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Grilled Spatchcock Chicken

June 9, 2017
grilled spatchcock chicken

Grilled chicken tastes wonderful, particularly when you char-crisp the skin. It has a satisfying flavor and it’s great not to heat up the kitchen in the summer. Rotisserie chicken is tasty, too and you benefit from the whole chicken’s juices. But grilling a whole chicken — rather than oven roasting or spiking it on a rotisserie  — that is something entirely different. It’s easy to do, once you know how to spatchcock the chicken.

The method is simple and quick: using sharp kitchen shears cut the belly of the bird so it’s splayed. Using a sharp knife, turn the bird over skin side down and remove the backbone. Because the bird has more area for the heat to access, grilling is an effective way to prepare it.

grilled spatchcock chicken

Spatchcocking a chicken is easier than you might think. All it means is to remove the backbone, leaving the chicken splayed with more area for the heat of the grill to reach, allowing for even cooking.

Now you’re ready to proceed with the rest of the recipe!

Grilled Spatchcock Chicken Recipe

1 or 2 whole chickens, cleaned and spatchcocked per above directions

Rub mixture composed of:

1 T coarse, Kosher salt

2 – 3 garlic cloves, peeled and minced

1/4 white onion, minced

1 tsp cumin

1 tsp oregano

1/2 tsp dried cilantro

1/4 tsp black pepper

Note: pressed for time? There are great grilling rubs everywhere. Pick your favorite and rub away!

3 T olive oil

Place chickens on wire baking racks on baking sheet.

Sprinkle rub ingredients over chickens. Drizzle with oil. Rub into skin. Let sit at room temperature for an hour or refrigerate for up to 4 hours.

Heat grill to 350°F. Oil grill grates to prevent skin from sticking.

Place chicken breast side down and grill for 15 minutes.

Flip and grill for 30 minutes.

Flip again and continue to grill until internal temperature reaches 165°F when measured with a meat thermometer and the skin is crisped.

Remove chickens to clean plate and cover loosely with tin foil. Allow chicken to rest for 10 minutes before serving.

Serves 4 – 6.

Shown here served with Tomato-Avocado Salad and couscous.

grilled spatchcock chicken

Grilling a whole chicken takes the heat out of the kitchen during the summer. Shown here with a quick tomato-avocado salad and couscous for an easy meal.

Left Coast Cellars White Pinot NoirOn Stephanie Davis’ recent trip to northern Arizona she met up with fellow wine educator Kate LeNormand at Raven Cafe for a glass of vino. They ordered the staff favorite, Left Hand Cellars White Pinot Noir, and celebrated their outstanding choice. Stephanie says the wine has less color than a rosé but is full of perfume, richness and juicy, summer fruit notes. It’s a wine for nearly any dish and will be absolutely stunning with grilled chicken. ($24).

Award-winning author Emily Kemme writes about human nature, illuminating the everyday in a way that highlights its brilliance. Follow her on her blog, Feeding the Famished,, or on Twitter @EmFeedsYou . Life inspired. Vodka tempered.

Interested in Drinking the Knock Water: A New Age Pilgrimage? Find it on Amazon and in Indie bookstores.

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