RECIPE: Soak & Smoke Chicken

Patience is a virtue, especially when making great BBQ. The seductive smell of wood smoke permeates meat over hours of slow, indirect heat, developing compound flavors and textures. Smoking is a great way to turn a relatively cheap cut into fancy fare that is well worth the wait.

PREP TIME: About 4.5 hours  |  COOK TIME: 3.5-4 hours   |  servings: 4-6   |   FROM LODGE CAST-IRON



  • 1 whole chicken (about 4 pounds)

  • 1 gallon water
  • 1 cup salt
  • 1 cup sugar

  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon rosemary


  1. Mix together the brine ingredients until dissolved in a large pot or other container.
  2. Add the chicken and enough water to cover.
  3. Place in the refrigerator for 4 hours.
  4. Rinse the chicken and pat dry. Allow to thaw if needed.
  5. Combine the rub ingredients in a bowl (or use store-bought).
  6. Rub the entire chicken with olive oil and sprinkle liberally with the rub mixture.
  7. Place the chicken in a 12 Inch Skillet and smoke between 225 and 250 degrees Fahrenheit for 3.5-4 hours, until breast meat reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
  8. Remove to a platter, tent with foil, and allow to rest for at least 20 minutes.

Don’t own a smoker? You can transform any grill into a slow-smoking BBQ machine. The key is indirect heat and smoldering wood chips. Just place the food as far from the heat as possible, add a cast iron dish filled with hardwood chips directly on the burner or charcoal, and close that lid!

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