Spatchcock chilli chicken

This chicken is everything you expect from a grilled chicken. The meat is juicy, and the marinade ensures that the skin is a nice golden brown and sticky. Cutting the chicken first so that it can lie flat ensures that the cooking is much more even. The chicken will also cook faster. So nothing but pluses.

The marinade is very simple to make. Remove the seeds and glands from the red peppers, then throw everything in a blender. That’s it. If you are a tough guy or girl, you can keep them in.

In any case, make sure that you can let the chicken marinate for at least 4 hours. Longer is allowed. If you want to take it easy, just do this the day before. By the way, this marinade is also great as a sauce.

Spatchcocking or butterflying of a chicken is not that difficult. You will need poultry shears to remove the backbone. Also, cut off the wingtips. They are too thin to eat and will only burn. Then turn the chicken over and press it flat. Don’t just throw away the backbone and wingtips. You can make a lovely chicken stock with it.

We like to marinate chicken or meat in a ziplock bag. You need less marinade. Before you close the bag completely, you push the air out. This will cause the marinade in the bag to get closer to the chicken all over.

We first let the chicken come to temperature indirectly. With the grill temperature below 160°C (320F) so that the sugars in the marinade do not burn. The chicken lies with the breast up and the legs wide. This protects the fillets, and the legs receive the most heat. If you have the chicken in a 2-zone kettle grill, place the chicken on the cooler side with the legs facing the direct zone.

We want that because the legs and wings are allowed to cook up to 85°C (185F). Then you won’t find any of those chewy bits anywhere. So insert a thermometer into the breast meat and close the lid. Go do something else for 45 minutes. Read a book, go walk the dog, take a nap. See for yourself.

When the breast has reached a core temperature of 60°C (140F), we fire up the barbecue or put the chicken over the direct heat. Then you must keep a close eye on the chicken and turn regularly. It would be such a shame if everything burned.

During the last minute of grilling, coat the chicken one more time with the marinade/sauce. This way, you get a nice shiny chicken that looks great.


  • 1 whole chicken
  • 50 ml of water
  • 150 grams of honey
  • 2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 8 red peppers
  • 1 tsp coarse salt
  • 1 tsp chopped ginger


  1. Cut the red peppers in half. Then remove the seeds and glands. Add the chillies, garlic, salt and ginger to a blender and chop everything fine. Then add the honey, vinegar and water and mix again briefly.
  2. Lay the chicken breast down and cut the backbone out with poultry shears. Also, remove the wingtips. Place the chicken breast up and flatten the chicken.
  3. Marinate the chicken in half of the marinade for at least 4 hours to overnight.
  4. Prepare a barbecue with 2 zones and a kettle temperature of 120 to 150°C (248 to 302F). Place the chicken breast up and legs wide and close the lid until the chicken has a core temperature of 60°C (140F).
  5. Place the chicken over the direct side and grill the chicken on both sides until the legs have a core temperature of 85°C (185F). For the last minute, brush the chicken with some of the marinade.
  6. Then let the chicken rest for 10 minutes and serve with the rest of the marinade/sauce.

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