Perfect Roasted Chicken

Roasted ChickenEvery home cook should have a no-fail recipe for roasted chicken, one you can count on to always deliver golden skin and well cooked, moist, flavorful meat. So what’s the secret? Well, there are several:

Buy Smaller Chickens

Smaller chickens – those weighing 4 1/2 pounds (2 kg) or less – cook fast and evenly, resulting in moister meat. Unfortunately, many stores only sell whole chickens that weigh 5 pounds (2.5 kg) or more. However, if you get stuck with a big chicken, pre-seasoning can help.

Pre-Season the Bird

No matter what size of bird you have, salting a chicken in advance will make the meat (especially the white meat) more flavorful and tender. Ideally, salt the chicken 24 hours ahead of time, but even a few hours can make a difference.

Season Liberally

As a general guideline, use 1/2 (2.5 ml) to 3/4 teaspoon (4 ml) of kosher salt per pound. Don’t rub the salt directly onto the meat; only rub it on the skin and sprinkle some in the cavity. For extra flavor, add any of your favorite spices to the salt mix and/or tuck fresh herbs under the skin.

Dry Skin = Crispy Skin

If you love crispy, crackling skin then moisture is the enemy. According to the USDA, there is no need to rinse a chicken before cooking it. Take the bird out of its packaging and pat the chicken dry really well with paper towels. Consider keeping the chicken uncovered in a refrigerator overnight (after salting it) which helps dry the skin further, then pat the bird dry again before putting it in the oven. Rubbing butter or oil on the skin can create moisture that prevents crisping up. And don’t baste the chicken while it roasts.

Don’t Roast a Cold Bird

Let the chicken rest on the counter for 30 minutes before putting it in the oven. A cold chicken directly from the refrigerator won’t cook evenly.

Use High Heat

Roasting a bird in a 475 ºF (246 ºC) or 500 ºF (260 ºC) oven might seem crazy (and will create a little bit of smoke) but the results are reliably stunning; crisp skin and moist meat.  Roasting at lower temperatures just prolongs the cooking process, making dry or even undercooked meat more likely.

Use a Thermometer

You’ll always pull the bird out at the right time if you know exactly what the temperature is. Inserted into the thigh, the thermometer should read 165 ºF. (74 ºC)

Follow the tips above or the recipe below and you’ll roast a perfect chicken every time.

Serves: 3 to 4

Time in the Kitchen: 10 minutes of prep and approximately 1 hour of cooking time (plus 24 hours to pre-salt the bird)



  • One 3 to 5 pound chicken (1.4 kg to 2.3 kg)
  • 8 fresh sage leaves or sprigs of fresh thyme
  • Kosher salt (1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon per pound) (2.5 ml to 4 ml)
  • Black pepper (1/2 teaspoon or more) (2.5 ml)
  • Add additional spices or herbs if desired


Remove everything from the chicken cavity and cut off the clump of tail fat right outside of the cavity. Thoroughly pat the chicken dry.

Use your fingers to loosen little pockets of skin over each breast and thigh so the skin separates from the meat. Tuck 2 sage leaves/thyme sprigs into each pocket of loose skin so the herbs are touching the meat.

Mix together the salt and pepper (and other spices) and rub all over the bird. Season the breasts more heavily than other parts of the bird. Sprinkle a little bit of salt and pepper in the cavity.

Seasoned Bird

Loosely cover the chicken with a large paper towel or leave it uncovered. Refrigerate the chicken for 24 hours.

Remove the chicken from the refrigerator and pat it dry again. Let it come to room temperature for 30 minutes. Tuck the wing tips in or cut them off.

Preheat the oven to 500 ºF (260 ºC). Place a rack on the second level from the bottom.

Put the chicken in a roasting pan or cast iron skillet breast side up. Slide the pan into the oven so the legs are in the back of the oven. This is so the legs/thighs, which take longer to cook, are in the hottest part of the oven (the back).

Roast the chicken for 10 minutes then give the bird a shove with a spoon or spatula to loosen it from the pan so it doesn’t stick.

