Chicken is such a popular protein to incorporate into your daily diet. You will find there are many parts of a chicken that are used in so many ways. Here is a chicken cuts guide to help you learn new ways to cook your favorite meat.
Chicken is a delicious meat, that really works well on taking on flavors you season it with. From using chicken in casseroles, to salads, or even fry it up. Let’s learn what parts of the chicken are used when it comes to cooking.
Once you learn how to utilize the different parts of the chicken, you can really elevate your cooking even more. There are so many recipes you can use, to really transform your dinners and lunches.
Learn Parts of A Chicken And Common Uses
Here are chicken parts and uses that we enjoy. These will help you quite a bit in learning ways to change up your chicken recipe ideas.
First, the chicken breast is a very popular cut of the chicken. You can buy chicken pre-cooked, raw, skin on, skin-off, etc. Try this chicken shrimp alfredo or learn how to cook Instant Pot Shredded chicken.
You will find that the chicken breast is very lean, and is great for marinating, frying, baking in the oven, and more. Chicken breast filets are popular because they so versatile.
The downfall is chicken breast can become dry if you overcook. Since they are very lean, it can become quite dry.
Next you have the tenderloins. Similar to a breast, but smaller in size. The tenderloin runs on both sides of the breast bone, and is located in the upper part of the chicken. This is a white meat, that you can use for chicken tenders, and other recipes.
Tenders are used often for chicken strips. You will find you can remove the white tendon. Just grab a fork and put tenderloin in between a fork tine. With a paper towel hold the tendon.
Pull down and the tendon will come right out. This will make your meat a lot less chewy when you go to eat it.
Wings are so popular for game day snacking or Friday night pizza and wings. You can find that wings don’t have a ton of meat on them, but they are a bone-in portion of the chicken that really get a popular reputation.
Affordable and popular are what you find in the chickens shin- aka legs, or even known as drumsticks. These are a dark meat piece of chicken that are so cheap to buy. This is great for making fried chicken. I also love these Instant Pot maple chicken legs, they are tender, juicy, and offer a sweet and savory flavor.
Gizzards are not something everyone loves. You will find that some people love a fried gizzard, this is a popular bar food. Gizzards are a muscle that is found in the digestive tract of the chicken.
Juicy tender meat that is the meat from the top of a chicken’s leg. You can buy this as a boneless or bone-in piece. Also the option of skin to skin off. You will find thighs are a dark meat which offer a juicy flavor when cooked.
This is one of the tastiest parts to the whole chicken, is what many will say. You can make tons of recipes with this chicken. Try this Instant Pot Chicken Curry, Honey Soy baked chicken thighs, or a simple baked chicken thighs recipe.
Leg quarters are made up of the drumstick, leg and back of the chicken. These are a larger part of the chicken, which is great for roasting. This leg quarters with mushroom is smothered in a creamy sauce. One of our favorites.
Giblets are a mix of pieces of the chicken. From neck pieces, heart, liver, and gizzards. You will find some use giblets for making a giblet gravy to pair with their chicken, or to pour over mashed potatoes. This is a vintage way to use these parts of the chicken.
Another way to buy chicken is the whole chicken. This is great for cooking up a dinner that you can carve and serve, or you can cut and break down the chicken as you would like.
The whole chicken will have all the pieces mentioned above and more. It is budget friendly, and versatile.
Common Questions Answered
Wings are considered a white meat, just like the chicken breast and tenderloins. Many are surprised things a chicken wing is a dark meat.
Chicken breasts are a white meat. The breast can become a little dry if you overcook it isn’t as forgiving as dark meat.
The tenderloin is found by the breast bone, and it runs on both sides of the chicken. It is a thinner slice of chicken, and is white meat.
Chicken needs to read 165 degrees Fahrenheit internally to fully cooked. You can’t eat chicken undercooked as it can make you very sick. Use a meat thermometer to ensure chicken is fully done.
Cooking chicken varies in cook time as each piece of chicken varies in size. If you are cooking with larger pieces of chicken compared to the recipe you are using, it will need longer to cook. Or say you are using smaller pieces of chicken, you will remove sooner.