Spatchcock Chicken marinaded in Paprika, Thyme and Yogurt

   spatchcock chicken on cutting board with fried potatoes

What is spatchcock chicken?

‘Spatchcock’ is just a funny word for butterflied. What is butterflied? Well, in this case of using a whole chicken, you basically just cut the whole bird down its backbone and flatten it.  This will allow it to cook evenly and uniformly on a grill or any other kind of flat surface.

 

Why would I spatchcock chicken?

There are several advantages to cooking a spatchcock chicken.

For one thing, it’s faster.  I found that this method of cooking takes 1/3 less time to cook than it normally does with a whole bird.  Instead of roasting it for 90 minutes, I only cook it in the oven for 60.   It also has more of a chance to cook evenly since everything is laid flat and exposed equally to the heat.  No more dry chicken breasts for you!

Did I mention all that extra crispy skin? Crispy chicken skin fires up all the pleasure centers in my brain like fireworks with its utter deliciousness.  So why not maximize the crispy skin potential by cooking everything skin side up and not simmering away in the juices beneath.

Lastly, it is GREAT for grilling! You don’t need to fumble with a whole bird on a hot grill.  Let’s face it, a slippery whole chicken on a grill sounds like a safety hazard. Best to just lay it flat on the grill and let the BBQ heat work its magic.  Who doesn’t love a whole chicken slowly grilled over smoke and fire?

 

 

spatchcock chicken leg with fried potatoes

 

Tell me more about that marinade…

I must say…this marinade is a work of culinary genius.  The yogurt tenderizes, the salt and sugar cure the meat providing flavor and further aiding in keeping everything nice and juicy and the lemon, thyme, paprika and garlic are a match made in mouth heaven.  I’m tempted to put it on all things poultry.

 

 

 

yogurt marinade in bowl with spoon
In a small bowl, mix together yogurt, garlic, lemon zest, chopped thyme leaves, paprika, salt and sugar.

 

whole chicken marinating in yogurt marinade
To prep the chicken, remove the giblet and spread yogurt marinade all over the whole chicken including the inside cavity. Place in a large ziplock bag or covered container and refrigerate for 6 hours to overnight.

 

 

raw spatchcock chicken marinated in yogurt on roasting tray
Place chicken breasts up and locate the backbone at the bottom, next to the chopping board surface. Using a sharp knife or scissors, cut down one side of the spine into the rib bones until the chicken carcass is no longer connected. You can continue on the other side to remove the backbone entirely or leave it in. It’s up to you. Flip the bird over, breasts up and flatten the chicken by pressing down on the breastbone. Place two skewers criss-cross into the thighs and through the breast.

 

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Paprika, Thyme and Yogurt Marinated Spatchcock Chicken


  • Author: Spicepaw
  • Prep Time: 6 hours
  • Cook Time: 1 hour
  • Total Time: 7 hours
  • Yield: Serves 3-4 1x

Description

This spatchcock chicken marinated in yogurt, garlic and spices then roasted in the oven to juicy perfection.  It’s finger licking good!  #chicken #spatchcock #butterflied #yogurt #paprika


Ingredients

Scale

1 whole chicken (about 12 kg/ 24.5 lbs)

1 tbsp sea salt

1 tbsp sugar

1 tbsp ground sweet paprika

1/2 tbsp fresh thyme leaves (chopped)

34 cloves of garlic (minced or grated)

6 tbsp unsweetened plain yogurt

1/2 tbsp grated lemon zest


Instructions

In a small bowl, mix together yogurt, garlic, lemon zest, chopped thyme leaves, paprika, salt and sugar.

To prep the chicken, remove the giblet and spread yogurt marinade all over the whole chicken including the inside cavity.  Place in a large ziplock bag or covered container and refrigerate for 6 hours-overnight.

When ready to cook, preheat oven to 230 C / 450 F if roasting.  If grilling, make sure the grill is nice and hot.

Place chicken breasts up and locate the backbone at the bottom, next to the chopping board surface.  Using a sharp knife or scissors, cut down one side of the spine into the rib bones until the chicken carcass is no longer connected.  You can continue on the other side to remove the backbone entirely or leave it in.  It’s up to you.

Flip the bird over, breasts up and flatten the chicken by pressing down on the breastbone.  Place two skewers cross into the thighs and through the breast.

Roast it in the oven for 40-60 mins on 230 C / 450 F or until internal temperature reaches 75 C / 165 F.  If you are grilling it, cook 15-25 minutes on each side (this will depend on how good your grill is) or until internal temperature reaches 75 C / 165 F.

Notes

If you are using wooden skewers, soak them in water for 5-10 minutes before putting into the chicken.  This will prevent them from going up in flames.

  • Category: Main, Chicken
  • Method: grilling, roasting
  • Cuisine: Western

Keywords: chicken, spatchcock, yogurt, paprika, garlic, thyme

 

 

spatchcock chicken on cutting board with fried potatoes, corn and green beans

 

More finger-licking chicken recipes:

Dinner in a Hurry Spicy Chicken Fajitas

No Cream Chicken Tikka Masala

The Perfect Roast Chicken

 

 

Author: Natasha

I'm just a busy expat mom who has a psychological need to feed people. I enjoy learning about new cultures, (especially the food) and enjoy experimenting with new ingredients and spices

5 thoughts

    1. Good question, Rhonda. 👍 There is no difference in outcome. I just find it easier to marinate it whole then spatchcock it as it takes up less fridge space for me when it marinates. Anyway, hope you give it a try either way. We love this recipe!

  1. Tried it tonight. So juicy and tender . I did spatchcock it before applying the marinade. Flavorful and moist. Excellent!

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