Using a Rotisserie Correctly on the BBQ

Wednesday, August 29, 2012 @ 07:08 AM
Lee Phillips

Many modern and high-end barbecues now have rear rotisserie burners, however 99% of all gas and even some charcoal BBQs have the ability to accept a rotisserie, some supplied as standard. One of the biggest issues is the correct use of the rotisserie and how to position food properly.

Rotisserie cooking is a great way to cook meat and in particular poultry. If you have a rear burner to the back of the cooking area then your BBQ is built for rotisserie cooking, fear not if you don’t though as you can use your standard burners. Cooking using a rotisserie is the ultimate method of ensuring your meat remains juicy, because the meat is constantly turning, it self-bastes using it’s own natural juices resulting in an exceptionally moist and tender meats.

Two of the most important things to remember when cooking with the rear rotisserie burner are to fix the meat securely in the middle of the spit. With poultry,m the wings and legs should be tied tightly to avoid burning. Secondly, make sure you place a large drip pan under the meat to collect any extra juices that run off, these juices are ideal for making gravy, the drip pan can be placed on the grill under the meat, or under the grills if you don’t have room on top.

How to position Poultry on the Rotisserie:

  1. With the breast down, bring the neck skin up over cavity. Turn under edges of skin, skewer to back skin. Loop oven string around skewer and tie. Turn breast side up and tie or skewer the wings to the body.
  2. Put a spit fork on the rod. Insert rod on neck skin parallel to the backbone, bring it out just above the tail. Put a second fork on the rod and insert forks in breasts and tail. Test for balance and tighten thumb screws.
  3. Tie the tail to the rod, the cross the legs and tie to the tail.

Now you know how to load a chicken for roasting, why not put it all to practice with the tandoori chicken recipe below?

The Perfect Tandoori Chicken on the Rotisserie:

Prep time: 15 minutes | Marinade time: 2 to 3 hours | Cook time: 1 hour 30 minutes


  • 1 medium whole chicken


  • 1 cup of plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon of fresh ginger, minced
  • 1 tablespoon of paprika
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 teaspoons of salt
  • 1½ teaspoons of cumin, ground
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper

Preparation & Cooking:

  1. Combine all marinade ingredients in a small bowl. Remove giblets and wing tips from chicken. Wash out chicken cavity and pat dry. Place the chicken in a deep dish, coat with yogurt mixture, also get mixture under the skin where possible, Cover and allow chicken to marinate in the fridge for 2 to 3 hours.
  2. Preheat your barbecue. Remove the chicken from the dish and discard marinade. Place the chicken on a rotisserie spit and cook over an indirect medium heat or with your rear burner on high for 1½ hours, or until internal temperature reaches between 175 to 180 degrees F.
  3. If heat is too high, reduce and cook over a medium heat instead. Let chicken rest for 10 to 15 minutes before carving.

If your looking for a barbecue with a rotisserie burner, then take a peek at Broil King, most are supplied with a rotisserie included worth over £80!

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