Cuts of a chicken

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Common cuts of chicken are breasts, legs: (drumsticks and thighs) and wings.

These cuts are often sold pre-packed and ready prepared but it is trivial (and economical) to joint a chicken at home, all you need is a sharp knife, a cutting board and these simple instructions.

A chicken, jointed and separated into breasts, drumsticks, thighs and wings

Chicken breast

Chicken breasts are probably the most commonly used cut of chicken, they can cooked whole, stuffed, pan fried, baked, roasted, barbecued or cut into pieces and stewed. They don't have as much flavour as legs or thighs and can dry out if not carefully cooked.

Chicken legs

Chicken legs can be left whole or separated into thighs and drumsticks. They have a lot of flavour, especially if cooked on the bone. If roasted with the skin on, they produce a lovely crisp golden finish.

Chicken drumsticks

The drumsticks are the 'shins' of the chicken and are from separation of the legs into drumsticks and thighs. As with the whole leg they have lots of flavour and are especially nice if roasted or barbecued with the skins on.

Chicken thighs

This is the darker meat of the chicken and that with the most flavour as it receives the most exercise in the life of a free range chicken.

Chicken wings

An underrated piece of chicken with lots of flavour, ideally barbecued, roasted, grilled or cooked with a sauce.

Chicken wings and thighs cooking in a sauce (Pollo al ajillo)

Whole chicken

Let's not forget the whole chicken. If you want an unusual way to cook the perfect roast chicken, try the beer can method. It is by far the best way to roast a whole chicken.

See also

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