How Long Does It Take To Smoke A Chicken

How Long Does It Take To Smoke A Chicken?

Chicken is a healthy food since it contains less fat and calories compared to other types of meat. Also, there are different ways of cooking a chicken that helps achieve this purpose. In addition, the type of food you cook will determine if it’s nutritious or full of toxins. The article below shows how you can prepare your chicken for that great tasting meal which is also good for your family’s health.

How Long Does It Take To Smoke A Chicken

Good ways to cook a chicken:

Smoking: This is one of the best ways to cook a chicken if you want that delicious barbecued or smoked flavored which will make your guests ask for more. It takes around 15 hours for this process but the result is something worth it. You can choose how to flavor it, hot and spicy or mild with many other choices available. Smoked meat loses less water content compared to frying so it’s healthy than any other type of cooking method out there.

Stir fry: You can stir-fry your chicken by following this step, ” Combine all ingredients; marinate for 15 minutes; heat oil in a wok or large skillet over high heat.” this will give you that great-tasting meal while still providing its nutritional benefit to your family like vitamin A and calcium.

Steaming: You can steam your chicken by following these steps, “Place thighs in a single layer in pan with 2 inches water” or you can also use vegetables to prepare it healthy plus tasty. It is the best way of cooking which preserves most vitamins and minerals compared to other methods of cooking.

Roasting: There are many ways on how to roast a chicken like, “Preheat oven to 400°F. Combine oil, juice, and herbs; mix well. Brush chicken with half of this mixture.” or you can choose to create your own recipes like adding ginger or any spices that will make it tastier; not mention checking the “Use-by” date on the chicken package before cooking.

Grilling: To cook a healthy grilled meal like Chicken Teriyaki Recipe, follow these simple steps, “Combine all ingredients (except chicken) in a bowl; marinate chicken in remaining teriyaki sauce for several hours.” You can vary this recipe by using different types of vegetables which are part of its nutritional value, maximizing your family’s health benefit.

Slow cooker: If you want to achieve that perfectly cook chicken by using your slow cooker, “Season chicken with salt and pepper. Place onion slices in the bottom of the slow-cooker pot. Layer seasoned chicken pieces over onions.” which is very easy to prepare at home or also can be used just like a normal cooking pot for your ingredients.

Baking: You can create this healthy meal for breakfast, lunch, or dinner by following these simple steps, “Combine oil and fresh rosemary leaves in small bowl; set aside 2 tablespoons rosemary oil”

Barbeque: You can grill your favorite barbeque meats without sacrificing taste because it contains uncured meats so there will never be any traces of antibiotics or added hormones, “Heat grill to medium-high heat. Whisk together the barbecue sauce ingredients.”

Deep frying: If you are determined to have that deep-fried chicken then it is good not to go overboard by following these steps, “Dip each piece in flour mixture, then into beaten egg, and back into flour mixture.” This meal can be enjoyed while still maximizing your family’s nutritional needs.

Sautéing: To achieve this healthy meal for your family’s dinner or lunch follow these simple methods, ” Heat olive oil in a large saucepan over high heat” or you can also add different types of vegetables if available since they are part of its benefits.

Why should you smoke a chicken?

Smoking a chicken is one of the best ways to prepare this meal because it changes the flavor into something different and unique which will surely be loved by all your guests.

Benefits of smoking a chicken:

First of all, smoking a chicken is very important to achieve that tasty meal because it adds flavor which you cannot achieve by other cooking methods.

Another reason for smoking a chicken is to reduce its nutritional needs since it loses moisture during the process.

Not only that but smoking also enhances your family’s health benefits like vitamin A and calcium. It can be done with vegetables too to give them an added health benefit.

Smoking your food is much better than deep frying or baking because less oil content will be used because the process uses indirect heat so there will never be any excess amount of oil dripping on your food or in your oven plus no open flame exposure so no carbon monoxide exposure too! You can always prepare a healthy meal for your family by checking the “Use-by” date on their food packages before preparing it.

How long does it take to smoke a chicken?

Well, it really depends on the size of your chicken plus if you are smoking it with other components like vegetables.

If you are planning to smoke just chicken breasts then keep the temperature at about 225°F to 250°F for about three to four hours until they are tenderized enough to be chewed easily. If you want that smoky flavor then place some hardwood chips under your grill’s grate and let them burn until they start giving off that smoky aroma.

