Cornell Chicken

YIELD:  16 Chicken quarters

     Long time NY State residents, Bob and I heard about Cornell Chicken for years, but hadn’t tried it.  We made it today, following the attached recipe and the results were amazing.  We’ll be making it again very soon.  The skin was crispy, and the chicken was moist, tender, and flavorful.  I am not good about eating leftovers, but I ate this again the next day.  Pair this chicken up with salt potatoes, and you’ll have a classic NY bbq.  Don’t forget the cole slaw and corn on the cob!

Here’s the history of Cornell Chicken:

This famous golden crispy-skinned grilled chicken recipe was created by Dr. Robert C. Baker, a food science professor at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY. The recipe ended up being a huge success, and the recipe became a statewide favorite.


1 egg

1 cup vegetable oil

2 cups cider vinegar

1 TBSP salt

1 TBSP Poultry seasoning

½ tsp pepper

4 broiler chickens cut into quarters


In a large bowl, whisk egg.  Add oil and whisk until it gets thick, and bright yellow, for about 2 minutes.  Now whisk in vinegar and seasonings. (OR – place all ingredients except chicken in your blender and puree until smooth).

Poke the chicken several times with a fork or knife so the marinade can get in and grease will release when cooking. Marinate the chicken for 3 to 24 hours in the refrigerator.

Set up the grill for 2-zone indirect cooking.  This is an important technique.  Place the chicken over the indirect zone and close the lid.  Baste about every 10-15 minutes.  Turn the chicken over, moving the pieces closer to the heat away and the pieces away closer.

Cooking time varies, depending on how big your chicken pieces are.  Allow approximately 40-45 minutes until internal temp of each piece is 150° F and stop basting.  Move all pieces over the hot direct heat side of the grill, skin side down.  Crisp the skin without burning it for 10-15 minutes.  Turn over and cook for 5 minutes more.  This crisps the skin and ensures that the raw egg is fully cooked.  Once the skin is crisp and the joint temp is at least 165° F, take the meat off the grill.  Dark meat takes longer to cook.  Stick the thermometer in the joint between the drumstick and thigh.  If it reads 165° F, it’s fully cooked and safe to eat.

NOTE:  The sauce is very close to mayonnaise and can be stored for a couple of weeks in the fridge.  The vinegar, salt and cold temp will prevent salmonella from growing.  Once it’s cooked, it’s perfectly safe.  The author of this recipe found Dr. Baker’s original recipe too salty, and it was cut back to 1 TBSP.  I think it was plenty salty using just 1 TBSP.

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By Tika for CHEW WANNA EAT? © 2016







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