Pellet Smoked Chicken Legs

Pellet Smoked Chicken Legs

Summer barbecues must have chicken legs coated with delicious sauce. But have you ever tried smoked chicken legs? It only takes about 2 hours to get some smoke into the meat and then you can finish them off over the fire of your grill. This is a simple recipe with a short prep time and best of all chicken drums are low cost. This recipe uses several different commercial rubs that you can find online or you can make your own rub or seasoning. And for the BBQ sauce, this recipe uses combination of Stubbs and Sweet Baby Rays. And you can always skip on the sauce if you prefer dry rub style.

Ingredients

  • 5.25 lb chicken legs
  • 1 tsp yardbird rub
  • 1 tsp holy voodoo rub
  • 1 tsp trager chicken rub
  • 1 cup BBQ sauce (1/2c Stubbs sticky sweet, 1/2c Sweet Baby Rays Original)

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Directions

First, spray down all sides of the chicken legs with duck fat. This will help the rub stick to the skin and it will help turn the skin nice and dark. Next apply the dry rub on all sides.


Heat up your pellet smoker at 240F using pecan, hickory or mesquite pellets. When the smoker reaches temp, place the chicken legs on the top rack. Cook the legs for one hour then spay them with duck fat. Flip them over and spray the other side. Cook for another hour or until the legs hit around 163F.


This step will hot cook the skin to tighten it up. If you have a grill, preheat it to a medium temperature or around 425F. Add the chicken legs and let them cook for about 10 minutes. Apply BBQ sauce to all sides then continue to cook uncovered. Flip them occasionally and apply more sauce until they reach about 175F. Remove them from the grill and let them rest 5 minutes before eating.




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Smoked Beer Can Chicken

Smoked Beer Can Chicken

Beer can chicken a.k.a drunken chicken is a fun and easy cook on your smoker or grill. You just need to make sure you have enough clearance to close the lid over a chicken that is going to be standing up. If you want to avoid knocking over the chicken while it’s balanced on a beer can, purchase a cheap beer can holder rack. These come in various sizes so you can get a single or double holder. If you are going to smoke the chicken, you can do low and slow 235F – 250F for around 4 – 5 hours. The skin will be a bit rubbery but you can sear it on high heat at the end of the smoke. For this recipe we’ll run a little hotter at 300F for about 3 1/2 hours. This makes the skin more crispy but gives enough time for some smoke flavor. If you cook this on a grill, it should be done indirectly. For flavoring, this recipe adds herbs and garlic to the beer cans. But you can use citrus or chili peppers or whatever you like.

Ingredients

  • 2 whole chickens
  • 2 cans of beer
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 6 sprigs thyme
  • 6 sprigs rosemary
  • 4 sprigs sage

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Directions

First, let’s get the most difficult step out of the way. Drink 2 cans of beer. Next use a can opener to remove the tops of the cans. After the tops are removed, add beer until each can is 1/4 full. Next rough cut the garlic cloves into chunks and add them and the herbs to the cans.


Next, remove the chicken from any packaging and dry off the skin with paper towels. Spray the skin on all sides with duck fat and this will help give the chicken a nice golden color. Season all sides of the skin and the inside cavity with your favorite BBQ seasoning. If you don’t have any favorites, a simple salt, pepper, garlic and paprika combo will do.


Preheat your smoker with pecan or hickory wood at 300F. You can use a lower and slower temperature (235F -250F) to get more smoke but the skin will come out less crispy.


When the chicken is seasoned, place the beer cans into the holding rack and slide the chickens over the beer cans. If you do not have a holding rack you can use a foil pan as a base and try to carefully move everything into the smoker. If you are going to use a wireless (or wired) temperature probe, stick it in at the top of the breast near the neck and push it in downward (see video).


Spray the chicken every hour with duck fat to oil those birds up like they are getting a tan at Miami Beach!


When the top of the breast meat reaches 165F and the legs and thighs are 175F, remove the chickens from the smoker and let them sit for 5 minutes. Don’t tent the chickens with foil, it will keep the steam on the skin undoing your crisping efforts. Now you can carve the chickens or pull the meat off the bones for good pulled chicken.




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Smoked Grilled Pulled Chicken Sandwiches

Smoked Grilled Pulled Chicken Sandwiches

Pulled chicken sandwiches are a tasty treat that is easy to make and full of flavor. With this recipe we brine our chicken overnight to add moisture and flavor. Then we smoke it low and slow for several hours and finish it on grill for a kiss of fire. And of course you can build your sandwiches any way you like or you can follow our quick and easy sandwich recipe.

