Warm, fall flavors of pumpkin spice, with the sweetness and tang of orange, and the aromatic flavors of onion and garlic never tasted so DANG GOOD together.
This marinade gets rubbed all over a spatchcocked chicken so that the skin crisps up and the meat stays beautifully juicy…mmmm. It’s the perfect pumpkin-spice-season main dish.
4 Weeks of Meal Plans.
So, “spatchcocked” might sound kinda naughty, I know. But it’s actually just an innocent cooking term, I pinky promise! You basically use good, sharp kitchen shears (I’ve found some sturdy ones at Walmart for 88 cents…I bought 3) to trim the spine completely away from a whole chicken.
Then you flip the bird over (hey now…) and lay it skin-side up, then press down on the breastbone very firmly until you hear a crack. This spatchcocking technique makes for a flat bird that bakes more quickly and evenly than just roasting it intact. The crispy (and I mean CRISPY) skin all over is just icing on the cake…err…bird.
Let’s talk about the pumpkin-spice-orange-garlic-onion-aminos-jus. It’s addictive as all things. Whatever you do, don’t just toss it down the drain after the bird is done roasting, my dear!
Tear off little bites of crispy-skinned, tender chicken and pick up a tender, soft onion. Dip them together straight into that pan jus, hun. It’s ok if it dribbles off your chin and hands while you snack, and your family or friends are staring at you judgingly like, “What is wrong with our loved one over there eating all of our dinner like a ravenous, greedy beast?”
It’s perfectly OK. Let them stare.
Rave review here for a moment…I’ve tried a few pumpkin spice blends, even made my own. But my absolute fave comes from the spice-aficionados on over at Primal Palate. They really know their spice blends. Their Pumpkin Pie Spice really wins, hands-down. It comes as part of their seasonal “The Sweet Pack” trio, alongside Apple Pie Spice and Gingersnap.
Just a heads up for elimination diets: The Sweet Pack trio is not compliant with AIP due to the seed spices (pumpkin spice blend substitution listed in recipe for ya). Also, the Gingersnap has a bit of maple sugar in it, so that one is not Whole Food Paleo Reset nor Whole30-friendly. You could give that one to Mum for a Christmas present…or hoard it for later when your Whole Food Paleo Reset or Whole30 is done. Just sayin’. 😉
The leftover bones from this made a MOST EXCELLENT bone broth. Oh my. It had so many of the warm flavors from the chicken just immersed throughout the divine liquid. I think it would make a great pho broth, or be perfect for a pureed roasted butternut squash soup.
Got leftover chicken? Shred it and mix it up with some of my AIP No-Mess, No-Egg Mayo, thinly sliced green onions and chopped water chestnuts for a killer chicken salad. Or add it to this Alfredo Flatbread Pizza and watch those mixed flavor profiles make mouth-magic. Yum. Yum yum.
Pumpkin Spice Spatchcock Chicken - Paleo, Keto, Whole30, AIP
Pumpkin spice, sweet orange & aromatic garlic with tender onions make for an addictive spatchcocked, crispy-skinned chicken with dippable jus. Whole30 and Keto with AIP option.
- 1 Tb Primal Palate Pumpkin Pie Spice for AIP use 1 & 1/2 tsp cinnamon, 1 tsp ginger powder, 1/4 tsp mace and 1/2 tsp clove.
- 1 tsp Himalayan salt
- 1/16 tsp cayenne pepper for AIP omit
- zest of 1/2 and all juice of 1 medium orange
- 1 Tb coconut aminos
- 1 Tb refined avocado oil
- 4 large cloves garlic pressed
- 2 Tb fresh parsley chopped
- 1 medium red onion sliced into 1/4" circles
- 6 lb whole chicken
To make the marinade: In a small bowl, mix together the Pumpkin Pie Spice blend, salt and cayenne with a fork.
Vigorously stir in the orange zest and juice, aminos and oil, then stir in the garlic and parsley. Set aside.
Lay a piece of parchment down on a large sheet pan and lay the onion circles in an even layer in the center. Set aside.
Use sharp, heavy duty kitchen shears to completely remove the spine from the chicken, and trim off any excessive flaps of fatty skin. (Save trimmed-off parts for making bone broth if you like.)
Lay the chicken skin-side-up over the onions, and press down very firmly on the center of the chicken until you hear a couple of cracks. This helps to flatten the chicken for even cooking.
Stir the marinade once more, then drizzle it all over the top of the chicken. It's going to drip down over the edges but that's OK.
Use your hands to massage the marinade into the chicken skin on top, then pick up the chicken with one hand and massage the under part / flesh with the marinade that poured onto the pan.
Leave at room temperature for 1 hour to allow flavors to soak into the chicken. Letting the chicken rest at room temp also to helps the chicken cook more evenly later.
Set oven to 425 F, then bake chicken for 1 hour, basting halfway through. Chicken is done when the skin is crispy and a lovely browned color, and temperature taken from the thickest part of the chicken reads at least 165 F.
Rest for 20 minutes before carving to keep those precious juices inside the meat!
Save that jus from the pan! Stir it well and serve it in a little bowls on the plate next to the chicken. Dip, slurp, YUM.
Serve chicken topped with onions over Acorn Squash Rice and spring mix. Drizzle the delicious drippings over everything as a warm vinaigrette for an easy but sexy meal.