With the launch of our three Buxton Hall Barbecue blends, we wanted to feature some recipes that grillers, smokers, and barbecue lovers alike could sink their teeth in to. Pitmaster Elliott Moss has called his Buxton Hall Barbecue Chicken Rub his "go-to rub for barbecue chicken," and once you fire up the smoker, you'll see why. Pulled right from his best-selling cookbook, Buxton Hall Barbecue's Book of Smoke: Wood-Smoked Meat, Sides, and More, we're sharing Elliott's Smoked Chicken recipe with a just a few alterations. Check it out below.
Buxton Hall Barbecue Smoked Chicken
1. Pat the chicken dry and then generously apply Buxton Hall Chicken Rub, making sure to coat the chicken well.
2. Before you place the chicken on the smoker, either spatchcock it or break it in half. I actually think halves work better. They're easier to move. Don't go any further than this -- a quartered chicken will lose moisture and cook less evenly.
3. Place it on the smoker bone side down, skin side up. If you're smoking a lot of meat in one day, it's fine to lay the chickens around a pig or alongside other meat.
4. Cook the chicken 2 to 3 hours with the pit at 200ºF to 220ºF.
5. About halfway through cooking, dunk the chicken in the red sauce and from that point forward baste it a few times as it finishes cooking.
6. While the food and safety guidelines say 165ºF, I recommend taking the chicken off the smoker once it hits 155ºF. It will continue to cook after you take it off the smoker, and I don't know that I've ever had chicken cooked to 165ºF that wasn't dry. There might be pink on the bone, but I've been eating chicken that way for a long time. And when I'm cooking out, I would rather have one person think they're not eating something that's safe than serve everyone dried chicken! That said if you get busy, chicken can hang out a little longer on the smoker without getting too dry.
7. At serving time, it's great if the skin is a little crispy. You may need to throw it on a gas or charcoal grill or flip it over on the smoker above some fresh coals to crisp it up. You can also broil it before serving.