Pro Butcher Shows How To Cut Up A Whole Chicken

Pro Butcher Shows How To Cut Up A Whole Chicken

welcome friends welcome back to the
kitchen I’m here again with my friend Jaime who is a butcher author educator
and today Jamie’s gonna break down a chicken I am yeah it intimidates a lot
of people it intimidates me and I do it all the time yeah understandably so like
I guess there’s a quite a few things going on but once you have the skills
and and I don’t want to like over complicate it because it doesn’t need to
be but once you have the skills to know where the joints are it does come apart
quite easily and it’s probably one of the most economical things that you can
bring into the home kitchen because the whole chicken is so much less than then
the parts that’s right okay so where do we start so I like to take the wings off
first so okay I’ll put the chicken breast side down and then what I’m doing
is is I’m just pulling the wing so I’m looking for like the armpit yep okay and
once I identify where the wing meets up with the breast
I just cut just deep enough until I can expose that joint okay so there’s a ball
joint there on the wing yeah so then what I’m gonna do is I don’t want to cut
into the breast I actually want to follow the shape of the ball tip on the
wing and I’m just gonna change my direction and come away from the body
like so so I’m left with a wing that doesn’t have half of the breast on it
yeah okay so there’s one wing second wing is gonna be the same thing I’m just
going in a slightly different direction because I need to obviously pull the
chicken around up so I’m looking again for that that between the wing and the
breast the armpit and again cut down until it pops
so I’ve exposed the ball tip and it very audibly pops it does yeah so then we’re
just looking at the differentiation between the ball tip and the joint that
the socket that it fit into on the breast so we’re just gonna follow that
around and now we’ve got our two wings off excellent okay
second thing we’re gonna so just a yep off topic point of interest when you
when you grill your wings do you leave the tip on I take the tip off do you I
do and I just find it’s for me personally it’s it has more of a use in
a stock than it does on the grill I agree with you is more of a use in the
stock but I absolutely love the crispy well if it’s a if it’s a flavor thing or
even later go for it’s a flavor thing for me but you know to eat your own
everybody’s got their own so you can either take that tip off and
put it with the bones in your soup stock and it is excellent for making soup
stock yeah I mean it’s just as simple as if I’m a yep
you just have to go right in between the red like that yeah and that’s it all
right and then that wing tip comes right off okay so those are gonna when you’re
buying a whole animal use it all yeah you should be using it all usually pay
for it you should be making soup with it yeah you’re throwing something in the
garbage you’re throwing your money in the garbage
okay so next up put the chicken back over on its back to take off the legs
I’m looking for and you’ll see them in these chickens in particular and and
most chickens I shouldn’t just kind of point fingers but there is a fat line in
between very visible right yeah so you just cut on that fat line and you guys
you’re just cutting the skin at this point right so now we’ve got our 2 legs
so you just open the skin you didn’t cut up any meat just open the skin just open
up the skin okay so from here now what I like to do is I’ll reach under and I
support my hands on the thighs and this is just so that I can pop the joints out
okay okay so now the joints have been popped out of the chicken yep okay so
from here this is where it gets a little bit more finesse
I guess so I’m gonna cut away the rest of the skin here so now I have a clear
line of sight at my thigh mm-hmm so I need to take my knife and just kind of
come underneath the back here so I can sets the ball joint at the top of that’s
right or the thigh that’s right and we just snap that out of the socket yeah so
I’m just gonna just follow my knife just a little bit around that backbone there
okay that’s it okay now I’m gonna flip it over and we
honestly have like a blueprint for how this leg is going to come out and since
I write this dark meat to the white meat of the back yep so it’s in this area
here so the reason why I cut along that backbone is so that I can pull that leg
back even further and now I can just follow that line so I’m kind of like not
making blind cuts I’m just gonna cut along until I can get this oyster out
which is this thick part of the thigh and I can just round around it like so
so now I’ve got one leg off leg and thigh together okay now I can flip it
around I’ve already popped that socket out and I’ve got that a clear line of
where that oyster is and I want to make sure that that comes with the thigh so
I’m gonna just follow me knife around that thigh and I’m gonna
take it on either side of the back now I’ve got two legs off okay I love that
little oyster piece yeah it’s really nice and again like if it stays on the
bone that’s fine too as long as you’re gonna be using it it’s not it cannot
stay on the leg so this goes part and parcel to merchandising as a butcher in
a retail situation or wholesale is that you would far rather have that on the
thigh then on the floor dollars okay so the next thing I’m gonna do is I need to
take off the breast off the bone okay we could always leave it as a bone and
breast and just cut it in half but what would the fun be there let’s let’s walk
let’s walk everyone through it so what we’re gonna do is we’re just looking for
another fat line here which is really visible there isn’t it that’s right yeah
so I’m going to just cut along that fat line right so keep in mind like this
this rib cage kind of works in a bit of a like almost like an oval right so we
need to make sure that we’re following right along that bone so what I’m doing
is is I’m just making sure that the tip of my knife is just following around
that rib cage and down lower so you can change directions of the breasts
whatever way you need to change it in order to make sure that you’re getting
the best line of sight at it I think that’s important manipulate the carcass
yeah so that you can you can it’s easier for you yeah some of the worst things
I’ve seen is when people try to perform a Cirque du Soleil type of acrobatics in
order to reach around something that’s gonna create more opportunity for an
accident happen right so the it’s small enough and light enough that you need to
change it around so that you can make it work for you so now I’ve peeled off the
meat from the bone we can see how that rib cage goes yeah right I’m gonna flip
it over to the other side so I’m not taking that breast off just yet I’m
gonna flip it over to this side and I’m gonna be going for that same fat line on
the other side yup so I’ll just take my knife like so and now I can just follow
that rib cage again using again the tip of my knife to follow along the shapes
of those bones this is where the wing came off so I need to just kind of
navigate around that socket a little bit and now I’m just following the meat
there’s the wishbone the meat on cut away the skin now this is where you
can take out the day’s frustrations if you really want to because from this
point here if you’ve cleared off enough meat you should be able to just pull it
out yeah right and now we’ve got some bones for our stock we’ve got a boneless
skin-on chicken breast that I would argue might want to remove this
centerpiece so we’ll go ahead and do that right where that bone rest we’ll
take a piece of cartilage in there that’s right there is a little piece of
cartilage in there and it might be there we can see it right there yeah
so I just want to pull that it will pull that out and now we’ve got two nice
bone-in skin-on chicken breast that’s a good-looking chicken yeah you know even
with us talking and me slowing you down that doesn’t take very long no not at
all oh and look at all like I mean everything again is useful we can
certainly get a you set of everything now what about breaking the thigh from
the leg okay good so from breaking the thigh so we’ve also
got when we look at the inside of it instead of the outer with the skin we’re
gonna flip it on so that we’re looking at the inside the skin is down so we’ve
got another fat line in here we can see yep
so ii-i’ll clean this and and and shoot it from the rooftops but I always say
the drum side of the fat line so the drum side of the line okay okay so we go
from the drum side of the line we’re gonna hit that joint every single time
would you like to do this one well yeah that didn’t why am i fighting with that
I don’t know you have to find the fat line and go
drum side of the fat line so there’s the fat line that’s right and so just on the
drum side of the fat just a little bit over I would wager right there you
should be pretty good okay I’ve struggled my entire life with
that cut thank you you’re welcome I have learned something today I’m very
very happy so by whole chickens buy the best
quality whole chicken that you possibly can I think that’s important too yep
the best that you can afford and use the entire bird thanks for stopping by
pleasure thanks everybody see you again soon you take like that that’s great you

