How to Smoke a Whole Chicken in An Electric Smoker


Smoked chicken is delicious, especially if it’s made in an electric smoker.  It’s smoky, juicy and there’s no dry meat.

Smoked Chicken

There are a lot of good smoker brands that’s good for beginners such as Masterbuilt, Char-Broil and Traeger.   If you have never made smoked chicken in an electric smoker before, you are in luck because we have easy step by step instructions that’s very easy to follow below.

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Smoked Whole Chicken Recipe

Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 4 hrs
Total Time 4 hrs 5 mins
Servings 4 people


  • 1 whole chicken
  • spice rub of your choice


1. Prepare the chicken

  • You’ll want to make sure the chicken is rinsed then patted dry with a paper towel. Then you’ll want to cut off any excess trimmings as well. 
    Don’t forget to put your spice rub on your chicken before putting it in the smoker.

2. Preheat the smoker

  • You are cooking a whole chicken, so you’ll want to cook it low and slow so that you don’t dry out the breast.  You will want to preheat the smoker at 250degrees F but no more than 275 degrees F.

3. Choose the wood

  • There are many different types of wood chips that you can use for chicken. But the most popular choices for chicken are Apple, Oak, Pecan, Hickory, Mesquite and Maple.
    Once you have chosen the wood chips of your choice, you can put it in the electric smoker.

4. Put the Chicken in the smoker

  • The smoker should be heated so now you will put the chicken on the smoker racks. When the chicken reaches 165 degrees F, it is ready to eat.
    To reach that temperature, it will usually be 3-5 hours in the smoker, depending on the weight. For that reason, you’ll want to have an instant thermometer on hand to make sure that the chicken is cooked before you take it out of the smoker.

5. Take Chicken out of the smoker

  • After it’s cooked, you’ll want to take it out and let it rest. But if you want a crisper skin, and because it was smoked in an electric smoker, the skin may not be as crispy as you would like it to be.
    For that reason, you’ll want to broil your chicken in the oven for a few minutes and let it rest for 10-15 minutes.


How long does it take to smoke a whole chicken in an electric smoker?

It depends on the weight, but it can range from 3 to 5 hours. It also depends on the temperature.

How long does it take to smoke a whole chicken at 225 degrees?

At that temperature, it can take as long as 3 to 5 hours. As long as the temperature in the center of the leg registers 165 degrees, that’s the set amount of time it should take to smoke.

How long does it take to smoke a 5lb chicken at 225?

It can take 4 to 5 hours, depending on the temperature.  The center of the leg should register 165 degrees and the thigh area should register at least 170-175 degrees F.

How long does it take to smoke a whole chicken?

It can vary depending on temperatures but it can take anywhere from 3 to 6 hours depending on its weight.  You should always keep an instant thermometer around so that you can keep an eye on the temperature on the chicken.

Final Say

 Smoking a whole chicken in an electric smoker can be satisfying and we hope the steps above will help you produce the results that you are looking for in smoked chicken.

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Tyler Lachance is a cookout professional. His expertise on cooking grilled food, creating marinades, formulating sauces and matching his food with the perfect drink is unrivaled.

Born and raised in a family that has a long history of cookout, he has treated this activity as a part of his culture and who he is.