset with cedar and it was too much and too hot) but in the end they came out great, so did the foil potatoes too! I pulled them at 154°, skinned, cut up and served them to a rambunctious crowd who devoured them! They were done and sooo juicy! Delicious.. everyone enjoyed them thoroughly!

    Didn't get any cut up pix, it went too fast! They cleaned the tray!
  19. [​IMG]  Thank you for posting about the pink color of smoked poultry!!! Now I can pig out and be happy !! We are new to smoking and had no clue what we did wrong, when the taste was so right. Thanks
  20. flash

    flash Smoking Guru OTBS Member

     I don't brine chicken either but my wife wants her chicken DONE. What that means instead of 165º I must take it up to 180º internal for her to be happy. We pull it from the smoker at 165º and finish it on the gas grill.  Surprisingly the chicken is quite moist and the wife is happy.




    Even at 180º it was still nice and juicey.

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