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How to butterfly (spatchcock) and brine a whole chicken?

How to butterfly and brine whole chicken?

In this post, I will show you two important things. That is, how to butterfly (spatchcock) and brine a whole chicken. Why is it important? Well, if you are tired of having an unevenly roasted whole chicken, butterflying or spatchcocking is the answer as it gives the chicken a more even thickness while cooking. It will also give you a crispier skin since all skin will be on one side. Now, if you also want a chicken that is not only crisp outside but also with moist meat, that is where brining comes in. Brining your chicken also ensures that you will have a whole chicken full of flavors that are not only skin deep but seeps in into the meat.      

I actually learned both techniques from my sister-in-law, ate Mia, on our last visit to Paris in August. But I was only able to put it to the test last Christmas on our traditional Christmas chicken recipe, broiled whole chicken, that I’ve got from my Mama. The recipe is actually amazingly simple but surprisingly so delicious. The problem is that every time we make it, liquids or juices usually collect at the chicken’s cavity. And then there is also the problem of making the skin crispy because once we turn the chicken to cook the other side, the skin at the bottom loses its crispiness. Another problem we had when we roast a whole chicken before is that since we just rub the chicken with the seasoning (salt and pepper), some of the (meaty) parts tend to be left behind…well nobody wants a dry, bland-tasting chicken breast meat. But all these are a thing of the past! 

In the illustrations below, you will see how I butterfly a whole chicken:

Learn how to easily butterfly whole chicken. |

How to butterfly (spatchcock) a whole chicken?

  • First, wash the whole chicken thoroughly then pat dry using a paper towel.
  • Turn it upside-down with the spine facing up.
  • Using a sharp knife or kitchen shears, remove the spine. Turn it again with breast now facing up.
  • Flatten the chicken by pressing the breastbone down using a firm pressure. That’s it!   

How to brine a whole chicken?

Now about brining. It is simply soaking the chicken in a brine solution for a period of time.

  • For a whole chicken, it is recommended to do this overnight.
  • The amount of salt, of course, will vary depending on how big your chicken (and container) is and how much water it needs to submerge the chicken completely.
  • The ratio I used is 1/4  cup + 1 Tablespoon of salt for every 4 cups of water. 

Learn the basic brine for whole chicken for a moist roasted chicken that packs so much flavor in every bite! |

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How to butterfly and brine whole chicken?
5 from 1 vote

How to butterfly and brine a whole chicken

If you are tired of having a bland and unevenly roasted whole chicken, then it is time to learn these very useful techniques of butterflying or spatchcocking and how to brine a whole chicken for a bone-deep flavorful and evenly roasted chicken.Learn the basic of brining a whole chicken to get a moist roasted chicken that packs so much flavor in every bite!
Print Rate
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: brine a whole chicken,butterfly a chicken,spatchcocking
Servings: 1 chicken
Calories: 3611kcal
Author: Bebs
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes


  • 5 tablespoons kosher/table salt
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 head garlic - - cut across into half
  • 1 tablespoon peppercorn
  • 3 1/2 pounds chicken

optional ingredients:


  • In a bowl, add salt (soy sauce and sugar) to the water and mix until completely dissolved.
  • Place the chicken in a large bowl or container. Add the garlic and peppercorns.
  • Pour in the brine solution until the chicken is completely submerged.
  • Cover bowl or container with a plastic cling wrap and refrigerate overnight.
  • Once ready to roast/broil, remove the chicken from the bowl and discard the brine. Pat the chicken dry.
Nutrition Facts
How to butterfly and brine a whole chicken
Amount Per Serving
Calories 3611 Calories from Fat 2151
% Daily Value*
Fat 239g368%
Saturated Fat 68g340%
Cholesterol 1190mg397%
Sodium 39290mg1637%
Potassium 3368mg96%
Carbohydrates 43g14%
Fiber 3g12%
Sugar 26g29%
Protein 304g608%
Vitamin A 2275IU46%
Vitamin C 34.2mg41%
Calcium 333mg33%
Iron 17.4mg97%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Tried this recipe? Tell us how it went. Tag us at @foxyfolksy or leave a comment and rating below.

On my next post, I will share the super easy broiled chicken recipe using the above technique.



Bebs here! I love to cook and try new things and DIY projects! And although I think of myself as a homebody, I like seeing other places from time to time.
If you are looking for a recipe and it ain't here, make a request and I will try my best to make it for you!

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  1. 5 stars
    Hi there, I dont usually browse my mail but if i have time to do it so, i would search for your mails. And i am so thankful that it is very much available. I hope that you would also feature how to make pizza pie, how to make a crust and an empanada too.
    Thank you very much and more power.
    God Bless

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