On the other hand, if you want that whole chicken then smoking it should take about two hours or more depending on its weight and the number of racks in your smoker so divide this time by how many racks and add thirty minutes for one rack and fifteen minutes for more racks.

What kinds of smokers should you use?

There are different kinds of smokers available in the market today. Some of them are electric smokers, charcoal smokers, propane smokers, and pellet smokers.

Electric smokers: Electric smokers are the easiest to use because you just simply plug it in and wait for it to heat up which takes around 30-45 minutes. This type is readily available in most department stores with different kinds of the price range.

Charcoal smoker: Like electric smokers, all you have to do is light the charcoal briquettes with newspaper underneath the grate where you will put your food. You can cook meat within an hour or so depending on how much you put inside there but do remember that it has direct flame exposure so once it is lit, let it burn until there is white ash on it before you start cooking your meat.

Propane smoker: With propane smokers, all you have to do is light the gas burner and wait for it to heat up. This type is not as easy as electric ones but depends on how much food you will be cooking so there are no limits as to what kind of ingredients you can use because all of them are cooked correctly with this machine. Pellet Smokers: Pellets smokers are quite different from charcoal or electric ones because they work by using small wood pellets that mostly consist of flavor enhancers, water and smoke then these three things mixed together create smoke which in turn cooks your ingredients. There are also some other things that need to be taken into consideration when using this kind of smokers such as how to maintain the right temperature and the ratio between smoke and heat.

Pellet smoker: this type of smoker works by using small wood pellets that mostly consist of flavor enhancers, water and smoke then these three things mixed together create smoke which in turn cooks your ingredients. There are also some other things that need to be taken into consideration when using this kind of smokers such as how to maintain the right temperature and the ratio between smoke and heat.

How Long Does It Take To Smoke A Chicken

Best wood chips for smoking a chicken:

Applewood chips: They are mostly used to give turkey and chicken a sweet taste plus it is quite affordable. It can be bought in hardware stores, department stores, or supermarkets.

Mesquite chips: This type of smoke gives your food that savory flavor but also has that earthy aroma which makes it very appetizing to eat. It can be bought at most barbecue shops or taken out of mesquites trees around the state where you live in. 

Oakwood chips: The oak tree’s root structure goes really deep into the soil so it doesn’t easily catch fire, therefore, producing less smoke than other types of wood chips making it perfect for smoking meat since the process will require hours upon hours of cooking time which could easily over burn other types of wood.

Alder wood chips: This type of smoke has that sweet fragrance of vanilla and bacon which is the perfect combination for chicken or ribs.

Pecan wood chips: Like an oak tree, pecan trees are hard to burn so it produces less smoke plus it also has a nice flavor when combined with other flavors making your food more presentable in terms of appearance.

Can I use any wood chips? No! You can’t just go out there and get any kind of smoked because some may contain resins, salt, or sodium nitrite which are harmful to our health, therefore, having no place on your ingredient list while cooking healthy meals for your family’s everyday dinner table. It is always to do some research about what kind of wood you are planning to use for cooking your ingredients.

Best charcoal for smoking a chicken:

Using the best charcoal for smoking a chicken is very important because there are many different types so choosing the right one would be difficult.

The following list will give you an idea of what kind or brand to use on your recipe:

Lump charcoal: This form of coal is made up of pure wood so there are no additives or chemicals that can be found inside this type which makes it perfect for smoking meat. It comes in different sizes each having its own use so choose wisely to get the best out of your hard-earned money.

Green briquettes: these types of charcoal are made by burning sawdust, wood chips, and other kinds of woods that don’t contain resins then all those used materials are scraped together to create blocks which after being soaked with petroleum distillate gas, set on fire until they turn into charcoal. Do not use any of them because they can emit toxic fumes when burned therefore not healthy for our bodies plus you will end up losing most of the food that you put into your smoker.

Kingsford charcoal: this type of coal produces a high quality of heat which comes from hardwood since it is made up of pure wood juice but also contains chemicals and additives to help it burn faster. It is perfect for cooking fatty cuts of meat because the burning process consumes most of the fat leaving a very tasty dish behind, it can be bought in most supermarkets or online stores.

What to look for when buying a chicken?

When you go to the grocery store or supermarket, there are many things that need to be taken into consideration when buying a chicken such as:

Make sure it is fresh and bright: whole chickens should have bright red color on them since they just came out of the packaging and looking rather pale will mean that it’s not fresh which makes it dangerous to eat. The giblets inside the bird need to look firm too because if they are not then don’t buy them since they would most likely be sitting there for days already making it moist and slimy with no flavor whatsoever.

