Smoked Whole Chicken

by Kevin H. on March 29, 2012 · 197 comments

 Smoked Whole Chicken Recipe

Is there anything prettier than a browned bird?

I’ll never forget the first smoked whole chicken I ever tasted.  It was on vacation and my father in law cooked it.  When I saw how pink the meat was I first thought it was undercooked.  Then I took a bite and realized it was pink from the 8 hours of smoke.  It was the best chicken I had ever eaten.  I was immediately addicted.

I’ve smoked more whole chickens than any other item, by a very large margin.  You can usually find them for less than $1/lb, they don’t take a ridiculously long time, they’re relatively healthy, and holy wow are they good.  This is an easy one for you to get really good at, really fast.

First and most importantly, brine the chicken – overnight if possible.  Use my Basic Brine Recipe.

Smoked Whole Chicken Recipe

 

Chop the lemon, onion, apple and garlic cloves.  Throw them in a bowl and mix together with salt, pepper and olive oil.

 

 

Take your chicken out of the brine and rinse with cool water.  Set on a tray.  Now take the happy mixture you just made and stuff it inside the chicken.  This is going to add flavor and moisture from the cavity of the chicken in a way that you can’t believe.

Rub olive oil all over your bird.  This will help give it a nice golden brown color.  Then sprinkle salt and pepper all over, and a light dusting of paprika for color.  You’re ready to light your coals.  But first, wash your hands and go grab your favorite drink.  You deserve it.

Smoked Whole Chicken Recipe

Set up your grill for indirect cooking (or use your smoker).  Place your bird away from the heat, and throw a bunch of wood on your coals.  Stick with fruit wood – apple is a good pairing with chicken.  Feel free to mix it up to your particular tastes.

Assuming your grill holds its temp around 250, and depending on the weight, your chicken will cook for 3 – 5 hours.  You want an internal temperature in the leg of 170.  Obviously if the bird is bigger or your heat is lower, it will take longer to reach this temperature.  Be patient.  It’s worth it.

Smoked Whole Chicken Recipe

Let the chicken rest for at least 20 minutes before pulling apart or slicing.  Oh, and when you pull the leg off, and it comes clean, and delicious juices pour out – it’s ok to giggle.  Now please, enjoy.

And the leftovers can be put to such good use.  My wife, Patti, has shared some of her leftover smoked chicken recipes. The tastiness she creates is illegal in 27 of the contiguous states.  And when you’re all done, take that carcass and make Smoked Chicken Broth for a little slice of heaven next time you make soup.

Let me know how it goes when you try this recipe for your next smoked whole chicken.  If you haven’t tried brining or stuffing the cavity before, I really think you’re going to be thrilled with the results.  Now go enjoy browning that bird!

Smoked Whole Chicken

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 4 hours

Total Time: 4 hours, 15 minutes

Smoked Whole Chicken

Ingredients

  • 1, 3-5lb chicken
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 onion
  • 1 apple
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Paprika
  • Olive Oil

Instructions

  1. Brine the chicken – overnight if possible.
  2. Chop the lemon, onion, apple and garlic cloves. Throw them in a bowl and mix together with salt, pepper and olive oil. Set aside.
  3. Take your chicken out of the brine and rinse with cool water. Set on a tray. Now take the mixture you just made and stuff it inside the chicken.
  4. Rub olive oil all over your bird. This will help give it a nice golden brown color. Then sprinkle salt and pepper all over, and a light dusting of paprika for color.
  5. Set up your grill for indirect cooking (or use your smoker).
  6. Place your bird away from the heat, and throw a bunch of wood on your coals. Stick with fruit wood – apple is a good pairing with chicken. Assuming your grill holds its temp around 250, and depending on the weight, your chicken will cook for 3 – 5 hours. You want an internal temperature in the leg of 170. If the bird is bigger or your heat is lower, it will take longer to reach this temperature.
  7. Let the chicken rest for at least 20 minutes before pulling apart or slicing.
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Leave a Comment

{ 194 comments… read them below or add one }

Jim October 30, 2014 at 8:32 am

This year I have learned to Smoke Brisket Smoke Pork Butt. But hands down This chicken has just a ton of flavor and smoke and I like smoke. My wife is from Mexico and we had Mexican tacos with the smoked chicken and wow. I followed your recipe but did 2 chickens about 2 months ago halved them and vacuumed sealed with the chicken juices. They are fabulous. I am brining two more tomorrow on Halloween and Saturday they go on the smoker thanks

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Kevin N. October 19, 2014 at 5:38 pm

Just finished dinner having smoked this for the first time on my gas grill. What can I say. Awesome tasting chicken. Followed the recipe exactly, 4 1/2 hours for a 5lb bird. My son has requested the leftovers for his school lunch tomorrow. Will be doing this again and looking to do a lot more. Thank you.

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Morgan October 12, 2014 at 8:02 pm

Absolutely amazing. Best chicken I’ve ever cooked. 3.5 hrs for 2 4lb birds was perfect. Followed everything else to a T. This one is a must eat

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Yvonne October 12, 2014 at 6:12 pm

We smoked a whole chicken and the dark meat was so tough we couldn’t eat it. The breast was awesome. What did we do wrong. We did not brine the chicken first.

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Kevin October 18, 2014 at 10:14 am

That’s surprising! Usually it’s the breast meat that dries out, not the dark. Only thing I can think of is maybe the legs were closer to the heat than the breasts? Not sure what else could have gone wrong…

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Brian September 21, 2014 at 1:07 pm

Doing 6 birds around 8 pounds how long would u say too cook temp at 250

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Kevin September 21, 2014 at 2:00 pm

I would guess 5-6 hours. .. just monitor the temp and when it hits 165 you’re in good shape!

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Brian September 21, 2014 at 2:17 pm

I use one of the bookstore temp forks love that thing

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Chris August 31, 2014 at 10:49 am

Kevin,
I have this site saved to my favorites on my web browser, pretty much have the recipe memorized but its great to have it forthe comments. I use an electric smoker with wood chips, usually end up doing a 5-6lb bird. A buddy of mine turned me onto smoked paprika, its a great addition to the final rub. Not sure about injecting the meat, mine usually come out juicy as all get out, so it has never occured to me. Today I am going to slip some fresh basil, thyme, and sage leaves under the skin before rubbing and smoking.

Also, best chicken soup I have ever made was with a boiled carcassof a smoked bird. Smokey, salty, savory. Perfect

Thanks for a very clear, concise, enjoyable site to use.

