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Smoked chicken advice

I am planning on smoking 2 chickens tomorrow and need some help.  I've never smoked a chicken before and hear that the skin is difficult to get it crispy.  Anyone know a little trick to crisp it up.  I also plan on doing them beer can style.  I have done numerous beer can chickens with great results.  I just wonder if doing a hybrid cook will negate the positives of each style.  Thanks for the help.

Comments

  • ChubbsChubbs Posts: 5,583
    edited January 2013
    You can go beer can, but I (as well as other here) suggest doing spatchcock or butterflied. The key to crispy skin is drying the chicken really well and leaving in the fridge uncovered overnight. Then set up you egg for raised direct. The higher in the dome, the better. Not sure of your taste buds, but I usually go pretty light on the smoke for chickens as birds tend to absorb a lot. Good luck. Oh, and i usually cook at 400 dome until 165 in white and 180 in dark meat.
    Columbia, SC --- LBGE 2011 -- MINI BGE 2013
  • Drying in the fridge as mentioned helps with the skin as well as many have said to sprinkle or roll it in cornstarch. Chicken does readily accept smoke so go easy , i use Pecan as it is a milder smoking wood. Good Luck !
    Ova B.
    Fulton MO
  • MickeyMickey Posts: 16,504

    Just what Chubbs said.....

     

    image
    Salado TX Egg Family: 2 Large and a very well used Mini, just added a Mini Max (I'm good for now). 

  • joe@bgejoe@bge Posts: 394
    edited January 2013
    Spatch!  My favorite rub is tsunami spin from Dizzy Pig...makes for a great tasting chicken.

    image

  • Those are pretty birds, @Mickey & @joe@bge! ;

    Wanna hear a secret?  I have yet to cook a spatchcocked bird on my BGE. :-$
    I'm Kristi ~ Live in FL ~ BGE since 2003.
    I write about food & travel on Necessary Indulgences -
    You can find me on Facebook & Instagram, too! 
  • lousubcaplousubcap Posts: 6,865
    @NecessaryIndulg-Say it ain't so... :)
    Louisville   L & S BGEs 
  • The best thing you can do for crispy skin is to brine them. A simple solution of 1 gallon water, 1 cup salt, 1/2 cup sugar  for 8-12 hours hours would be perfect. Bring this solution to a boil to dissolve solids, let cool and add the birds and refrigerate for 8-12 hours) You can add any herbs or lemon to that you want and it will add to the flavor. It's all good but the basic brine is fine. Then let them air dry in the fridge or outside if your temps are at 40 or below (probably best not to let them freeze if you are that cold) until the skin is tacky to the touch. I then dust with a little corn starch and spatchcock them as shown above. The skin will be very crispy and the meat will be very flavorful and juicy. You can add additional rubs/flavors to the outside of the bird as well. Careful adding too much more salt though. I add All kinds of Dizzy pig rubs or pepper and herbs or whatever I'm in the mood for. 

    here is a good brine recipe and all the times for brining as well. I use this brine religiously and it produces awesome results every time


    Good luck and enjoy the cook

  • joe@bgejoe@bge Posts: 394
    @NecessaryIndulg-blasphemy!   ;)

  • AleBrewerAleBrewer Posts: 555
    For crispy skin, you really need to get into roasting temps. I prefer 350 and above.

    I've said it before....I'm not  huge fan of Mangrate...oops, I meant spatchcock chicken. I prefer my birds with a backbone....some pretty tasty morsels that get cut out when you remove the back bone. And I just prefer how a whole bird presents itself.

    However, if I'm in a hurry to get some yardbird on the table, then spatch is the way to go.

    I rinse the bird off, dry it pretty well with some paper towels...and then into the fridge for a few hours to dry.

    I do my mine indirect at 350 or a bit higher. The skin always gets crispy.....brined birds are awesome if you have time to do it....doesn't really take too much extra, but it's well worth it.
  • MickeyMickey Posts: 16,504

    Those are pretty birds, @Mickey & @joe@bge! ;

    Wanna hear a secret?  I have yet to cook a spatchcocked bird on my BGE. :-$ </blockquote
    Kid don't feel bad. I have you bested. I have never cooked a brisket and live in the middle of Texas.

    Salado TX Egg Family: 2 Large and a very well used Mini, just added a Mini Max (I'm good for now). 

  • Mickey said:
    Kid don't feel bad. I have you bested. I have never cooked a brisket and live in the middle of Texas.
    :-O
    I'm Kristi ~ Live in FL ~ BGE since 2003.
    I write about food & travel on Necessary Indulgences -
    You can find me on Facebook & Instagram, too! 
  • EVOO helps with skin also
  • Ale, you can butterfly a whole chicken and leave the backbone in. Same results as spatchcocking
    Live on beautiful Lake Hartwell GA
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