Butterflied Citrus Chicken

  • Active Time 1h 25m
  • Total Time 9h 25m

Makes 4 servings

Butterflying chicken allows the maximum amount of surface area to be exposed to the grill. Use the indirect-heat method, as shown in Advice for Grilling Chicken. The coals are medium hot when you can hold your hand above them for just 3 seconds.


  • 2 1/2-3 pound whole broiler-fryer chicken
  • 1/3 cup olive oil or cooking oil
  • 1/3 cup orange juice
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried rosemary, crushed
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper


Use poultry or kitchen shears to cut closely along both sides of the backbone for the entire length of chicken. Discard backbone. Turn skin-side up and open the bird out as flat as possible. Cover with clear plastic wrap. Strike breast firmly in the center with the flat side of a meat mallet. (This breaks the breastbone so bird lies flat.) Twist wing tips under the back. Halfway between the legs and breastbone near the tip of the breast, cut a 1-inch slit through the skin on either side of and parallel with the breastbone. Insert drumstick tips into the slits. Place butterflied chicken in a large baking dish.

In a small mixing bowl stir together olive oil or cooking oil, orange juice, lemon juice, rosemary, garlic, salt and pepper. Pour into a large plastic bag; add chicken. Seal bag; turn bag to coat chicken with marinade. Marinate in the refrigerator for 8-24 hours, turning bag occasionally. Drain marinade from chicken, reserving marinade.

In a covered grill arrange medium-hot coals around a drip pan, then test for medium heat above the pan. Place chicken, skin-side up, on the grill rack directly over the drip pan, not over the coals. Brush with some of the reserved marinade. Cover and grill for 30 minutes. Brush with additional marinade. Grill for 30-40 minutes more, or till chicken is tender and no pink remains. Discard remaining marinade.

Recipe reprinted by permission of Weldon Owen. All rights reserved.

RecID 2149

nutrition information per serving

372 calories; 23g total fat; 115mg cholesterol; 418mg sodium; 4g carbohydrates; 0g fiber; 36g protein

These nutrition facts are calculated according to the ingredients listed in this recipe. Any substitutions will change these facts. Although we strive for accuracy, please note that food manufacturers occasionally change their food formulas, which could affect the calculations as shown.

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