The Biggest Mistakes You Make When Cooking Chicken

The Biggest Mistakes You Make When Cooking Chicken

People tend to think of chicken as an “easy”
choice of meat, but the truth is that getting it right is actually pretty tough. You may even be surprised at just how many
of these poultry-based mistakes you’re making in the kitchen, and that chicken deserves
better. “Who loves chicken? You do!” “We do!: “Delicious chicken … swing on through!” Just like with any kind of meat or fish, the
first job when preparing chicken is choosing a high-quality cut or bird. People put a lot of thought into how their
beef looks, and chicken really shouldn’t be any different. There are a few key ways you can tell whether
chicken is any good or not. Firstly, the meat ought to be bright pink
all over, including in the crevice areas, such as the thighs and wings. If that chicken is going gray, it’s going
bad. The flesh should be firm but not stiff, and
springy to the touch. Equally, chicken that has developed an odor
should be avoided like the plague. Finally, there should be absolutely no blood
visible on the meat. Follow those rules and you’ll be going home
with a potentially tasty chicken. There’s nothing like a good, tender chicken
breast to make a good meal, is there? After all, it’s the cut of the bird with the
most meat, it’s easy to cook, and it’s super tasty. What’s not to love? Well, it might give you the most meat but
the breast isn’t actually the easiest to cook, and it’s not the best, either. Too many people gravitate towards it because
it appears to be the choicest cut, causing them to overlook some far more interesting
parts of the bird. That includes the most underrated chicken
part of all: the thigh. The advantages of cooking with chicken thighs
are numerous. They’re even easier to cook than breasts,
which are very easy to over-do. They have a fantastic texture, season easily,
and often just taste a whole lot better than the other parts of the chicken. Find a good recipe and you might never go
back to breasts. “I will have a chicken breast hold the chicken. “ By and large, the points we’ve hit so far
have dealt with ensuring the meat you’re using is high-quality and suitable, and results
in deliciousness rather than disappointment. Now here’s an altogether more serious element
of the cooking process. Put short: never wash raw chicken. According to the USDA, running raw chicken
under the tap will likely increase your risk of food poisoning. This is because the water droplets which splash
onto the chicken from the tap can travel over a foot and half in any direction, and that
means that raw chicken water is splattering all over cooking equipment, clothing, and
kitchen surfaces. And given that it doesn’t take much to cause
you to come down with a case of food poisoning misery that can last up to five days you’ll
need to just trust the cooking process to kill bacteria. So, just stop rinsing. Ideally, you want to cook chicken fresh and
avoiding freezing it at all. Sometimes, however, that’s not an option,
and so you’re forced to stick it in the freezer and defrost it later. If that’s the case, make sure you don’t thaw
it on the counter, or you’re just asking for trouble. According to the USDA, raw and cooked meat
must be kept at a safe temperature during the thawing process. As soon as it begins to defrost and hits temperatures
of 40 degrees and above, bacteria that might have been present in the meat can start to
multiply. This will also happen if you let it sit at
room temperature for more than two hours, or if you thaw it in hot water. If you’ve got to defrost chicken, the best
way to do it is to let it slowly thaw in the refrigerator, where it’ll stay at a cool enough
temperature to stop all that nasty bacteria from spreading. You can also defrost it in cold water or in
the microwave, as long as you get cooking from the very moment it’s defrosted. If you don’t remember anything else, remember
that there’s never any good reason to remove the skin, especially if you’re using chicken
thighs. That’s because the chicken skin has a number
of uses during cooking. It acts as a kind of sponge full of tasty
juices, and if you leave it on, they’ll be released to the meat during the cooking process. It also protects that same meat from the heat,
and allows the meat to cook at a slower pace and retain its moisture. If you take the skin off before cooking, there’s
a good chance that what you find on the other end is a dry, tasteless chicken. If you really, really don’t like the skin,
just remove it after cooking instead. You’ll find a use for it. “Silence of the Lambs Hello Clarice, it’s
good to see you again.” Brining or marinating your chicken before
cooking can be a game-changer, and once you find your go-to method for chicken prep, you’ll
never go back. If you have some time, consider wet brining. That involves making a solution of salt, sugar,
water, herbs, spices and aromatics, which is then boiled, stirred, then cooled to kill
any bacteria. Then, submerge the entire bird or cuts, leaving
them to brine for up to two days in the refrigerator. Dry brining is a similar technique in which
the salt, sugar and seasonings are rubbed straight onto the meat, allowing for a quicker
turnaround since they’ll soak in after just a few hours. Don’t have that much time? Try marinating, and the good thing here is
that even a quick soak in marinade for just 15 to 20 minutes will make a huge difference
in the final product. In fact, you don’t want to let it sit for
too long, as it’ll get stringy and mushy. No one wants that. “They’ll be people watching around the globe
jealous of this chicken.” The golden rule is this: never marinate chicken
for more than 24 hours. And the other golden rule is this: get creative,
and have fun with flavors. This is a must-do on the preparation checklist
if you’ve got chicken breasts in mind for your recipe. Many of the issues that come with cooking
