Smoked Chicken Breasts are delicious and made in an electric pellet smoker. Even if you’re new to smoking on a pellet grill, this recipe is so easy and quick to make. Perfect for parties, weeknight dinners, and part of a healthy meal!
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Smoked Chicken Recipe in the Electric Smoker
Another great recipe to try on your smoker is smoked chicken breast. It is so easy to make and turns out juicy and smoky.
It’s no secret that I love my electric smoker.
Whether I’m making a whole Beer Can Chicken, Smoked Chicken Thighs or Smoked Burgers, if my smoker is running outside, I get excited because I know dinner is going to be good.
This recipe was one of the first ones I tried when we got our pellet smoker, so I can assure you firsthand that you can make this even if you are new to cooking on the smoker! I feel like it's some of the best chicken breasts I've ever had.
It's so good served alongside grilled corn on the cob and pasta salad or a green bean casserole.
Why you'll love this easy smoked chicken breast recipe
There are so many reasons to love smoked chicken breasts.
- Smoked chicken breasts are easy to make.
- It’s a quick recipe too. They come together in just an hour!
- The chicken comes out so juicy and tender and it tastes smoky and flavorful.
- It makes for excellent meal prep! You can serve it up in a variety of ways that go perfectly in whatever chicken meal prep recipe you're making.
I love this recipe because it’s equally easy for a weeknight dinner or a summer barbecue.
It is a great one for a dinner party, too, because you can pop the chicken in the smoker while you prepare all the sides. The smoking process is pretty hands-off!
Ingredients for Smoked Boneless Chicken Breast
Here’s what you’ll need to grab at the grocery store to make this recipe:
- boneless skinless chicken breasts - I always say get the best quality meat you can afford. If needed, you can substitute boneless chicken thighs, but it will affect the cooking time.
- avocado oil - Feel free to substitute the avocado oil for another neutral-tasting oil such as olive oil. You can also use other binders like mustard or mayonnaise.
- smoked chicken rub - I’ve included my favorite recipe below, but feel free to play with other seasonings. Fajita seasoning would be delicious as would Greek seasoning.
Rub for Smoked Chicken
A flavorful spice rub will make a big difference and give the best results.
Below is what you need to make my favorite smoked chicken dry rub for pellet smoked chicken breast. (See the full, printable recipe at the end of this post.)
Having fresh spices that aren't expired are key to this flavorful rub. Remember, spices typically have a shelf life of about 6 months. If they're older than that, it's probably time to replace them.
- brown sugar - light brown sugar and dark brown sugar both work well
- smoked paprika - smoked paprika has a deeper flavor than regular paprika, but they both work well in this
- salt - Sea salt or coarse kosher salt are my go-to's when cooking
- garlic powder - be sure to use garlic powder that's fresh and not expired for the best flavor
- onion powder - even if you aren't a fan of onion, be sure to include onion powder for the best results
- ground mustard - See more about this ingredient below!
- ground black pepper - Pepper from a pepper grinder is going to give you the strongest and best flavor
Also known as dry mustard or mustard powder, ground mustard is probably the only one on this list that you might not have on your spice rack, but I highly recommend you add it. You can order it online or buy it at the grocery store.
It is made from ground mustard seed, which is the same seed used to make the mustard you know and love for burgers. In recipes, it adds a hint of mustard flavor. I love it in these honey mustard pretzels.
A homemade dry rub isn't required. If you prefer, you can use a store-bought seasoning blend or your favorite rub. Just make sure it's packed with great flavors.
Best pellets for smoking chicken breast
When making Traeger chicken breast, it’s important to have the right kind of wood pellets to get the best flavor.
For a strong, smoky flavor, use a competition blend, mesquite, or oak.
For a sweeter smoke flavor, cherry or apple pellets will offer a milder taste.
How to Make Chicken Breast on a Pellet Grill
Making pellet-grilled chicken breast is so easy. If it’s your first time using your smoker, have no fear — I promise you can do it!
First, preheat the smoker to 225ºF.
Coat all the chicken breasts with avocado oil. You shouldn't need more than 2 tablespoons. The oil is simply acting as a binder for the seasoning.
