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Wager 11-27-2012 12:01 PM

Brining thighs, how long?
For those that brine your thighs for competition, how long do you leave them in the brine? I'm use to doing a whole bird for 12 + hours but as small as the thighs are how long does it take?

Also, where do you find the biggest benefit from brining, tenderness, or taste, or both? I would like to try and get my tenderness scores up somehow and was hoping this might be one route that will help.

Lance Miller 11-27-2012 12:35 PM

1 to 1.5 hour tops. Anything longer and you will taste the salt. Brining is gift from the Gods. Your thighs will be juicy and flavorful. I have started using Oakridge Game Changer brine instead of making my own and got a walk in our last comp compared to always being middle of the pack. Brine those thighs!

glenntm 11-27-2012 12:42 PM

We use the Game Changer from Oakridge. 4-5 hours on brine time.

Wager 11-27-2012 02:10 PM

Thanks guys. looks like I will be ordering some Game Changer to try out.

Do you find that it helps your tenderness scores at all?

Smokin Mike 11-27-2012 04:38 PM

Smoke on Wheels has a great chicken marinade, you got to try it.

Jason TQ 11-27-2012 04:54 PM

I believe it really depends on the contents of the brine, especially salt. Ive been going up to 6 hrs with good results.

BKBBQ 11-27-2012 07:06 PM

oak ridge game changer two hours. Add some rub to it also.

code3rrt 11-27-2012 07:24 PM

For the single pieces I usaully brine for 1-3 hours depending on the size of the pieces, whole chickens 8-12 hours, again depending on size.
I think it improves the flavor, juiciness and the tenderness. I've heard from some that they felt that brining takes away from the true chicken flavor, but I just use the simple basic brine, and don't feel that I get those results.

bam 11-27-2012 08:15 PM


Originally Posted by fnbish (Post 2282390)
I believe it really depends on the contents of the brine, especially salt. Ive been going up to 6 hrs with good results.

I agree have gone 12 hrs on a watered down brine.

Pickin' Porkers 11-27-2012 10:43 PM

WELL, since we are are known for not keeping any secrets I'll say honestly....we brine thighs for 12 hrs....put them on brine at 8 PM and off at 8 AM....

4 cups water
1/4 C salt
1/4 C sugar
1/8 C Buttrub

We are not #1 in KCBS chicken this year but if you do a thorough review of our results you will see that we do not do too bad. The latter part of the year is a result of some sauce tweaks that went bad, and that will change.... but we assure you, tenderness cores do not suffer averaging 8.2......

Crash 11-28-2012 02:42 AM

We use our own brine, soak for almost exactly 4 hours and then rinse, rub and cook. It's worked for us, but everyone has a different approach.

kcmike 11-28-2012 05:49 PM

Brine time definitely depends on the concentration of the brine, and to a lesser degree, the size of the item(s) being brined. Thighs in Game Changer at full strength, 1.5-2 hours. Thighs in Game Changer at half strength, anywhere from 4 hours all the way up to 12.

southernstyle 11-28-2012 07:35 PM

Cant go wrong with game changer. I leave mine for 5 hrs. The moisture is awesome

HookedonSmoke 11-29-2012 08:32 AM

When making a brine is it best to use kosher salt or iodized table salt?

Uncle Buds BBQ 11-29-2012 08:43 AM


Originally Posted by HookedonSmoke (Post 2283854)
When making a brine is it best to use kosher salt or iodized table salt?

Here is some great info...

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