Late Night Tailgating: Sweet Tea Brined Chicken

Whip up this delicious recipe at your next Steelers’ tailgating party!

This week on “Steelers Late Night,” we’re cooking up Sweet Tea Brined Chicken!

STEELERS LATE NIGHT “Late Night Tailgating Recipes”: Sweet Tea Brined Chicken

COOKING TIME: 1 – 1½ hrs. (Marinate 24 hrs.)
SERVING SIZE: 5-8 people


  • 2 family-size tea bags
  • ½ cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • ¼ cup kosher salt
  • 1 small sweet onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 lemon, thinly sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves, halved
  • 2 (6-inch) fresh rosemary sprigs
  • 1 tbsp. freshly cracked pepper
  • 2 cups ice cubes
  • 1 whole chicken, cut up (3 ½ – 4 pounds)


1. Bring 4 cups water to a boil in a 3-qt. heavy saucepan; add tea bags. Remove from heat; cover and steep 10 minutes.

2. Discard tea bags. Stir in sugar and next 6 ingredients, stirring until sugar dissolves. Cool completely (about 45 minutes); stir in ice. (Mixture should be cold before adding chicken).

3. Place tea mixture and chicken in a large zip-top plastic freezer bag; seal. Place bag in a shallow baking dish and chill 24 hours. Remove chicken from marinade, discarding marinade; pat chicken dry with paper towels.

4. Light one side of grill, heating to 300° to 350° (medium) heat; leave other side unlit. Place chicken skin side down over unlit side. Cover with grill lid and grill for 20 minutes. Turn chicken and grill covered for another 40 to 50 minutes or until done. Transfer chicken, skin side down, to lit side of grill, and grill 2 to 3 minutes or until skin is crispy. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

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Don’t forget to tune into “Steelers Late Night” each Saturday after the 11 p.m. News on KDKA-TV for more recipes!


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