Chris

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Jim August 29, 2014 at 10:53 am

Wow did one Chicken two weeks ago and this morning I have put two 5 lb birds on one for my wife and I and one to half up for friends. So So flavorful and I smoke mine longer with a lower heat just love the smoke flavor. I too heat my brine but I also add a few things to it. Love it on the smoker..
Thank you

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Don August 18, 2014 at 11:14 am

I was looking for a recipe for whole smoked chicken and was intrigued by your recipe. I followed the directions except I boiled the brine first to dissolve the salt and sugar, brought it to room temperature then started a 2 day brining. I also used my smoker rather than indirect heat in a enclosed grill.
WOW! What an awesome result! I smoked two 5 pound chickens and now I’m hooked! The chicken was exploding with flavor and moist beyond belief! OUTSTANDING!

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Jeff August 15, 2014 at 4:48 pm

Just made this recipe for my wife and 3 boys (7,9,11). I’ve never heard so many adjectives come out of their mouths before!! Was a little worried because my grill that I used to smoke it got up to 300, but it came out super juicy and delicious 4.5 hours later!

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Gary August 17, 2014 at 12:40 pm

Am I missing something ? I read where people are cooking chicken for 4 + hours at 250 and I feel that might be a bit too long. Grant you, when I smoke/cook a chicken on my cooker I am cooking a Spatchcocked Chicken. Why would it take 4+ hours to cook a chicken ? I guess stuffing the chicken might take it longer but aromatics are just going inside the cavity. Thanks.

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Kevin August 18, 2014 at 7:42 am

Gary –
Not sure what to tell you exactly – each smoker is different, the size of the bird, how you cook it – they all play a part. Spatchcock chicken definitely cooks faster than a whole stuffed chicken. The birds I cook also are usually around 5lbs. I’ve cooked a 5lb bird in as quickly as 2 hours on my Weber, and as slow as 8 hours on my Backwoods Smoker. Both turn out great!

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tom August 12, 2014 at 10:04 am

Hey Kevin…

If my leg temp is supposed to be 170…what do I shoot for in the breast meat?

Thx

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Kevin August 18, 2014 at 7:45 am

I try to keep breast meat at 170 or lower. 165 is my preference. One of the ways I do that is tent the breast meat with foil, or drape bacon across it. The main thing is you don’t want to overcook the breast meat.

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cory August 3, 2014 at 11:12 pm

My first smoked chicken omg loved it loved the lemons the meat was so tender and juicy I made broth withe the rest everyone loved it

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cory August 1, 2014 at 7:50 pm

Does it matter what kind of apples

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Kevin August 3, 2014 at 10:20 pm

Nope. I’ve never noticed any difference, and I’ve used every apple under the sun!

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Kevin August 1, 2014 at 11:02 am

What is your thought on using a rotisserie with this on the smoker?

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Kevin August 3, 2014 at 10:22 pm

I think a rotisserie would work great with a smoked whole chicken. I would still do all the prep – inject, stuff – and then adding the rotisserie element should be excellent.

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Kevin August 4, 2014 at 8:17 am

Family went nuts over this one. I stuffed mine with slices of Orange and lemons with an alternating mixture of bell pepper, onion diced. A full head of garlic minced. a couple tea spoons of white wine salt and pepper. Seasoned the outside with salt, pepper and garlic powder.

I use a pellet smoker and it took about 4 hours at 250.

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Mike July 31, 2014 at 1:32 am

I pull mine and put in a small ice chest for serving. Stays at a perfect temp for a long time. Great in flour tortillas or pulled and made into quesadillas!

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Brad July 27, 2014 at 5:25 pm

WOW!
Two weekends in a row with this. Awesome recipe. I’ve done several beef and pork cuts in my smoker since I got it a couple of months ago and I am almost embarrassed to admit that this chicken has taken a definite lead.
Thanks for sharing this!

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Neicey July 26, 2014 at 11:20 am

Can you use an electric smoker and throw in wood chips?

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Kevin July 27, 2014 at 9:46 pm

Absolutely. I’ve used an electric smoker and thrown wood chips right on the heating elements. Works great, no problems. I will say, I think the bigger chunks work better than the chips.

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Randy Owens July 26, 2014 at 9:11 am

Do you need to eject or put baste the chicken while smoking.

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Kevin July 27, 2014 at 9:46 pm

I don’t touch the chicken once it starts smoking. No need. The skin holds all the moisture in once the smoker starts doing its thing!

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Stu July 19, 2014 at 8:57 pm

Hi, do you truss your chicken as well? I like to truss, and am going to do this. I guess: Brine, Stuff, Truss, rub with olive oil, in that order?

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Kevin July 20, 2014 at 8:15 am

That sounds like a great process, Stu. I have trussed several times, but I don’t every time. Both ways work well.

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Craig July 19, 2014 at 12:49 pm

First attempt at smoking a whole chicken (actually smoked two) and this is the best thing I have ever smoked. Great recipe! Will be doing this many times in the near future!

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donna July 14, 2014 at 7:48 am

I smoked 2 chickens this weekend using my Smoke Hollow Electric Smoker. I brined them for about 12 hrs. The meat on both chickens came out mushy. Temp was about 250, skin was not crispy and they were in the smoker from noon to 4:30ish. What makes the meat mushy?

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Kevin July 14, 2014 at 7:59 am

Donna – I’m not sure what the answer to that question is. I’ve never had my chicken meat end up mushy. The only thing I can think of is that it wasn’t all the way done.

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Scott July 13, 2014 at 7:58 pm

This was my first smoked Whole Chicken and boy this recipe was great. It was so juicy and taste great.
Thank You Kevin

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Zeus July 9, 2014 at 1:57 pm

Just made this today with two birds in my Brinkman charcoal smoker (ECB?). No mods to the smoker yet (hopefully this weekend) and only my second time smoking ANYTHING. Now I have to wait till dinner to eat these bad boys while my mouth waters the rest of the afternoon. They smell soooooo good! If they taste half as good as they smell….

Here is a pic of the birds right out of the smoker: http://imgur.com/v89Mmck

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Kevin July 10, 2014 at 3:28 pm

Those look outstanding! !

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Zeus July 12, 2014 at 1:43 pm

So delicious! We ran through both birds between 4 adults and 4 children. Even the kids loved em! Will definitely make these again once I get my smoker tuned up a bit so I can control temps easier. Thanks for a great recipe!

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Terry Z July 4, 2014 at 9:13 am

I like to put the smoked bird in a very hot oven for 15 – 20 minutes after I pull it from the smoker to get the skin very crispy. I then let it rest before separating. Still juicy and the crispy skin adds another dimension.

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ephraim July 2, 2014 at 2:24 pm

first time smoking the whole chicken do you rap it in aluminum foil? Breast up or you need a chicken stand until rap?

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Kevin July 2, 2014 at 3:01 pm

Definitely never wrap chicken. The skin is protection enough and you want to make sure the smoke can penetrate! And I always cook breast up.

