Chicken Grill Main Dish One Pot Meal

Shipwreck’s Smoked “Bombay-ish Butter Chicken”

By John Dillon from Shipwreck BBQ

Here is my twist on the classic Indian dish, “Butter Chicken”, which usually has cubes of chicken breast cooked in the sauce. I wanted to use a whole bird, so why not Spatchcock? I love the added smokey element to the dish too.

My tip is to always prep out your ingredients prior to cooking. It helps the cooking process go smoother and more enjoyable!


Print Recipe
  • 4-6 lb whole chicken
  • 1-2 Tbsp Dizzy Pig Bombay Curry-ish Seasoning (I do a liberal coating as I want those all those spice notes and aroma in the dish, but use as much as you prefer)

Butter Sauce

  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 1 Tbsp ginger, grated or minced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2-3 Tbsp butter
  • 2 tsp Garam Masala
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1-2 tsp Dizzy Pig’s Bombay Curry-ish
  • 14 oz can tomato sauce
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup water



  1. Pat dry your chicken with paper towels, as dry as you can get it.
  2. Time to spatchcock! It’s a simple process and all you need is some kitchen scissors or a sharp knife. Place the bird breast down and cut along each side of the backbone of the chicken (I save the backbones to make homemade stock). Flip over the bird and press down on the breast to crack the breastbone. This allows the bird to lay flat for the cook. Pat dry the bird again and let it sit for 15-20 minutes to dry out.
  3. Season up the bird with Bombay Curry-ish.
  4. Time to start your BGE or other smoker and set it up for indirect cooking at 325°F. (You can smoke the bird at whatever temp you normal cook with – 325°F is my preference as it gets enough smoke time and still hot enough to get a nice crisp to the skin)

Cook Chicken

  1. Once your smoker comes to temp, place you chicken on the smoker.
  2. Pull off the bird once it hits the desired internal temp of 165°F in the breast. I cook to internal temps and not for time – but usually a bird in that size range and at that cooking temp, should get to 165°F in approximately 75-90 minutes.
  3. Note: The chicken can be cooked ahead of time too. If you did, just start with the sauce part of the recipe and add the chicken after the sauce is simmering and let it simmer another 20 minutes to heat the chicken back up and meld with the sauce.
  4. While the bird is on the smoker, it’s time to start the sauce.

Make Butter Sauce

  1. Melt 2 Tbsp butter in a large pot or large cast iron skillet over medium heat.
  2. Add the onions, ginger, and garlic and sweat for 1-2 minutes.
  3. Add the garam masala, Bombay Curry-ish, cumin and sautee until fragrant.
  4. Add the tomato sauce, water, and cream. Bring to a simmer (You can add more heavy cream if you like the sauce to be creamier)


  1. Now you have a few different options to put it altogether:
  2. You can pull the meat from the chicken and add it to the sauce pot to cook together for another 20 minutes – you can do this on the stove or on the smoker to add a smokier element to the dish.
  3. If you used a large cast iron skillet like I did, you can add the whole spatchcock chicken to the skillet. Put the skillet back on the smoker for 20 minutes. This option makes a cool presentation when eating with family and friends!
  4. Serving
  5. To garnish, swirl more heavy cream on top and chopped cilantro. These are optional but make a great presentation!
  6. I served this Smoked Butter Chicken with fragrant Lavender Basmati Rice and Naan Bread.