100 thoughts on “Pro Butcher Shows How To Cut Up A Whole Chicken”

  1. Thanks for watching everyone! I'll be making Chicken stock with these bones this week, and Jamie will be back next week with a Whole hog that we'll be butchering. So keep a lookout for those videos. Here's our Chicken Stock Recipe:

  2. Besides for learning about eggs, and cooking the chicken, this is one of the more important things to understand for an omnivore. Don’t forget to use the best knife for the task at hand. That being said, I’m going out for some General Tso’s chicken, the general out ranks the Colonel in my world.

  3. Thanks. Great info. I don't suppose Jamie would want to butcher a turkey? It would be great for an old couple to be able to get an inexpensive big bird, butcher it, freeze what we don't use and ultimately have several different meals.

  4. I was always thought to break the wishbone to make it easier to get the filet off. Also I start from the breast to get the filet off. You'll get two filets in stead off one.

  5. Fat line, drum side: Love it when you show you're not a 'know it all personality chef' that look down to your viewers! I learned also – will try with my next bird.

  6. This video will be saved in my "How to video". Thanks so much Glen for providing us with this type of video. As always, you provide your viewers with the best videos. Cannot wait for the next.

  7. All right , Glenn!! It's great to hear someone admit to actually liking the wing tip instead of (usually snootily) saying it's only good for the stock, or there's no meat on it. It's super crispy and on of my favorite parts to eat!

  8. At my local store a raw chicken is $2 more expensive than a cooked rotisserie chicken is. It always leaves me scratching my head head. Since I hardly ever have time to cook one I don't care that much but it's so strange.

  9. This was soooo timely for me. Super helpful. I just did this myself and I have to say I’m kinda proud of the results. Thank you!

    Also, I’ve been watching a while now and I have to say I love the channel! Great work 🙂

  10. I was just editing some future episodes and noticed how badly I butchered the chicken … next time … how about carving a finished whole chicken?

  11. hey Glenn..good,.. you're cutting up chicken. I assume that means you're going to do your KFC clone sometime soon? I tried a tweaked version of the Ken's version 7 (I added garlic powder,onion powder, no cloves no allspice no coriander) turned out absolutely delicious not perfect but,. I don't have a pressure fryer anyways. absolutely chicken I would be proud to serve to anybody..!! By the way You can separate your wings exact same way as the leg thigh cut!

