Brine (Poultry)

Basic Brine for Chicken

  • 3 qts water
  • 3/4 cup kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup sugar

Change the proportions as necessary to make enough brine to cover your chicken.  This is sufficient to cover a 5-lb whole fryer.

5-lb chicken in basic brine

Pickling Spice Brine for Chicken

  • 1 gallon water
  • 1 cup salt (1 1/2 cups Kosher or coarse salt)
  • 1/2 cup white vinegar
  • 3 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp pickling spice
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp allspice
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp tarragon

I haven’t tried this one yet, but will probably use it next time.

The general rule for brining chicken is to immerse it in the brine, then cover and refrigerate it.  Leave it in the brine for one hour per pound, then remove the chicken from the brine, rinse it thoroughly, and pat it dry.


Amateur cook and barbecue fanatic.

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