Recipe: Sweet Tea Brined Chicken

Today’s recipe is a bit unusual but oh so delicious and perfect for the summer. Who doesn’t love a bit of BBQ in the summer??The addition of sweet tea is perfect. Thanks to Glenn Brunett, Pitmaster at WildWood BBQ in Hadley Massachusetts for the recipe.


Sweet Tea Brined Chicken

6 cups of sweet tea (homemade or store bought)
¼ cup Kosher salt
¼ cup sugar
2 Bay Leaves
1-2 chickens (whole, halved, or cut into quarters)


  1. Rinse and place meat in a one-gallon plastic bag or shallow container with tight-fitting cover.
  2. Mix together sweet tea with other ingredients in a bowl and pour over chicken.
  3. Let marinate in refrigerator for 24 to 48 hours – longer brining will give you a stronger flavor.
  4. Rinse off marinade and pat chicken dry with paper towel.
  5. Sprinkle meat with poultry BBQ seasoning (optional)
  6. Smoke, grill, or cook in a preheated 350° oven until internal temperature reaches 150°.
  7. Let meat rest for about 10 minutes before cutting and serving. (Final temperature should be 160°.)



Sweet Tea 

This recipe takes 5 minutes to Prep, 15 minutes to Make and needs to sit for at least 4 hours before use, and makes 2 quarts. I’d suggest leaving it over night if you can.


  • 1 pinch baking soda
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 6 black tea bags
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 6 cups cool water


  1. Sprinkle a pinch of baking soda into a 64-ounce, heat-proof, glass pitcher. Pour in boiling water, and add tea bags. Cover, and allow to steep for 15 minutes.
  2. Remove tea bags, and discard; stir in sugar until dissolved. Pour in cool water, then refrigerate until cold.

My husband would BBQ dinner every day in the summer if I would let him.  Have you  been BBQ’ing this summer?

Sweet Tea Brined Chicken Recipe by Glenn Brunett the pit master at Wildwood BBQ in Hadley, MA;  original  article published by Seth Stuman 


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