This delicious and easy piri piri chicken is cooked along with potatoes and served with a green chilli dressing.
Piri Piri (or sometimes Peri Peri) chicken is a Portuguese dish, named after the piri piri pepper that is popular there. Piri Piri is usually some combination of paprika, vinegar, garlic and hot red pepper, that is basted on to chicken while it roasts or grills. I started with a whole chicken and butterflied it myself. Every time I do it, I wonder why. Honestly, do yourself a favour and buy a chicken that’s already butterflied. It’s not that it’s that hard. It’s just a somewhat unappealing process (or maybe it’s just me ;)
So assuming you’ve got yourself a pre-butterflied chicken (or you’ve man-handled a whole one), simply whip up the Piri Piri marinade in the food processor (or blender) and you’re good to go. Pop it on to a baking sheet and let it roast away for 35-45 minutes. I used the skewers, as directed, for easy turning, but honestly, they aren’t necessary.
Now let’s talk about the potatoes. The recipe directed to place them on the baking sheet with the chicken. Hmmmm. Hope my family will be happy having 3 slices of potatoes each, because that’s all that will fit alongside the chicken. I thought about putting them under the chicken, but worried about all the fat from the chicken. I decided to go with Plan B. I cooked the chicken on one baking sheet and the potatoes on another, a rack lower. Worked well, except when they were done, I decided tossing them on the sheet with the chicken juices wasn’t such a bad idea, after all.
I sliced my potatoes too thin and had to take them out before the chicken was done. Be warned that even a thicker slice may be done before the chicken, so watch closely. They were admittedly really nice alongside the roasted chicken and they were great with the dip. A simple salad would be nice as well, if you’d rather not fuss with the potatoes.
The suggested dip of cilantro, green chili pepper and mayonnaise was lovely with both the chicken and the potatoes. It was easy to prepare and made a lot, which was great, because the left-overs were nice as a vegetable dip later. I’d recommend it, if you have the time and ingredients on hand (you could easily replace the mayonnaise with plain yogurt). I replaced the cilantro with parsley, since I’m one of those cilantro-hater-types and used jalapenos, since that’s what I had around.
All in all, I loved this dish. Simple enough for weeknights and looking ahead to grilling season, will definitely take the Piri Piri sauce to the BBQ.
Get the Recipe: Piri Piri Chicken with Potatoes
- 1 (1) whole chicken, butterflied
Piri Piri Marinade:
- 3 cloves (3 cloves) garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
- 1/2 tsp (2.46 g) dried chilli flakes, crushed red chillis
- 1 Tbsp (14.79 g) smoked paprika
- 1/4 cup (61 ml) lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp. (14.79 ml) red wine vinegar
- 1/4 cup (54 ml) olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- 1 lb. (453.59 g) waxy potatoes, sliced 1/4-inch thick
- 2 Tbsp. (29.57 ml) olive oil
- 1/2 tsp. (2.46 g) thyme
- Salt and pepper
Green Chilli Dressing:
- 2 (2) long green chillies, or jalapenos, roughly chopped
- 1/2 cup (30 ml) fresh cilantro or fresh parsley leaves
- 1/2 Tbsp. (7.39 ml) olive oil
- 1 Tbsp. (14.79 ml) lemon juice
- 1/2 cup (112 ml) mayonnaise, or plain yogurt
- 1/4 cup (57.5 ml) sour cream
- Butterfly (*how to below) your chicken and if desired (for easy turning), thread two skewers through from side to side. Slice potatoes and toss in a large bowl with the oil, thyme, salt and pepper. Prepare two baking sheets (line the one for chicken with foil if you like, for easy clean-up). For the baking sheet for the potatoes, spray lightly with cooking spray and spread potatoes evenly over baking sheet.
- Combine the Piri Piri marinade ingredients in a food processor or blender. Process until smooth. Reserve 1/4 cup of the marinade and set aside.
- Preheat oven to 425° F. with racks in the centre and one lower. Rub remaining marinade on to the top of the chicken. Place your chicken onto a baking sheet, skin side down. Place chicken in to pre-heated oven on the middle rack. Place baking sheet with potatoes one rack position below it and roast both chicken and potatoes for 15 minutes, basting once with the reserved marinade. Turn chicken over (skin side up) and flip potatoes. Cook chicken another 20-30 minutes, basting a couple of times with the reserved marinade, until cooked (depending on the size of your chicken). Check potatoes regularly and remove when golden brown.
- While chicken and potatoes are cooking, make the dressing by combining all ingredients in food processor or blender and processing until well combined.
- How to butterfly a chicken: Place chicken on cutting board with breast side down and the drumsticks facing towards you. Using kitchen scissors and a sharp knife, cut down one side of the backbone, from one end to the other. Repeat on the other side. Remove and discard backbone. Flip chicken over and using the palm of your hand, press the chicken down to flatten slightly.
First time making piri piri chicken. Great flavour , a keeper!
So glad to hear, Pina :) Thanks!
I made this today and I must say this chicken is to die for! I bought 1.6kg whole chicken and butterflied it myself. The chicken was literally falling off the bone. I used yoghurt and parsley for the sauce. I don’t have sour cream on hand but it didn’t butter me much. Jalapeño green sauce really complimented the chicken and potatoes. Thank you!
So glad to hear, Annie :) Thanks so much!
Rather than the red pepper flakes, can you use actual bottled piri piri sauce.
Sure! If you have the sauce on hand, I’d definitely use it :)
The recipe doesn’t say what to do with the remaining 1/4 cup marinade that was set aside.
Can’t wait to try it!
Sorry Wendy. It should be used to baste the chicken a few times, while it roasts. Thanks for letting me know I missed that part. I’ve added it to the recipe.
I took out a chicken to defrost cause this baby is on the menu tomorrow. Yum
Enjoy, Kathy. A simply delicious meal!
This just might be the best looking chicken I’ve ever seen! I love piri-piri flavour!
Thanks so much, Julia.
Roast chicken with potatoes is such a classic, but I love this fresh spin with the Piri Piri marinade and green chili dressing!
Thanks Laura. It was a nice change from the usual. Left-over chicken made a great sandwich, as well!
Something that never used to bother me — working with raw meats — has started to become rather unappealing to me, as well. I never thought to have a chicken butterflied by a butcher! Haha silly me. Makes so much sense. Love the flavors here of chiles and lemon, I’m sure it just makes the chicken sing! Thanks for sharing!
Thanks Sophie. I’m seeing packaged (on the shelf) butterflied chicken more around here, especially during BBQ season. It’s a bit more expensive, but maybe worth it :)
Gorgeous dish! The potatoes look like chips! : ) I am craving a chicken dinner at 9am.
Thanks Crystal. Those potatoes were awesome, actually. Great with the dip!
I’ve heard of peri peri before. This looks amazing!
Thanks. The flavours were great, Cheri. Not a lot of heat. Just enough.