Barbecue Spatchcock Chicken with Charred Lime

Barbecue Spatchcock Chicken with Charred Lime

Also known colloquially as flatties, spatchcock chickens have long been a feature of the traditional South African braai. Of course, strictly speaking spatchcock chickens are not exclusively South African, but they have nevertheless earned their place on the grill along side other local favourites like braaiwors and skilpadjies. Delicious and, most importantly, practical, flatties remain a true braai stalwart!

Whether it be marinated in spicy peri-peri, chutney and ginger beer or simply with some lemon and herbs, you can usually find a flattie to meet your family’s tastes. Personally, my favourite flattie is marinated in a simple braai sauce and then doused in the juice of a couple of charred limes.

Now I must confess that I’m not a natural braaier. Generally speaking, I have an annoying propensity for cremating everything I place on a braai and my Weber has been collecting dust in the garage for years. This particular recipe is, however, just so damn tasty I just can’t resist the urge to wheel out my long forgotten braai! I can’t get enough of the combination of the lime and braai sauce, so much so, I could happily eat the whole chicken on my own – burnt or not! This simple recipe is my very own barbecue-bliss. Enjoy.

For more braai/barbecue recipes from The Muddled Pantry, please click HERE

Barbecue Spatchcock Chicken with Charred Lime

  • 1 large chicken, spatchcocked
  • 2 limes (or 2 lemons, if limes are out of season)

Braai/Barbecue Marinate:

  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 tbsp. tomato ketchup
  • 2 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp. honey
  • 1 tbsp. lime juice (or lemon juice)
  • 1 tsp. wholegrain mustard
  • 1 tsp. smoked hot paprika (if unavailable, substitute with ½ tsp. regular paprika & ½ tsp. chilli powder)
  • ½ tsp. Herbs de Provence (if unavailable, substitute with ½ tsp. mixed herbs)
  • ½ tsp. dried coriander leaves
  • ½ tsp. ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp. ground fennel
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • A good pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Combine all the marinate ingredients in a large bowl
  2. Smother the chicken in the marinate, making sure to work the sauce in between the skin and the flesh. Cover with cling film and store in the fridge for as long as possible – at least 4 hours, but preferably overnight
  3. Remove the chicken from the fridge at least half an hour before cooking
  4. Cook the chicken on your braai/BBQ over a medium heat for 35 to 40 minutes, turning every 10 minutes or so. Baste the chicken with the remaining marinate as it cooks
  5. Cut the limes in half and place flesh side down onto the braai/BBQ. Cook for about 15 minutes or until the limes are soft and the flesh slightly charred
  6. Just before serving, squeeze the cooked limes over the chicken

For more braai/barbecue recipes from The Muddled Pantry, please click HERE



  1. This “BARBECUE SPATCHCOCK CHICKEN” is something I would love trying ASAP.
    I’m adding some garlic salt instead of garlic cloves, hope it’s fine, as I don’t wanna use garlic here directly…


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