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Grilled Herb Butter Chicken

Using an Herb Butter and spatchcocking a chicken before grilling assures a moist, tender, and seasoned bird with perfectly crispy browned skin.

Top-down view of a grilled chicken quarter laying on a bed of polenta on a white plate with a garnish of fresh thyme.

John is the king when it comes to cooking outside. He was a great boy scout, and when we went camping, we always ate in style. Maybe not Grilled Herb Butter Chicken, but we ate a heck of a lot better than most.

He recently brought home a gorgeous free-range organic chicken. It was so fresh and plump, and we didn’t want to waste one ounce of it, so I decided to roast it whole.

Roast it on “The Big Green Egg” that is. The Big Green Egg is a ceramic grill that uses lump charcoal. Alternately you can grill it on any grill or bake it in the oven too.

It has a couple of vents that allow you to control the temperature. There isn’t any financial gain for me to endorse this equipment, but we make some amazing food using it. It can be used for smoking, and indirect cooking too.

A raw spatchcocked chicken rubbed in butter and fresh spices.

John prepped the bird by spatchcocking it. To do this, take a pair of good kitchen shears or a boning knife and cut through the bird on each side of the backbone and remove it. You then press down on the breastbone hard enough to flatten the bird out.

Flattening the bird allows the dark meat and white meat cook at the same rate which keeps the white meat moist since you aren’t overcooking it while the dark meat cooks. I freeze the backbone and use it when I make chicken stock.

Once the bird was ready to go, we put a smear of *homemade herb butter under the skin. I rubbed the exterior of the bird with olive oil and seasoned with salt, pepper and a sprinkle of fresh chopped rosemary and thyme.

You could use an Italian seasoning too which is what I often do.

A roasted spatchcocked chicken.

The chicken cooked on the grill at 375 degrees F for 1 hour and 20 minutes.

Tips for the perfect Herb Butter Chicken

  • Spatchcocking chicken or turkey assures that the white and dark meat cook at the same rate. No more dry white meat!
  • Applying herb butter under the skin gives the meat flavor as it cooks.
  • A drizzle of olive oil over the skin and additional seasoning makes for a delicious browned bird with crispy skin.
  • Baste the bird once it reaches 145° to achieve the perfect browned crispy skin.
  • When you remove the bird from the grill let it rest before carving it. The meat will reabsorb the juices. By cutting it right away, those flavorful juices will just run out.
  • Don’t overcook the bird. Use an instant-read thermometer and test in the thickest part of the let without touching the bone. Chicken is finished when it reaches 160°F. It will continue to rise for a short time because of the residual heat.
  • Put your cutting board in a rimmed baking sheet to catch any remaining drips. It will make for an easy clean-up.

This chicken was succulent and flavorful. The skin was crispy good. We paired this lady with a side of roasted carrots and creamy cheesy polenta for a complete meal meant for a king.

Tips for flavored butter

  • I keep flavored butter in my freezer. I made this butter by taking room temperature butter and mixing it with grated lemon peel, chopped rosemary, and thyme.
  • When your butter tray is getting empty, save the last couple of tablespoons by putting them in a small dish in the freezer. When you get 6 to 8 tablespoons, let it thaw and add the flavors you like. Shape it into a rectangle or log shape that will fit your butter dish and either use it or refreeze it in a reclosable plastic bag. Mark and date the contents and refreeze.
  • Herbed butter is delicious on popcorn or vegetables and potatoes or for making your own seasoned crackers.
  • Season the butter with honey and cinnamon. It’s amazing on toast or pancakes.