chicken breast can be mitigated, if not avoided altogether, with a good bit of heavy tenderizing
prior to cooking. Pounding and tenderizing the chicken helps
spread out the thickness and allows the meat to cook more evenly and quickly. The process also makes the resulting chicken
juicer and tastier, which is especially helpful considering chicken breast can often be neither
of those things. The method is simple. All you have to do is wrap up the chicken
in plastic wrap or put it in a plastic storage bag, grab a heavy object such as a ladle or
sauce pan, and start hitting it. “Hahahaa!” Start from the thick part of the cut and slowly
work your way to the thinner bits, until the whole thing is finally thin and flat. Once that’s done, you’re ready to season and
cook. Easy! This is probably the most downright criminal
mistake people can make while cooking chicken, but we’d hazard a guess that it’s probably
a fairly common one, too. Please, don’t forget to season your chicken. Meat that only has salt and/or pepper added
to it is bad enough, but serving up something without even that is just sinful. Here are some golden rules for seasoning chicken. Salt is the big dog, but you’ve got to get
it right. Try to use kosher or sea salt to keep sodium
levels down while getting maximum flavor. Make sure the other seasonings you’re using
are suitable for chicken: good starting points include basil, rosemary, garlic, mustard,
paprika, thyme, parsley, celery seed, cumin and cayenne, but don’t be afraid to play around. You never know what will work, and a failed
experiment is still going to be far more satisfying than a tasteless, unseasoned husk of a bird. The word “dry” might seem like exact opposite
of what you want to hear, but the truth is that drying out your meat after brining is
a must-do for any poultry cook worth their salt. According to James Wilschke, the executive
chef of Filifera in Hollywood, “People want to get really crispy meat, and
the general rule of cooking is moisture is the enemy of caramelization. When you want to get meat crispy, you want
the skin as dry as possible.” You should air dry the meat out of its packaging
in the fridge for up to four hours, although it could take up to a day or two if you’re
making something like fried chicken. Then, take it out, pat it down with a paper
towel, and you’re good to go. This might go against the instincts of anyone
who’s particularly safety-conscious when it comes to handling and preparing raw meat,
but it’s actually a good idea to let your chicken sit out for a little while before
you cook it. Tempering chicken has a few key benefits:
it’ll help your chicken hit that key temperature more quickly, helps the chicken cook more
evenly all the way through, and makes the end result juicer. And that’s never a bad thing, is it? As long as you’re careful, this process isn’t
going to cause you any harm, either. Don’t allow it to sit out anywhere it can
come into contact with other food, wash your hands, and don’t let it sit out for longer
than two hours and you’ll be just fine. No surprise here, but it’s always worth saying
just in case: always make sure your chicken is cooked to a hot enough temperature, otherwise
you’re just asking for a world of pain to come crashing down on top of you. The USDA states that the ideal temperature
for chicken to be cooked at is 165 degrees.This temperature will effectively destroy salmonella
bacteria, which has the highest heat resistance of the pathogens that regularly grow on raw
poultry. Certain cuts require higher temperatures,
albeit for quality reasons more than safety ones. For example, whole muscle breast meat should
be cooked at 170 degrees, while whole muscle thigh meat should be cooked as high as 180
degrees. The best way to ascertain whether your chicken
has cooked through enough is to get a food thermometer. Stick it into the meat, make sure it’s hit
that golden number, and keep cooking if it hasn’t. It’s a good habit to take on. This is another common mistake made during
the actual process of cooking. If you’re pan-frying, pan-searing or sauteing
chicken, you ought to make sure the pan is never overcrowded. This is because one of the main things which
gives chicken its flavor is browning, a reaction which happens when the food comes into contact
with very high temperatures. “You need some heat in that pan – remember,
no color no flavor. . no color no…” “Flavor!” Unfortunately, if the pan is too crowded the
moisture that comes off the chicken will have no room to spread and evaporate, and it’ll
turn into steam or water instead. Instead of browning, the chicken will end
up steaming and you’ll have poached chicken. This is all easily avoidable, and just make
sure there’s plenty of room for the chicken in the pan. The pieces shouldn’t be overlapping or smashed
up against each other, and it’s an easy fix for something that’s a big deal. Getting it wrong can completely ruin your
dish. This is the last thing you should do before
serving up your chicken, especially if it’s a roast. Resting involves allowing the chicken to sit
out for anywhere between 10 and 20 minutes once it’s cooked. The reasons for doing this are twofold: firstly,
cutting into chicken straight away can cause liquid to pool out and the meat will end up
dry. Allowing it to sit for a while will help the
chicken absorb the moisture back into the meat. Secondly, meat tends to continue to cook even
after you’ve taken it out of the oven, and it’s always good to let it continue to do
so. It’s even built into many recipes that suggest
taking meat out of the oven just before it’s done cooking for this reason. Take the chicken out, keep it in foil to make
sure it stays warm, and keep yourself otherwise occupied for a while. It’ll all be worth it in the end. Check out one of our newest videos right here! Plus, even more Mashed videos about your favorite
stuff are coming soon. Subscribe to our YouTube channel and hit the
bell so you don’t miss a single one.


