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How to Brine a Whole Chicken + Video

Chicken Brine - http://CookingWithKimberly.comThe most effective, easiest and inexpensive way to impart flavor into your whole bird (albeit a chicken, duck, turkey, hen) is to use a brine.

If you’ve never brined a chicken or turkey before, you really don’t know what you’re missing. The increased flavor intensity, as well as the moisture it imparts, and the dark, crispy skin it lends itself to, make brining an amazing trick in your flavorful kitchen.

This is a basic recipe for brining a bird, but also be sure to check out my Ultimate Holiday Turkey Brine for that unmistakable holiday flare.

Try it! You’ll love it, and never go back to roasting a bird that hasn’t gone for a swim in the brine first!

Type: Chicken Recipe
Prep Time: 7 min
Brine Time: 1 hr – overnight
Yield: about 1 gallon

The ingredients & instructions are listed below the video for measurements & directions. Please enjoy the video below.


  • 16 cups water
  • 1 cup kosher salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tbsp peppercorns
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 onion – sliced
  • 1 whole chicken


  1. Into a large pot, add all ingredients. Stir thoroughly to dissolve the salt & sugar.
  2. To an oversized soup pot, brining bag or oven-roasting bag inside of a cooler, gently place cold-rinsed chicken breast-side-down, if possible.
  3. When you’re ready to start preparing your chicken, remove bird from brine and rinse thoroughly, pat dry and prepare your bird as usual. * Tip: Discard brine and clean everything thoroughly.
  4. Enjoy your roasted chicken.


I hope you enjoy this How to Cook Video on Cooking with Kimberly. Until next time…

Be a Champion in Your Kitchen & Eat Deliciously!

P.S. Need a large stock pot? Grab one today…



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Author: Kimberly Turner

Kimberly Turner is the web-chef behind CookingWithKimberly.com. Food writer, food consultant and general lover of the delicious treats on our planet, Kimberly brings you hearty content, delicious offerings, fun antics, and some down-home cooked love with her mom making cameos. Internet entrepreneur and marketer, International model, and Editor-in-Chief of a number of online publications. Be a Champion in Your Kitchen & Eat Deliciously!

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  1. I’ve been using Kimberlys brine for all my smoked poultry for the past year. This brine imparts the perfect combination of flavors and ensures the meat remains moist throughout the extended smoking process. No need for additional seasoning, I pull them from the brine, give them a quick rinse and throw them onto the smoker, perfect taste every time! Thanks Kim, keep the info coming!

    Post a Reply
    • Thank you so much, Jeff, for such a stellar review of the recipe.

      I’m so glad that it’s the go-to for your smoking needs, and I know you smoke A LOT of meat!

      I appreciate you leaving this lovely comment.

      Kimberly 🙂

      Post a Reply


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