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Spatchcock Question

BarManBeanBarManBean Posts: 129
edited 6:01PM in EggHead Forum
OK, so I've done two spatchcocks now. Both have turned out pretty good as far as moisture/doneness goes. First one I cooked indirect at around 400, second did direct around 350/400. I enjoyed the first a bit better.

My question is: how do i get more flavor into the chicken? I've been dry-rubbing the birds, and the skin is not turning out that great, so not much flavor mingling with the meat. Is brining or marinating the only way?

My plan for future birds is to cook indirect and to figure out when to crank up the temperature so that the meat is done to temperature and there is time for a maillard reaction to occur and crisp up the skin. I'm thinking to get it to around 130 and then open up the vents, but I think there might be some trial and error involved.

Anywho, any advice on cooking whole chickens and getting good flavor is appreciated :cheer:


  • ResQueResQue Posts: 1,045
    Brining works and so does putting the rub under the skin. For a crisper skin, air the bird out in the fridge for at least 24 hours. I cook mine direct at 350-375 up high in the dome. Start skin side down and flip over to finish about halfway through. Hope this helps.
  • 2Fategghead2Fategghead Posts: 9,623

    My success in crispy skin on my spatchcock chickens are as follows.

    I go to the store and buy two whole not frozen and no larger than 3 pound chickens.

    When I get home I spatchcock the birds and remove the keel bone and trim the excess skin and fat.

    I then apply the rub on top of the skin and grill the chickens up high in the dome of my large egg on my adjustable rig with the grid extender on top of it. I have my egg stabilized at 400F direct. I take my chicken out when the leg quarters reach 200F internal. I take what I get in the white meat. The cook usually lasts about 45 minutes. I usually get very crispy skin using this technique and my dark meat is very tasty and flavorful and done. The white meat may be a little on the dry side. I use a sweet rub so the skin gets very dark. We don't like rubbery skin and using the method described above we get nice crispy skin but, if it's not when the dark meat reaches 200F internal I will flip the chickens skin side down on a lower level on the adjustable rig for a short time making sure I don't burn the skin but, crisping it up more.

    Now for added flavor I sometimes make a low sodium flavor brine and refer to thirdeye's site for recipes.

    I let the chicken soak for a few hours before grilling. I take about a quart of water in a pan and add three table spoons of kosher salt and three table spoons of brown sugar and about three table spoons of my favorite rub. I heat this in the pan with the water until the salt and sugar dissolves then I remove the pan from the heat and let the mixture cool. Once the mixture cools I place the chickens in a gallon ziploc bags and add the brine and place in the fridge for up to three hours. I sometimes dilute the brine with water and mix and divide into the bags with chicken in them. This system usually works for me. Have a great cook. ;) Tim

    In this pic I usually place the spatchcock chicken on the grid with the dark meat turned toward the back or the front of the egg making sure the white meat is turned in toward the middle.


    Sorry about this blurry pic it's all I have. :angry:


    Here I am applying a glaze to my cooked chicken. Very tasty. :P

  • Hey Michael, If you stick your fingers underneath the skin and separate it from the breast you can get any flavor directly into the meat. Dry rubs, salt, or sauces. I but an Asian black bean paste under the skin and it comes out great. Also, using a fruit wood like cherry or apple will add a smoke flavor to the meat. J.
  • GriffinGriffin Posts: 7,426
    If you are looking for more flavor, you could also try injecting the bird before cooking it. There are some pre-made ones in the store, like Tony Cachere's, or you could make your own, depending on the flavor you are going for.

    Richardson, Texas

    Griffin's Grub or you can find me on Facebook

    The Supreme Potentate, Sovereign Commander and Sultan of Wings


  • I inject with maple syrup sometimes. Also to get the breasts moist I hit them with a piccard tenderizer then lay some butter on top of the breasts,white meat ends up moister than the dark

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