Can I use an acidic marinade overnight on a whole roast chicken?
April 28, 2012 2:46 PM   Subscribe

Can I marinate (and use a flavor injector to insert marinade into) a whole chicken using this recipe late tonight and then cook the chicken tomorrow night? How long can I marinate a whole chicken with this recipe until I run into problems?

I've heard that marinating chicken too long will cause problems because the acidic marinade will "cook" or in some way alter the texture of the meat unfavorably.

I can't seem to find a reliable source to say if this is true or not. Some people say marinading a whole chicken overnight (and a little into the next day) is just fine.
posted by skjønn to Food & Drink (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I can't speak to your main question but on the issue of effective timely marinading I have found that if you let a frozen chicken breast thaw in marinade it seems to sponge it up. It's really awesome, even with something as simple as say orange juice.
posted by XMLicious at 2:53 PM on April 28, 2012

The acidic marinade thing is only a problem if you're using an acidic marinade. That marinade is, at most, about 1/4 acid, so i wouldn't worry about it. Marinating a chicken overnight in that marinade will be fine.
posted by Kololo at 3:10 PM on April 28, 2012

After a few hours you'll get some breakdown and softening. Whether that'll be enough to overly soften the flesh and bother you depends on the person. I've never noticed an issue and it'll probably depend a lot on whether it's skin-on and how you cook it. If you use a method that does a lot of crisping it'll be less noticeable I think.
posted by phearlez at 3:35 PM on April 28, 2012

Not to be That Guy™, but the post containing that recipe says, "…marinade half a day or even overnight before roasting according to your usual degree and time preferences," in the first paragraph.
posted by ob1quixote at 4:23 PM on April 28, 2012

I've marinated a chicken in an almost-entirely-lime-juice-based marinade for 24 hours with no big problems; any longer and the meat becomes rubbery. With your timeframe and acid content, you should be fine.
posted by Greg Nog at 4:52 PM on April 28, 2012

I've made roast chickens that sat overnight in brine, buttermilk, semi-acidic, or acidic marinades; none were bitter, rubbery, or overly soft. Just keep it between 4 and 24 hours and you should be good.
posted by zombieflanders at 8:17 AM on April 29, 2012

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