Why is Some Cooked Chicken Pink?

One of the most frequently asked questions about our food is, "Why is my chicken pink? Is it undercooked?"

Caesar Chicken Salad - Saddleback BBQ


It can be alarming if you've never had our smoked chicken to bite into it and find some pinkness, and for good reason, as we all know undercooked chicken can be extremely dangerous.

The pinkness comes from a protein called myoglobin found in the muscles of meat. The more myoglobin the more red the meat is. For example, there is a much higher amount of myoglobin in beef than there is in chicken.

When smoking our meats the food comes in contact with nitric oxide and carbon monoxide, this is what keeps the pink color in the chicken. Additionally, it's the same element of smoking that gives you the highly coveted "smoke ring" when cooking a brisket.

We are always sure to check the internal temperature of our chicken when smoking it, ensuring it's above 165 degrees.


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