Spatchcocked Chicken on Bread With Herbs and Lemon

Spatchcocking a chicken means scissoring it down the back (we leave the meaty backbone attached) and then flattening it. Smear it with butter, season with chunky sea salt, and place it on a platform of bread to absorb the juices for the fastest, easiest no-waste roasted chicken ever. While it's still hot, scatter fresh herbs over it and squeeze on some lemon juice for a fresh sauce that basically makes itself.

  • Prep:
  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 6
Spatchcocked Chicken on Bread With Herbs and Lemon

Photography: Marcus Nilsson

Source: Martha Stewart Living, October 2013


  • 1 whole chicken (3 1/2 to 4 pounds)
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons chunky sea salt
  • 6 slices rustic bread (from about 1/2 loaf), 3/4 inch thick
  • 1 cup fresh Thai or regular basil leaves
  • 1 cup fresh mint leaves
  • 1 lemon, halved


  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Cut chicken along backbone on 1 side with kitchen shears and open it like a book. Turn over and press to lay flat. Slather with 2 tablespoons butter; season all over with salt.

  2. Spread remaining tablespoon butter on 1 side of bread slices. Place side by side, buttered side up, on a parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet and lay chicken on top. Roast until chicken is golden brown and a thermometer inserted into thickest part of breast (do not touch bone) reaches 160 degrees, 30 to 35 minutes.

  3. Remove chicken from oven; let rest on baking sheet 10 minutes. Scatter with herbs; squeeze lemon juice over chicken. Cut chicken and bread into serving pieces; place on a platter. Pour pan juices over chicken and serve.

Cook's Notes

Flavor Swap: Add paprika and minced garlic with the salt. Use sliced potatoes instead of bread.


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