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Mike C. June 22, 2014 at 8:01 pm

I tried this recipe yesterday for a family BBQ. It was amazing! I did 2 4lb birds, brined them overnight on Friday and then just followed your steps. Came out perfect! The skin was crisp and delicious. Everything just fell off the bone. And the meat was so moist and smoky. Just a perfect meal. Thanks so much for posting this!

PS – Next time I’m making one bird for me and my wife and we are just going to sit outside and pick at it at our leisure instead of taking the time to take it all apart first. Our sampling during that process was the most fun/best tasting. :)

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Kevin June 26, 2014 at 8:10 am

So happy to hear it went so well for you, Mike! Smoke on!

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Ange June 21, 2014 at 12:01 am

We smoked our first chicken today. Used your recipe and it was GREAT! It was the moistest chicken we have ever eaten.

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T.K. June 17, 2014 at 1:49 pm

I’ve tried this 3 times. Each time my internal temperature hasn’t been near the FDA recommended temp. The bird is browned and tastes delicious nonetheless, but I would definitely prefer a higher internal temp right off the grill (I have been finishing it off in the oven). The most recent time I held the temperature more consistently but still no luck. The only thing I can think of is that my grill thermometer is very inaccurate. Thoughts?

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Kevin June 19, 2014 at 7:57 am

It may be worth it for you to get a nice leave in probe thermometer so you can more accurately monitor your internal temps. I’ve never had to finish a chicken in the oven, it always gets up to temp on my smoker.
Other than that, just try cooking on a higher temp with your smoker and see if that does the trick!

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Glen August 4, 2014 at 1:43 pm

I had a similar problem. The thermometer stuck in the leg said 170 degrees but when I checked the rest of the bird it was lower. I think the problem is that by completely stuffing the cavity (with the lemons, etc, it lowers the temp of the breast and it doesn’t cook as fast. So I re-inserted the probe into the breastmeat and waited till it reached 160 degrees.
After it’s done take it out and let it rest , as the instructions say.
My chicken was perfectly cooked and delicious.

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Wendy Cole June 16, 2014 at 2:28 pm

That sounds so good, I have bought whole smoked chickens in past (French) and they were decicioux but I am really tempted to try this soem time.

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Steve Flagstad June 16, 2014 at 8:29 am

Hi Kevin,
Does it matter if the bird sits in the brine for two days? This is my first bird on my smoker.

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Kevin June 19, 2014 at 8:02 am

Nope. Just to be sure to thoroughly rinse the bird before cooking and you’ll be fine!

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Brian June 13, 2014 at 8:28 am

Kevin,
Can you give more specific time frame? Lets say I am doing a 4 pound bird. How long will that take? 3-5 hours just seems like a very wide margin. How do you get the timing correct so all the sides come out at the same time as the chicken?

Thanks

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Brian June 13, 2014 at 8:34 am

I am using a wood pellet smoker

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Gary June 14, 2014 at 12:29 pm

One thing you have to get out of your head is cooking/barbecuing by time. The best way to know if chicken is done is by internal temp.

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Brian June 17, 2014 at 8:43 am

Gary,
How do you manage to have all your sides dishes done at the same time as the chicken? Or decide when to put your birds on in relation to your guest’s arrival time? I realize times will vary from smoker to smoker, ambient temp to ambient temp. I was just looking for a narrower window to give me a better idea.

The birds turned out great for my first time. I used a pellet smoker and apple wood pellets. The birds each weighed 5 lbs. It took 4 hours. Ambient temp was about 75, lots of clouds. So sometimes it felt much colder and others much hotter. I only bring this up because my smoker temp seemed to vary depending on cloud conditions. Anyone else experience this? My lid is black.

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michael June 17, 2014 at 7:18 pm

Hey is the smoker insulated or just sheet metal? I have a pellet smoker that is a big signal box it is insulated and works great.

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Brian June 18, 2014 at 9:30 am

Michael,
It is not insulated. In the fall and spring I throw a welding blanket over it to help with temp maintenance. Sure beat the price of any fancy insulating cover sold in the stores. And I put the welding blanket under my fire bowl. There is no damage to the grass at all.

Gary June 17, 2014 at 10:18 pm

I am sorry about the short reply. I have in my mind the time it might take to cook a chicken at at certain temp from various cooks I have done in the past. I figure my timing backwards knowing it takes “x” amount of time for my KK to get up to temp as well as the cooking of the chicken or whatever protein I am cooking.

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Kevin June 19, 2014 at 8:01 am

I monitor the internal temp of the chicken. When it’s getting close to 165 I start the sides. Plus the whole chicken will stay warm for a while if needed to finish the sides. Put in a pan and cover with foil. That’ll buy you 30 minutes.
Thermoworks sells phenomenal probe thermometers. Check out the link on our site to see what they have.

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Brian June 19, 2014 at 11:22 am

Kevin,
Thanks for the reply. At least now I have one data point to go with and the boss lady has requested more smoked birds. The more times I do it the better my estimation will be. Thanks for the idea about starting the sides when the bird hits 165 & keeping the bird warm for 30 minutest afterward.

Ty Spence June 11, 2014 at 4:53 pm

Hi Kevin, glad I found this site and thanks for sharing your hard earned knowledge with us. Im a smoking Newb having only recently got a smoker. However its my wifes 40th soon and I wanted to do something special for when the guests arrived for the BBQ. I want to give each family their own smoked bird as they arrive (8 in total) along with sides and chili so they aint waiting for food (Brisket, pulled pork and ribs for the ones who stay into the evening). Are there any issues with timings is smoking 8 birds at once? Any tips on how I can handle this type of effort? Cheers

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Kevin June 11, 2014 at 9:39 pm

Hey Ty – This sounds like a fantastic party!
Any issues with timing would just depend on your smoker. I can cook 12 chickens in mine at the same time and have no issues. Without knowing what your smoker is like, the only suggestion I’d have is to rotate them if you have hot spots on your cooker to make sure they all cook evenly.
Let me know if you need some specific tips based on your smoker – I’m happy to help. That’s going to be fun – enjoy!

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Geoff Doig June 4, 2014 at 11:32 pm

I made this for the first time last night, experimenting on my guests as usual. This chicken was extraordinary. My guests could not stop raving out how good it was. The red meat around the thighs was unbelievable. “The best chicken we have ever had…by a street”.

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Kat June 4, 2014 at 12:44 pm

Has anyone used beer can method while smoking?

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Kevin June 5, 2014 at 8:24 pm

Here’s the recipe I did for beer can, Kat: http://www.extraordinarybbq.com/beer-can-chicken/

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Uga Lee May 31, 2014 at 5:00 pm

Did this today but did half bud lite and half water.
Almost passed out it was so good.

