Deep down in the heart of Alabama, a legendary sauce was born at Big Bob Gibson Bar-B-Q. This mayo-based sauce was simply named “Alabama white sauce,” and is creamy, tangy with a little punch of heat. The flavor profile perfectly lends itself to smoked or grilled chicken. Given this, we thought we’d give it a sous vide twist.
Cue sous vide chicken quarters. As we already know by now, sous vide chicken is simply unbelievable. It is insanely tender and juicy every time, the definition of perfection.
Then you top it with creamy, zesty sauce, and you’ve got yourself the perfect flavor profile.
Save yourself a trip to Alabama and make this sauce at home now.
Time and Temperature
Through loads of experimentation, we’ve found that cooking chicken quarters at 74C/165F for 3 hours is the perfect combo. Cooking the chicken for 3 hours results in extremely tender, juicy chicken that Thomas Keller would be proud of. Also, cooking the chicken at 165F ensures that it is fully cooked to the bone. Just make sure you have a reliable sous vide that accurately regulates the temperature of the bath or your results may vary (check out the Anova or Joule). For other time and temperature options, check out our cooking guide here.
Sous Vide Machine – This one is obvious. To cook sous vide, you’re going to need a device to precisely regulate the temperature of the bath water. The two best sous vide machines in the game right now are the Anova Precision Cooker and the Breville Joule. The main difference between the two is that with the Anova you can control the device both manually and with a mobile device, and with the Joule you can only control the device by using your mobile device. Either way, both sous vide machines are top class and you can’t go wrong with either choice.
12-quart Container – Although you can use a basic stockpot for your sous vide cooking needs, I highly recommend buying a large plastic container. They are inexpensive and spacious, so you won’t have to worry about cooking a big roast in a small pot. I recommend a 12 quart Rubbermaid container, as it is BPA free, sturdy, and large enough for just about anything you will be cooking.
Container Lid – If you are going to buy a plastic container, I highly suggest buying a compatible lid for it. When you sous vide for a long duration, the heat of the water causes evaporation. With a lid, it eliminates a majority of the evaporation so you can cook for 72 hours care-free.
Cast Iron Skillet – If you are looking to take your searing game to the next level, we recommend investing in a cast iron skillet. By using a cast iron in this recipe, you’ll achieve a deep sear on the protein. Cast irons are also extremely handy for searing just about any and all sous vide meat. Lodge offers the best quality and price, which is why it is our favorite cast iron brand.
Check out our full list of recommended gear here.
Sous Vide Chicken Quarters with Alabama White Sauce
Chicken Quarters and Seasonings
- 2-3 lbs chicken quarters
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp pepper
Alabama White Sauce
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 3 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 2 Tbsp extra hot horseradish
- 1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 1 tsp yellow mustard
- 1 tsp fresh ground black pepper
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
Alabama White Sauce
In a bowl, mix together mayonnaise, apple cider vinegar, extra hot horseradish, lemon juice and yellow mustard. Once stirred, add salt, pepper, cayenne pepper and garlic powder and stir again. Put Alabama white sauce in the fridge for an hour to let flavors combine.
Set sous vide machine to 74C/165F.
Place chicken in freezer bag and remove the air through a vacuum sealer or the displacement method. Drop the bag in the bath for three hours.
Remove bag from bath. Take chicken quarters out of the bag, pat dry and season with blend of salt, pepper, cumin, paprika and garlic powder.
Heat a large skillet on high and add oil. Sear for 60 seconds on each side. If you have a grill, preheat on high and sear for 60 seconds on both sides. Remove from pan or grill and place on plate to rest. Serve the chicken quarters with Alabama white sauce and enjoy!