Delicious outdoor chicken – beyond the tent

Delicious outdoor chicken – beyond the tent

This chicken swamp recipe is great for outdoor cooking. It makes for a very strong, delicious meal that’s easy to prepare and is one of my favorite recipes from the South at home.

The first time I met swamp chicken was when I was 12 years old! My family moved to South Carolina and my father’s job was to help out with a charity event for a local church where he helped us make a huge bog and sell paintings. I was commissioned to cut the sausage. I fell in love with swamp chicken this day!

They cooked the giant swamp in a propane boiler or an outdoor turkey fryer. It’s the same pot we use at Lowcountry Boil and the way I recommend cooking swamp chicken if you need to feed a very large crowd, such as a family gathering! There are many different ways to cook a good swamp. Basically, if you can boil water, you can cook swamp chicken.

My husband was born and raised in South Carolina and grew up cooking this Southern favorite! When cooking in an outdoor swamp, a tripod is usually used with a Dutch oven suspended over an open fire.

Unfortunately we’re not camping at the moment and will be making rusk chicken on my gas stove in my house, while pretending we’re in the mountains! Imagine my Dutch oven hanging over an open fire or over a camping stove or grill, while I was surrounded by nature with me!

Ingredients you will need


For convenience, I will be using 2 pounds of boneless, skinless chicken thighs for this recipe. This way, when the chicken is cooked through, all you have to do is chop it up. I also made this recipe with a whole 3-pound chicken or chicken thigh quarters. Keep in mind that the bones add weight and you will need to remove the bones when cutting the chicken.

When camping to make it easier, I recommend using boneless, skinless chicken thighs. It’s cheap and easy to store in the cooler.

Kielsa or smoked sausage

I’m going to be using a Hillshire Farms Kielbasa ring today, because that’s what I have. You can also use smoked sausage. I highly recommend smoked sausage or the airtight ring form of kielbasa as they are very compact and easy to store in the cooler.

Prepare sausages or kielbasa and marinated chicken thighs.

an onion

For this recipe, you will need a sweet onion. I like to use sweet Vidalia onions, but any onion will really do. You will need to prepare the onions by washing them and then cutting them into cubes.


I’ll be using 2 jalapeños in this recipe, but I love the spice! You can adjust to use just one jalapeño or even remove it entirely depending on your preferred level of seasoning, but it does add great flavor and heat to the swamp.

Bring chopped onions and jalapeno.


This is optional but also adds great flavor. I use 4 crushed garlic cloves when making this recipe.


For Southern Chicken Swamp, of course you need butter. I use 1/2 cup or 1 piece of butter in this recipe.

White rice

It wouldn’t be a chicken swamp without rice. Use only uncooked white rice for this recipe.


You can mix and match the spices you want. When camping, you may not have access to a large variety and you can make a huge chicken swamp with just salt and pepper . Since I pretend to be camping and at home, I have the luxury of access to my pantry, so I’ll list what I use.

Chicken stock cubes, Kinder “The Blend” seasoning, red pepper flakes, ground cayenne pepper and whole badia spices.

How to make a delicious outdoor chicken swamp

Begin by heating the oven or Dutch pan over a medium heat.

Let the chicken dry and season with the whole Badia seasoning and Kinder “Mix” seasoning. You can also season it with salt and pepper, but be sure to season the chicken with something!

Add 1/2 teaspoon olive oil to the Dutch oven. Next, add the onions and jalapenos and fry for 2-3 minutes.

Cook onions and jalapenos.

Add butter and garlic. Once the butter is completely melted, add the sausage and chicken to the saucepan. Gently stir and cook for 1-2 minutes.

Next, pour in 8 cups of water and add chicken stock cubes if using. If you have limited ingredients, swamp chicken only tastes great, but the broth cubes add to the flavor. Next, add ground red pepper, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper to taste.

Add the water and seasonings to the saucepan with the chicken marinade ingredients.

Bring the water to a boil, then cover and simmer over low heat for 40 minutes.

Remove chicken from pot and chop when cool enough to handle. It should practically collapse. I took two chicken forks to chop it up a bit better, but my husband used a wooden spoon to start with and the chicken fell seriously flat! Set the chicken aside and cover to keep it warm.

Add the rice to the saucepan and boil for 10 minutes, then reduce the heat, cover and simmer for an additional 10 minutes or until the rice is cooked.

Boil rice with chicken marinade ingredients.

Then add the shredded chicken to the pot and stir gently. I usually rub the rice with a big fork at this point too!

Marinated chicken is ready to serve.

And it is ready to serve! I hope you enjoy!

Delicious outdoor chicken swamp pot.


  • 2 lbs of boneless, skinless chicken thighs, seasoned with whole badia spices and kinders the blend seasoning. (Two tablespoons of each). Rub the spices evenly over the chicken.
  • 1 pound smoked sausage or kielbasa, cut into inch pieces
  • 1 large onion cut into cubes
  • 8 cups of water
  • 1-2 hot peppers cut into cubes.
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • ½ cup butter (1 piece)
  • 2 cubes chicken broth
  • cayenne to taste (I added half a tablespoon)
  • Red pepper flakes to taste (I added ½ tablespoon)
  • 3 cups white rice


Heat a Dutch oven or pot over a medium heat or over an open heat or grill over a high heat.

Allow chicken to dry and season with Al Badia and Kinders Seasoning, and rub all over.

Add half a tablespoon of olive oil

Add onion and jalapeno and cook for 2-3 minutes.

Then add butter and garlic.

Once the butter has melted, add the sausage and chicken.

Stir while it simmers for about a minute.

Then pour water and add chicken stock cubes.

Add red pepper flakes, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper to taste. Bring the water to a boil, then cover and simmer over low heat for 40 minutes.

Remove chicken from pot and chop
chicken when cool enough to handle.

Meanwhile, add rice to saucepan and boil for 10 minutes, then reduce heat, cover and simmer for an additional 10 minutes or until rice is cooked. Then add the shredded chicken. I usually stir the rice with a large fork. And enjoy!


Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator or an ice box for up to 4 days.

Marinade chicken actually tastes better the second day as all the spices continue to enhance the flavour!


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