Spatchcock Roast Chicken

Serves 4 to 6.

Note: Using this technique helps ensure the chicken roasts evenly and completely in less time. It allows the breast and legs to cook at the same level on the pan. From Beth Dooley.

• 1 whole roaster chicken (about 5 to 6 lb.)

• 1 stick unsalted butter (4 oz.), softened

• 1/4 c. chopped fresh parsley, plus 6 sprigs fresh parsley (leave intact)

• 2 tsp. chopped fresh thyme

• Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

• 6 garlic cloves, unpeeled

• 1 lemon, cut in half

• 1 c. white wine


Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Rinse the chicken and pat dry. Place the chicken breast-side down on a cutting board. Using a poultry shears, cut along both sides of the backbone, and remove the backbone (save it to make stock later). Turn the chicken breast side up, and open the underside of the chicken like a book. Press firmly against the breastbone until it cracks.

Place the chicken in a roasting pan. Gently lift the skin around the breast and rub in half of the softened butter and the chopped parsley and thyme. Rub the remaining butter over all the exterior of the chicken. Season the chicken with salt and pepper.

Tuck the garlic cloves under the chicken and lay the 6 parsley sprigs over the chicken. Squeeze half of the lemon over the chicken. Add the wine to the roasting pan.

Roast the chicken in the hot oven for 20 minutes. Baste the chicken with the pan juices. Reduce the heat to 325 degrees and continue roasting, basting every 15 minutes, until the thigh wiggles easily, the juices run clear, and a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest portion registers 165 degrees, about 35 to 50 minutes. Drizzle the remaining fresh lemon juice over the chicken and allow to stand 5 to 10 minutes before carving.

Nutrition information per each of 6 servings:

Calories 545

Fat 38 g

Sodium 140 mg

Carbohydrates 2 g

Saturated fat 16 g

Added sugars 0 g

Protein 45 g

Cholesterol 185 mg

Dietary fiber 0 g

Exchanges per serving: 6 ½ medium-fat protein, 1 fat.