Before we get started, did you know we have an entire series to set you up for success on your Big Green Egg? If you are new to the Egg Game, definitely check it out! Anyway, let’s talk smoked chicken on the Big Green Egg!!!
A whole chicken is a great meal and a simple cook on the Big Green Egg. Adding some fresh vegetables in the chicken and dry herbs on top makes this chicken super flavorful.
Smoked chicken can tend to have rubbery skin. It’s just part of the deal. A few things that can help mitigate this is to run a slightly higher smoker temperature and allowing the chicken to rest in the fridge uncovered for 4-24 hours after dry brining. This fridge rest helps the skin dry a bit more and gives the salt from the dry brine a chance to work its magic.
Let’s walk through getting the chicken ready and on the Egg. Get your chicken on the cutting board and remove any giblets it may have in the cavity. I like to remove the tail and any excess fat that is around the cavity opening.
Apply kosher salt at ½ teaspoon per pound all around the chicken skin. I tend to apply a bit more on the top/breast side than the back as that is where the meat is the thickest. Now let the chicken rest in the fridge for 4-24 hours. If you don’t have the time to let the brine rest, you can skip this step, but if possible try to allow time for fridge rest.
Fill it up, tie it and give it a rub:
Place some aromatic in the chicken cavity. I love to use celery, carrots and onions, but you can use other vegetables. Some options are peeled garlic and fresh herbs. Even a lemon goes nicely with chicken, These add ins will really give your bird a wonderful, subtle flavor kick.
Once the aromatics are in, fold the wings under the body to prevent burning. Use some butcher twine to tie the legs together. This will help the chicken cook more evenly and it will give you a nicer presentation once cooked.
With the aromatics in, let’s rub this bird up. I like a simple herb rub on chicken. Combine the following: 1 tablespoon dried crushed parsley, 1 tablespoon dried crushed rosemary, 1 tablespoon dried crushed thyme.
Use a quick spray of cooking oil on the bird to act as a binder so the rub has something to stick to. This oil will also help with the browning and crisping of the skin. Once sprayed, give the bird a good dusting of the mix.
Alright already. Let’s get this bird on the egg!
Fuel up your Egg and add your wood chunks if desired. This is a great time to talk about the smoke. Take a look at Robyn’s new BBQ CALCULATOR to help you make your wood selection.
Light the Egg and drop in the convEGGtor for indirect cooking. Get the egg running at 275°-300°f. I like to place a disposable drip pan on the convEGGtor just to help with clean up.
If you need a refresher on firing up the Big Green Egg, take a look at this article: “HOW TO LAY A FIRE AND CONTROL THE TEMP IN YOUR BIG GREEN EGG”
A word on smoke:
Poultry in general takes on a smoke easily. In my opinion, a little wood goes a long way. Use just a few rather small chunks of wood to avoid over smoking the bird.
The more smoke/wood you add, the darker your bird is going to be. At some point, the chicken just becomes unattractive and a tad bitter. That said, if you want a dark smoky bird I totally support you adding more of your favorite wood chips or chunks.
If you’re not sure what you like, you can easily run a few test cooks with a chicken or two to get a better understanding of how many wood chips you want to add.
Make it safe:
At 300°, the chicken will take around 3 hours (depending on the size of the bird) to reach 165°f. Regardless of how long it takes, you need to cook your chicken so it reaches a minimum internal temperature of 165°f in all parts of the bird. This should be checked with a digital instant read thermometer like a ThermaPen or ThermoPop from ThermoWork.
Rest and serve:
When the chicken hits 165° in all parts of the chicken, get it off the Egg and let it rest. A good general rule of thumb is let the chicken rest 10-20 minutes before serving.
Chicken is always a simple, affordable and attractive meal that pairs well with so many different sides. Go get yourself a chicken and get it on your Big Green Egg!
A straight forward Big Green Egg whole smoked chicken.
- 1 whole fryer chicken 2 1/2-4 1/2 lbs
- 1 carrot cut in short lengths
- 1 stalk celery cut in short lengths
- 1 small onion pelled and quartered
- kosher salt at ½ teaspoon per pound of chicken
- 1 tablespoon dried crushed parsley
- 1 tablespoon dried crushed rosemary
- 1 tablespoon dried crushed thyme
- 12” kitchen twine
- cooking spray
- Apply 1/2 TSP of kosher to chicken. Rest in fridge uncovered for 4-24 hours.
- Insert celery, carrots and onion into chicken cavity.
- Combine dry herbs.
- Apply a light spray of cooking oil to chicken and dust on herb mix.
- Fold chicken wings under and tie legs together.
- Light your Big Green Egg with your wood selection. Insert the convEggtor and get the Egg up to the desired temperature of 275°-300° f.
- Place chicken on the grill and smoke to an internal temperature of 165°f (appx. 2/12-4 hours).
- Allow the chicken to rest for 12-20 minutes.
- Carve and serve.
Until next time, happy grilling.
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If you enjoyed this recipe, be sure to check out our EVERYTHING BIG GREEN EGG SERIES- that teaches you everything you need to know to use your Big Green Egg with Success!