Then add all of the rub ingredients to a mixing bowl and stir to combine. (Sometimes I make a big batch in a mason jar and then shake it up!)
Generously season all sides of the chicken breasts with the rub mixture. Make sure they are coated on all sides.
Once the smoker has preheated, place chicken breasts directly onto the grill grates of the smoker.
Next is the easy part: Smoke the chicken for 1 hour or until the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 165ºF at the thickest part. I recommend using a digital instant-read thermometer for this part if your smoker does not have a built-in temperature probe.
If it’s not ready, keep smoking it and checking the temperature every few minutes. You may need a little longer smoking time depending on the size of the chicken breast.
Once the chicken has reached temperature, remove the chicken from the smoker.
Let the chicken rest for at least 10 minutes before serving. This helps to release the juices from the chicken, resulting in a super tender cut.
Tips & Tricks for delicious smoked chicken breast
Whether you're smoking chicken breasts on a Traeger pellet grill or a Pit Boss pellet grill, there are a few tips and tricks you can use to make sure you have juicy chicken every time.
Before preparing the chicken, be sure to cut off any big pieces of fat, but leave a little behind because fat = flavor.
I don't recommend brining pellet grill chicken breasts prior to smoking due to the texture change. A good rub and a binder to make it stick to the chicken are all that you need!
You can use a store-bought rub in place of homemade. This rub is my favorite one!
Another great binder instead of avocado oil is mustard. It adds that tangy, bitter flavor and just melts in your mouth.
Making sure you cook to the right temperature is the key to having tender meat and the best results. An instant-read thermometer is a go-to tool in my kitchen.
If you want to add a hint of spice, you can add cayenne pepper to the rub.
About 10 minutes before removing from the smoker grill, you can brush on your favorite bbq sauce.
How to make this recipe work for the whole family
Use a seasoning or rub that your family enjoys. You can even season each chicken breast differently with the seasoning that person likes best! Add some Smoked White Queso Dip to the chicken for a kick up of cheesy jalapeno flavor.
How to store and reheat Pit Boss Chicken Breast
For any leftover smoked chicken, allow it to cool completely to room temperature and then place it in an airtight container.
When stored properly, it will stay fresh for up to 3 days in the refrigerator.
You can use it cold on your favorite salad or shred it to make a smoky chicken salad. So good!
If you want to reheat it, do this to keep it moist and smoky: Preheat the oven to 350°F. Place the chicken on a baking sheet. Bake for 10-15 minutes until the interior has reached 165°F with a meat thermometer.
products used to make smoked chicken breast
mixing bowls - stainless steelBuy Now →
What to Eat with Smoked Chicken
Here are some side dishes I love to serve with smoked chicken:
When stored properly, smoked chicken will last up to 3 days in the fridge or 6 months in the freezer.
Other chicken recipes you might like
More Easy Smoker Recipes
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Smoked Chicken Breast
- 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 2 tablespoons avocado oil
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons smoked paprika
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon ground mustard
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- Preheat the smoker to 225ºF.
- Coat all the chicken breasts with avocado oil. You shouldn't need more than 2 tablespoons. The oil is simply acting as a binder for the seasoning.
- To a mixing bowl, combine all of the rub ingredients.
- Generously season all sides of the chicken breasts with the rub mixture. Make sure they are coated on all sides.
- Once the smoker has preheated, add the chicken breast directly to the grates of the smoker.
- Smoke the chicken for 1 hour or until the internal temperature reaches 165ºF at the thickest part. You may need longer depending on the thickness of your chicken breast.
- Remove the chicken from the smoker and allow it to rest for at least 10 minutes before serving.
- I don't recommend brining chicken breasts prior to smoking due to the texture change
- You can use a store-bought rub in place of homemade
- Another great binder instead of avocado oil is mustard
Nutritional information is provided as a courtesy. It should only be used for estimation purposes and is not a guarantee of any kind. Nutritional information varies widely between brands and types of ingredients used. It is recommended that you calculate the nutritional information based on your own ingredients and brands used. Sweetly Splendid, LLC makes no guarantees as to the exact nutrition information.
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