Spatchcocked (Butterflied) Roast Chicken Recipe

6 servings


1 hour 5 minutes

total time


1 large chicken, about 4 to 5 pounds (1.8 to 2.3kg)

2 tablespoons (30ml) light olive oil or other neutral-flavored oil, such as canola or vegetable, divided

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper (see note)

1 teaspoon (5g) baking powder (optional; see note)

2 teaspoons (10g) chopped fresh parsley, thyme, rosemary, oregano, marjoram, savory, or a mix (optional)

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


Place oven rack in upper-middle position and preheat oven to 450°F (232°C). Using sharp kitchen shears, remove backbone from chicken and cut spine into 5 to 6 one-inch-long pieces. Set backbone aside. Flatten chicken by placing skin side up on a cutting board and applying firm pressure to breastbone. Transfer to a wire rack set in a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet. Position chicken so that breasts are aligned with center of baking sheet and legs are close to edge.

If using herbs: using your fingers and starting from the neck end and working your way down towards the legs, gently separate chicken skin from the breast and thigh meat; be careful not to tear the skin. Carefully push the herbs under the skin, distributing them as evenly as possible all over the breast and thigh muscle.

Combine 1 tablespoon (15g) kosher salt, 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper, and 1 teaspoon (5g) baking powder (if using) in a small bowl. Sprinkle all over chicken skin and cavity sides, then return to skin-up position. Drizzle chicken skin with 1 tablespoon (15ml) oil, rubbing to distribute evenly.

Roast chicken until thickest part of breast close to bone registers 150°F (66°C) on an instant-read thermometer and joint between thighs and body registers at least 175°F (80°C), about 45 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat remaining 1 tablespoon (15ml) oil in a small saucepan over high heat until shimmering. Add chicken backbone and cook, stirring frequently, until well browned, about 3 minutes. Add onion, carrot, and celery and cook, stirring frequently, until beginning to brown, about 3 minutes. Add bay leaf and deglaze with vermouth or sherry and 1 cup (240ml) water, using a wooden spoon to scrape up any browned bits from bottom of pan. Reduce heat to maintain simmer and cook for 20 minutes. Strain out solids and return liquid to pan. Boil over medium-high heat until approximately 1/3 cup (80ml) remains, about 7 minutes. Whisk in soy sauce, butter, and lemon juice off heat. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Remove chicken from oven, transfer to cutting board, tent loosely with foil, and allow to rest 5 minutes before carving. Serve with hot jus.


I usually roast over veg, and don’t make the sauce


Serving Size

Serves 4 to 6


658 kcal

Total Fat

49 g

Saturated Fat

15 g

Unsaturated Fat

0 g

Trans Fat



230 mg


941 mg

Total Carbohydrate

4 g

Dietary Fiber

1 g

Total Sugars

1 g


43 g

6 servings


1 hour 5 minutes

total time
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