What is its weight? Chickens come in weights ranging from 8 pounds up to 16 pounds so make sure that you choose one that matches your recipe.

What is its date? fresh chickens can be eaten within 7 to 8 days after being packaged while a frozen one will be good for about a year before going bad, so check the label to find out which one it is and how long you have to eat it before going bad.

The package’s seal: always check if the package’s seal has been broken because once opened, the chicken will go bad rather quickly plus if there is any liquid inside then don’t buy them since they might already been sitting there for too long which can make them harmful to eat.

What is the price? try buying the cheapest one that you can find because it still has all of its nutritional value but costs less than other types. It might be smaller than other brands but who cares, right? at least there are no chemicals or additives inside which will end up making us sick in the end.

Best Chicken Rubs:

As far as you are concerned, choosing the right kind of chicken rub is very important because if not done correctly then it could end up ruining all of that work you have made on preparing your food. For this case, we will be talking about some spices and stuff that can make your chicken taste better with these simple guides below.

Salt: salt is one of the oldest spices in the world because it has been used during war times to keep soldiers stronger by consuming it along with other things since having sodium in our body helps us keep moving instead of sitting down while eating so why not add a little bit more? By using salt to your chicken recipe, it would make its exterior crisper while increasing in flavor which will be enough to drive all of your family’s members down your kitchen table.

Rosemary: it is used in almost every chicken recipe because it gives that herbaceous type of fragrance plus it goes well with most ingredients so why not mix them up? Cooking shouldn’t always have the same thing on the ingredient list so try adding some rosemary sprigs when smoking or grilling your food for something new.

Sage: if you are planning to sautee your chicken then sage is one of those spices that can help give a different taste but still be able to stand out from other stuff at the grocery store. It has got that earth tone brought by cedarwood that makes a good combination for a chicken dish.

Cayenne pepper: now this is the kind of spice that can make things really spicy but with a little bit of work can make your chicken crispy on the exterior and moist from within making it ideal to use as an ingredient when smoking or grilling. Just remember not to overdo it because it can easily burn.

Onion powder: if you do some research then you will find out that onion powder is one of those spices that have been used for decades by most chefs around the world which means they know what they are doing plus they also share their expertise through cookbooks, websites or television shows. Onion powder has a very unique taste so don’t be afraid to try new things especially if you are just a beginner.

Garlic powder: garlic and chicken is like peanut butter and jelly because they go together perfectly plus it has some kind of nuance if added properly to your recipe or dish. It also works well with most vegetables so try using it when cooking your green beans while sauteeing them in some oil, hot pepper, and salt to make an awesome vegetable side dish for dinner tonight.

Ground black pepper: this spice goes perfect on any kind of chicken dish because it gives that extra kick on flavor but remember not to add too much of it since overdoing things could end up ruining your entire meal which is definitely something you don’t want to happen especially if you have a big family. Just a pinch would do the trick.

Ground white pepper: this kind of pepper is used in almost all chicken recipes because it has that peppery flavor without the heat, don’t forget to add a little bit of salt for extra taste.

Paprika: use paprika if you are planning on smoking or grilling your food because it can give great color plus can also be used as an alternative for black pepper so why not give it a try? Paprika is one of those spices that can easily overpower your dish so remember to always start with less than enough since you always have the chance to add more later on according to your own personal preference.

Now that we have talked about some spices and stuff that you can use when cooking healthy meals for your family then it is time to get into the kitchen and start cooking today.

How to smoke a chicken?

Smoking a whole chicken is one of those things that you should be able to do right as long as you know how to control the fire and smoke. It may take several hours but the good news is it’s not like there are only a few steps involved in smoking, barbecuing, or grilling food so here they are.

The first thing that you need to do when smoking your chicken is choose which type of woods should be used for cooking depending on what kind of smoked flavor that you like best then go ahead and soak them into the water before use.

Once your smoker or grill begins reaching 240 degrees Fahrenheit, place the soaked wood chips onto your coal pan then put the grate where your meat will be placed. After this, turn off one of the burners to create indirect heat then place your chicken on the side that does not have any burner turned on.

Close the lid but make sure you leave some small holes to allow airflow so your meat will not suffocate while cooking plus it will also allow water vapor to escape so there is no chance for it to drip back onto your food.