  1. Urrrbs…. so lazy. I accidentally stumbled across a great way to cook chicken. What was meant to be a marinade turned into a 24 hour bath in sweet chilli sauce. Chicken breast strips, soak in thai sweet chilli sauce and refrigerate for 24 hours. Pan fry until caramelised and brown in a none stick pan and serve with whatever carb you prefer. Amazing is an understatememt especially the flavour from the reduced almost jam like remainder of the sauce.

  2. I'm gonna rinse all meat no matter what the "know-it-all's" think ….I just don't have a splash-fest while doing it.

  3. What rubbish video only stupid people don't wash their chicken go to wet market to buy your chicken kill on the spot less Bacteria reaches home wash it right away never eat your chicken without washing better still don't eat frozen chicken.

  4. My mother always told me the most important thing if you are going to fry or bake or BBQ chicken get a small chicken. Not over 4 pounds. Big chickens are tough. Brine your chicken too.

  5. Biggest mistakes people make is overcooking and not cooking to temperature. With any meat or food forget what you ever learned about cooking times and temperatures, when it hits the proper internal temperature it is done. It is up to you to monitor this and adjust the temperature if it is close to get the sear or browning desired before it hits this temperature. When frying, grilling, boiling, steaming or roasting vegetables they are done when they are tender and have the right colour to them. I’m not a chef, but chefs don’t get taught recipes in culinary school, recipes teach people bad habits about cooking everything the same amount of time not factoring in exact weight or thickness.

  6. Never fails. Every time anyone mentions that washing chicken is stupid, you get a whole bunch of stupid people showing up to defend their stupid practice of washing chicken.

    If you want to risk food borne illnesses and waste your useless time then do so but keep it to yourself and shut up.

  7. You don't need to be Einstein to figure out other ways to wash chicken, or any kind of meat. And, I agree with the comments that cite how anyone who thinks there's nothing the chicken goes through in a poultry plant that needs to be cleaned off lives under a rock.

  8. You're crazy if you don't rinse that bird, it's known there are feces on almost all chickens. Brine in salt water and then rinse well will take care of all that.

  9. Never washed chicken and never had food poisoning.. this might be just because I'm in australia, we have pretty good standards for food safety here

  10. I've always been a fan of thighs over breasts mainly because the texture and the taste. I'm all about the dark meat. That said I've baked breaded chicken breasts and they're absolutely outstanding. As the video suggests you do a little tenderizing, give it an egg wash then into seasoned breadcrumbs then bake for about 40 minutes and you'll have some incredibly tasty and juicy chicken breasts.


  11. This vid has so many people touching the raw chicken and cross contaminating… You should avoid touching the chicken at all costs

  12. samonella is only dangerous for certain groups. pregnant women, eldery, etc. Normal people wont have any problem with it. besides, it's not just on the chicken, also some vegetables and sprouts may carry it. there's a trend now in japan to make sushi with raw chicken, perfectly fine for the average person.

  13. I eat chicken a few times a week. Never got food poisoning. Depending how I'm cooking, a nice wash/soak in saltwater is great. Want to defrost quick and marinade before cooking… leave on counter.

  14. for you trolling morons >>> Salmonella is one of the most common causes of food poisoning in the United States. Each year, salmonella infections, called salmonellosis, sicken more than 1 million people.
    Up to 450 die from salmonella poisoning annually.

    and you claim thorough cooking always kills it? …..and why should people worry about thoroughly cooking bacteria when they can wash it down the drain? ….. what the hell you think the drain and the sewers are for?
    Rinse the raw meats off !!!