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Chris June 2, 2014 at 9:08 pm

Are you saying you added the beer/water in the brine or you substituted it for the apples/lemons during the actual cook?

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Jeff May 26, 2014 at 1:56 am

Used this recipe twice and a personal variation of it three times and I can honestly say that it was heavenly. Fantastic site I love how it reads in such a personal level and not just bullet or hash tagged all out.

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steve May 25, 2014 at 6:13 pm

I just made this chicken in my electric smoke hollow and it was the best we have ever eaten. Brining and smoking is the best. I used apple and mesquit chips mixed. Thanks for your recipes.

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Matthew May 24, 2014 at 10:26 pm

I am also making this for Memorial Day weekend! rock the rock!

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Patrick May 23, 2014 at 2:30 pm

So glad I came across this! very excited to try this & it will be my 1st time using the smoker. will post how it turns out! have a nice holiday weekend everyone.

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Matt May 23, 2014 at 11:29 am

I have smoked chickens before & they are always delicious, however, i’m always on the lookout for some new ideas. Using this recipe for my Memorial Day cookout tomorrow. Going to add Rosemary to the Brine & the Stuffing. Doing 4 or 5, 3 – 5 lb chickens & a bunch of Pork Loins (rubbed). Will let you know how everything turns out.

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Michael May 12, 2014 at 2:31 pm

How was your skin from the chicken? Brian

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Brian May 12, 2014 at 4:18 pm

Leg skin was nice and thin/crunchy. The breast was crunchy with a bit of fat layer under, but it was too salty to really eat. I went too liberal with the salt!

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Michael May 12, 2014 at 5:54 pm

My skin come out like rubber. What temp you at and do you use water inside?

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Brian May 12, 2014 at 7:21 pm

200-220 for 4 – 4.5 hours. I kept the water pan full. Gas smoker with very steady temp. Turned it up to about 260 for the last 30 mins to speed it up. Was getting close to dinner time.

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Michael May 13, 2014 at 10:34 am

Nicely done

Brian May 12, 2014 at 1:11 pm

First time smoker, new Brinkmann vertical gas smoker that I got for free…. this recipe and instructions completely demistified smoking and made for superb results. Was worried about the cheap smoker and being new to the craft.

Followed the brining instructions. Smoked with soaked cherry wood chunks at 200-220 degrees for 4 hours and kept the water basin full.

The results were incredible! We normally have half a chicken for leftovers if we grill or bake. The kids devoured this, nothing left! Even my wife who normally turns her nose up at smoked meat enjoyed it.

As a neat little treat, wipe a piece or two in Bush’s Homestyle bean juice! And finish it off with a side salad with ranch dressing. OMG, yum!

Thanks for the coaching. You have turned me into a weekend smoker! Already planning the next few meals.

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Michael May 11, 2014 at 1:06 pm

Hey Kevin I have smoked 11 chickens. My question to you is my skin is rubbery is that normal or what should I do to fix?

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Kevin May 11, 2014 at 7:38 pm

Higher temperatures will help crisp up the skin. Also, start by rubbing olive oil all over your bird. Hopefully those two things will give your skin a bit more crisp!

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Ryan May 25, 2014 at 1:07 pm

1O min before you take bird off, hit it with 400 degrees, or heat the oven up to 450 and toss the bird in just to crisp the skin

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Dominic Tascarella May 11, 2014 at 12:46 pm

Hey, Just wanted to thak you for this site. So far I have done a pork shoulder, brats, and 3 chickens following the recipes as close as possible. Absolutely DELICIOUS! Really appreciate the information and recipies. This is my first smoker, and first few times I’ve ever tried it. Everyone has loved everything that’s come off the smoker so far! Thanks a lot.

-Dom

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Kevin H. May 11, 2014 at 1:01 pm

Thanks for the kind words, Dom! We have a lot of fun doing this site and it’s great to hear the success stories that come from readers. Thanks for reaching out!

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Michael May 4, 2014 at 4:14 pm

Kevin we have two kinds of chicken for sale fryer or roaster does it matter anyone better than the other?

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Kevin May 5, 2014 at 7:13 am

I don’t think it matters at all. I believe those are just different sized chickens, Michael.

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jon April 30, 2014 at 6:58 pm

can i substitute a orange instead of a lemon?. And i have a wood pellet smoker n i hate the clean up.so i use a cookie sheet lined with foil.Will that affect the smoking process?

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Kevin April 30, 2014 at 8:54 pm

I like the idea of trying an orange! Let me know what that flavor is like. You can stuff anything inside the chicken you want – whatever you put in there will add flavor and/or moisture.
Putting on a sheet is fine. Or just put in an aluminum pan. As long as it’s open on top it will get good smoke.

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Cindy April 27, 2014 at 11:56 am

I’m trying this today, minus the stuff to fill the cavity as I didn’t have all that. Going to follow then use a dry run and cook this with a can of cola in a can/chicken holder.

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Kevin H. April 27, 2014 at 12:19 pm

Great! Let us know how it goes!

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Cindy April 27, 2014 at 4:31 pm

This was excellent. Used a dry rub, smoked it for about 2.5 hours ( the bird was just over 6lbs)
Just before removing from smoker, we glazed it lightly with one of our favorites sauces.
It was a party in our mouth lol

Thanks to whoever posted this recipe/ idea.

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Mike Sanchez April 20, 2014 at 9:32 pm

Kevin, Thanks for the recipes! I smoked an 8 .lbs chicken for Easter with your recipe for stuffing and brine, I didn’t inject the bird. This is my third attempt at smoking, I did spare ribs and turkey legs before this chicken. It took 7 hrs, I have an R2D2 (red Master Forge) electric water smoker. I brined the bird for 24 hrs and used cherry with a couple of mesquite chips that I soaked in a bucket for 48 hrs. I put the water from the soaked chips in my water pan. I used a temp probe and put it in the top of the breast and waited for it to reach 180 degrees. The bird was very juicy and everyone loved it! I kept the temp in the smoker between 225-250 degrees and slowly worked it up to 275 in the last 2 hrs. I know you said put the probe in the thigh, but I wanted to make sure I cooked it completely. It took 4 hrs to go from 160 to 180 degrees on the probe. Do R2D2 smokers get hung when smoking? I am going to try and smoke your pulled pork and rub recipe with a pork butt next Saturday. I plan on using apple juice in the water pan and putting it in an aluminum pan covered for the last 6 hrs. I’m a little worried about the hourly spraying…”if your looking your not cooking” and my R2D2 seems slow when I’m not opening it up, any thoughts or words of wisdom for a rookie?

