Blackened Chicken Breast

She Who Must Be Obeyed likes boneless skinless chicken breasts. They are not my favourite cut of chicken as I have pointed out before. I work to give them more taste and a nice texture.

One of my favourite ways is to “blacken” them. That involves putting a spice coating on the chicken and cooking it in an extremely hot pan or flat top grill to blacken the seasonings.

The problem with this method is it really smokes up your kitchen. I wondered if I could do it in my Traeger Timberline smoker?

The challenges are that the smoker cooks by indirect, not direct heat and it only goes to 500 F (260 C).  I thought I might get around that by preheating a cast iron pan.

I made a Blackening Seasoning mix by mixing the following together in a bowl:

  • 2 ml (1/2 teaspoon) salt
  • 2 ml (1/2 teaspoon) dried oregano
  • 2 ml (1/2 teaspoon) dried thyme
  • 1 ml (1/4 teaspoon) pepper
  • 1 ml (1/4 teaspoon) white pepper
  • 1 ml (1/4 teaspoon) onion powder
  • 1 ml (1/4 teaspoon) garlic powder
  • 1 ml (1/4 teaspoon) paprika
  • 1/2 ml (1/8 teaspoon) cayenne

I sprinkled the mixture over both sides of 2 boneless skinless breast halves.

I took a heavy cast iron frying pan and put it in the cold Traeger. I turned it on to 500 F (260 C). When it got to temperature, I let the pan heat in the smoker for another 20 minutes. You are trying to get as much ambient heat in the iron pan as possible to give a direct heat source.

I put 1/8 inch of vegetable oil in the pan and closed the lid to let it heat for 5 minutes.

I put the chicken in the pan and closed the lid for 5 minutes. The chicken should have a nice brown crust with the herbs blackened. Turn the chicken, close the lid and cook for 5 more minutes.

I took the chicken out of the pan and put it on an upper smoker rack and continued cooking until the internal temperature was over 170 F (77 C), it took about 10 minutes.

Let the chicken rest for 5 minutes and serve.

The Verdict

First, I will tell you this does not get the very black coating of a hot pan or grill. However, it does get a great deep brown coating and has that nice spicy blackened taste.

The chicken meat was nice and moist with a great texture.

Overall, this was quite easy, very tasty and looks great!

The Old Fat Guy

Blackened Chicken Breast

Blackened Chicken Breast

Ingredients

  • 2 boneless skinless chicken breast halves
  • 25 ml (2 tablespoons) vegetable oil
  • Blackening Spice Mix:
  • 2 ml (1/2 teaspoon) salt
  • 2 ml (1/2 teaspoon) dried oregano
  • 2 ml (1/2 teaspoon) dried thyme
  • 1 ml (1/4 teaspoon) pepper
  • 1 ml (1/4 teaspoon) white pepper
  • 1 ml (1/4 teaspoon) onion powder
  • 1 ml (1/4 teaspoon) garlic powder
  • 1 ml (1/4 teaspoon) paprika
  • 1/2 ml (1/8 teaspoon) cayenne

Instructions

  1. Mix the blackening spice ingredients together.
  2. Sprinkle the mixture over both sides of two boneless skinless breast halves and press it in.
  3. Put a cold cast iron pan in a cold smoker. Turn it on to 500 F (260 C). When it gets to temperature, let the pan heat in the smoker for another 20 minutes. You are trying to get as much ambient heat in the iron pan as possible to give a direct heat source.
  4. Put 1/8 inch of vegetable oil in the pan and close the lid to let it heat for 5 minutes.
  5. Put the chicken in the pan and close the lid for 5 minutes. The chicken should have a nice brown crust with the herbs blackened. Turn the chicken, close the lid, and cook for 5 more minutes.
  6. Take out of the pan and put it on an upper smoker rack and continued cooking until the internal temperature was over 170 F (77 C), it took about 10 minutes.
  7. Let the chicken rest for 5 minutes and serve.
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