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Camp Chef Smoked Whole Chicken

Alrighty, folks, gather ’round because today we’re diving into the tantalizing world of BBQ, and I’ve got a juicy tidbit for ya – how to make a smoked whole chicken on the Camp Chef pellet grill! Yeehaw, you’re in for a finger-lickin’ treat, and I can’t wait to share this mouthwatering recipe with you.

camp chef smoked whole chicken

Before we get to the nitty-gritty, let me tell you about my first time trying this heavenly dish. It was a summer evening, and the smell of a neighbor’s barbecue wafted through the air, teasing my senses. I thought, “Why not give it a whirl?” So, I grabbed a whole chicken, seasoned it up real good, and threw it on my Camp Chef pellet grill. The result? Pure magic! Now, I’ve made it a weekend tradition.

How to Make Smoked Whole Chicken on Camp Chef

  1. Prep that Bird – First things first, give your chicken a good ol’ rubdown with your favorite seasoning. That’s where the flavor magic happens. Don’t be shy with the rub, folks; we want that bird to sing!
  2. Preheat the Grill – Get your Camp Chef up to around 225-250°F. It’s like a cozy spa day for your chicken.
  3. Wood Chip Selection – Here’s a critical part: choose your wood chips or pellets. For that classic smoky flavor, I’d recommend hickory or mesquite. Pop ’em in your pellet hopper, and let the party begin.
  4. On the Grate – Place your seasoned chicken on the grill grates, right in the center of the smokin’ action.
  5. Wait Patiently – This is where the fun begins, but patience is key. Close the lid and let that chicken soak up the smoky goodness for about 2-3 hours. You can throw in some moisture by spritzing it with a little apple juice every now and then.
  6. Crank Up the Heat – After the low and slow part, crank up the heat to around 375°F for the final stretch. This will give your chicken that crispy, golden skin we all adore.
  7. Check the Temp – You’re almost there, amigos! Ensure the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 165°F, and you’re good to go.
  8. Rest, Slice, and Devour – Let your smoked beauty rest for a few minutes, then slice it up and savor the victory! It’s worth the wait, I promise.

The Rub Dilemma

Now, for the rub, you’ve got some options. I’m a fan of a classic blend of paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and pepper. But if you’re feeling a bit wild, you can add a pinch of cayenne for some extra kick. Just make sure to massage it into the chicken real good, and don’t be stingy with it!

camp chef whole chicken recipe

Wood Chip or Pellet Paradox

When it comes to wood chips or pellets, it’s a bit of a conundrum. Here’s the deal: chips deliver a more intense, quick burst of flavor, while pellets smolder longer. I say, mix ’em up! Throw some chips for that initial smoky kiss, and then switch to pellets to keep the love affair going.

Crispy Skin Secrets

Oh, that crispy skin – the stuff dreams are made of! To achieve it, just crank up the heat toward the end of your cook. It’s like giving your chicken a sunbath! A 375°F temperature will work wonders. You can also oil the skin before the final stretch, like giving it a little suntan lotion.

Expert Tips from Yours Truly

Now, I’ve cooked my fair share of smoked chickens, so here are some pro tips that’ll make your BBQ journey a breeze:

  1. Brine That Bird – If you’ve got the time, brine your chicken a few hours before. It’ll keep it juicy and add some extra flavor layers.
  2. Mix and Match Woods – Don’t be afraid to experiment with different wood flavors. Applewood and cherrywood can add a hint of sweetness to your smoky masterpiece.
  3. Double Trouble – Want to go all out? Smoke not one but two chickens! Trust me, leftovers will be scarce.

Pairing Up the Perfect Sides

As for what to serve alongside your smoked chicken, let’s talk sides, folks! A crisp, tangy coleslaw, buttery cornbread, and a big ol’ scoop of mac ‘n’ cheese are classic companions. Don’t forget a zesty BBQ sauce for some extra oomph!

camp chef whole smoked chicken

Well, there you have it, the lowdown on creating the most lip-smacking smoked whole chicken right on your Camp Chef grill. It’s an art, my friends, and you’re the artist. So fire up that grill, season that chicken, and let the smokin’ begin!

Finally, a big ol’ thank you for joining me on this saucy adventure, and remember, “Smoke ’em if you got ’em!” Happy grilling, y’all!

Camp Chef Smoked Whole Chicken

Looking for a mouthwatering smoked whole chicken recipe? Look no further! Camp Chef has the perfect recipe to satisfy your cravings.

Course Main Course
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours
Brining 2 hours
Servings 4


For the Chicken:

  • 1 whole chicken 4-5 pounds
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper optional

For the Brine:

  • 1/4 cup kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 quart 4 cups cold water

For the BBQ Sauce:

  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper adjust to taste
  • Salt and black pepper to taste


Brining (2-4 Hours)

  1. Combine the kosher salt, brown sugar, and cold water in a large mixing bowl. Stir until the sugar and salt dissolve.
  2. Place the whole chicken into a Ziplock bag or a brining container and pour the brine mixture over it. Seal the bag or container and refrigerate for 2-4 hours. This step is optional but highly recommended as it adds flavor and moisture to your chicken.

Homemade Rub

  1. Mix the paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, black pepper, and cayenne pepper (if you want a little heat).
  2. Remove the chicken from the brine, rinse it, and pat it dry with paper towels.
  3. Generously sprinkle the homemade rub all over the chicken, inside and out, making sure to get it under the skin for maximum flavor.

Firing Up the Camp Chef

  1. Preheat your Camp Chef pellet grill to 225-250°F. Set it up for indirect grilling/smoking.

Smoking the Chicken

  1. Place the seasoned chicken on the grill grates breast side up. Close the lid and let it smoke for about 2-3 hours.
  2. If you'd like, spritz the chicken with a bit of apple juice every 30-45 minutes to keep it moist.

Preparing the Homemade BBQ Sauce

  1. While the chicken is smoking, let's make that finger-licking homemade BBQ sauce. Combine the ketchup, apple cider vinegar, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, and cayenne pepper in a small saucepan. Whisk it all together.
  2. Place the saucepan over low heat and simmer for about 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season with salt and black pepper to taste.
  3. Remove from heat and set the sauce aside.

Crank Up the Heat

  1. About 2.5 to 3 hours into the smoke, crank up the heat on your grill to around 375°F. This will help crisp up that delectable skin.

Final Touch and Serving

  1. Continue to cook the chicken at the higher temperature until it reaches an internal temperature of 165°F in the thickest part of the meat, which should take about 20-30 minutes more.
  2. Once it's done, remove your beautifully smoked whole chicken from the grill, and let it rest for a few minutes.
  3. Carve it up and serve it hot with that homemade BBQ sauce on the side. You've just created a masterpiece from scratch!
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