I love smoked chicken. Mostly white meat. For dark meat I prefer grilling. My quest is to make pulled chicken BBQ. And often.
Nothing is easier to do than to smoke a few chicken breasts. Bone-in split breasts give the most flavor without having to worry about the meat getting too dry or tough. Unlike smoking a pork butt or beef brisket, chicken cooks quickly without a lot of prep or fancy rubs, mops, or injections (though you could certainly inject a bit more flavor if you desired, and some folk like brining theirs first).
I loaded up my Weber Smokey Mountain (WSM) cooker with split breasts. I removed the skin from the chicken first because it isn’t going to crisp when you are smoking low-and-slow. All the skin does is prevent the smoke and salt and pepper from penetrating the meat. So, off with it! I prefer the WSM cooker because I believe that cooking chicken over a water pan results in a more tender, juicer meat so I don’t worry about removing the skin and having dry chicken.
After the chicken is cooked and cooled I pull or shred it and use it in tons of recipes, like simple pulled chicken BBQ sandwiches. Just add a bit of your favorite BBQ sauce and slap it on a bun, add some chips on the side, and you’re ready to eat!
Also try my pulled pork BBQ.
Pulled Chicken BBQ
- 4 chicken breasts bone-in split, skin removed
- Kosher salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- Light smoking wood cherry, apple, etc
- Fire up your smoker for cooking at 225 F.
- Generously season the chicken on all sides with salt and pepper. Don't be shy.
- Place the chicken into the smoker and smoke until the chicken reaches 160 F.
- Remove chicken from cooker and wrap in foil and let rest 30 minutes.
- Slice, shred, or chop as desired.
Nutritional values are approximate.