Chicken Week 2016: How To Smoke Chicken

Update and Redux: J – Luke got me into smoking stuff. First, it was just bacon. Then, it moved on to this chicken recipe. Now, I’ll smoke just about anything. I’m not looking back. It’s an addiction. Nice I can eat and enjoy the results.

J – Doing smoked meat can seem challenging.

It’s not. And, smoked chicken is the easiest of all. I was amazed when Luke showed us how to smoke meat on my simple charcoal grill. I had built up in my mind all these reasons why it would be hard. Poof. Gone.

Now, Christina thinks I smoke too much … meat.

Smoking meat couldn’t be much easier. Get some meat. Brine or cure it for a day or three. Brine, in the case of chicken.

Get some wood chips. Light the grill with just a few briquets. Add wet chips. Maintain a 200 degree temperature. Place the meat in an indirect location. Cover grill.

Take meat off when the internal temperature is correct for the meat you’re smoking.

Chicken Week: How to Smoke Chicken
Recipe type: Mains
Prep time: 24 hours
Cook time: 3 hours
Total time: 27 hours
Serves: 4
  • ½ medium yellow onion, peeled and quartered
  • 3 fennel stems and fronds, rough chopped
  • 4 to 6 sprigs of fresh thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 6 pepper corns
  • ½ cup kosher salt
  • ½ cup golden brown sugar
  • 8 to 9 cups water
  • 1 whole chicken, back removed and flattened (Spatchcock)
  1. Mix all ingredients in a large pot and bring to a boil
  2. Lower heat and simmer for 30 minutes.
  3. Cool to room temperature. This is very important.
  4. In a medium storage pan, pour brine over chicken.
  5. Brine the chicken overnight.
Smoked Chicken
  1. Remove chicken from brine and dry thoroughly, removing all the herb bits.
  2. Use wood chips of your preference. We use apple wood for chicken..
  3. Soak chips in water for 30 minutes.
  4. Light the grill with just a few briquets. Add wet chips.
  5. Place the chicken skin-side-up in an indirect location. Cover grill.
  6. Maintain a 200 degree temperature, adding briquets and chips when needed.
  7. Take chicken off when the internal temperature is 150 degrees.
  8. Cut up or slice.
  9. Serve.
  10. Enjoy!


The result is awesome. The smoke is not overpowering. Both the dark and white meat are moist and flavorful. Just the right amount of saltiness with hints of herbs.

Only real problem is not having enough. We tend to tear it apart in just a few minutes.