How to Spatchcock a ChickenLast updated on 6/08/2018
Cooking a whole chicken can make for a juicier, more satisfying end product. In order to get the meat to cook evenly, you need to cut the chicken so it lays flat. This is a method called spatchcocking, and it's the best method for grilling or roasting a whole bird. To do this, all you need is your bird, your cutting board, a knife or kitchen shears, and these instructions, and you’ll be on your way to spatchcocking a chicken. For other ways to prepare chicken, check out our video on how to debone a chicken.
Step-by-Step Instructions for how to Spatchcock a Chicken
Lay the chicken breast-side down with its legs towards you. Locate the backbone running straight down the middle.
Begin cutting along one side of the backbone down the entire length of the chicken. Do the same on the other side to fully remove the backbone.
- You can discard the backbone or keep it to make delicious homemade chicken stock.
Make a 1/2” slit through the cartilage in front of the keel bone.
Crack open the skin around the keel bone by folding the chicken outward.
- The keel bone is another name for the breastbone and is found at the front of the bird, opposite the backbone.
Remove the keel bone by breaking the delicate skin on either side with your finger and pulling it out.
Flip the chicken over. It should now be pretty flat.
Tuck the wings under the breasts.
Check out our video for a visual guide on how to spatchcock a chicken.