Ingredients

  • 2 whole chicken
  • 4 cups apple juice
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried sage
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 4 tablespoons plowboys yardbird
  • 12 burger buns
  • 1 jar sliced dill pickels
  • 1 package sliced baby Swiss

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Directions

First thing to do is to cut out the backbone of the chickens and snip the breast plate so that the chicken will lay flat. This will allow for the chicken to cook evenly so that you are not drying out the breast meat while waiting on the thigh meat to reach proper temperature. Next you should brine your chickens overnight so that they stay moist during the smoking process. For this brine we will place each chicken in a gallon zip seal bag, then add 1 tablespoon kosher salt, 1/2 teaspoon dried sage, dried thyme, and dried rosemary. Finally add 2 cups of apple juice to the bags, seal em up and put them in the refrigerator for 24 hours. Every few hours you should flip the chicken bags over to allow each side to soak in the brine.


After your chicken is brined, wash off the brine and herbs then place the chickens on a cooling rack. Next you want to cut the skin down the center so that you can pull the skin back and season the exposed meat. Heavily season the breast, thigh and drum meat. Flip the chickens over and season the back side. Flip the chickens back then pull the skin back in place to cover the meat. The skin will keep the meat from drying out, and because this is pulled chicken, we really don’t need to worry about keeping the skin all pretty for slicing into. So season the skin and these chickens are ready for the smoker.


Get your smoker running between 240 and 260 Fahrenheit using pecan wood. You can also use hickory or mesquite but avoid using apple if you decided to brine with apple juice. That’s just too much of the same and you should try and layer the flavor instead. Place the chickens on the smoker and let them go for several hours until the temperature in the breast reaches 150 F. At this point get your grill fired up and transfer the chicken to the grill. Place the chicken skin side down and close the lid. Cook for at least 10 minutes keeping an eye on the grill for flare ups. Flip the chickens to back side down then cook until you reach 165 F in the breast and 175 F in the thighs. At this point remove the chickens and allow them to rest for 10 minutes.


When the chickens have rested, put on some heat gloves and start to hand shred the chicken. When it comes to heat gloves, we are talking about a liner glove with a nitrate outer glove. These offer the best movement and touch while blocking heat from your skin. Pull the chicken being very careful not to include any bones or cartilage. When you are done, make a second pass looking for bones. It is very easy to overlook bones when pulling chicken meat. And when it comes to skin, this is up to you, but it will add a nice flavor to shred up and include the skin.


Okay sandwich its time! This is a simple sandwich we are making, it’s just a burger bun with a slice of baby Swiss. Then we add the pulled chicken, some dill pickle chips and some BBQ sauce. Of course you can make whatever sandwich you like, but we hope you give this one a try and let us know what you think.




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Rotisserie Grilled Chicken

Rotisserie Grilled Chicken

Supermarket rotisserie chicken is pretty tasty but you can’t beat home cooking. At home you can use whatever flavors you want and save a few coins in the process. So if you have a rotisserie or are thinking about buying one for your gas grill, check out this butter herb chicken recipe. Combine this with some smoke from a pellet tube and you have juicy smokey butter delicious chicken dinner on the way. Winner Winner!

Ingredients

  • 1 whole chicken
  • 1 lemon
  • 2 sticks butter
  • 1 tablespoon herbes de Provence
  • 1 cup half and half
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

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Directions

First, melt half a stick of butter in one cup or small container. Next, usa a mortar and grind ½ teaspoon of herbes de Provence until a fine powder builds up. Place a sieve over the cup of melted butter then pour the contents into the cup. This will remove the big chunks of herbs and make everything play nice with your injector. Stir this mixture well then inject the butter herb mixture everywhere into the chicken. Inject the breast meat, thighs, legs and even the wings.


Next, allow one stick of butter to soften on the countertop or warm it on low in the microwave. When the butter softens, combine it with a ½ teaspoon of herbes de Provence. Using your hand, loosen the chicken skin over the breast and thigh meat. Use a spoon and deliver the butter herb mixture under the chicken skin. Use your fingers to hold the butter mixture under the skin as you slowly pull the spoon back out. Use the remaining butter herb mixture to coat the outer skin of the chicken. If needed, make a second batch of softened butter herb mixture.


Next, using a knife, stick the lemon several times creating slices to release juices. Slide the lemon over the rotisserie spit and place it in the center. Next, slide the rotisserie stick through the chicken cavity and out the neck hole until the lemon is inside the chicken cavity. Use the fork ends of the rotisserie to pin in the legs and wings to hold them in place. You will need to pierce both the drumsticks and wing tips for the best hold. Next, sprinkle kosher salt and more herbes de Provence on the chicken.


Preheat your grill on medium, then turn the burners down to low. Shut off the center burner, if you have one. This will prevent fire flare ups that will happen due to the melting butter and chicken fat. Install the rotisserie spit onto the grill but do not install the motor. Let the spit rotate freely so that the heavy part of the chicken is facing down. Now simply pull your balance counterweight upward and tighten it in place. This will now balance the rotisserie spit and help prevent motor burnout. Now install the motor, and insert the spit into the motor. Power the motor on and start cooking!


If you have a tube pellet smoker, load it up with enough pecan pellets for an hour and half of cook time.


Every 20 minutes brush on melted butter. The chicken will cook for at least 1 hour before reaching proper temperatures. The chicken will be ready when the breast meat reaches 165 F and the thighs reach 175 F.




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