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Kevin April 22, 2014 at 9:58 am

First, I’m glad you had good reviews on your chicken! 180 seems a bit high for a temp, but the only thing that matters is tasty meat!
On the pork, you definitely don’t need to spray. You have to know your smoker. Mine recovers quickly after opening. I just like the layers of flavor that spraying and sprinkling extra rub provides…but it’s certainly not necessary. You’re right, those little bullet smokers are tough to keep temp regulated. Just keep throwing in lit coals to keep temp up. I used to throw lit coals in every couple of hours.
Have fun!

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Michael April 15, 2014 at 8:23 pm

Hey kevin have you used pellets to smoke with and if so what did you think?

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Kevin April 15, 2014 at 9:07 pm

Only once, and it was a good experience. I will say I’ve talked to many people who use pellets and they absolutely love them. Easy to use, easy to regulate, good smoke.

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Michael April 15, 2014 at 9:09 pm

Thank you have you ever smoked lamb shank? If so how did it go?

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Kevin April 15, 2014 at 9:19 pm

I have not, but I want to try – I’ll keep you posted!

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Michael April 15, 2014 at 1:58 pm

I followed this recipe exactly last weekend and it was fantastic! I cooked a 7 lbs. chicken, brined it over night and then smoked it over charcoal/wood for about 5 hours, average temp around 225. It was incredibly moist, very flavorful and enough to feed a small army. I made chicken salad with the left overs. A great bang for the buck! I will do this again for sure now that the weather is finally breaking.

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Michael April 15, 2014 at 10:19 pm

Well I was not sure how it would go but all my friends and family told me that I could do it. And with all the things that you and others on this site helped me feel good. But best of all we have alot of leftovers to make chicken enchiladas, that is the start of something great. Thanks for having the passion that we do keep smokin.

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Michael April 12, 2014 at 11:39 pm

Hey kevin do you put your chicken in pan to cook

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Kevin April 13, 2014 at 7:11 am

The only time I use a pan is if I want to infuse with flavors, such as citrus. In that case you would want to use chicken parts or spatchcock your bird.
When I smoke whole chicken I always put directly on grill.

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Michael April 13, 2014 at 1:46 pm

Thank you so much. I have four 6 lbs birds on I did one just like yours and three different rubs but used the stuffing of yours in all I will let you know how it goes. Thanks for your reply.

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Michael April 13, 2014 at 7:36 pm

Kevin, dam that is the bomb did four and we had four people over for dinner and they could not stop eat them. We all had our own we liked because we did four different rubs and the juice was the best I have seen in my life. You are the man.Thanks love your site.

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Kevin H. April 14, 2014 at 6:15 am

Great! So glad you had success!

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ryan April 8, 2014 at 9:58 pm

Im planning on using this, but with four 5lbs birds. How long do yoi think it will take? Also, to you flip every now and then, ir just let ‘em cook?

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Kevin April 9, 2014 at 10:04 pm

I never flip.
As far as how long…it depends on your cooking temp. If you cook at around 250 they should be done in 3-5 hours. The number of birds shouldn’t matter unless you’re really cramming them in your cooker…if your cooking chamber is packed then it could extend cooking time.

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Mike luyks April 4, 2014 at 5:39 pm

Followed your brine recipe, and was so stoked to try the smoking. (Even soaked my applewood chips in Apple juice!) However a full day of rain and 5 degrees Celsius, so I stuffed the bird and put it in the oven.
Family all agreed it was the best chicken yet! I honestly cannot wait to smoke a bird. Tried to talk the family into having smoked chicken tomorrow night.
Thanks for the recipe and your site. I will return after I do smoke one.

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Mike luyks April 13, 2014 at 7:07 pm

Smoked two tonight. (Gas BBQ with wood chips,)
It was great, very moist and flavourful.
This will become my standard way of cooking from now on.

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Pete Y March 30, 2014 at 6:19 pm

I’ve never had chicken as good as this. I followed the instructions and recipe exactly. 3.5 lb bird. Good lord, this is a great recipe. Thanks very much for the recipe to use. Man, I’m so full right now!

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John March 27, 2014 at 4:52 pm

Unbelievable!
This is from a guy that doesn’t really like chicken.
Thanks.
Made my wife happy that I will cook chicken for her now.

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Wynn March 23, 2014 at 12:57 am

Love the site!! I have smoked several smaller chickens with your fantastic recipie, however I have a 7lb one I’m looking to smoke., brining as we speak. Any suggestions or ideas on the smoking time? I will be using indirect on a stable temperature grill.

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Kevin March 23, 2014 at 11:10 am

I bet you’ll still get it done in 5-6 hours cooking at around 250. If you want it smokier you could certainly use a lower temp and smoke longer. Just monitor that breast temp and you can’t go wrong!

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Scott March 20, 2014 at 7:44 am

Will the puncture wounds, if I choose to inject the chicken, cause too much leakage of the juices during the smoking process?

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Kevin March 20, 2014 at 5:04 pm

I used to have that same fear but I think the results are still pretty awesome, even with piercing the skin. It will still be the best chicken you’ve ever eaten.

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Taylor March 7, 2014 at 2:32 pm

Using a smoker, will it take longer to do 2 chickens or will they still take 3-5 hours?

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Kevin March 7, 2014 at 8:18 pm

Cooking 2 instead of 1 shouldn’t add any time as long as they’re getting the same amount of heat (i.e. same rack).

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Taylor March 8, 2014 at 10:46 pm

Awesome, thanks man! Really digging your site. I got a smoker for Xmas and have been having a ton of fun with it. Your recipes are great and easy to personalize. Thanks for the fast response!

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Sonny March 2, 2014 at 5:51 pm

Today was the first time I made Smoke Whole Chicken It turn out out of this world! I follow the instruction just they way you have it!!! I had 5 LBS birds so I smoke them for 6 HRS. they came out just right !! Thank You very much!! Would you have any Idea on Whole smoke rabbit?? Thank you again!!

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Kevin March 4, 2014 at 9:53 pm

Sonny – Great to hear such good feedback! Unfortunately no, I don’t have any experience with rabbit…

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J baumgartner February 23, 2014 at 6:06 pm

Wow! Used the brine recipe. Took about 4 hours at 250 in the smoker with mesquite chips. Fabulous! We are usually a white meat family, but this had us fighting over The flavorful dark meat. Served it with homemade hash browns and roasted asparagus. No leftovers!

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J baumgartner February 23, 2014 at 7:02 pm

Oh, the only change we made was that we had no lemons, so I omitted them. I did squirt some conncentrated lemon juice into the apple/ onion/ garlic mixture. I barely fit that in the chicken, so I’m thinking it’s a good thing.

