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Ultimate Spatchcocked Roast Chicken: Crispy, Juicy, and Perfectly Cooked

Easy and Delicious Spatchcocked Roast Chicken Recipe

Discover the secret to achieving the crispiest skin and most succulent meat in this mouthwatering spatchcocked roast chicken recipe. Say goodbye to dry breast meat and hello to a perfectly cooked bird that will impress your family and guests!

Why Spatchcocking is the Game-Changer for Roast Chicken

Spatchcocking, also known as butterflying, is the ultimate technique for roasting chicken. By removing the backbone and flattening the bird, you’ll achieve even cooking, ensuring that both the breast and leg meat reach their ideal temperatures simultaneously. This method results in juicy breast meat at 150°F (66°C) and tender leg meat at 170°F (77°C), all while creating that irresistible crispy skin we all crave.

The Science Behind Perfect Roast Chicken

Traditional roasting methods often lead to a frustrating dilemma: overcooked breast meat or undercooked legs. Spatchcocking solves this problem by taking advantage of the oven’s heat distribution. The flattened chicken allows the cooler center of the pan to protect the breast meat while exposing the legs to higher heat at the edges. The result? A perfectly cooked chicken that will have your taste buds dancing!

How to Spatchcock Your Chicken Like a Pro

Step 1: Remove the Backbone

Using sturdy poultry shears, cut along both sides of the spine to remove the backbone. Don’t discard it – we’ll use it to make a delicious jus later!

Step 2: Flatten the Bird

Flip the chicken over, skin side up, and press firmly on the breastbone until you hear a satisfying crack. This will ensure your chicken lies flat for even cooking.

Step 3: Tuck Those Wings

To prevent burning, tuck the wing tips behind the breasts. This simple step will protect them from the intense heat of the oven.

Creating a Flavor-Packed Jus

While your chicken roasts to perfection, transform the backbone into a rich, savory jus that will elevate your dish to restaurant-quality status. Here’s how:

  1. Brown the chopped backbone in a saucepan with oil.
  2. Add aromatic vegetables and cook until lightly browned.
  3. Deglaze with vermouth or dry sherry and water, scraping up all the flavorful bits.
  4. Simmer with herbs, then strain and reduce for an intensely flavored sauce.
  5. Finish with a touch of soy sauce, lemon juice, and butter for a silky, umami-rich jus.

Ingredients for Spatchcocked Roast Chicken

  • 1 large chicken, about 4 to 5 pounds (1.8 to 2.3kg)
  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) light olive oil or other neutral-flavored oil, divided
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper (see note)
  • 1 teaspoon (5g) baking powder (optional; for extra-crispy skin)
  • 2 teaspoons (10g) chopped fresh herbs (parsley, thyme, rosemary, oregano, marjoram, or savory)
  • 1 medium onion, roughly chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 1 medium carrot, peeled and roughly chopped (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1 medium rib celery, roughly chopped (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 cup (240ml) dry vermouth or sherry
  • 1 cup (240ml) water
  • 1 teaspoon (5ml) soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons (45g) unsalted butter
  • 2 teaspoons (10ml) juice from 1 lemon

Instructions for the Perfect Spatchcocked Roast Chicken

  1. Preheat your oven to 450°F (232°C) with the rack in the upper-middle position. Prepare your chicken by removing the backbone and flattening it as described earlier. Place it on a wire rack set in a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet, positioning the breasts in the center and legs near the edge.
  2. For an extra flavor boost, gently separate the skin from the meat and distribute fresh herbs evenly under the skin. This step will infuse your chicken with aromatic goodness.
  3. In a small bowl, mix 1 tablespoon (15g) kosher salt, 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper, and 1 teaspoon (5g) baking powder (if using for extra-crispy skin). Sprinkle this mixture all over the chicken, including the cavity. Drizzle 1 tablespoon (15ml) oil over the skin, ensuring even coverage.
  4. Roast the chicken until the thickest part of the breast reaches 150°F (66°C) and the thighs register at least 175°F (80°C), about 45 minutes. The skin should be gloriously golden and crispy.
  5. While the chicken roasts, prepare your jus. Brown the backbone pieces in oil, then add chopped vegetables and cook until they start to brown. Add the bay leaf, deglaze with vermouth or sherry and water, and simmer for 20 minutes. Strain the liquid, reduce it to about 1/3 cup, then whisk in soy sauce, butter, and lemon juice off the heat. Season to taste.
  6. Once the chicken is done, let it rest for 5 minutes before carving. Serve your perfectly roasted spatchcocked chicken with the warm, flavorful jus for a truly memorable meal.

Pro Tips for Chicken Perfection

For ultra-crispy skin, add baking powder to your salt mixture. It’s a game-changing secret that will take your roast chicken to the next level!

If using a salt other than kosher, go by weight rather than volume to ensure proper seasoning.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
658 Calories
49g Fat
4g Carbs
43g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4 to 6
Amount per serving
Calories 658
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 49g 63%
Saturated Fat 15g 76%
Cholesterol 230mg 77%
Sodium 941mg 41%
Total Carbohydrate 4g 2%
Dietary Fiber 1g 2%
Total Sugars 1g
Protein 43g
Vitamin C 10mg 49%
Calcium 86mg 7%
Iron 4mg 22%
Potassium 550mg 12%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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