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.

Chef John
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Ingredients

6
Original recipe yields 6 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • 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.

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  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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).

  • Preheat the oven's broiler and broil the chicken until skin is crispy and golden, 1 to 3 minutes.

Nutrition Facts

303 calories; 13.3 g total fat; 132 mg cholesterol; 154 mg sodium. 0 g carbohydrates; 43.1 g protein; Full Nutrition

Reviews (31)

Read More Reviews

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 5 stars
04/22/2015
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. Fortunately it was included in the video. The temperature that the oven must be preheated to is 425 degrees. Other than that omission everything else is spot-on. If you're unsure how to spatchcock your bird the video covers that. It's helpful to see a demonstration if you've never done it before. Note that although it's possible to do with a meat cleaver and/or a pair of kitchen shears I'd strongly recommend that you invest in a pair of poultry shears which have the heft and blade to cut through chicken bones easily. Save yourself some frustration and get the right tool for the job. This technique is excellent for roasting as in this recipe or cooking on the grill. The chicken cooks in a fraction of the time. Actually you can even cook your Thanksgiving turkey this way. It's fast easy moist and tender. As you can see once you get those poultry shears you'll make liberal use of them. Read More
(49)
35 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 23
  • 4 star values: 12
  • 3 star values: 0
  • 2 star values: 0
  • 1 star values: 0
Rating: 5 stars
04/22/2015
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. Fortunately it was included in the video. The temperature that the oven must be preheated to is 425 degrees. Other than that omission everything else is spot-on. If you're unsure how to spatchcock your bird the video covers that. It's helpful to see a demonstration if you've never done it before. Note that although it's possible to do with a meat cleaver and/or a pair of kitchen shears I'd strongly recommend that you invest in a pair of poultry shears which have the heft and blade to cut through chicken bones easily. Save yourself some frustration and get the right tool for the job. This technique is excellent for roasting as in this recipe or cooking on the grill. The chicken cooks in a fraction of the time. Actually you can even cook your Thanksgiving turkey this way. It's fast easy moist and tender. As you can see once you get those poultry shears you'll make liberal use of them. Read More
(49)
Rating: 5 stars
04/22/2015
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. Fortunately it was included in the video. The temperature that the oven must be preheated to is 425 degrees. Other than that omission everything else is spot-on. If you're unsure how to spatchcock your bird the video covers that. It's helpful to see a demonstration if you've never done it before. Note that although it's possible to do with a meat cleaver and/or a pair of kitchen shears I'd strongly recommend that you invest in a pair of poultry shears which have the heft and blade to cut through chicken bones easily. Save yourself some frustration and get the right tool for the job. This technique is excellent for roasting as in this recipe or cooking on the grill. The chicken cooks in a fraction of the time. Actually you can even cook your Thanksgiving turkey this way. It's fast easy moist and tender. As you can see once you get those poultry shears you'll make liberal use of them. Read More
(49)
Rating: 5 stars
07/09/2017
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 I rub on the chicken the night before. Read More
(6)
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Rating: 4 stars
05/12/2015
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 well. You can do this as well with a rotissary chicken from the supermarket! The back bone comes out without cutting. And the skin will crisp up in the pan. Read More
(4)
Rating: 5 stars
05/16/2015
I only ever want to make chicken this way again!!! I seasoned with garlic lemon Rosemary butter but followed recipe method. Divine!!!! Read More
(3)
Rating: 5 stars
05/25/2015
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 with a boning knife but I must admit kitchen shears ARE easier. The brick trick worked perfectly though mine was a bit slippery since I placed a sheet of silicone paper between the aluminum foil-wrapped bricks and the chicken (I never cook with/on aluminum). I don't use cast iron anymore (glass cooktop) so I thought I'd use my heavy 14" stainless sauté pan... but it was NOT large enough so I used a shallow enamelled (rectangular) roasting pan lined with more silicone paper and that worked beautifully. If I can find a cast iron pan that is rectangular I would buy it just for this purpose. It was that good! Thanks Chef John!:) Read More
(1)
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Rating: 5 stars
04/16/2018
Excellent!! I made this for company tonight and everyone loved it! No one heard of spatchcock chicken before so it was a great conversation piece (plus I love saying spatchcock:) I have made spatchcock chicken before using a different method; both are fantastic. I love using my cast iron skillet however I did not have bricks so I used another cast iron pan as my weight. Definitely watch the video! I decided to add sliced onion & minced garlic to the skillet prior to roasting the chicken in the oven. While the chicken was resting I quickly made a gravy out of the drippings using 1/4 c chicken broth & 1 Tablespoon of cornstarch. Thank you again Chef John! Read More
(1)
Rating: 5 stars
06/22/2015
Chef John straight up on this one....Chicken stayed moist and skin was crispy just like this ol' boy likes it......in a word numanum will do again. Read More
(1)
Rating: 5 stars
05/31/2017
Absolutely Delicious and worth making over again and again. Bought the clay bricks at HomeDepot for 49 cents each and used my 12 inch cast iron skillet and everything turned out just like the video. The texture and crispy thin skin was perfect. Enjoyed every bite. Read More
(1)
Rating: 4 stars
05/19/2017
Very yummy! Read More