Lemon Spatchcocked Chicken with Red Pepper Jam and Quick Aioli

Enjoy an extra-special barbecue dish with Lesley Waters's flavourful recipe for lemon-marinated chicken with red pepper jelly
By Lesley Waters
Lemon Spatchcocked Chicken with  Red Pepper Jam and Quick Aioli
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time:
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes plus 4-6 hrs marinating
  • Effort: medium



  • 3 lemons
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1.8kg chicken
  • handful of sprig thyme

For the red pepper jam:

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 red peppers, halved, deseeded and finely sliced
  • 2 yellow peppers, halved, deseeded and finely sliced
  • 2 orange peppers, halved, deseeded and finely sliced
  • 1 red chilli, halved, deseeded and finely sliced on the diagonal
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 lemon, halved
  • black pepper

For the quick aioli:

  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 6 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 2 tbsp crème fraîche or Greek yogurt
  • 2 tbsp chopped flat leaf parsley
  • black pepper


1. Using a zester, remove the zest from 2 lemons, leaving behind the white pith. Cut the lemons in half and squeeze out the juice, reserving the squeezed halves.

2. Put the lemon zest, lemon juice and olive oil in a large, shallow dish. Add plenty of black pepper and mix well. Add the split chicken, thyme and squeezed lemon halves, cover and refrigerate for 4-6 hours.

3. Make the red pepper jam while the chicken is marinating. Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy-based saucepan.

4. Add the red, yellow and orange peppers, chilli, garlic and sugar, as well as the lemon juice and the squeezed lemon halves. Mix together well.

5. Put a piece of wet, crumpled greaseproof paper on top of the mixture in the pan and cover with a lid.

6. Cook over a low heat for 35 to 40 minutes until the peppers are meltingly soft. Uncover the pan and increase the heat to reduce the liquid for about 3-4 minutes. Add salt and freshly ground pepper to taste and remove from the heat. Spoon into warm sterilised jars, cover the jelly with axed discs, set aside to cool then cover.

7. Remove the chicken from the marinade. With the wings nearest you, push a skewer through one wing diagonally across the chicken and through the opposite leg. Push the second skewer diagonally through the second wing and leg. This will make the chicken easier to turn.

8. Cook on a hot barbecue or roast in a preheated oven at 200°C/gas 6 for 30-40 minutes then turn and continue to cook for another 30 minutes.

9. While the chicken is cooking, make the quick aioli, place the garlic, mayonnaise, crème fraîche and parsley in a bowl and stir to mix together. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper.

10. Serve the freshly cooked chicken with the red pepper jam and the aioli.

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