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How to Make a Rotisserie Chicken on the Grill

Rotisserie chicken offers a tender and juicy meal full of flavor. You can consume this versatile meat as a main course or use it as the primary ingredient in chicken salad, buffalo chicken dip, tacos and a variety of other dishes. With the right seasoning and a few essential tools, you can make rotisserie chicken in your own backyard.

Quick Tip: Always consult the manufacturer's guide. While there are general grill safety basics to always keep in mind, the manufacturer's guide can answer any questions about the exact product and its mechanisms.

What you’ll need:

  • Whole chicken. Choose a fresh chicken from a brand you trust.
  • Marinade or brine of choice. Consult your favorite cookbook or concoct your own creation to marinate the chicken before you skewer it.
  • Paper towels. You'll need these to dry the chicken.
  • Butchers' twine. Make sure the twine is long enough to wrap around the chicken several times.
  • Shallow pan or aluminum foil. This will catch any drippings from the rotating chicken.
  • Grill with rotisserie attachment. You'll need a special rotisserie attachment for this task.
  • Meat thermometer. This is necessary to ensure the chicken is cooked to a safe temperature.

Step 1: Prepare the chicken.

Start by cleaning the chicken and rinsing the inside of the center cavity, and then pat it dry with paper towels. Marinade or brine the chicken with your favorite seasoning. Let the chicken sit in the marinade or brine for 5 to 6 hours.


Step 2: Prepare the grill and rotisserie.

Remove the grill grates from the grill and place the pan or foil at the bottom of the grill, underneath the space the chicken will occupy. Pre-heat the grill to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.


Step 3: Remove the chicken from the marinade or brine.

If you use brine, make sure to rinse off any excess salt. If you used a simple marinade, you will only need to remove the chicken.


Step 4: Truss the chicken.

Use the twine to tie the legs and wings of the chicken closely to the body. The compression will help keep the chicken from moving around on the rotisserie spit. With the chicken legs facing away from you, place the twine underneath the legs and pull it upwards on both sides. Cross the twine over and around a couple of times to tighten the bottom of the bird, pushing the drumsticks together. Then, pushing the wings inward, secure the entire chicken by wrapping the string around it, moving up toward the neck.


Step 5: Secure the chicken on the spit.

Skewer the chicken onto the spit, and ensure that the rotisserie forks clamp tightly into the bird so that it won't move around while rotating.


Step 6: Start the rotisserie motor and cook.

Once the rotisserie motor has started rotating the skewer, confirm that the chicken is solidly in place and cook for 1 to 2 hours.


Step 7: Check the internal temperature.

Use the meat thermometer to verify that the internal temperature of the chicken has reached 180 degrees Fahrenheit before you take it off the grill.


Step 8: Remove from the grill and serve.

Carefully remove the chicken from the spit using a grill mitt or heat-resistant gloves. Let the chicken stand at room temperature for 15 to 20 minutes before serving, allows the juices to absorb into the chicken.


Step 9: Make gravy (optional).

While the chicken is resting at room temperature, you can use the drippings in the pan with water, flour and additional seasoning to make chicken gravy.