Grilled Roasted Chicken

For this grilled roasted chicken, a little smoked paprika, chili powder, butter, and salt and pepper are all it takes to make a sensational spatchocked chicken dinner. Crisp and insanely flavorful skin. Tender, juicy meat.

A whole spatchcocked grilled roasted chicken on a round wooden board with dishes of salt and peppercorns on the side.

As most of you know, there tends to be a little guesswork involved while standing at the grill. This grilled roasted chicken recipe sidesteps that by relying on covered grilling, which dispels a lot of the guesswork in terms of how high a flame and how long to leave something over the flame by essentially turning your grill into an oven. As such, a steady temperature can be maintained even on a grill. And yes, this recipe for grilled roasted chicken offers actual specific temperatures and times that you can easily approximate. How easy is that?!–Cheryl and Bill Jamison

Grilled Roasted Chicken

  • Quick Glance
  • (2)
  • 10 M
  • 2 H, 45 M
  • Serves 2 to 4
5/5 - 2 reviews
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Combine the paprika, chili powder, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Rub the mixture inside and outside the chicken, both over and under the skin. (Be careful not to tear the skin.) Let the chicken sit at room temperature for 30 minutes.

Prepare the grill for indirect cooking, making a hot fire on half the grill and leaving the other half unheated. Place an inexpensive oven thermometer (available at any kitchen supply store) on the cool half of the cooking grate. (You can’t rely on your grill’s built-in thermometer because you want to measure the temperature only on the unheated side. ) Close the grill and heat the temperature to 400°F (200°C) on the unheated side.

Using washable heatproof oven mitts, place the chicken, breast side down, on the unheated side of the cooking grate. (If you have a low-powered gas grill that won’t reach the ideal 400°F (200°C) roasting temperature, you can still grill-bake your chicken in standard oven fashion, increasing the cooking time as needed until the chicken is cooked through.) After 35 minutes, turn the chicken breast side up. If a glossy skin is desired, brush the bird with a tablespoon or more of butter.

Reduce the heat to 350°F (175°C). If using a gas grill, simply turn the heat down; if using a charcoal grill, close the vents and spread out the charcoal. Cook the chicken until the skin is crisp and well-browned and an instant-read thermometer stuck in the thickest part of a thigh reads 170° to 175°F (76° to 79°C). Let the chicken rest for 5 to 10 minutes on a cutting board. Carve and serve. Originally published June 4, 2004.

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Recipe Testers' Reviews

I love this recipe for grilled roasted chicken. I've made it many, many times. Its simplicity easily carries over to preparing it, even if the chicken has been spatchcocked.

If you loosen the skin and carefully slide a spoonful of the rub under the skin, you tip the spices out. Once under, you can use your finger to move them around, again, carefully. After grilling, we had a wonderful, flavourful, juicy, perfectly seasoned bird. I definitely included the butter option. Brushing it lightly over the cooking bird yields such wonderful results!

I used smoked paprika, ancho chili powder, and exercised the butter option. I did not need all of the rub.

I now use an electric grill. It has ceramic briquettes and a grill plate. It looks and works the same as all other grills, except it is smaller (apartment size, so to speak) and it uses electricity (obviously). Due to its size, it is not possible to grill indirectly. However, if folks need another apartment or small grill option, this is what I do:
a. Set the grill for 400°F and, once reached, place the prepared bird breast side down.
b. Turn the bird over after 3 or 4 minutes, brush with butter and turn the heat down to 350F. (If left breast side down too long, it risks burning.)
c. After 20 minutes, brush with butter again and check the bottom. If it is getting too dark, remove to a 350F oven to finish. That could take another 10 minutes or so but use the instant-read thermometer to be sure.

This chicken was served with grilled asparagus and a potato salad.

A grilled roasted chicken on a wooden cutting board.

This was a quick, simple roasted chicken recipe to put together with tasty results. The ingredients for the rub are spice-rack staples, no need to rush out to the store for extra ingredients. I didn't spatchcock the bird. The chili powder gave a little bit of bite that gives this recipe a different taste than most other grilled chicken recipes. The indirect grilling produced a moist chicken with a crisp skin.


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  1. This grilled-roasted chicken was simple to prepare and everyone enjoyed it. I definitely will add it to my recipe file and make it again. It is a wonderful chicken recipe for outdoor entertaining and also it is a good weekday meal as well and any leftovers are great for lunch the next day.

  2. I’ve roasted many a chicken but this was the BEST ever! The rub gave it great flavor without being overpowering, the skin was crisp and the meat was moist. Used my gas grill and it was nice not to have to worry about smoking/burning cicken!

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