Facebook LinkedIn Email Pinterest Twitter Instagram YouTube Icon Navigation Search Icon Main Search Icon Video Play Icon Plus Icon Minus Icon Check Icon Print Icon Note Icon Heart Icon Filled Heart Icon Single Arrow Icon Double Arrow Icon Hamburger Icon TV Icon Close Icon Sorted Hamburger/Search Icon

Butterflied Roast Chicken with Chile-Cinnamon Rub

Scott Phillips

Servings: two to three.



  • 2 Tbs. olive oil
  • 2 tsp. minced garlic
  • 10 sprigs fresh thyme or 4 sprigs fresh rosemary; more for garnish, if you like
  • 1 tsp. pure chile powder or 1/2 tsp. cayenne
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. ground coriander seeds
  • 1 tsp. coarse salt
  • 1/2 tsp. sugar, preferably granulated brown
  • 3-1/2 lb. chicken, rinsed inside and out and patted dry with paper towels

Nutritional Information

  • Nutritional Sample Size based on three servings
  • Calories (kcal) : 700
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 400
  • Fat (g): 44
  • Saturated Fat (g): 12
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 8
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 21
  • Cholesterol (mg): 275
  • Sodium (mg): 860
  • Carbohydrates (g): 3
  • Fiber (g): 1
  • Protein (g): 70


  • Heat the oven to 475°F.
  • Pour the olive oil into a small saucepan and add the minced garlic and herbs. Set the pan over high heat until the oil is hot, about 30 seconds. Reduce the heat to low and cook until the garlic has browned slightly, about 3 min. Remove from the heat and let infuse for at least 10 min. or up to 2 hours.
  • In a small bowl, mix together the spices, salt, and sugar.
  • Set the chicken on a board, breast side down, and butterfly it. Starting at the neck, remove the narrow backbone by cutting through the ribs on each side with kitchen or poultry shears. Leave the breastbone intact. Flatten the bird and turn it skin side up.

    Remove the backbone by cutting through the ribs.

  • Next, press on the breast with the heel of your hand as the bird lies flat; you’ll need to break the collarbones and some ribs. Tuck the wing tips behind the shoulders.
  • Set the chicken skin side down in a shallow roasting pan or a jelly roll pan. Brush thoroughly with half of the garlic olive oil (use the herb sprigs as a brush, if you want, before discarding them) and sprinkle with half of the spice rub. Turn the bird over and gently loosen the skin over the breast and thighs. Brush the remaining oil and most of the spice rub directly on the flesh under the skin. Rub the remaining spices on the skin. Pierce the skin with a sharp fork or small paring knife randomly in about 10 places to help it crisp.
  • Roast until the skin is nicely browned and the thigh meat is 170°F or the juices run clear, about 40 min. Remove the chicken from the oven, tent with foil, and let rest for 10 min.
  • To serve, halve the chicken by cutting straight down the center of the breastbone. Carve each half into drumsticks, thighs, wings, and breast, and garnish on a platter with fresh thyme or rosemary, if you like.


Rate or Review

Reviews (5 reviews)

  • Chamigwyn | 08/05/2013

    This was very good. I made it for two. The flavour was wonderful and the chicken was moist. I followed the recipe exactly and had perfect results.

  • cookiegirl52 | 11/06/2010

    Wow, this recipe absolutely deserves five stars. I was a little hesitant about the cinnamon (not usually a fan in savory dishes), but I think it made all the difference in this recipe. Yum! Strongly recommend. Next time I will serve it with sweet potatoes as a previous reviewer mentioned.

Show More

Rate this Recipe

Write a Review

Delicious Dish

Find the inspiration you crave for your love of cooking

Fine Cooking Magazine

Subscribe today
and save up to 50%

Already a subscriber? Log in.


View All


Follow Fine Cooking on your favorite social networks

We hope you’ve enjoyed your free articles. To keep reading, subscribe today.

Get the print magazine, 25 years of back issues online, over 7,000 recipes, and more.

Start your FREE trial