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tawana Johnson February 23, 2014 at 3:24 pm

Smoked my chicken today using your method and it was wonderful. Thanks for sharing

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scott February 23, 2014 at 10:03 am

I thoroughly enjoyed this article. Well done. I’m going to do this today. I only found the article this morning so I’m going to cook my chicken on a 4 hr brine. The rest will be the same. I’ll brine overnight next time.

Thanks!

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Gary February 15, 2014 at 7:50 pm

I usually spatchcock my chickens. I have cooked/smoked chicken at 250. I cook them on a Kamado. Would I get the same results from your recipe ? If I were to make the mixture that goes inside the chicken, could I put it underneath the chicken ?
Thanks.

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Kevin February 18, 2014 at 2:26 pm

Hey Gary – I think that’s a great idea to put mixture underneath the chicken. My wife does that in the oven when she roasts. It will definitely help. If you spatchcock, I think the total cooking time will be less – at least that’s my experience. I’ll have to do one soon and post it – thanks!

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blaine January 11, 2014 at 9:41 pm

quick question,
Just got done smoking a chicken according to your instructions and was wondering what to do with the stuffing. Do you throw it away or is it good to eat?

Thanks

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Kevin January 12, 2014 at 2:27 pm

I always throw it away unless I’m making chicken broth. Then I throw it in the pot with the carcass…but I know several people that eat it!

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edward January 2, 2014 at 3:39 pm

I tried your whole chicken recipe and followed the brine ingredients and time
The chicken is the best I ever had the taste was out of this world

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Chris January 1, 2014 at 6:55 pm

I made 2 of these today for some family that came over. It turned out amazing! Everyone loved it and it was so juicy! Next time I’m saving the carcass and making broth.

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Patti January 1, 2014 at 8:45 pm

Yay! Let me know what your family thinks of the soup! There are so many creative things to do with leftovers. I’m so glad you’re trying out this soup! Happy eating! :)

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MVanWie December 29, 2013 at 2:59 pm

Just wanted to drop a line and say that I tried this today on my first attempt at smoking (got a charcoal smoke box for Christmas.) I followed the directions exactly and it was incredible, the whole family loved it. I will certainly be using this recipe again in the future. Thank you for help!

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Chris December 25, 2013 at 11:56 am

I’ve used this recipe for 8 months now and I have tried many different types of wood. Cherry is my favorite and I have two in the smoker today for Christmas lunch. I keep my smoker at 225 and add more wood every 30 to 45 minutes. It takes about 4 hrs to reach internal temp of thigh to 165. It always turns out phenomenal and the skin is never dry. I have a gas smoker and I keep the water pan full the entire time so nothing dries out. Best smoked chicken I’ve ever eaten.

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Daphne December 25, 2013 at 8:50 am

I have just bought my first smoked chicken and don’t know how to cook it –
do I stuff it just like a normal chicken??
or just re heat it??

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Kevin December 30, 2013 at 8:34 am

I’m not exactly sure what your question is, Daphne. You bough an already cooked smoked chicken? Or you’re going to smoke your first chicken? If you’re smoking it, definitely yes stuff it like a normal chicken. If it’s already cooked, I wouldn’t bother. Just reheat in a pan with some liquid and cover it.

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Patrick C November 29, 2013 at 4:46 pm

Smoked six chickens for Thanksgiving…. following this recipe and instructions and WOW …WOW….WOW …. So simple but SOOO GOOOD. Meat pulled off the bones and the flavor is good and throughout the meat. Great recipes for the chicken and brine.

Thank you

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Scott R November 17, 2013 at 8:23 pm

Thanks for recipe and tips. I smoked four small chickens too perfection yesterday thanks to you. I added a little pink salt to my brine for a minor change. The final product was the juiciest, best tasting smoked chicken I have eaten.

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Becky October 28, 2013 at 12:20 am

2nd. Foolproof recipe so far! The chicken was outstanding! I forgot the lemon, oops! I also forgot to oil. salt, pepper and paprika the skin, LOL. It didn’t matter. The chicken looked as beautiful as yours. Everyone raved of it’s juiciness, tenderness and great flavor. You are absolutely right, I will never oven roast another chicken. I’m so glad I stumbled upon your website, it’s my go to for all my smoking recipes :) Thanks

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jeff mcpeak October 15, 2013 at 4:46 pm

chicken looked beautiful – the chicken itself was juicy and delicious – the skin, as pretty as it was, was like chewing on a rubberband . just ate it without the skin . did i do something wrong or is this you get ?

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Kevin October 15, 2013 at 5:17 pm

Is this on a whole chicken?

If so, there’s nothing you can do that I’m aware of. I never eat the skin. I peel it back and just enjoy the delicious meat. Plus it’s healthier.

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Dustin December 6, 2013 at 3:09 pm

In the past I have taken the birds out of the smoker and finished on a hot grill to crisp the skin. I however was just reading a Cooks Illustrated article and they suggest taking the bird from the brine and letting it air dry overnight in the fridge. I will use this technique in next time and hope I can avoid the hot grill finish.

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Stewart J. Moore September 30, 2013 at 6:30 am

Excellent results! Thanks for the tips and the bird came out juicy and delicious. I used lime instead of lemon as grocer had a poor selection of lemons. Also, instead of a paprika for coloring I used some red chili powder. We’re gearing up to smoke a turkey for Thanksgiving and this was a good test run. It was a great success and thanks for the advice!

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Jeff September 29, 2013 at 3:46 pm

I’ve got my chicken on the smoker now (about 1.5 hrs) how long do you smoke it for? I was thinking 2.5 hours of smoke and just slow cook the rest of the way? Also where is the best place on a whole chicken to monitor temp? Once again great recipe and chicken smells amazing! Thanks

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Kevin H. September 29, 2013 at 4:24 pm

It’s all about temperature and not time. You want your thigh to be at 165 degrees. Hope that helps!

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Jeff September 29, 2013 at 10:14 pm

Thanks! This chicken was amazing ! I can’t imagine cooking it any other way

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Elizabeth Lamon September 17, 2013 at 12:20 pm

Loved it! It’s very detailed, I bought a new smoker for the football season and since my husband is terrified of grilling in general, it was my job to figure it out. This was perfect for a starter recipe, as a vegetarian I only got to enjoy the fabulous scent but everyone was so happy with the food that the Cowboys loss didn’t sting as much lol I’ll make two next time for sure. great job!

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Nathan September 14, 2013 at 4:40 pm

Did one of these last weekend and doing two more this weekend. Last week I kept the smoker at around 300 and the chicken was done in about 2-2 1/2 hours it turned out beautifully. Best chicken I’ve ever had. Thanks for the tips!

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Kevin September 12, 2013 at 4:05 pm

The chicken was awesome! This was the first one I’ve done on my smoker. I will make this again and again. The kids loved it.

