Smoke a chicken

How To Smoke A Chicken Using A Pellet Grill

How to smoke a chicken using a pellet grill for flavor is easy. First, you will clean your chicken, apply the seasonings, and put it on the grill. This sounds too easy because it is. There is so much more to do before you even fire up the grill. Let’s take a look at some of those processes for a better understanding.

Frequently Asked Question

How long does it take to smoke an 8-pound chicken at 225F?

When you smoke a whole chicken, it will take between 2 – 4 hours. It takes this length of time since the average cooking time is 45 minutes per pound. Ultimately, the doneness is measured by the internal temperature reaching 165F. Let your chicken rest for about 10 minutes before cutting into it.

Smoking A Spatchcock Chicken

Smoking a spatchcock chicken is very similar to smoking a whole chicken. The weight will be almost the same. The biggest difference is in a spatchcock chicken you remove the spine. You do this by taking bone shears to cut along both sides of the backbone to remove it. By having the chicken splayed on the grill, you are reaching more of the chicken at one time for the smoking process.

Once you remove the backbone, use your preferred seasoning. After you have removed the backbone and seasoned your chicken, it is time to put it on your pellet grill. Once you have the temperature set and the cooking chamber to temperature, place your chicken on the grill.

You may want to lightly spray your chicken every 30 minutes to help keep it from drying out. As you spray your chicken don’t keep the lid open very long, this causes you to lose heat. I have found that doing this not only helps keep it from drying out but also helps it retain its moisture when you take it off the grill.

However, if you don’t want to spray your chicken every 30 minutes you can add a small pan with apple juice or some other juice to help retain moisture in your chicken or you can just leave it off.

How To Spatchcock A Chicken Video

Smoke A Chicken On A Pellet Grill

Brining Your Spatchcock Chicken

If you don’t like dry rubs but still want a chicken full of flavor then brining may be the way to go. A brining solution is easy to make. Most brines have a ratio of 1 tablespoon salt to 1 quart of water to place your chicken in. Be sure to cover your chicken completely for the best results of your brine. If you want to add some aromatics to your brine they will penetrate deeply adding more flavor to your chicken.

When you remove your chicken from the brine pat it dry. This slows the brining process but you still have the aromatics inside the meat for a delicious meal. Just another example of what creativity can do for you.

Heating Your Pellet Grill

Preheating your pellet grill is one of the most important parts of smoking a chicken. Start your pellet grill on the smoke setting with the lid open for your preheat. After about 10 minutes, change the setting to the temperature you desire. It will take a few minutes for the temperature to stabilize for smoking your chicken.

This gives you the opportunity to double-check everything before placing your chicken on the grill. After double-checking everything, including the temperature, place your chicken on the grill. Check your time and plan to spray your chicken 30 minutes later. Once your chicken reaches 165F, your chicken is done.

Smoke A Chicken For Flavor

Many people forget that the proper seasoning will help you achieve the flavor you are looking for. I use a variety of seasonings that are right for my family. You can do the same thing by thinking about what your family prefers. If you don’t want to develop your particular flavor, there are several good rubs and marinades available for this.

Knowing what flavors your family likes will give you a clue about the types of flavors you have to choose from. This will also give you an opportunity to expand your flavor profile. You may find there are other flavors your family likes with some experimenting with different herbs and spices.

Taking Your Spatchcocked Chicken Off The Grill

By using your spatula and tongs together you will be able to take your chicken off the grill like a professional. If you used some olive oil or avocado oil on your grates when it was preheating then you should have no problems taking your chicken off the grill. If you didn’t use any oil on your grill grates, you may have a small amount of trouble.

After removing your chicken, place it on a cutting board covering it with aluminum foil to keep the heat in. You will need to let your chicken rest for at least 10 minutes before slicing it. This helps keep all the juices in your chicken and not on the cutting board.

Thoughts On Increasing Your Expertise

As you take risks and experiment with different flavors, herbs, spices, and techniques, you find your grilling is becoming better each time your grill. There are times you will stay with what you know but other times you will get out of your comfort zone.


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