Barbecued Thai chicken

Try this Thai chicken next time you have a barbecue. The marinade is heady with exotic flavours and lemongrass stalks hold the spatchcocked chicken together

  • Prep:30 mins
    Cook:1 hrs
    Plus marinating and resting time. (Cooking with indirect heat)
  • Serves 4
  • More effort

Nutrition per serving

  • kcal 441
  • fat 22g
  • saturates 6g
  • carbs 12g
  • sugars 10g
  • fibre 1g
  • protein 48g
  • salt 2.6g


  • medium chicken (about 1½ kg), spatchcocked
  • 2 stalks lemongrass, kept whole
  • 1 tsp black peppercorns
  • 8 garlic cloves
  • large handful coriander stalks
  • 1 stalk lemongrass, chopped
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 3 tbsp Thai fish sauce
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar


  1. Crush the peppercorns using a pestle and mortar, then add the garlic and crush again. Add the coriander stalks and chopped lemongrass, and bash to a rough paste. Stir in the lime juice, fish sauce and sugar and mix until the sugar dissolves. Poke a metal skewer through the leg and breast on either side of the chicken (see our video on how to spatchcock a chicken), then replace with a lemongrass stalk. Sit the chicken in a dish and pour over the marinade – squelch it around so the bird is completely coated, then cover and chill in the fridge for as long as possible or overnight.

  2. Remove the chicken from the fridge an hour before cooking. Set a lidded barbecue up for indirect cooking with a foil drip tray on the coal-free side. When the coals are very hot, lay the chicken, bone-side down, over the coal-free side, with the legs closest to the coals.

  3. Cover with the lid and arrange the vents for maximum air circulation. Cook the chicken for 50 mins-1 hr until a thermometer reads 70C (or a little higher) when stuck into the thickest part of the thigh or the juices run clear. Poke the coals about so they flare up again, then, using a pair of tongs, carefully flip the chicken, so it’s skin-side down over the coals. Cook until the skin has browned and the thermometer reads 75C. Lift onto a board, leave to rest for 10 mins, then remove the lemongrass and carve.

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