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Louis September 6, 2013 at 9:17 pm

I used your brine and i am going to do the beer can w
ith rub in it also

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cara September 5, 2013 at 6:38 am

I am going to use this recipe to make several chickens for my sons graduation party. Would the cooking time/temp on the grill change , if I was cooking two chickens on the grill at once? Also, although I know not ideal, any suggestions for making ahead of time, cooling, slicing, and re-heating? ( i am sure you are cringing at the thought- but I am hosting about 80 people, and this is only one of the things I am making) Thanks for the recipe

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Kevin September 5, 2013 at 3:03 pm

Hi Cara –
No, the cooking time/temp shouldn’t change. I regularly cook 2 chickens at once on my grill. You should be fine. As far as reheating, I do that all the time! I don’t slice – I pull it. I freeze it with the juices in the bag and I think it still tastes delicious when defrosted. Just heat it up slowly at a low temp (225-250) and be sure to add juices as necessary. Apple juice, butter, sprite…whatever sounds good to you.

Hope the party and the cooking go well!

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Dave August 8, 2013 at 8:04 am

I am going to use this recipe but I was wondering would you deduce the cook time if you are using seperate pieces of chicken vs a whole chicken? If so, what would you recommend? Thanks.

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Kevin August 12, 2013 at 10:49 am

Hey Dave – yes, I would definitely reduce the cook time if parts vs. whole. A whole chicken takes much longer. Depending what parts you’re talking about, it shouldn’t take more than a couple hours to get done. Cook at around 225-250 and leg quarters, bone in breasts and such should be done in 2 hours.

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Dave August 12, 2013 at 10:57 am

I ended up using legs and thighs. I brined overnight using your simple brining method. I then rubbed them with your all purpose rub and smoked them in my electric smoker at 250 with applewood for approximately 2 hrs and they turned out fabulous. My kids keep asking me if we are having them again day after day. Thanks.

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Peter August 5, 2013 at 3:52 pm

I echo the sentiments of many of the other commenters here when I say that this smoked whole chicken is amazing. This is my fifth or sixth bird (losing count) and each time it turns out excellent. Thanks Kevin for this recipe and this website as a resource.

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Natalia July 30, 2013 at 10:33 am

Kevin I love this recipe and such an amazing photography. I hope you don’t mind that we’ve shared one yof your photos and your recipe with our readers as well… in one of our posts. Here is the link http://flavorshades.com/2013/07/salad-kapriz-with-smoked-chicken/. Keep those recipes coming, they look so delicious!

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Marc Mitchell July 21, 2013 at 6:28 pm

These comments are not lies. This is the best chicken I have ever tasted. I am new to smoking and I smoked it all afternoon in a Master Forge, with water and apple wood chips. Beside that i followed the recipe to the tee. Kudos Kevin and thank you for the recipe.

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Kevin July 24, 2013 at 10:03 am

Thanks so much for the kind works, Marc. Keep coming back and spread the word!

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Meagan July 20, 2013 at 3:57 pm

I’m trying this out today! My dad and I are each smoking a whole chicken. I brined, he didn’t, we both stuffed the cavity!! I’m so impatient when it comes to these things, but I can’t wait!! The smoker smells so good! I’ve got a 6lb bird in there and I’m excited for it to be done!!
Thanks for such an easy no nonsense recipe!!

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Kevin July 24, 2013 at 10:03 am

Fun! Let me know how it went for you and your dad, Meagan!

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tlyp July 13, 2013 at 6:25 pm

Did this today in a Bradley smoker, followed the recipe exactly (brined overnight) – this is the BEST chicken I’ve ever had in my life. No joke. Doesn’t even need sauce. I bet I could eat the entire chicken myself (I’m female). In our smoker at 250 degrees it took about 3 hours which was faster than we thought so I covered it in tinfoil and placed it in the oven on ‘warm’ for about an hour (needed to get other food items ready for dinner). It is RIDICULOUS!

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Dean July 11, 2013 at 6:48 pm

First time for brining and smoking a chicken, and I’m really glad that I stumbled across this page. Used the basic brine mixture for a couple of 4-1/2 pound birds and left them in the mixture for about 24 hours, then stuffed and oiled up the fowls. Next came the fun part…smoking them with apple and cherry chunks four 3 hours until golden brown. Awesome recipe and even more awesome taste! Thanks for sharing Kevin.
– Dean

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Alecia July 6, 2013 at 11:05 am

Recipe sounds awesome and going to give it a try! One question, do you need to use a water pan in smoker? Thanks for the recipe!

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Kevin July 8, 2013 at 2:55 pm

Hey Alecia – No, you don’t need a water pan. In fact, I often smoke chickens on my Weber with no water pans. Personally, I PREFER using a water pan, just to maximize moisture, but it certainly isn’t necessary.
Good luck and let me know how it turns out!

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Brent July 4, 2013 at 8:23 am

This is a great recipe. Thanks. But something I love to do if you don’t have time to brine. Fry up a pound of bacon pull the meat out and add a fresh herb. I like rosemary. Render the herb flavor into the fat. Strain. Let the fat cool and then inject the bird. The bad fats will drip out while smoking leaving that amazing flavor. One of the moistest birds I’ve ever smoked.

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Kevin July 4, 2013 at 1:15 pm

Brent – this is genius, that’s what it is. I’m absolutely trying this soon. I’ll post it and give you credit. I’m really excited to try this – thanks so much for sharing!

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Deron June 29, 2013 at 2:56 pm

Kevin, at what temperature are you cooking at? thanks

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Kevin H. June 30, 2013 at 6:52 am

Hi Deron! In the recipe I am assuming your grill holds its temp around 250. Depending on the weight, your chicken will cook for 3 – 5 hours. You want an internal temperature in the leg of 170. Obviously if the bird is bigger or your heat is lower, it will take longer to reach this temperature. If you’re using a Weber, I’d say start checking them temp after 3 hours or so and when you hit 165, you’re done!

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Andy Waring June 24, 2013 at 2:39 pm

Well this is a winner! The best thing I have smoked in the UDS so far. Had left overs today in a wicked Club Sandwich. Thank you from the UK :)

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Dave June 23, 2013 at 3:25 pm

Hi. I tried this recipe today and must have misstepped somewhere. I’m hoping you can help me out. I brined the bird overnight and following your cooking method on my electric smoker. While the chicken came out juicy inside , the outside looked like an explosion. Any ideas on what I did wrong? The skin was all torn apart and discolored.

