Do Over on Chicken Breasts (bone in and skin on)

Discussion in 'Poultry' started by albertahab31, Feb 19, 2012.

  1. I had some bad luck my first try brining and smoking chicken breasts so I have decided to  make a few changes this time.

    A  24 hours brine time

    B  300 - 325 degrees smoker temp

    C  wrap in hd foil for 30 min after 165 degrees is acheived

    Oh ya and being that this is only my third attempt at smoking anything I will try to resist peaking along with waiting alittle longer to put the chicken on or atleast until the smoker is up to temp...

    What do you think? Great chicken or sour faces at the supper table tomorrow?
  2. grange

    grange Fire Starter

    I'm fairly new to smoking as well, but I've smoked several chickens on my Brinkmann Vertical Smoker and smoked my first one today on my BGE.  I haven't had a problem with my chicken being dry so I haven't wrapped it.  I would be concerned wrapping the bird would lead to rubbery skin.  I smoke at around 275 to 285.  This last chicken took somewhere 2.5 to 3 hours to get to 170 (at the breast).
  3. bmudd14474

    bmudd14474 Smoking Guru Staff Member Administrator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Great Chicken I think
  4. jrod62

    jrod62 Smoking Guru Group Lead OTBS Member

  5. My first try I had gried out chicken that was spongy and grey in color. NOT GOOD

    OK so no foil it sounds like and keep the temp down a bit. What about the water bowl? indirect smoking or direct heat with no bowl? I was going to go with a bowl...

    You guys rock, thanks for your input so far
  6. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    First of all welcome to SMF!

    Leave the bowl in & put some play sand in it, covered with foil. We smoke our chicken at 300-325.

    Would you do us a favor & head over to roll call & introduce yourself so we can all welcome you to SMF. Thanks!
  7. thanks and will do
  8. Ok all done and eaten and here is the results


    Great Smoke Flavour

    Juicy meat


    Rubbery skin and texture

    Too salty

    Pictures to come soon

    How I did it was

    24 hours brine time (too long it seems to me) and seasoned with Montreal Chicken spice right before smoking

    Brought smoker up to medium type heat (just guessing because my smoker's thermometer is in words only on the dome lid)

    Filled the "water bowl" with play sand and covered it with tin foil

    I started out with a foil packett filled with wood chips but eventually just threw the chips directly onto the charcoal

    Smoked for 2 hours exactly adding wood chips as I went to keep the smoke up

    Flipped the the breasts over and lowered them to the the bottom grill for the last 20 min in an attempt to crisp up the skin (didn't work)

    I need to get the recipe down so I can move onto a pork shoulder. Any advice?
  9. harleysmoker

    harleysmoker Smoking Fanatic

    Are you smoking chicken breasts or a whole chicken? Kind of wondering you said the skin was soft and smoked 2 hours. Most breasts here from grocery are skinless.

    What kind of brine did you use? The Slaughter house brine is a good one to use.

    If you plan on doing a lot of smoking a digital thermometer to monitor the inside of the cooker and the meat is a good investment. Don't trust the one mounted to the smoker as they are normally way off.
  10.   Did you rinse your chicken after brining? Make sure you rinse well. Does the Montreal seasoning contain salt? Maybe try something else.

     You absolutely need a good digital thermometer to know when your food is done and can find out your actual cooking temp too.

     Many folks toss the chicken on the grill for a few minutes to crisp up the skin or pop under the broiler.  

     You might also try adding some seasoning to your brine if you don't already.   

     Keep experimenting and you will find out what works for your tastes. If you get tired of chicken for a while go ahead and try a shoulder. They are pretty forgiving. You can do some things wrong and still have good chow.      


  11. sprky

    sprky Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Chicken breast is tough to do and not dry it out, as it is lean and not the same thickness all over. With that said you are on the right track, brining helps but 24hrs is a long time for breasts. This may very well be why the chicken is salty cut the brine time in 1/2. The best way too crisp the skin up is to pull them off the smoker about 10 degrees before your finished IT and throw them on the grill to crisp up the skin.  Al's way of cooking at 300-325 also works well for crisp skin. Another problem I see is you don't know what your smoker temp is. Get a good thermometer so you know what the temp of the grill and meat is, this is an absolute must if you intend to duplicate your smokes. You could very easily be over cooking your breasts. 
  12. Ok so I need a thermometer and try rinsing the brine off and less brine time. Awesome advice! I will also try the grill the skin method next time too. The smoker did not get very hot this time and it was the first time ever used sand, does sand keep temp down vs water? Thanks again for all your help guys
  13. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    The smoker will run hotter with sand & it will recover faster when you open it up.

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