How To Spatchcock A Chicken

Spatchcocking a chicken basically means butterflying it, allowing for juicier meat. No dry chicken breast over here!

Done in 2 hours

Serves 4



for the chicken

1large chicken

Salt and pepper, to taste

2 tbspolive oil

1lemon, zest

for the pan sauce

1chicken backbone, removed when spatchcocking

1onion, roughly chopped

3garlic cloves, roughly chopped

2celery ribs, roughly chopped

1large carrot, roughly chopped

350ml approxwater

Salt and pepper, to taste

Knob unsalted butter

Chicken pan drippings

Wondering how to spatchcock a chicken? How long to spatchcock a chicken for or generally what the hell spatchcocking is? Well, we've got you. Removing the backbone means that the the dark meat is at the same level as the white meat, so everything cooks evenly and it's much quicker. We've gone for a super simple seasoning mix here, so you can add whatever seasonings you like.


Preheat the oven to 215 C.

Cut out the backbone of the chicken with some strong kitchen scissors, and save it for later. Flip over the chicken, and press down on the breast bone until it's flattened.

Transfer the chicken to a roasting tray, rub with olive oil, salt, pepper, and lemon, as well as any other seasonings you like. You can also add lemon slices underneath the chicken to stop it sticking to the tray.

Pop in the oven for 45 minutes to an hour, or until the skin is crispy and the thickest part of the breast and legs reaches 73 C. The juices should run clear.

While the chicken is cooking, get started on your sauce. This is a basic pan sauce recipe, so you can use this method for different meats/flavours. Chop the backbone into more manageable pieces, then brown in a skillet with a splash of oil.

When the backbone is browned, add the vegetables. Once these are browning and fragrant, pour over the water. Season with salt and pepper, and let it simmer until everything is soft, around 20 minutes.

After 20 minutes, strain out all the chicken and vegetables. Reduce the leftover sauce to the thickness of your liking, and finish with a knob of butter. Finish with any pan juices from the chicken.

Slice up your cooked chicken, serve with the pan sauce and your favourite sides. Enjoy!

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Spencer Lengsfield

Spencer Lengsfield

Spencer has been cooking since she got her first Easy-Bake oven at four years old, and began recipe developing professionally whilst completing her Master’s degree in 2020. Born in Los Angeles, she has an inherent love for all things Mexican, Japanese, and Korean, but is also heavily influenced by her family's Louisiana heritage. Spencer loves bright flavours, spice and fusion food. If she were a food, she'd be kimchi - versatile, spicy and funky.

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