Perfecting the Art of Smoked Chicken Breast on a Pit Boss

If you’re craving the rich, smoky flavour of perfectly cooked poultry, look no further than this comprehensive guide on how to smoke chicken breasts using ...

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Calvin Lamb

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Smoked Chicken Breast on a Pit Boss

If you’re craving the rich, smoky flavour of perfectly cooked poultry, look no further than this comprehensive guide on how to smoke chicken breasts using a Pit Boss pellet grill. Unlock the secrets of the smoking process, including dry brining, choosing the best wood pellets, and mastering grill temperatures to achieve that juicy, tender, and flavorful chicken breast you’ve always dreamed of.

Choosing Your Chicken: Skin-On and Bone-In vs. Skinless and Boneless

Your choice of chicken will significantly affect your smoking process and the overall flavour of your meal. For the richest taste and juiciest texture, opt for skin-on and bone-in chicken breasts. The bone imparts additional flavour during the smoking process, while the skin helps to lock in moisture, preventing your chicken from drying out.

However, if you’re aiming for a leaner meal or prefer not to deal with bones, skinless and boneless chicken breasts can also be successfully smoked. Keep in mind, though, that without the skin and bone, these cuts may require extra attention to prevent them from becoming dry.

Dry Brining Your Chicken Breasts

Before you start smoking your chicken, it’s crucial to prepare your meat properly. This is where the dry brine method comes into play. Dry brining is a process where you coat raw chicken breasts with salt and leave them in the refrigerator for a few hours or overnight. The salt draws moisture from the chicken, dissolves the salt, and then the chicken reabsorbs the salty liquid, leading to a more flavorful and moist result.

Once your chicken is properly brined, pat it dry using paper towels. You can then move on to the next step of the process: the dry rub.

Creating a Memorable Dry Rub

The dry rub is your opportunity to add a burst of flavour to your smoked chicken breast. Traditional dry rub ingredients include brown sugar, chilli powder, garlic powder, onion powder, black pepper, and cayenne pepper. But don’t stop there! Feel free to add a few of your own touches—maybe some smoked paprika for a deeper smoky flavour or some dried herbs for an earthy note.

Before applying your dry rub, you’ll want to coat your chicken breasts with a thin layer of olive oil or mustard. This not only helps the dry rub to stick to the chicken but also aids in the formation of a beautiful, flavorful crust on the outside of your smoked chicken breast.

Preparing Your Pit Boss Pellet Grill

Now, let’s focus on your Pit Boss pellet grill. It’s essential to prime the grill before starting, ensuring it’s clean and ready to go. Fill the hopper with your chosen wood pellets—apple, cherry, and maple are great choices for chicken, providing a mild and slightly sweet smoke that complements poultry perfectly.

Switch the Pit Boss into smoke mode and adjust the temperature to 225°F. Allow the grill to preheat until it reaches the desired temperature.

The Smoking Process

Once your grill is up to temperature, it’s time to place your chicken breasts on the grill. Be sure to position them in such a way that they’re not directly over the fire pot to ensure even cooking. Close the lid and let the Pit Boss do its magic.

The cooking time will vary depending on the size of the chicken breasts, but a good rule of thumb is to allow 1 hour per pound of meat. You’re aiming for an internal temperature of 165°F, so be sure to have an instant-read thermometer handy. Remember, it’s better to go by temperature rather than time to ensure perfectly cooked chicken.

Halfway through the cooking time, flip the chicken breasts using tongs to ensure they cook evenly. Remember, you’re aiming for a consistent, even cook, not necessarily those textbook grill marks.

Optional: The Reverse-Sear Method

If you want to have the best of both worlds—a smoky flavour and a crispy exterior—consider using the reverse-sear method. Once your chicken breasts have reached an internal temperature of about 150°F, remove them from the smoker and crank up the heat to 250°F.

Once the grill is hot, place the chicken breasts back on the grill for about 1 minute per side. This will result in a delicious, crispy skin while still maintaining a juicy interior.

Finishing Touches: BBQ Sauce and Resting Time

Once your chicken breasts reach the safe internal temperature of 165°F, it’s time to add your favourite BBQ sauce. Use a basting brush to apply a layer of sauce to each breast, then close the lid and let the sauce set for about 5 minutes.

Remove your smoked chicken breasts from the grill and let them rest for at least 10 minutes before slicing. This allows the juices to redistribute throughout the meat, leading to a more tender and juicy result.

Conclusion: Smoked Chicken Breast on a Pit Boss

From choosing the right cut of chicken, mastering the dry brine method, and creating an unforgettable dry rub, to perfectly smoking your chicken on a Pit Boss pellet grill, smoking chicken breasts might seem like a daunting task. But with a little patience and practice, you can master the art of smoking chicken breast on a Pit Boss. The result? A flavorful, tender, and juicy chicken breast that’s nothing short of jaw-dropping.

Now you’re equipped with the knowledge to take your grilling game to new heights. So, light up that Pit Boss pellet grill, invite over some friends, and prepare to amaze them with your newfound smoking prowess. Happy grilling!


What is the best wood pellet flavour for smoking chicken?

Apple, cherry, and maple pellets are perfect for chicken, providing a mild, slightly sweet smoke. If you prefer a more robust flavour, try pecan or oak.

Can I smoke other things like cheese, fish, or bacon on my Pit Boss pellet grill?

Absolutely! Your Pit Boss is a versatile cooking tool that can smoke a variety of foods, including cheeses, fish, and bacon. Just remember, different foods require different temperatures and smoking times.

What should I do if my chicken breasts are overcooked?

If you find your chicken breasts are dry or overcooked, don’t panic. One trick is to slice the chicken and mix it with a little BBQ sauce to add some moisture back in.

Can I control my Pit Boss grill from my phone?

Yes, some Pit Boss grills come with a phone app that allows you to monitor and adjust the grill’s temperature remotely. Check your grill’s manual to see if this feature is available.

Can I use a Pit Boss grill for indirect grilling?

Yes, Pit Boss pellet grills are perfect for indirect grilling, which is often used for slow-cooking foods like smoked chicken breasts. Just remember to place the food away from the direct heat of the fire pot.

How long does it take to smoke chicken breast on a Pit Boss?

The cooking time for chicken breasts on a Pit Boss depends on the size of the chicken breasts and the temperature at which you’re smoking. Generally, it takes about 1 hour per pound of meat when smoking at 225°F.

How long to smoke chicken breast at 225 degrees?

At 225 degrees, chicken breasts usually need about 1 to 1.5 hours to fully smoke. Always use an instant-read thermometer to check the internal temperature, which should reach 165°F for safe eating.

How to smoke chicken breast on a Pit Boss grill?

To smoke chicken breast on a Pit Boss grill, start by seasoning the chicken to your liking. Preheat the grill to the desired temperature, usually between 225°F to 250°F. Place the chicken breast on the grill, ensuring it’s away from direct heat. Close the lid and smoke until the internal temperature reaches 165°F.

What temperature do you smoke chicken on a Pit Boss pellet grill?

For smoking chicken on a Pit Boss pellet grill, it’s best to set the temperature between 225°F to 250°F. This range ensures the chicken cooks slowly, allowing it to absorb maximum smoky flavor while remaining juicy.

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