Total Time
3hrs 25mins
Prep 25 mins
Cook 3 hrs

This chicken gets its flavor from the smoke of the hickory chips, so I don't baste with a barbecue sauce while cooking this recipe....feel free to add it if you think it's necessary. I do like to offer Julie's Alabama White Sauce posted by Oolala when serving it. It's important to use skin on chicken halves because the chicken is cooked for a long period over indirect heat. I have the butcher at my grocery store cut whole chickens in half for me to make it easier on myself.

Ingredients Nutrition

  • hickory chips (Soak for about 6 hours if possible, can soak overnight)
  • 4 whole chickens, split (3 to 3 1/2 lbs each)
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 1 12 teaspoons pepper
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce (use your favorite)


  1. Soak your hickory chips for 6 hours (may soak overnight).
  2. Split the chickens if you didn't have your butcher do it for you. Combine the salt, paprika, and pepper; stir well. Sprinkle over the chicken on both sides.
  3. Combine the vegetable oil, vinegar, and hot sauce, stirring well. Set chicken and oil mixture aside.
  4. Prepare a fire in your grill; let burn until the coals are gray. Rake the coals to one end of the grill; put an old disposable foil pan on the other end of the grill. Pour water in it to make steam and keep your chicken nice and moist. Sprinkle the hickory chips over the hot coals.
  5. Place the chicken on the side of the grill over the pan with water in it. Place the lid on the grill. Grill over indirect heat 3 to 3 1/2 hours, or until done. Turn the chicken occasionally. Add hickory chips as needed to keep the smoke going. You may also need to throw a few pieces of charcoal in it to keep the fire going nice and hot. Baste the chicken with the oil mixture during the last hour of grilling time.
  6. Enjoy!
Most Helpful

All I can say right now is that this was delicious! Hubby used our "Traeger Grill" to make this, so I will have to get his input on exactly how he did it and report back. Yum! Thanks for posting a new chicken recipe for us to try. (Made for PRMR)

rosie316 December 31, 2013

Very good. Hubby cooked this on the smoker instead of the grill and we all enjoyed this.

bmcnichol August 09, 2011

WOW...this was really good!!! I was out of charcoal, so I used the smoker-cooker. We had some leg quarters, so that's what I used. I've smoke cooked chicken many times before, but your basting sauce is what caught my eye & I'm glad it did...will DEFFO make this again!!! THANKS for sharing!!!

Ackman April 25, 2011