How to Cut Up a Whole Chicken

Uploaded by allrecipes on 30.11.2010

Buying a whole chicken is a great way to save money. But cutting into pieces can
be tricky and intimidating if you've never tried it before.
Never fear, we'll show you how to get the most out of a whole chicken by cutting
it into easy to use pieces in five steps.
To start you need two simple kitchen tools: a cutting board and a sharp knife.
Make sure the knife is really sharp. You need to cut through skin, cartilage, and
bone. A dull knife makes this difficult.
Plus, you'll end up with torn, instead of cut meat.
Be safe always cut away from your fingers and hands. Chicken is slippery,
so be careful.
Step one: Empty the cavity.
Remove any extra pieces like the neck, liver, giblets, and heart. Discard the
liver and set the rest aside to use for homemade chicken stock. Pull off any extra
fat, too.
Step two:
Cut off the legs. Place the chicken breast side up, on a clean cutting board.
position the bird so the legs are pointing toward you.
Pull one leg away from the body,
and cut down through the skin, between the leg and the body.
Cut through the joint; repeat with the other leg. Here's a little trick to
separate the leg from where it attaches to the body. Think of the joint attachment
as a ball and socket. Bend the leg backwards to pop the ball out of the
socket. If you want to separate the drumsticks and thighs, bend the leg, and cut
through the joints.
Step three:
Cut off the wings.
Pull one wing away from the body, and cut down through the skin and breast, just
above the shoulder joint. Cut through the joint to remove the wing.
Do the same thing on the other side.
You can leave the wings whole or cut through the wing joints to make snack
sized pieces for your favorite wings recipe.
Step four: Cut off the breast meat. The lower calorie white meat, the breast, is
easy to remove. Turn the chicken breasts side down; remove the backbone by cutting
through the rib cage along one side.
Repeat on the other side.
Then cut the whole breast lengthwise along the breastbone.
You'll get to perfect breast halves.
Step five:
Rinse, trim, then cook or store.
Rinse the chicken pieces in cold water.
Trim off any bits of bone, cartilage, and fat. Now you're ready to cook your
favorite chicken dish with the right pieces.
Or, you can freeze the pieces in individual packets to use later.
Keep the bones, and add them with the pieces you saved earlier into a stock
pot with water in vegetables for a savory chicken stock.
Be safe when handling raw chicken.
Wash everything you've used: cutting board, knife, and your hands with warm
soapy water. That's it!
Cutting up a whole chicken is that easy.
And you'll get better, the more you practice. Transforming a whole bird into
convenient, ready to cook pieces doesn't take much time; and you'll save money
every time you do it.