For the remaining roasting time, don’t open the oven door or disturb the bird. Keep your oven fan on and plan to open a window, as roasting at 500 ºF does cause a little smoke.

Plan to roast the bird for 10 minutes per pound (50 minutes for a 5 pound chicken) and then check the temperature. When the temperature near a thigh is 165 ºF (74 ºC), the chicken should be done.

Carefully remove the pan from the oven, watching out for hot grease.

Remove the chicken from the roasting pan, pouring any juices that have accumulated in the cavity back into the pan.

Let the chicken rest on a cutting board or plate for at least ten minutes before cutting into it.

Add a little bit of water or chicken stock to the roasting pan or skillet and bring it to a simmer on the stove, scraping the bottom of the pan to release any bits stuck to the bottom. Simmer the liquid to reduce it by half before serving it as a sauce for the chicken.

Roasted Chicken

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  1. Actually, roasting at high temperatures will just make it more likely that you burn the chicken or get that dry chicken. I’ve made incredibly moist, incredibly tasty, chicken at 100C. It took ages and ages, but I’ve never had a chicken come out that yummy. I usually use 125C for roasts and the like, because it evaporates less water.

    Checking a chicken’s temperature should be done in the meat close to the thigh bone, on the inside of the thigh. That’s the part that gets done last, and it should always reach 75C. I think the guideline for store’s in Sweden is 82C, but cambylobacter and salmonella both die at 70C, so I use 75C as a measurement at home.

    1. I’ve tried both high and low heat. It’s possible to get good roasted meat from both.

      High heat has the advantage of cooking quickly and crisping up the skin nicely. The downside is the smoke and the fact it needs to be watched carefully at the end because it will burn quickly. I’ve covered skin in the beginning and then uncovered near the end to try to prevent the burning issue, with some success.

      Low heat has the advantage of no smoke and a “set it and forget it” approach. The downside is that it seems like you need to start it yesterday. 🙂 It is also much harder to get a crispy skin.

      Currently we cook at the highest heat we can to prevent the smoke (that’s about 400-450F) because we’re usually looking to get it done quickly. I’ll cover it for the first 30 minutes and then uncover it for the rest of the cooking time. I confess I still am tweaking the getting the skin right, though. I might need to cover it less or forgo it entirely.

      At any rate, it usually gets us chicken within the hour. Higher heat would be ideal, but we don’t have the equipment to deal with the smoke and a smoky kitchen gets old quickly.

    2. I cook at low temp for an hour, and then finish at a high temp. The trick to not burning the skin is to cover with foil once it has browned sufficiently.

  2. Similar though not quite identical to the Zuni Cafe method, which I have found works very well. The summarized version of that on the Smitten Kitchen blog comes in handy. Probably you’ll want to avoid the bread salad side dish. Or just do as described above: it’s close enough. I like thyme sprigs and tend to loosen the chicken skin in way too many places just to insert them, sometimes overdoing the herbal flavors.

  3. Cook’s Illustrated had a great article on crispy skin roast chicken. Rub the skin with a mixture of 2 tablesoons salt and 1 tablespoon baking POWDER (not baking soda- that’s a very important difference). Run your fingers under the skin to separate it from the meat, poke a few holes in the skin to let the fat drain off, and then let it air dry in the fridge a few hours or overnight. I forget the exact cooking times (Cooks Illustrated gets really technical with details) but you can roast normally.

  4. I find that 1/2 tsp of Kosher salt per pound is plenty for my taste. Gravy made from the drippings is still too salty for me. A few hours of advanced salting is fine for pork chops, but the 24 hour time works better for turkey, whole chicken or a pork tenderloin. The ultimate roast chicken though is pre-salted, spatchcocked and cooked at high heat with the indirect method on the BBQ. Spatchcocking is easy (use a good pair of kitchen shears to cut along both sides of the spine and open the sucker up like a book) and helps it cook more evenly. It doesn’t look as pretty when it’s done though.

