How to Smoke Chicken Leg Quarters

eHow may earn compensation through affiliate links in this story. Learn more about our affiliate and product review process here.

Things You'll Need

  • Paper towels

  • Dry rub

  • Wood chips soaked in water

  • Aluminum foil

  • Meat thermometer

The low and slow process of smoking chicken thighs crisps the chicken skin, keeps the meat tender and juicy and infuses the meat with flavors. Adding your preferred seasonings to the chicken allows you to customize it to suit your tastes. The chicken will need to be monitored carefully while it cooks in the smoker to prevent it from overcooking, which can result in a tough and chewy texture.


Step 1

Heat the smoker to 250 degrees Fahrenheit according to the manufacturer instructions.

Video of the Day

Step 2

Rinse the chicken leg quarters under cool water. Pat the leg quarters dry with paper towels. Season the chicken with a dry rub if you desire.


Step 3

Fill the water pan in the smoker halfway full. Wrap a handful of your preferred soaked wood chips in aluminum foil. Poke three to four holes in the foil and add the wood chips to the smoker.

Step 4

Place the chicken in the smoker. Smoke the chicken for 1 1/2 to 3 hours or until a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the leg quarter reads 180 degrees F. The temperature of the meat will increase 5 degrees after being removed from the smoker.

Step 5

Remove the chicken from the smoker. Allow it to rest for five to 10 minutes. Serve the poultry immediately.


Cover the chicken with aluminum foil if it browns too quickly in the smoker.

Brush barbecue sauce over the leg quarters during the last 10 minutes of smoking.


Always wash your utensils, surfaces and hands after handling raw poultry to prevent food-borne illnesses.



Report an Issue

screenshot of the current page

Screenshot loading...