  15. LOL, I always wash my chicken, just with nowhere near as much water pressure as in this vid. people who blast their raw chicken with water deserve food poisoning, haha.

  16. I'm another Aussie who's never ever washed a chicken before cooking it. I've been cooking chicken for over 65 years without a problem. Out here, poultry sellers are constantly subjected to rigorous checks by the food standards association inspectors and the penalties for failure to comply are severe.

  17. Most people wash their chicken as part of prepping the meat, for example to get rid of blood, feathers, parts of kidney, gizzards and grit from a badly cut bird, etc. Even if washing increases the risk of contamination, that small increase is not worth the fuss. Wash your meat without splashing if you need to. But wash your hands afterwards and be careful not to contaminate cooked food or utensils you are going to use to eat later.

  18. You can rinse off a smelly old slimy chicken. If it stops being smelly it's good to eat!
    That's my super tip

  19. Never wash your chicken??? Sorry but I don’t agree here. I have been cooking chicken and washing my chicken for many years, and I have never yet contracted food poisoning.

  20. ​ @ Nik Murphy, sorry looser but what's irrelevant is your opinion of how to hopefully stop meat with bacteria.

    We ALL can plainly see you never worked in a slaughterhouse or a poultry meat packing plant.

    The USDA make them freeze meat to preserve the meats by stopping germ and bacteria – but they will tell you in a hurry that don't work so cook to a high heat in HOPES that that process will finally kill the bacteria!

    Get off your lazy butt and go ask any real animal farmer do they rinse off meats after slaughter even though it's "farm fresh" and they will tell you in no uncertain terms >>> HELL YES!

    None of the knowledgeable will ever value lame opinions like yours!

  21. @ ​ Nik Murphy stop your whining, I told you to go talk directly to poultry meat packers or animal farmers, If you are too lazy to do that, then go talk to a responsible butcher and ask if he/her rinses off his meat at home …. Although you are too lazy to get from behind that keyboard – I bet you already know the answer!

  22. I can make a mean, tasty stir fry with good quality chix breast. Also, lemon pepper baked chix is another one of my specialties.

  23. never buy spiced chicken because it was ready to get thrown out but better to spice it and repackage and don't lose the sale. same thing with places that sell spiced chicken they buy the birds that all others refuse to buy and they buy at a cheaper price . same thing with ground beef , the old smellie gray grnd beef is put in the middle of the good grnd beef you buy and cook and don't even know it. so cut it and smell it before cooking. 😣😀

  24. Don't wash your chicken?? My Jamaican mum would of box me round the head if I didn't wash chicken in lemon juice, God bless her soul! Turn the bloody tap down and clean your kitchen like the rest of the world. Don't wash your chicken? I've never heard anything so stupid in my life.

  25. This is making me more mad the more I watch. You need to take the skin off for marinades to soak in. When I'm making brown stew chicken and one pots, I let the chicken marinade over night and it's never been 'stringy'. Sorry, but who is she? Right I'm not watching anymore, as it's grinding my gears lol.

  26. @Nik Murphy, – well if you too pathetic and lazy too get off your butt and go talk to a butcher or poultry farmer, then call the FDA or the USDA and "talk live" to one of their professionals about whether to rinse off bacteria or not.

    BUT being the lazy coward you are I'm sure you won't do it!

  27. Brine is brine- salt solution. There is no such thing as dry brining. That’s called dry rub with salt
    Salt is salt- sodium chloride NaCl. 40%sodium and 60%chlorine. Sea salt is an overpriced scam. The only difference from table salt are the other minerals and things along for the ride. But they don’t reduce sodium in any way.
    Rinsing chicken is never a bad thing unless you hose it down. High pressure spray is purely amateur but so is cooking it in its own package slime. That stuff is loaded with contaminants and can be well above the safe temp that the meat is still.

  28. I hang my whole raw chicken, open both ends, outdoors. I boil a kettle and immediately, thoroughly swamp the bird inside and out, prising the legs/wings off the body for max coverage. Water boils at 100°C (212°) but bacteria die at only around 75°C (167°F). The video talks about bacteria in meat but any bugs are mostly on the meat, of course. The bird will soon air-dry, by the way and, as a bonus, this method also helps crisp the skin during cooking.

  29. I am from the deep south and we have so many recipes for chicken it is just unbelievable I can remember when I was little before I went to live in Conyers Georgia home I was a young person all my older siblings they would have to catch those yard chickens and then have to wring their necks or kept their neck off with the axe I remember that I remember them plucking it and burning it and it would stink eye yeah when I was a kid I wasn't too crazy about chicken but when I got older I learned to enjoy it is a process to kill and clean a chicken until you've done it you don't know LOL. Lights camera action.

