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Chef John's Chicken Under a Brick

Chef John

"You should use a big cast iron pan for this, but it will also work in a high-quality, heavy-duty stainless steel pan, or other oven-proof skillet. The key is to heat it very well before the chicken goes in. Other than that, there's really no way to screw it up, unless you under or overcook it, which won't happen, since you're going to check it with the thermometer."
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1 h 10 m servings 303 cals
Original recipe yields 6 servings (1 whole chicken)

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  1. Use kitchen shears to cut down both sides of the backbone. Remove backbone and discard. Cut through breastbone from the inside until chicken folds out like a book and lays flat.
  2. Season chicken all over with salt and black pepper, and sprinkle herbes de Provence on the inside. Let chicken sit for 20 to 30 minutes at room temperature; pat dry with paper towels. Brush skin-side of chicken with oil and season again with salt and black pepper.
  3. Heat an oven-proof cast iron skillet over high heat until very hot, about 5 minutes. Place chicken, skin-side down, in hot skillet and place bricks evenly on top to weigh down chicken.
  4. Roast chicken in the preheated oven for 25 minutes. Remove bricks, turn chicken over, and continue roasting until juices run clear and meat is no longer pink at the bone, 5 to 15 minutes more. An instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh, near the bone should read 165 degrees F (74 degrees C).
  5. Preheat the oven's broiler and broil the chicken until skin is crispy and golden, 1 to 3 minutes.

Nutrition Facts

Per Serving: 303 calories; 13.3 g fat; 0 g carbohydrates; 43.1 g protein; 132 mg cholesterol; 154 mg sodium. Full nutrition

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Read all reviews 21
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Great instructions for how to cook a spatchcocked bird under clay bricks. There is, however, one crucial piece of info that would appear to have been inadvertently omitted in the written recipe....

I find garden shears, the kind used to cut flowers, the best for cutting through chicken bones/ribs. Hor skillwr necessarty to keep skin from sticking to pan. You can put skillet an grill as wel...

I only ever want to make chicken this way again!!! I seasoned with garlic lemon Rosemary + butter but followed recipe method. Divine!!!!

Instead of bricks, I just use another heavy cast iron skillet for weight, preheating both in a 425 oven until screaming hot. This always turns out perfectly, regardless of which spice mixture ...

Chef John straight up on this one....Chicken stayed moist and skin was crispy, just like this ol' boy likes a word numanum will do again.

What a great idea! It was so different, I just HAD to try it. We live in a condo, so I went to a building centre to buy 2 bricks (good conversation starter). I've always spatchcocked chicken ...

Very good! I will make again. I would like to try it on the outdoor grill.

I learned about spatchcocking - so that's cool. The chicken tastes great too, but not so sure it was worth the effort to basically shorten cooking time slightly and add a crisper skin. Fun 'sho...

First time I've ever cooked a whole chicken. Followed the recipe to a "t" (although as someone else mentioned, you have to watch the video to find out that you need to set the oven to 425 degre...