How to stop red chicken

I did chicken thighs and they were so red I struggled to eat them. It wasn’t just red meat at the bone, but the outside of the meat was red in places. I understand this is homoglobin and marrow but yikes! They were cooked from frozen for 2.5 hours at 150 degrees which I understand to be sufficient.

One solution I read is to de-bone the thighs. That is more work than I was looking for. Are there simpler techniques out there?

Thanks, Hugh

Red and/or pink chicken around the bone is natural and perfectly safe in this instance.

Deboning chicken thighs is a really simple process, requiring nothing more than a sharp knife and some observation. Your first one might take you 5 minutes but with practice it’ll take you less time to pop the bone out than it does to put it in the bag.

Of course, the other option is to buy boneless thigh fillets. But they’re usually skinless too here in Australia.

How to stop red chicken? Don’t buy it.
Your boning unwholesome chicken would not alter your discomfort with it if the discolouration is widespread.

I’m fussy so i buy my fresh meat, poultry, and seafood at a store with the old-fashioned glass fronted displays so i can see all sides of what i am buying. Oddly, the prices are generally lower there too.

If you get something unacceptable again, i suggest you take it back to the vendor. If enough people return unwholesome products they will fix the problem as they operate on very thin margins. Store managers don’t want their other customers to see you returning food either.

Most retail poultry sold these days is “tray-pack” product, processed in large factory-like settings operating at a very high output rates where it’s very easy for the people working there to miss a poor quality item. Your chicken should have been tossed into the bin destined for mincing at the plant.

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I did assume they were red after cooking. Not sure there is any way to stop that. Commercial chickens are raised to be at slaughter weight very young. Younger birds are apparently more likely to develop pink or redness around the bones when cooked sous vide.

I suppose one possible solution is to search out meat from heritage breeds which take longer to get to table weight. The plus side of that is that you’d be buying much tastier chicken.

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I checked on this “red chicken” issue with my poultry specialist, a tray-pack facility operator. He says the red flesh is an indication of the animal being under a high degree of stress, or distress, at the time of slaughter. If that’s the case it’s a wonder it isn’t more common.

I buy a lot of naturally-raised poultry and never experience the problem. Also, certified Halal poultry is unlikely to have the problem as is Kosher poultry, but Kosher is ridiculously expensive in my area, about triple market prices.

Apologies for reviving an old topic but I think I’ve solved this one. Our family loves SV fried chicken but the red meat near the bone was putting them off. I was vacuum packing the meat but read that this pulls the red liquid from the bones. Tried it last night by just using the immersion method with freezer bags and no red!

Same taste but no offputting visuals. Result!

Yeah, somehow I really don’t think it has a whole lot of impact. The red doesn’t happen in all chickens, and supposedly has more to do with the handling and age of chicken at dispatch.