Thanks,
Dave

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Kevin June 25, 2013 at 2:59 pm

Hey Dave – hmmm, I’m not sure why your chicken exploded like that. Maybe the temp was a bit high? Did you put oil on the skin? If you didn’t, try that, as it seems to help keep the skin together and looking nice. Hope that works for you!
Hey, at least the most important part – the meat – turned out well!

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Benjamin June 22, 2013 at 5:38 pm

You sir are a genius!!! Just finished a 5 pound bird with your exact directions and ummm WOWWWWWWWWWW!!!!!!!! The juice is pooring down my chin, the flavor is outstanding!!!!!!! THANK YOU!!!!!!

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Kevin June 22, 2013 at 5:56 pm

Well…I guess I’ll take that as fairly positive feedback.
;-)
Make sure the juice doesn’t drip onto your keyboard. I would hate to short circuit your computer.

So glad to hear your success!!

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Dennis June 16, 2013 at 9:36 am

Found your site thru a Google search & I have my chicken on the smoker right now. Only thing I forgot was to add some olive oil to the stuffing & skin but I covered in a rub so I think it will ok. I have been smoking for a few years but nowhere near the level like this. I will be trying more of your secrets & recipes. Thanks for taking the time to share & document your knowledge. In a few hours I will be pulling it off to devour. & would send pics but wasnt sure if that was an option. Thanks again!!!

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Kevin H. June 16, 2013 at 9:53 am

Would love to see a picture! Post one on our Facebook page! https://www.facebook.com/ExtraordinaryBBQ

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Nikko June 11, 2013 at 10:15 am

Looks pretty amazing and want to give it a shot this Sunday. My question is do you attend to the bird at one hour intervals with some sort of say apple juice spray to maintain moisture? Also, could I eat this in a pulled chicken sandwich fashion doused with BBQ sauce or would I need a different rub for that?
Much appreciated!

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Kevin June 11, 2013 at 6:27 pm

Great question, Nikko! I have found that spray isn’t necessary with chicken because it’s protected with the skin. As long as you don’t overcook it, you won’t have any issue with moisture. It will be outstanding. That being said, spraying with some apple juice certainly wouldn’t hurt!
And absolutely you could pull this apart! That’s what I do nearly every single time. I mix the dark and white meat and dunk in sauce – it’s delicious!

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Nikko June 15, 2013 at 1:45 pm

Thanks for your quick response! I will let you know how it turns out tomorrow.

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Nikko June 21, 2013 at 1:57 pm

That was great, Kevin! everyone including my kids loved every piece of that bird.
Thanks!

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Kevin H. June 21, 2013 at 2:04 pm

That’s great news Nikko! Thanks for letting me know the results!

Matt June 5, 2013 at 9:46 pm

I had friend who was in town on business over and wanted to try something new and home cooked since he travels a lot and goes to a ton of restaurants. I decided on some good old fashioned home-smoked BBQ, so I searched for “smoking a whole chicken” on Bing and this was the first result. I saw this recipe and decided to go for it since it wasn’t that complicated, BEST DECISION EVER! I am a complete novice and the chicken I made had a smoke ring! Kevin, you are awesome, I have bookmarked the site and will definitely be back for other recipes. Also chanced by your bio, how bout them Cards?!

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Kevin June 7, 2013 at 9:21 am

Excellent, Matt!! So great to hear success. Keep me posted on how things go with this and other recipes you try, and let me know if there are recipes you would like to see that aren’t posted.

And….HOW BOUT them Cards!! 2nd only to BBQ, Cardinals Baseball is my passion – and they aren’t disappointing this season!

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JT June 4, 2013 at 8:31 pm

This recipe is a winner. Smoked two birds on my first attempt and all who tried them thought they were restaurant quality. Look no further for a great recipe

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Corey Wilcox May 25, 2013 at 10:04 pm

This is an amazing recipe. The chicken was very moist and had amazing flavor. I recommend this to everyone. I add some extra spice to them an hour before the smoker. Everyone loved them!! Thank you for sharing with us!!

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Ben May 25, 2013 at 8:11 pm

How long does it take for a 3-5lb whole chicken in a electric smoker

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Kevin May 25, 2013 at 8:19 pm

Well, if your smoker is at 250, I’d guess 3 hours…but it might be more or less depending on the pounds. Just make sure internal temp is 165.

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Tom May 14, 2013 at 5:06 pm

So I tried this recipe and it was great. I used a 6lb chicken and it was done in a little over 2 hours. Does anyone have any ideas why it cooked so fast? Temp was set for 240.

Thanks/Tom

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Kevin May 15, 2013 at 12:22 pm

Hey Tom – a lot depends on the cooker. I regularly get chickens done on my Weber in 2 hours. With the Weber, the heat is close and surrounds the food, so it cooks much faster. It’s definitely ok to get it done fast – it might just be less smokey.

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Tom May 15, 2013 at 8:02 pm

Thanks, I figured it was something like that. I’ll just log it and next time I’ll plan on it taking less time.

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Mike January 2, 2013 at 10:07 pm

We made this chicken a few days ago, and it was THE BEST chicken we’ve ever tasted! Today, I’ll be putting 4 more birds into the smoker! Excellent recipe, and instructions!

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Brad Slauson October 15, 2012 at 11:16 am

How long should you smoke a whole 7 lb. chiken? 6-8 hours?

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Kevin October 15, 2012 at 9:20 pm

Brad – it depends on your cooker and the temp you’re cooking at. Most of the chickens I smoke are about 5lbs and take about 5-6 hours on my smoker…so your estimate is probably right on. But If I do it on my Weber, indirect, the heat is closer to the meat so it only takes 2 – 3 hours. If you’re using a Weber, I’d say start checking them temp after 3 hours or so and when you hit 165, you’re done.

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Brett Nichols October 8, 2012 at 7:56 pm

Wish I could post a pic.

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Kevin H. October 8, 2012 at 8:02 pm

That’s fantastic!! Have you liked our Facebook page? If so, you should be able to post a picture on our wall. Or, e-mail it to me! (kevin@extraordinarybbq.com) Thanks for letting me know you tried the recipe…we love to hear success stories!

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Brett Nichols October 8, 2012 at 7:56 pm

Just did this for the first time and it turned out amazing. Thanks for the great recipe.

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Lee July 25, 2012 at 6:20 pm

This was my first whole chicken on the smoker and it was fantastic! Will be saving whats left for some of the other recipes on this site.

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Kevin August 11, 2012 at 12:41 pm

Lee – so happy to hear you had such success with your first bird – Congrats! And let me know when you try the other recipes, I love hearing about it.

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Michael June 18, 2014 at 10:03 am

I was asking because I used some cement board 1/2″ and it helped my box alot. There is thiner board that you cut and put it inside. My box is alum and 44″ by 26″ by 4 1/2′ the 1/2″ works great in my smoker

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