  12. Fantastic. Loved this video. As much as I loved watching you guys explain the cuts the first time, I loved the silent demo after the knowledge portion maybe even more. I know I won’t be the first or Last to ask but, could you do a cow and pig breakdown next? Keep up the good work Glen.👍

  13. Would love if Jamie could return in a future video for a how to in prepping some other meat, or fully preparing an animal (such as knocking out or shooting a turkey chopping off the head, removing the organs… but that miiiiight be a bit graphic for YouTube).

    Also maybe in the future you could get in touch with the people behind FreshCap Mushrooms and maybe have them show a method to start a mushroom growing operation for having fresh shrooms. I noticed them a few days ago, thought it might be something you could do with your backyard garden, show how to grow the food not just preparing it.

  14. Excellent video. Excellent teacher. The only reason I don’t do this more often is not wanting to deal with the sanitation. I’ve got a small kitchen without a big open worktop like that and in order to manipulate the carcass I’m splashing raw chicken particles all over hard to clean surfaces. There’s always this nagging feeling that I missed a drip of chicken juice somehow. This’d be a whole different video if you had to do this on that back counter next to your knife block or coffee machine. Still, this is far and away the best explanation of this procedure I’ve ever seen. Just another reason why this is the best cooking channel out there.

  15. Glen, I love your videos! It would be great to see a series in great stocks: vegetable, chicken, etc. Always good to see ways to not waste bits and bobs. Cheers!

  16. I wonder how many people are seeing chicken being cut for the first time and are realizing they are eating an animal lol, yes this was a bird. Cool vid, thank you for the fundamentals, that's what is missing more than not.

  17. The tip about how to separate the leg from the thigh is worth the video. I always followed the advice of a certain food-related channel that told me to bend the joint and feel for the two bumps.

  18. Growing up we always had fried chicken on Sunday. I was lucky enough to have watched my mother cut up the bird which had to be stretched to it's limit with 6 kids in the family. Everybody had their designated piece. My sister always had to have the wishbone which was a nice piece of white meat. We fried it all leaving the oyster on the bone to provide a treat for the one getting the mostly bony part. My usual piece was a leg and sometimes the backbone which I enjoyed going over every bone.

  19. Great tutorial. I've always left the oyster on for soup. Oops! Breaking down a chicken is like buying the breasts and getting the rest free.

  20. Thanks to you and Jaime for this video! Using it as a guide, I was able to cut up a chicken for the very first time and didn’t massacre it too badly.

    Now wish me luck cooking the first dinner on my brand new oven!

  21. Have you seen the Chef Show on Netflix? On season 2 Jon Favreau breaks down a brisket but glosses way over (probably for time). Would you consider another episode like this for a brisket? 😋

    Great episode.

  22. Thank you so much for this video. I love the content on this channel, Jamie is so clear in the way he communicates and your quality of production really made that a joy to watch. I also learned something today!

  23. Great video on how to do it right but I need to know how to cut up a cooked chicken. I can never get the drum sticks off without messing them up !

  24. But where's the chicken fingers?

    Just kidding. This is a great video. Very informative. Where I live here in the states we have Costco whole chickens cooked for $5. I'm always struggling with a couple of those cuts but I assume this could transfer over to a whole cooked chicken too. I'm going to give it a try next time. Thanks again!

  25. I was wrong about the wing but dead on about poultry injections…

    @Glen M

  26. Wow, this is super helpful! The one cut not included which I wish I could have seen, though, would have been to see how to take the bone out of the thigh cleanly. I seem to either leave too much meat on the bone or have parts of the joint/cartilage still left in when I buy bone-in thighs at the grocery store.

  27. Thanks for a great tutorial! Separating the drum from the thigh was new to me as well. Be sure to watch the close-ups after the last commercial for a clear review of the process.

  28. This video came in handy this week with full chickens on sale I bought 5 and cut into pieces and froze them in groups according to parts. SWEET! I saved a bundle. Thanks guys for the fat line clue for cuts.

  29. Wow I learned a LOT here but I also learned, not to discredit the rest of the teachings, that my knife is a damn crayola-brand knife for kids. He cuts through some spots like butter, very effortlessly, where I am struggling to slice some skin like my knife is safety scissors. lol

  30. I made my first attempt after watching this. Did ok except for breast, think I left a little to much meat on the carcass. Oh well I’ll have to practice some more.

  31. do you break down the back and neck? or do you plop it all in the stock pot? i don’t like all the blood that’s left on it. do you wash it off or does it go in the stock too?

  32. The close up shots of him cutting into the chicken were the most helpful. Was hoping for a top, down view of the entire demonstration.[edit] just watched the last few minutes of him breaking down a chicken in silence. Thank you.

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