How to Smoke Chicken Using a Charcoal Grill

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Charcoal grilling is the best method to use to give your chicken a deep smoky flavor. Smoked chicken is not only tasty, but also a healthy meat to include in your diet. Poultry contains less saturated fats than red meats, thus reducing your cholesterol and fat intake. In addition, grilling chicken is healthier than frying it. To optimize the smoky flavor, you need a charcoal grill with a cover to keep the smoke from escaping the grill too quickly.


Light your charcoal grill before preparing your chicken. Light your charcoals per the product manufacturer's instructions. Once your charcoals begin to ash, cover your grill. Open the lid vents and the bottom grill vents to 25 percent. Place 1 to 2 handfuls of wood chips in a bowl of cold water for 10 to 15 minutes.

Wash your chicken under cold water, then pat dry. Place your chicken on the heavy-duty aluminum foil. Lightly season with black pepper and salt. Do not over-season.

Place your wet wood chips onto the charcoals. Spread them evenly with long tongs and immediately cover your grill.


Remove the cover and place the aluminum foil and chicken on the grill plate. Punch many holes in the aluminum foil to allow smoke and heat to reach the chicken. Cover your grill.

Check your chicken every 5 to 10 minutes. You will know that one side is well done when you no longer see any blood or pink meat. Flip your chicken once the meat is white and tender. Check and flip your chicken as fast as you can to prevent smoke from escaping your grill. Cover as soon as possible.

Close all the vents on the grill when all your chicken meat is white and tender. Closing the vents will hold smoke in the grill and improve the smoky flavor of your chicken. Let stand for 3 to 5 minutes on the grill. Immediately place in a covered container to retain heat and moisture. Serve immediately.