    Right now I have a pork tenderloin and a turkey breast pre-salted sitting in the fridge. This evening I’ll smoke the turkey for sandwiches later this week and cook the tenderloin for dinner. I use a chopstick to stuff thyme branches undr the skin of the bird.

  5. We use the a method from America’s Test Kitchen where you use a hot oven (450F) and preheat an oven safe skillet in it while you rub the chicken with olive oil and salt. The hot skillet speeds the thigh cooking, then about 20 to 30 min in you turn off the oven and let it be for about half an hour. I forget what temp the meat should be at when you turn off the oven but it’s easy to google the recipe. Then you can make a pan sauce from the skillet drippings.

  6. I just want to tell a funny story: When my husband and I were at the height of our SAD diet eating, we went to Canada and discovered poutine. (SCD staple). For those of you who don’t know, this is french fries and cheese curds with gravy on top. Of course, this must be eaten with beer.

    On a quest to replicate this in the US, we talked with our neighbor who is a good home chef and she said (to make the gravy), “first, you roast a chicken.”

    We thought this was hilarious because who would ever roast a chicken to get the bones to make the stock to make the gravy. We wanted the fastest possible route to fries smothered in cheese and gravy. “First, you roast a chicken” was the punchline of a lot of jokes.

    Fast forward a couple of years and we are buying locally-raised chickens, roasting them on the “spinner” (an ancient, “as seen on TV” rotisserie my dad produced from his basement) and yes, I am making broth from scratch with herbs from my garden.

    There is no poutine at the end of this story, just two much healthier people who still laugh every time we say “First, you roast a chicken.” Only now because we are laughing at our old selves.

    We are fans of brining. Will experiment with some of these ideas and comments. Thanks!

      1. Whatever gave you that idea?

        It’s kind of a Monty Python sketch. On that note I think I should say something like “A CHICKEN?! Whatever gave you the idea?.”

        And then there would have to be something about haggling over the chicken at a famers market or perhaps this was already covered by Portlandia. Yes, I think it was. The chicken’s name was Colin.

      1. Where do you live and how do I get there? I can bring fresh cheese curds. And of course A CHICKEN!

    1. That’s actually a very funny story IMO.
      I probably would have burst out laughing if I was told that was the START of making gravy.

      I too would have used the line “First, you roast a chicken……” as the beginning of the explanation of all sorts of stuff for years.

      Question : How post a comment on MDA website?
      Answer : “First, you roast a chicken………”

      You’re doing the chicken roasting start of prep now – which is great – but a funny ending.

      1. I am roasting some beef today which doesn’t lend itself to any funny stories but I appreciate your reply, which is hilarious.

    2. So out of curiosity… Did you ever make the poutine by first roasting a chicken?

      If it’s been a running gag for years, I would at least do it once. Make an epic long day of it to get around to making a small amount of poutine.

  7. For incredibly moist white meat, roast the bird breast-side down. I tried it with my Thanksgiving turkey this past year, and it was the most succulent white meat I’ve ever prepared. I’ll have to try this method of seasoning.

  8. I’d have to look this up again, but last year I tried a turkey recipe from Alton Brown. It included soaking in a brine (which isn’t needed here), then roasting the turkey at a high temp-450F I think it was-for the first half hour, then reducing heat to 350-375-again, check on this-until it reached the desired inner temp. I tried this last year, and it was great. Crisp skin, moist meat.

    1. Concur with John. I’ve used Alton Brown’s turkey recipe several times, and it’s yet to fail me. A couple of other tips in his recipe are oiling the bird before cooking it at high heat (essentially frying the skin), and using a foil “shield” on the white meat to cook it more slowly while the dark meat makes its way to done.

