Southern Cornbread Dressed-Up Chicken

Total Time:
1 hr 40 min
30 min
10 min
1 hr

4 servings

  • 4 strips thick-sliced bacon
  • 2 large onions, thinly sliced
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 cup crumbled prepared cornbread
  • 2 cups baby spinach
  • 1 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup pecan pieces
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons dijon mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 2 chicken halves, backbone removed (about 1 1/2 pounds each)
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Cook the bacon in a large ovenproof skillet over medium heat until crisp, about 7 minutes; transfer to a paper-towel-lined plate. Add the onions to the pan with 1 teaspoon salt and some pepper; cook over low heat until tender, about 5 minutes, scraping up the browned bits with a wooden spoon. Set the skillet aside.

  • Combine the cornbread, spinach, cheese, pecans, garlic, 1 tablespoon of the mustard, 1/2 teaspoon salt and the nutmeg in a medium bowl. Crumble in the bacon and toss gently. Stuff the mixture between the skin and flesh of each chicken half, making sure to cover the breast and thigh.

  • Place the chicken halves skin-side up on top of the onions in the skillet. Combine the butter and honey in a bowl and brush all over the chicken; season with salt. Roast in the oven until a thermometer inserted in the thigh registers 165, about 50 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a cutting board; let rest for 10 minutes. Whisk the remaining 1 tablespoon mustard into the onion mixture and set aside. Carve each chicken half and serve on a platter with the onions.

  • Photograph by Tina Rupp

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    This recipe is featured in:

    The Best Kwanzaa Recipes