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spatchcock vs. whole chicken and potatoes

BeaumontyBeaumonty Posts: 171
edited 11:43PM in EggHead Forum
I recently did chicken spatchcock style and really liked the consistency and novelty. it certainly seems to be a favorite method of BGE forum users. I am, however, trying to perfect a roast chicken recipe and am going to use a method proposed by Cooks Illustrated that uses a brined whole chicken on a rack that starts at 375* and ends at 450*.

To further complicate matters, I want to use Granpas Grub's method of putting potatoes under the chicken in the drip pan. Is there a reason to prefer spatchcock over whole chicken and do you think it'll interfere with the potatoes below?

Thanks for any input. I'm also wondering if brining for an hour will be enough. That's what Cooks Illustrated recommends.


  • Grandpas GrubGrandpas Grub Posts: 14,226
    Spatchcock, whole or even a lot of parts should matter much at all.

    It will be interesting to hear and see the results of a brining chicken. No idea on the brining time.

    If you are going to use a ramped cook 375° to 450° watch your veggie tray, the upper temperature might be a bit high for the potatoes.

    I have cooked whole and spatchcocked chicken from 225° to 500° dome and if I pull the bird at 165° the chicken has always come out very moist.

    I can see the bring having making some difference but I don't see any advantage of doing a ramp cook of 75° other than to get a little more heat on the skin towards the end of the cook.

    As I said above this will be interesting to see.

  • thirdeyethirdeye Posts: 7,428
    Strength of the brine (along with the size of the bird) will determine the brine time.

    When using a brine base of 6 ounces of salt to 1 gallon of water, I brine whole chickens for 3 or 4 hours if I'm going to be grilling or roasting them. (longer if I'm smoking them) Following brining I give them a good soak in clean water and let them sit in the fridge for an hour or two.

    These are brined and roasted chicks.


    Happy Trails

    Barbecue is not rocket surgery
  • sharhammsharhamm Posts: 255
    An organization that DH belongs to makes the most delicious brined chicken and then they cook it over charcoal briquets.
    Now we have our egg. I don't brine and our chicken is just as moist and even more delicious without the extra work and refrigerator space needed for brining.
  • 2Fategghead2Fategghead Posts: 9,623
    Thirdeye, I have been following your brining techniques here lately and I have been getting some great results. Yesterday I brined wings and they were my best. Thanks for all your help. Tim
  • Jersey DougJersey Doug Posts: 460
    My experience is that it is easier to cook spatchcock chickens so the breast isn't dried out by the time the leg and thigh are thoroughly cooked.

    We almost always have kosher chickens which are brined as part of the kashering process. We're so used to them that it's just the way chicken tastes to us, but others often comment on how good they taste - even when we cook them indoors :)
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