  30. if you cook the breast right it is delicious I can take one big breast and I can eat off their breasts for a whole week just making me a one-man does not take a lot to feed me I am 73 and if I fix a pot of dried beans but guess what I freeze it then I pop it out when I want it I do my Chili's at way I do my suits that way I do my spaghetti's that way yeah and it's really cheap eats a little of nothing it does not take much to see the person and plus I definitely get stuff on sale like the other day I was at the grocery store and there was some bacon on sale it was like $14 for this bacon and I don't know why but it was on sale for 250 and there was 50 packages it was 2 lbs but I bought this Jabra I bought Kroger out I want a better if they going to discontinue a certain type of last summer I got about 80 pounds of butter for-profit I think $20 and those of the deals I like to find and I put it in my freezer and it lasts and of course I share with my kids but it nothing I use mostly bacon for seasoning and cooking I love bacon but I'm not really a egg eater and I don't care for eggs that much but that's just me I'm I'm a see you later in the morning now sometimes at night I I can and will enjoy bacon and eggs and grits and toast or homemade biscuits are biscuits and gravy however but not often a single person can't very well if they struggle and they catch the sales and they use their coupons they can eat as good as a rich person.I also raised my Chili's up that way to single servings and it's just unbelievable and I enjoy my food.I make it a point to buy food that's not going to go bad on me and if I do my fresh vegetables I cooked in that day or the next day and then I got them all wait. My favorite bacon is right w r i g h t s that's correct spelling of it and when I do buy it I don't buy the peppered bacon you going to spend three more dollars so that I do my pepper grind on it when I'm frying my bacon I love my bacon extra Chris and that between up a piece of loaf of bread on dairy content oh God you I love my BLTs but there's got to be so fresh.I could go on and on because I'm from the deep south and I am a good cook
    Lights camera action.

  31. I'm going to say this and I'm going to get out of here I have to add to this and pay homage to so many people out there because there's so many wonderful and they don't have to be chefs I prefer a cook / chef in a day of the week and all you people that's on YouTube and you have your dishes new recipes I tried them some of some my palette looks step summit won't but you know what you don't know until you try it but again I want to let y'all you cooks know that I do respect you and your work that you do on YouTube because I think you're all fantastic people and thank you so much for sharing your knowledge. Lights camera action.

  32. How can you eat chicken without washing. Just look at the fried chicken sold outside ..not fully cooked and you can see the slim inside ..

  33. First you say bacteria will multiply when left out for 2 hours, then you say leave the chicken dry for 4 hours.. I'm so confused.

  34. Never leave your chicken out for more than two hours, also, always leave your chicken out for more than two hours…

  35. Never rinse raw chicken. LMFAO. YOUR KIDDING, right?… God gave me a brain, I know how to clean up! I’ve never made anyone sick.

    Video gets 1 1/2 stars out of 5.

  36. I love the thigh but here in the Philippines the butchers do not know how to cut up a chicken so they cut the thigh in half with half going to the leg and the other half going to the back, It sickens me to see the thigh never being served in fried chicken places here.

  37. Leaving the skin on is correct, the rest is BULLSHIT. The reason you get sick is all the antibiotics you use and take. Very few people got sick before hand sanitizers came out. You're fucking scared of your own shadow, good luck DIEING.

  38. Number one….. buy only organic !!!

    Number two…… Cook it in the instant pot !!

    Perfect every time whole or cut up…..

  39. You are clueless how the packing industry treats, actually mistreats chicken. They rip them apart and throw them into cold water and there is still fecal mater in the carcasses. So chicken is NOT CLEAN. It must be handled and cooked as such. Totally different from beef or tofu. Cook it to a high temperature with no sign of pink left. And don't rely on that $1.49 Chinese met thermometer to give you the right temp. Cook it until the thigh is totally softened and loose from the backbone. And deep in the breast too.

  40. Don’t give away the secrets of the best parts pleassse!!!!!!🤫😲 The thighs are the best and the legs.

  41. Ive never had a meat thermometer, always rinsed off chicken, usually thaw on kitchen counter. Never gotten sick. Been Cooking over 40 yrs.

  42. Do not follow the temp rates given here for chicken. This is just too over done. Check other sources, because, this…this is just wrong!
    Use thermometers but use one that stays in. If you poke me, will I not bleed? If you poke chicken over and over, you lose juice. One thermometer poked in once while raw. When temp. reached, alarm goes off.

  43. If I get stinky chicken, I take that bird, step backed a few, then punt that bird across the meat department! Split the uprights aaaand IT'S GOOD!!!

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