How to cook a whole chicken on a campfire

Nature is the best place to enjoy good food. And you don’t need a lot of equipment to make a great meal either – just a hot campfire, a decent cast iron pan, and some quality ingredients. Here Wes Siler shows you his favorite way to cook a whole chicken and all its ingredients over an open fire.


  • A whole chicken, giblets removed
  • Potatoes
  • A bunch of parsley
  • A bunch of coriander
  • A large jalapeño
  • salt
  • pepper
  • Real olive oil
  • Red wine vinegar


  • A sharp knife (Wes uses an Esee CL1)
  • A cutting board
  • A 1 gallon plastic bag
  • Kitchen scissors (Wes uses Oxo Good Grips)
  • Aluminum foil
  • A large cast iron pan
  • Soap, water and hand sanitizer for cleaning
  • Gloves or a hot pad (Wes wears Mechanix Originals)


Make a fire at least an hour before cooking to create a firm bed of glowing coals. Spit cock your chicken, set it aside, then sanitize your cooking station. Next, make a chimichurri sauce by chopping the coriander, parsley and jalapeño and adding salt, pepper, olive oil and vinegar to taste. Pour this mixture into the plastic bag. Halve or quarter the potatoes depending on their size. Lightly oil the pan and place the chicken breast side up. Arrange the legs carefully so that the chicken is evenly distributed, then place the potatoes around them and cover with chimichurri sauce.

Place the pan directly on the fire, camp it with aluminum foil, and cook for 45 minutes to an hour, depending on the size of your chicken and the intensity of your fire. Check your bird after 20 minutes – you can do this by cutting into the thickest part of the chest or thigh. It’s done when the meat is evenly white and the juices are clear. Add a liquid like white wine or beer if something sticks to the bottom of the pan. Slice, serve and enjoy.

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