This classic brining method can make your chicken even more flavorful and juicier. Never again will dry chicken breasts be a problem!

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I just started brining my chicken! Why has it been 49 years since I ate dry chicken breasts? Because I was confident that I could cook them without becoming too dry, I tend to eat boneless, skinless chicken breasts.

But, now that’s all changed! My protein cooking skills have improved by 10,000 since I started my culinary program!

I now commit to always preparing containers of chicken, freshly cooked and brined.

The Basic Steps of Brining Chicken Breasts or Tenderloins

  • Combine water, sugar, and salt. I use 2 cups water, 1/4 c sugar, and 1/4 c salt for 1 lb. You can brine whole birds (such as turkeys or whole chickens) with 20 parts water to one part salt and one part sugar.
  • First, heat the sugar and salt in water until they dissolve.
  • You can add any herbs to your chicken, including peppercorns, rosemary, garlic, and lemon.
  • Let the water cool completely before removing it from the heat source.
  • Place your chicken breasts in a sealed container.
  • Let soak (or brine) for at least 24 hours.
  • In a heated skillet, heat the brined chicken with butter or oil.
process shots for brining a chicken breast

How many calories are added for brined chicken?

So you made a brine of salt, sugar, herbs and are now on a low sugar/low carb/low sodium diet. But how much of the brine actually gets into your chicken?

Well, it isn’t that much. In fact, I weighed both the chicken before and after brining. Here’s what I found:

  • My chicken weighs 16.7 ounces before it is brined
  • My chicken’s post-brine weight is 19.8 ounces
  • The brine alone has the following calories and macros:
    • 200 calories,
    • 52 g carbs
    • 28,318mg sodium.
  • After -brine, the macros and calories that ended in the chicken were
    • 4 calories per 12 ounce (66 calories for the entire pound).
    • 1 g carb per ounce
    • 36 mg sodium per ounce.

To make things more complicated, the POST cooking weight for the chicken when it was cooked in a skillet was 17.8 ounces. We lost 2 ounces of chicken in the cooking process. The cooked weight of the chicken was:

  • 1 ounce un-brined, raw chicken =27.5 calories/0g carbs/11.25mg salt for the chicken
  • After adding the brine, 1 ounce of chicken contains 31.5 calories/1g carb/46.25m sodium
  • A 4 ounce portion of raw chicken has 126 calories and 4 g carbs/185 mg sodium
  • After cooking, a cooked 3.5 ounce chicken breast would yield the same results as a cooked 4 ounce chicken breast.

In a nutshell: For a 3.5-ounce piece brined chicken, expect it to have about 126 calories, 4g carbs, 185 mg sodium, and approximately 3.5 oz of meat.!

Classic chicken brine recipe for the juiciest chicken breasts
  • 2 Cups water
  • 1/4 Cup Salt
  • 1/4 Cup Sugar
  • 1 sprig Thyme
  • 1 sprig rosemary
  • 1 Slice Lemon
  • 1 clove Garlic
  • Combine all ingredients in a small saucepan. Heat until sugar and salt are dissolved.

  • Remove from heat and allow to cool completely.

  • To cover 1 lb of chicken breasts or tenderloins, pour the brine into a container.

  • Let the chicken rest for 24 hours, then heat up a skillet on medium-high heat until it is cooked.

Serving: 1Recipe | Calories: 200Cal | Carbohydrates: 52g | Protein: 0.3g | Fat: 0.2g | Saturated Fat 0.01g | Polyunsaturated Fat 0.03g | Sodium: 28318mg | Potassium: 36mg | Fiber: 0.4g | Sugar: 50g | Vitamin A: 52IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 45mg | Iron: 1mg

Classic chicken brine for the juiciest chicken

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