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Don’t forget to pin this delicious Grilled Chicken Recipe

Top-down view of a grilled chicken quarter laying on a bed of polenta on a white plate with a garnish of fresh thyme.
Top down view of a grilled chicken quarter laying on a bed of polenta on a white plate with a garnish of fresh thyme.
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5 from 1 vote

Grilled Herb Butter Chicken

Using an Herb Butter and spatchcocking a chicken before grilling assures a moist, tender, and seasoned bird with perfectly crispy browned skin.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 30 mins
Resting time 15 mins
Total Time 2 hrs
Servings 8
Author Julie Menghini

Ingredients

  • 4 1b chicken
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • seasonings of your choice thyme, rosemary, salt, pepper, garlic

Herb Butter

  • 4 tsp butter salted or unsalted, softened
  • seasonings of your choice thyme, rosemary, salt, pepper, garlic

Instructions

  • Blend the softened butter with the herbs or seasonings of your choice.
  • Spatchcock the chicken and apply the herb butter under the skin without entirely removing the skin from the bird. Drizzle the skin of the bird with olive oil and season it with additional herbs, salt, and pepper.
  • Grill or bake the chicken at 375°. When it reaches an internal temp of 140°F baste the skin of the bird with additional herb butter if desired. Remove the bird from the grill or oven when it reaches an internal temperature of 160°F.
  • Let the chicken rest for 15 to 30 minutes before carving.

Notes

Tips for the perfect grilled herb butter chicken:
  • Spatchcocking chicken or turkey assures that the white and dark meat cook at the same rate. No more dry white meat!
  • Applying herb butter under the skin gives the meat flavor as it cooks.
  • A drizzle of olive oil over the skin and additional seasoning makes for a delicious browned bird with crispy skin.
  • Baste the bird once it reaches 145° to achieve the perfect browned crispy skin.
  • When you remove the bird from the grill let it rest before carving it. The meat will reabsorb the juices. By cutting it right away, those flavorful juices will just run out.
  • Don’t overcook the bird. Use an instant-read thermometer and test in the thickest part of the let without touching the bone. Chicken is finished when it reaches 160°F. It will continue to rise for a short time because of the residual heat.
  • Put your cutting board in a rimmed baking sheet to catch any remaining drips. It will make for an easy clean-up.

Nutrition

Calories: 507kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 42g | Fat: 36g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Cholesterol: 175mg | Sodium: 196mg | Potassium: 429mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 380IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 25mg | Iron: 2mg
This recipe was calculated using the exact brands and measurements I used to make this recipe. If you are following a strict diet please note changing anything will cause the nutritional info to change. My calculations are intended as a guide only.
Tried this recipe? That’s awesome!Mention @hostessatheart or tag #hostessatheart!
Recipe Rating




Sally

Wednesday 26th of May 2021

We love how easy and delicious this chicken in and is our go-to most of the time.

tinywhitecottage

Tuesday 14th of April 2015

What a wonderful post. Glad to have found your blog this afternoon. :) I've been wanting to try spatchcocking for a few years now. And I'll look for those pre-brined chickens at Trader Joe's. Haven't noticed them before. Lovely blog.

Julie is Hostess At Heart

Tuesday 14th of April 2015

Thank you so much for your kind comments! I'm happy that you stopped by. I just found some recipes on your site that I can't live without!

J Seaton

Tuesday 24th of March 2015

I definitely need to try spatchcocking a chicken, both because of the benefits and the name. I'm bbqing a whole chicken tonight, and I'm kind of disappointed that I'm going to butcher and marinate it first, and not spatchcock it.

Julie is Hostess At Heart

Tuesday 24th of March 2015

You really must try it! It sounds kind of intimidating, but it is actually easy. We often buy pre-brined chickens at Trader Joes. They are moist and delicious. I recommend them if you have access to them. Thank you for visiting!

Lisa @Wine & Glue

Tuesday 24th of March 2015

Ooooo, this is my favorite way to grill a whole chicken! I haven't done it in years though, I'll have to try again with this recipe!

Julie is Hostess At Heart

Tuesday 24th of March 2015

Thank you Lisa! We really like doing this on the weekend so we can have leftovers during the week.

nancyc

Saturday 21st of March 2015

This chicken looks SO good–yum! :)

Julie is HostessAtHeart

Monday 23rd of March 2015

Thank you Nancy! So appreciate your stopping by!