For a lot of amateur or busy family chefs, chicken is an easy go-to dinner option. Tacos, enchiladas, chicken noodle soup, or even a salad, chicken is a classic centerpiece to a quality meal.
Once you have decided on your choice of meal (which is the hardest part), it is time to prepare your chicken. Not only is boiling chicken faster and easier than roasting or grilling it, but it is also a safer way to ensure your chicken will be juicy without drying out, according to Better Homes & Garden.
Regardless if you have boned or boneless chicken, here is how you can boil your chicken to perfection in a few easy steps.
How to boil chicken
Step 1: Select a Liquid
Based on your overall meal, you can boil your chicken in a variety of ways. Whether you want to boil in water or something more flavorful like chicken broth, there is no wrong answer as long as you have a liquid in the pot.
Step 2: Season up
Place your chicken in a large pot with a tight-fitting lid that has enough liquid to cover the chicken. Add any additional seasonings, such as salt and pepper. This is a good time to add any vegetables or fresh herbs that you want to be included because the boiling water can really bring those savory flavors out, Delish reports.
Step 3: Begin to boil
After the chicken is covered up in your chosen liquid and additional flavors, bring your water to a boil. Cover the pot with your tight-fitting lid, slightly lowering the heat once the water is boiling.
Leave your chicken to simmer in the pot until the internal temperature is 165 degrees Fahrenheit (this can be checked with a meat thermometer). If your chicken seems to need more time, check every 5 minutes and avoid overcooking so the chicken doesn’t become rubbery, according to Delish.
How long to boil chicken?
Ideally, the chicken will be done once it has reached 165 degrees Fahrenheit, according to the U.S. Food Safety and Inspection Service. However, here are a few timing guidelines you can follow if you are unsure, based on chicken type.
It is advised that you thaw the chicken first before boiling it frozen. If able, leave the chicken in a fridge for at least nine hours.
If unable, the U.S. Food Safety and Inspection Service recommends boiling frozen chicken 50% longer in time than already thawed chicken.
Boned, skinned chicken:
Cook for about 30 minutes, or 45 minutes if frozen, according to Better Homes & Garden.
Boneless, skinless chicken:
Cook for about 12 to 15 minutes, or 18 to 22 minutes if frozen, according to Better Homes & Garden.
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