I love the change in seasons. Summers are for quicker cooking meals so my hot oven isn’t running all day, cool salads, and the produce of the season! By September I’ll be ready to pull out my everyday soups, stews, and warming meals again, but while we are enjoying soaking up the sun for a few months, I really enjoy summer meals.
One of the reasons I love summer so much is because I get to refresh my freezer chicken stash. Every October as our farmer’s markets wind down for the winter, I fill up a whole shelf in my deep freezer with 25 or so whole chickens to get us through the winter. I love my chicken lady 🙂 She is the sweetest thing in the world, and treats her birds so amazing.
We headed up to the market this weekend, and I told my husband I was planning on chicken for dinner. The warm weather was begging me to keep my oven use to a minimum so I decided a summer spatchcock style chicken would be the best.
Spatchcock (or some people call this “butterfly”) chicken cuts the cook time way down to less than an hour, so it is perfect for summer. Just use kitchen shears down the backbone on both sides, and flatten the chicken down with the breast up.
Other than my crockpot chicken method, this is the method I use until I can slow roast my chickens during the fall and winter. Since cooking chickens spatchcock style offers so much more yummy skin to enjoy, we did our bird up barbeque style this weekend. It is one of our favorite summer meals alongside summer potato salad, and it was a fun way to start our summer off.
This method it super easy. Don’t be intimidated with halving the chicken. Just follow the backbone – it is very simple and quite forgiving. I remember the first time I did a chicken this way just falling in love with how quick our chicken night could be cooked in – especially one these beautiful summer days when we are out at the beach all day!
- 1 whole pastured chicken, split down the back (mine are anywhere from 4-6 pounds)
- 3-4 TB butter (or olive oil, or avocado oil for the bottom of the pan and surface of the chicken
- 1 cup or so of BBQ sauce (This 5 minute BBQ sauce is so good and no junk ingredients! If you purchase store bought just check those labels for corn syrup, preservatives, etc)
- 1 onion, sliced into rounds
- 2 cloves of garlic, chopped
- Butter the bottom of a large baking sheet or jelly roll pan, lay slices of onion on top, and garlic on top of the onions.
- Put the butterflied chicken on top of the onion rounds, and butter the surface of the chicken.
- Cook at 425 degrees for 40 minutes, take it out and brush the surface of the chicken with BBQ sauce.
- Place the chicken back in the oven and cook another 5-10 minutes, take it back out and brush it with more BBQ sauce. Cook another 5 minutes until the chicken is fully cooked and juices run clear.
- You can use more BBQ sauce for dipping if you wish!
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