Now, this is very important because after doing this, increase the temperature to 275 degrees Fahrenheit and let it smoke for 30-45 minutes then lower the heat again to 225 degrees Fahrenheit before placing the wire rack where your bird will be placed or if necessary, add more water in order to maintain good humidity inside grill or smoker. Once done, close the lid and cook until the internal temperature reaches 170 degrees Fahrenheit.

Tips for smoking a chicken:

Do not baste the meat with sauce every 20 minutes because this will prevent your chicken from getting that thick brown coating which can be perfect for some people especially if they like eating smoked chicken skin.

Use apple, hickory, or oak wood to create smoke since these types of woods can give great flavor to your meat but make sure you don’t over-smoke it because the food may end up tasting bitter.

Cooking time will greatly depend on the size of your bird so just calculate how long should you cook it until its internal temperature reaches 170 degrees Fahrenheit before checking again on its temperature after reaching this point.

Remove all wood chips and coals 30 minutes before the chicken is completely done cooking then wrap foil around it before putting it in the oven for additional 30 minutes.

If you are using a grill, place aluminum foil below the grate where your chicken will be placed so it will be easier to clean when grilling plus if using an electric smoker, wrap aluminum foil at least halfway around your meat before putting it inside because this way, the smoke will have more time to penetrate through your food which makes it taste better.

Remember that every time you put wood chips on coals, water, or meat then always make sure that you wait until it reaches 240 degrees Fahrenheit before doing anything else and also remember that after putting wood chips on coals, water or meat then always make sure that you wait until it reaches 240 degrees Fahrenheit before closing the lid.

There is no need to add any additional water when smoking a whole chicken because it will release enough moisture by itself plus add more water than needed and you may end up with soggy skin or overcooked meat so just trust us on this one.

What sides are good to have with a smoked chicken?

Well, there is really no limit on this so try to familiarize yourself with some of these side dishes for smoking chicken just in case you are running out of ideas.

The first one would be coleslaw which can be done easily by mixing up all the ingredients including vinegar, oil, sugar, and mayonnaise then throwing in shredded cabbage before adding salt and pepper to taste.

Another great side dish that you should try out is cornbread because believe it or not but cornbread goes very well with a whole smoked chicken plus if you want a healthier version of this then skip the sugar and use low-fat milk instead of using sour cream.

For those who love eating green vegetables then steamed asparagus or sauteed green beans are great side dishes including broccoli, cauliflower, or green peas which can be cooked easily by boiling them.

You can also make scalloped potatoes plus this dish will also go well with whole smoked chicken especially if you are planning to grill your meat since it has that smoky taste that will greatly complement the food because even though you are cooking chicken, it still tastes like barbecue.


What temperature should a smoker be set at when smoking a chicken?

According to most people who did their research about how to smoke a chicken, they advised others that once done cooking whole smoked chicken, the best way to determine if it’s completely cooked through is by inserting a fork into its drumstick plus if the juices from the meat run clear then it means that it’s ready for consumption.

If you are not sure whether your smoker can sustain low heat for hours then just use methods such as using an oven or even wrapping your meat in foil then place it inside the oven and check on its status every 30 minutes by inserting a fork into its drumstick.

Is smoking a chicken harmful?

This is definitely one of the most asked questions about how to smoke a whole chicken. As long as you don’t leave your food out for too long, especially when cooking or smoking meat plus if you are using a smoker with an automatic shut-off mechanism that automatically turns off once it hits a certain temperature for hours, then there should be no problem at all.

What herbs go well with smoked chicken?

Well, the answer to this question would depend on what kind of dish you are planning to do because for instance, if you want something sweet then cinnamon, ginger, or nutmeg is perfect for you. However, if you are looking for something savory then consider using basil, thyme, oregano, and sage would work perfectly.

How do you keep a chicken moist when smoking?

The answer to this question is very easy. In order to keep your chicken moist when smoking, all you have to do is add a few drops of water in the foil pack before sealing it or wrapping it around your meat.

How do you keep chicken from getting rubbery when smoking?

Rubbery meat is usually caused by overcooking your chicken so to avoid this from happening, make sure that the internal temperature of your smoker reaches 180 degrees F before you even think about wrapping it with foil.

How do you get crispy skin on a smoked chicken?

There are several ways for you to get crispy skin on your smoked chicken. One way is to rub the skin with some oil plus sprinkle salt on top of it before putting your meat on the smoker. Another method would be just cooking it without foil then you can flip it over once in a while, especially when you see that it’s getting charred or blackened.

Do you boil chicken before smoking it?

