Brining Poultry

Many poultry production companies will brine their food during processing to preserve flavor and security longevity of shelf-life. A brine is a salt water mixture. When you place meat in a brine that has more salt than meat, liquid will flow through the cell walls in to the meat, which adds moisture. You can check this by weighing a chicken breast and then placing it in a salt water brine for a few hours, remove and weigh again. That chicken breast is now heavier. The added weight is inside the meat in the form of water. In addition to adding moisture, salt breaks down proteins and therefore tenderizes the meat.

Brining too long can be a bad thing (too much salt, etc.). So, it is best to err on the side of too little than too much. In general, poultry brines for an hour per pound. However, the thickness (or mass) of the poultry is more important than the weight. A whole chicken should be brined somewhere between 6 and 10 hours, but a whole chicken cut up, should be brined no more than 4 hours. A cornish game hen will be ready to cook in about an hour or two, while a whole, large turkey will need at least 24 hours.

Like all cooking, brining is something you should experiment with and adjust to your own tastes, and speaking of which, through in some herbs, spices, and vegetables to give your brine flavor. You can also take a look at some of my recipes.


SA Series
Packaged Chillers
(integrated pump tank)
1.5Ton – 20Ton
Single / Dual Circuits
Single / Dual Pumps
SAE Series
Modular Chillers
(pump & tank on
separate skid)
1.5Ton – 200Ton
Single / Dual Circuits
SAR Series
Split Chillers
(Outdoor Condensing Unit)
(pump, tank, evaporator on
indoor skid)
1.5Ton – 200Ton
Single / Dual Circuits