I made a chicken recipe tonight that was really good, but I want MORE flavor in the chicken. It had a rub on the outside made from Chinese five spice, brown sugar, grated ginger, and minced garlic. The cavity of the chicken was stuffed with slices of orange and chunks of ginger. The recipe then called for a mix of orange juice and soy sauce to be poured over the chicken then cooked (covered) with the lid coming off for the last 15 minutes of cook time for the chicken to brown. My first issue is that when I poured the liquid over the chicken (as directed by the recipe, the rub came off and pooled in the bottom of the dish. My second issue is that the flavors were good, but not IN the meat. Any suggestions of how to get the flavor all through the chicken? I'm wondering if I pulled the skin back a bit and put the rub underneath? Pour the soy/orange mix on the bottom? Baste every so often? Inject some of the liquid? Please help. Thanks!


If you're going to use a rub, i'd recommend rubbing it a day or two before cooking and leave it in the fridge. That lets the flavor set in properly. Also brining as mentioned in the previous answer is a great method of getting flavor into the meat. With chicken, however, I find it's best to create a sauce or gravy to serve it with. Getting flavor actually IN to chicken meat as you're asking is pretty hard, so sauce / gravy is the way to go.


Generally speaking, the way to get flavor INTO the meat is through brining in a solution of liquid and salt. Brining does two things well: it yields more moist meat, and seasons (salts) the meat throughout. It's likely not going to infuse your chicken with any of the flavors you use in this recipe; for those, a rub below the skin works better.

Here's a link with some good info: The Quick and Dirty Guide to Brining Chicken or Turkey

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