No, boiling chicken will certainly make it taste like water and there’s no way you can add flavor to it. In order to add more flavor when cooking your meat, what you need to do is brine the chicken in a mixture of salt, sugar, and other ingredients for an hour or two before putting it on your smoker.

What tools do you need to smoke a chicken?

Tools that you will need to smoke a chicken are usually placed inside your smoker, such as the wood chips of your choice plus some barbecue sauce if you want to add more flavor. You also need to have a thermometer in order to check the internal temperature of your meat before serving it.

Does smoked chicken need sauce?

This depends on individual preference but most people tend to think that smoked meat doesn’t really need any kind of sauce since they can already taste all the flavors from the marinade or brine. However, adding a little barbecue sauce isn’t going to hurt especially when cooking whole chickens or turkey during holidays such as Thanksgiving or Christmas.

Can you store a smoked chicken?

Technically, you can store a smoked chicken in your fridge for three or four days but make sure that you place it inside an airtight container. If you are planning to keep the meat longer than what is deemed appropriate then it would be best to freeze them instead so they won’t rot.

How long does a smoked chicken last?

A smoked chicken can last for up to four or five days if you place it inside the fridge and if you store it right. However, you should always remember that meat has a very limited shelf life so make sure not to keep your chicken for an extended period of time especially since cooking at high temperatures such as smoking may increase bacterial growth which will only cause food poisoning.

How do you reheat a cold-smoked chicken?

You can easily reheat a cold-smoked chicken by placing it inside the oven at 350 degrees F so all the flavors will come back. Another way would be to pour some hot water in a pan then turn on the stove and put your meat inside so it can absorb more flavor. Make sure though that once you are finished cooking it, you must serve your chicken hot especially since there are some bacteria that can grow if the meat is cold.

Why are smoked chickens sometimes hard to debone?

Smoked chickens tend to be hard to debone because they contain fibers that make the bones stronger and harder for you to pull them out. In order to avoid such hassle, what you need to do is add an extra step during the process which is removing the bones before putting it in your smoker.

Do you cover chicken when smoking?

When smoking chicken, you need to make sure that your meat is exposed at all times. This will allow the heat to evenly cook your chicken plus it will also allow the smoke to soak up all its juices which results in better tasting meat. You can do this by using skewers or toothpicks then placing them on each piece of meat before putting it on your smoker.

Can I glaze a smoked chicken?

If you want to glaze your smoked chicken then there is nothing that can stop you from doing so. There are plenty of glazes out there that you can choose from such as honey, barbecue sauce, and many more! Just make sure to use the right kind of glaze and follow the recipe since if it’s not done correctly, it might ruin the entire meat instead of adding flavor to it.

Can you smoke a stuffed chicken?

Technically, you can smoke a stuffed chicken but it’s not recommended to do so since the meat will most likely fall apart once it is cooked. This is because there are some parts that are easily overcooked while other parts are still raw which causes uneven cooking. The best way to prevent this problem would be to make sure that the stuffing is thoroughly cooked before putting it inside your smoker.

Do you need to use brine when smoking chickens?

When it comes to smoking chickens, you don’t necessarily need to use brine since the meat is already marinated. However, adding a little bit of salt can make your chicken more flavorful and juicy especially if you are planning to smoke it for long periods of time.

Can smoked chicken be reheated in an oven or microwave?

Reheating smoked chicken in an oven or microwave would be pretty much useless since it will only dry up the meat even more which results in a terrible tasting meal. The best way to reheat smoked chicken is by using a pan on the stove so all the juices and flavors will return making it taste just as good as new!

How do I tell if the chicken is done smoking?

One of the best ways to tell if your chicken is done smoking is by using a meat thermometer since each type of meat will have its own set of standards. For instance, smoked chicken would be safe to eat once it reaches 165 degrees F which are all juices are running clear. Make sure that you always check on your poultry’s internal temperature before consuming it just to be on the safe side.

Do you have to use a water pan when smoking chickens?

When it comes to smoking chicken, using a water pan is essential in order to prevent the meat from being dry. It also allows the juices of the chicken to be soaked up allowing it to return once you start cooking it. This way, your smoked chicken will always have that moist and tender quality which makes every bite even more satisfying!


Smoking a chicken can be done pretty easily however, it does take some time for the meat to fully cook. As long as you choose the best type of smoker and carefully follow each step then there is no reason why you should have any difficulties whatsoever! Just make sure that your chicken is cooked thoroughly before eating it to avoid any bacterial problems.

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