Chicken smoke temp?

Discussion in 'Poultry' started by bigsteve, Apr 2, 2009.

  1. bigsteve

    bigsteve Master of the Pit

    Is there a general concensus here about what temp to smoke a chicken? I know the skin can be tricky. I'm doing two birds in my Brinkman on Saturday. One on a beer can, one spatchcocked. Appreciate any insight on temperatures........
  2. marty vw

    marty vw Fire Starter

    I smoke mine at 200 for about 4 to 4 1/2 hours
  3. guvna

    guvna Smoking Fanatic

    for crispy skin, the general consensus is to smoke poultry at 300*.
  4. pineywoods

    pineywoods Smoking Guru Staff Member Administrator Group Lead SMF Premier Member

    Chicken does not benefit from the low temp smoke at no less than 225. Personally I like smoking poultry at around 325
  5. bigsteve

    bigsteve Master of the Pit

    What is the skin like? How long does it take to go past 140*?
  6. bigsteve

    bigsteve Master of the Pit


    Both of these birds are about 4.3 lbs. What's your best guess on how long it will take to get to 170*?
  7. travcoman45

    travcoman45 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    250* till an internal temp a 170*, spritz each hour. Skin ain't bad with my spritz, but ifin ya wan't pull it a few degree's early an finish in a 350* oven ta crisp up that skin more. Never had no complaints on mine.
  8. geek with fire

    geek with fire Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I somewhat agree that poultry doesn't benefit from low and slow in the sense that there isn't collagen to break down like in a boston butt or a brisket. However, it does benefit from low and slow with regard to smoke penetration and even cooking. There is a delecate balance between the 2 directions:
    Low & Slow (around 250-275)
    Pro's: more even smoke penetration, allowing you to go light on the smoke and reduce bitter over smoke. Produces a sweeter smoke flavor.
    Con's: Easy to dry a bird out but bacon or other pork fat can help. Mayonnaise also can be used to keep it moist. You also will have rubbery skin, but can easily be crisped up over an open flame

    High & Fast (300-375)
    Pro's: Crisp skin, moist meat
    Con's: Uneven cooking, outer layers are usually cooked to a higher temperature than internal layers (especially with turkey, just a couple of degrees make a suggnificant difference). Also less smoke penetration, usually causing you to over smoke.

    EDIT: I forgot to mention one last thing. The bigest thing to remember with poultry is final temperature. If you cook to 165 or 170, it's going to keep cooking when you pull it off, and most likely over cook. I pull all poultry when the deepest measurement reads no higher than 160. I've even been known to pull a large turkey at.....well, I'm not going to document that for liability reasons, but suffice it to say, way below the USDA recommended temp. A large hunk of meat will continue to radiate heat and continue to cook from the inside out.
    jdomep likes this.

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