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Smoked whole chicken recipe on wooden board ready to be carved.

The Juiciest Smoked Whole Chicken Recipe

Course: Main
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Grilling
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 3 hours
Total Time: 3 hours 15 minutes
Servings: 5
Calories: 506kcal
Author: Marilyn
This smoked whole chicken recipe is flavored with a combination of an easy spice rub, a moisture infusing brine, and wood chips in you smoker. You will be rewarded with the juiciest smoked chicken with a nice crispy skin. You find yourself craving this recipe again and again. 
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  • 1 whole chicken
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil or other neutral tasting oil

Injection Marinade

Seasoning Rub

  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground mustard
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika


  • Preheat smoker to 225°F.
  • Using a 1 foot piece of kitchen string, position the string under the leg ends. Pull it up and over the legs, then down and crisscross the string between the legs. Pull the string tight and tie a knot. Cut off any extra string. Then, tuck the wing tips underneath the body.
    How To Truss a Chicken method with raw chicken on a plate.

Injection Marinade

  • In a medium bowl, add the chicken stock, melted butter, lemon juice, honey, and garlic powder, stirring until well combined. Fill the injector with the butter sauce.
  • Insert the injector tip into one end of the breasts and push it to the other end, being careful not to puncture the skin on the opposite end. Slowly inject the marinade while gradually withdrawing injector. Do this 2 to 3 more times in the breasts to fully marinate. Follow the same method to inject each thigh and leg once..

Seasoning Rub

  • In a small bowl, combine chili powder, salt, pepper, garlic powder, ground mustard, and smoked paprika. Generously sprinkle all over chicken.


  • Place your chicken directly on the smoker's grates and close the lid. Close the lid and smoke for 3 to 4 hours, or until an instant-read thermometer inserted horizontally into the thickest part of the breast registers 165°F. The thighs will register about 10 degrees higher, which is fine.
  • Transfer the chicken to a cutting board. Let stand 5 minutes before carving. Serve.


You may want to have this handy magnet on hand which shows you the safe internal temperature of poultry, pork, fish and beef so you have a quick reference for How Long to Smoke a Chicken at 225 degrees.
  • During the final 30 minutes of smoking, baste the chicken with BBQ Sauce.
  • For very crispy skin, increase the heat of the smoker to 375°F during the last 10 minutes of cooking.


Calories: 506kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 30g | Fat: 38g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Cholesterol: 138mg | Sodium: 1808mg | Potassium: 419mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 1639IU | Vitamin C: 8mg | Calcium: 33mg | Iron: 2mg