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necessary to remove chicken giblets?

Planning to bbq a whole chicken this wknd, and virtually every recipe says to remove the giblets. Why is this? I love the giblets - they're one of my favourite parts!

I found this article, but it doesn't really provide any insight:


Does anyone know the downsides of cooking the chicken with the giblets inside? I've always done it this way and as far as I can tell there were no problems.

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  1. some just don't like 'em and assume nobody else will either (fools), some prefer to use them in gravy. do as you like as long as the bag isn't plastic.

    2 Replies
    1. re: hill food

      thanks, what bag are you referring to? The giblets are in the chicken.

      1. re: spacediver

        sometimes the giblets are inside the cavity wrapped in plastic bags.

    2. Giblets are a mix of densities and textures that tend to fare better when cooked outside the chicken, IMO.

      7 Replies
      1. re: DuchessNukem

        I see - so the risk is that they'll be over done if cooked inside the chicken?

        1. re: spacediver

          I'd consider that the liver might become fragile and fall apart, rather than maintain a smooth, buttery/fatty texture; the crop and heart could become tough and chewy.

          If you're enjoying cooking them this way already, then maybe there's no issue for you. Have you tried them cooked any other way?

          The "bag" hill food mentions is often paper, sometimes plastic, and contains the innards and is stuffed into the bird in many US chickens. One is supposed to remove it before cooking and use the organs as desired (many just toss the goodies).

          1. re: DuchessNukem

            thanks Duchess - yeah, I'm so used to the 'sanitized' poultry what with the bags and no heads or feet, I sort of forget when I get an intact one.

            I too would cook them separate just cause I like them 'just so'

            1. re: DuchessNukem

              thanks for the great reply. As far as I can tell, the giblets in all the chickens I've bought are attached to the chicken the same way that all the other parts are - i.e. as part of an intact bird as hill food mentions.

              Gonna try leaving them in and seeing what happens - will report back either way :)

              1. re: spacediver

                leave them in this time, next time skewer them and cook to the side as this isn't your last meal after all (or IS it?) time after that saute in a pan with butter and white wine.

                I'm just happy to see somebody else who doesn't just toss those jumbly bits.

                1. re: spacediver

                  If the giblets are still attached, you need to follow these instructions:


          2. I 'beer can' my bird on my Green Egg, so no room in the cavity for the offal. However, I chop the innards up, add six oysters, a cup of fresh sourdough, a handful of fresh herbs, sea salt, ground Tellicherry and lots of cultured butter and put all this in foil as I cook the bird. Yum!

            1. ahh! we got moved over to Home Cooking, I was waiting. it feels better here.

              TorontoT - I may have to play with that soon.

              1. Doesn't the presence of the giblets affect the taste of the breast and thigh meat? Not a giblet lover here, so I don't mean that in a good way.

                1. Not sure on my response?? Several years ago, on a ski week in New England with friends. We'd hit supermarket and make a few BIG buys and then pick at ehm during week. Friend was PUFFED up that he could cook a turkey. I said at maybe 250, we could just go skiing and come back to a nice meal. I got back to condo first and place smelled GREAT!! I pulled bird out... legs were almost pulling off... so knew it was done. Saw funny "bulge" in neck end... was papr bag of the "goodies"... neck, liver, gizzards. I cut them out and put them on stove to simmer. Was heading home next day and knew dogs would enjoy.

                  Didn't have any effect on outcome of birf.

                  1. The chicken will be cooked long before the giblets will. Remove them and cook them separately. You have to remove the bag anyway.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: zeldaz51

                      Read upthread. The OP is getting birds with the organs still attached as they were in life - not in a bag.

                      1. re: greygarious

                        Where's a snare drum when a thread desperately needs a rim shot?

                        "...what did you stuff it with?"
                        "I didn't stuff it with anything, it wasn't hollow."

                    2. So picked up the last whole bird they had at rowe farms, and was told that the giblets had all been removed :(

                      I could have sworn there was some liver in there though after cooking it, though.

                      Gonna try healthy butcher next time and see what happens. Really appreciate the discussion!

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: spacediver

                        yes, chicken that's been raised outside and walking around as chickens were intended to be raised tend to have a somewhat livery/gamier flavor.

                        I love this, but not all do.

                        1. re: spacediver

                          Did this bird have a hollow cavity, one that you could put your hand in from the rear? And a shallower cavity at the front (where the head was attached)? If so then this bird was gutted. Usually (in the USA) an animal is gutted immediately upon slaughter.

                          Giblets are just part of the guts, the internal organs of the bird. In USA practice, customers are given a heart, gizzard, liver, and neck. Everything else is disposed over in some other way.

                          Looking at the Rowe Farms (Toronto) web site, I don't see any evidence of special chicken slaughter practice, except for the air-chilling. And that in itself is a good indication that the bird was thoroughly gutted. The carcass will chill faster if the cold air freely circulates inside the gut cavity.

                        2. If you love the giblets, I would think you could cook them better in a manner other than having them steam inside the cavity of the chicken.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: John E.

                            I dunno - I'm a simple guy when it comes to food. Generally season with salt and pepper and i just rip into the bird with my fingers and hands and eat it like I would in the wild. I chew the bones and everything.