Monday, October 13, 2014

Spatchcock Chicken w/ Compound Butter

So far, our Wolverines are struggling to get going and it's kinda leaving a bad taste in my mouth. We were able to pull out a win against Penn State, so things are looking up. I want to get some of that bad taste outta my mouth from a 3-4 start and I can't think of a better way than with a super juicy "Spatchcock" smoked chicken. This is my "GO TO" chicken recipe when I need to feed a group of hungry tailgating Wolverines and feed em rather quickly.  While I love a good Beer Can Chicken or a bird thats been brined overnight, this butterflied clucker could be the juiciest yet. The compound butter adds great flavor and keeps things extremely moist. I decided to try Juniors Rub Grub on this bird and it is delish! Give it a try. I will be doing a review on this rub shortly. It's a WINNER!

  • 3-4 LB Whole Chicken Fryer
  • BBQ rub of your choice. I went with Juniors Rub Grub
Compound Butter: Mix Together and set aside. 
  • 1 stick of butter (Room Temperature)
  • 1/4 cup of your favorite BBQ Rub


Preheat grill or smoker to 275-300 degrees and add some pecan wood chunks.  If you are using a gas or charcoal grill, set it up for indirect heat. While the smoker is heating up, its time to butterfly the yardbird.  Start by removing the backbone with a sharp knife or set of kitchen shears.  Once the backbone is removed, turn it over (Bone side down) and press down with 2 hands. HARD. We want it to flatten out a little. 

Once the bird is laying flat (breast side up), loosen the skin by sticking your fingers or a small spatula in between the skin and meat. Make sure you do not rip the skin. Once the skin is loosened, we can mix up our compound butter. I know a full stick of butter seems like a lot, but we will lose a lot of it during the cooking process.  Spoon in the butter and spread evenly with your fingers.

Once this is done, sprinkle to entire outside of the bird with your favorite BBQ rub. Don't be shy, sprinkle liberally. Place on a hot smoker and kick back for an hour. 

I let the bird smoke for about an hour before checking the internal temp with my instant read thermometer. We are looking for an internal temperature of 165 degrees and some crispy skin on the exterior. The higher grill temp of 275 - 300 degrees will help crisp things up. After about an hour, your bird will start to darken. This is a beautiful thing. 

Once we have reached 165 internally, it's time to pull the bird from the smoker and let it rest. If you would like to add some of your favorite BBQ sauce before removing from the grill, go ahead.  You will lose some crispiness in the skin, but add some great gooey goodness with the sauce. Once the bird has rested for about 15 minutes, DIG IN!

The legs can be removed with a butter knife at this point. They are super moist and will be dripping tasty bird juice. Use a sharp knife to cut right down the middle of the bird and separate the breast meat from the bone. Or leave it on the bone. Either way is ridiculously tasty. You will be shocked at how juicy and flavorful this bird is due to the compound butter mixture. The skin is also super crispy and will crunch when you take a bite.  

This is part of a weekly series of tailgate recipes for Great site for your Wolverine football news. Check em out.


  1. Once again, great job! I'll definitely be trying this one on the grill. I've found that my WSM doesn't quite get hot enough. BTW, I smoked a bone-in turkey breast last night and we've got plenty of leftovers for sandwiches, etc. It goes great with baba gannoush (esp. if you grill your eggplant whole, caveman style over charcoal like I do).

    1. I'll have to try the CAVEMAN Eggplant. Sounds great. Open all of your vents fully on the wsm and add a full chimney of lit Charcoal to some unlit coals. Leave the top 2 sections off until you get some flames on the coals. This will help get that temp up. A BBQ GURU also helps. Thanks for the comments.

    2. Fired up the grill today and made the chicken. It was awesome! My rub of choice was Rudy's BBQ Turkey Rub. I smoked over pecan wood. Great recipe!

    3. Looks phenomenal as always! I've still yet to do a spatchcocked chicken, but I might have to throw one on this weekend after seeing this beauty. Well done!