This was power packed with flavor! I injected a marinade I concocted after doing some research on the typical Caribbean flavors. I first wanted to use coconut milk for the main marinade ingredient, but I wasn’t sure how much flavor would be imparted into the meat.
After more research, I decided to go with mango juice. The mango juice was pretty thick, so that’s why I added the 1/2 cup water. If this gets too thick, the injection process won’t work. It just goes into the meat and stays in one place, rather than dispersing throughout.
So here it is. We’ll cover the whole process from injecting to the finished smoked chicken.
Island Flavored Smoked Whole Chicken ~ Caribbean Style
1 whole chicken
1 fresh apple
1 cup mango juice
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
1 Tablespoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon Allspice
Lets start with the marinade for injecting. In a bowl, mix all of the ingredients together, except for the chicken and the apple of course. Set this aside.
Thoroughly rinse the chicken and pat dry. Put the chicken in a medium sized aluminum baking pan. Cut your apple in half, then cut one half into four wedges and put the wedges loosely in the cavity of the bird. Don’t stuff it in there. There needs to be plenty of breathing room inside of the cavity when smoking to allow the heat and smoke to cook from inside the bird.
Now take the marinade you made up and using an injector, inject the bird in the legs, thighs and breast. Now pour the rest of the marinade into the bottom of the pan.
Note: You don’t want too much liquid on the bottom of the pan. Too much, and the bottom of the chicken gets a little soggy.
Now put this into the refrigerator for about 2 hours.
After 2 hours in the refrigerator, remove the bird and set it on the counter to let it start getting close to room temperature before you put it on the smoker.
Now, let’s get the smoker going.
I loaded up the fire ring in my 18.5 Webber Smokey Mountain. You can check out my article, “Starting the Fire in a 18.5 Webber Smokey Mountain” for details on how to do that. For this cook, I decided to go with apple wood that was still green. I’ve noticed that using wood that’s still green imparts a stronger flavor to the meat.
Once the smoker is up to about 230 degrees, I put the chicken on.
I smoked it at an average temperature of 265 degrees. It fluctuated between 250 and 275 degrees. I typically smoke most meats at about 230 degrees. Especially if it’s something like pork or baby backs that I plan to take up to an internal temperature of around 200 degrees for pulling. But I believe chicken works out better if you cook it at a little higher temperature.
After a little more than 4 hours, the internal temperature of the bird was at 170 degrees. Time to pull it out, wrap it in aluminum foil, and let it set on the counter to rest for about an hour before carving.
After an hour of resting, wrapped in aluminum foil, I carved up the chicken. It was so tender, I didn’t even have to use a knife to remove the leg and thigh. In fact, I had to be careful to hold them as one piece so I didn’t separate them. Slicing the breast was like slicing through butter. So tender! And so tasty! The flavor of the cloves and ginger were noticeable and just right! Mmmm, Mmmmmmmm!
Here’s what it looked like before taking it off the smoker.