  9. Okay, I’ve finally read something that I have to factor in on. I’d like to offer a variation to those few folks who have access to normal chickens. At age 60, I have been breeding and raising poultry for almost 4 decades. I belong to a number of poultry organizations and we even show some of our birds (yes….there are chicken shows!). We have a youth sponsorship program and also do presentations on breeding, raising, culling, processing, and cooking “real chicken”. We call them “real” because the chickens we eat are the birds your great grandparents ate. The bird in the picture, even if it’s “organic” is a version of birds thatconsumers (unfortunately) have been offered in grocery stores and even many farmers markets pretty much since the mid-50’s (much cheaper to produce). We call them “franken chickens”. Real chickens (the ones your great grandparents ate, are butchered @ 4 to 6 months of age. What you buy at the stores are 5 & 6 weeks old, sometimes 7. They MUST be butchered at an early age. They grow so fast that @ butcher time, their feathers only cover half of their skin, their hearts and other organs are tiny, and if they don’t get butchered by around 10 weeks their leg joints give out, assuming their organs have held up. (we raised some….all true). They also don’t get much exercise because they grow so fast and eat feed so ravenously, within a couple weeks, their legs can’t support the weight so they pretty much lay around the feeders and keep eating. They couldn’t forage if they wanted to….which they don’t. If you are fortunate enough to be able to find access to real chickens from a local breeder, internet, or farmers market [such as Jersey Giants, New Hamps (sold in stores until the mid 50’s), Barred Rocks (ditto the Hamps), Rhode Island Reds, Salmon Faverolles, and Marans], follow the recipe in the Daily Apple but after 7 mins, knock the temp down to 310 and place a strip of aluminum foil on top of the breast bone. (Cooking real chicken must be a slower process.) We stuff the cavity with slices of fruit and sometimes spritz the bird halfway through the roasting with a mixture of beer/olive oil/apple juice and still get a crisp skin. Because the chicken has been doing what real chickens do, foraging weed seeds, bugs, grass bits, etc, and growing up, they have more muscle tissue and because of their age MUCH more flavor. With age comes flavor so be prepared to taste CHICKEN…..sorta like the difference between a store-bought tomato and one picked ripe, right off of the vine.

    1. This is an incredibly useful post: thank you. Our first “real” chicken left us a little unsure because it was so different. We have figured it out, although I like your tips.

      Your details about other chickens, well, I didn’t know any of that. We still have conventional chicken when we are out and after this I’m not sure what I’m going to do between the chicken and the vegetarian (wheat / corn / GMO) entree. I guess mindfully eat what I’m eating — and knowing me have some need to discuss with my table.

    2. “Real chickens (the ones your great grandparents ate, are butchered @ 4 to 6 months of age. What you buy at the stores are 5 & 6 weeks old, sometimes 7. They MUST be butchered at an early age. They grow so fast that @ butcher time, their feathers only cover half of their skin, their hearts and other organs are tiny, and if they don’t get butchered by around 10 weeks their leg joints give out, assuming their organs have held up. (we raised some….all true). They also don’t get much exercise because they grow so fast and eat feed so ravenously, within a couple weeks, their legs can’t support the weight so they pretty much lay around the feeders and keep eating.”

      Perfect! They’re more efficient to bring to market, not all stringy and tough from exercise, easier to clean, and the meat-to-waste ratio is awesome. Thanks for bringing to my attention how great frankenchickens are.

      1. I hope you’re being facetious…

        If nothing else, real chicken tastes >>> Frankenbird.

    3. Thanks…have struggled cooking the pastured chickens from my farmer. They are always too dry. Will use your tips. The pastured pork however is incredible. Never had anything like it from the store…Never!

  10. Cornish game hens are much, much easier to work with. I highly recommend Alton Brown’s recipe. It is on the Food Network website. He uses a brick on top of the hens and roasts at 500F. It is absolutely delicious! He recommends serving with bacon and onions. That is one meal I won’t forget for a while.

  11. I recently became a fan of long cooking, and this thanks to the cast iron pots 🙂

    When I roast anything, from lamb’s gigot to a big piece beef, I set the oven to 180°C can cook it from 2 to 2.5 hours, but in a closed environment. I turn the piece 2-3 times, the external part caramelizes evenly, without burning.

    I also add plenty of additional fats, especially for lean meats like rabbit or game meat, and aromatic herbs (rosemary is a must when I cook in the oven, and lamb wouldn’t be the same without thyme). The juice that is collected in the pot is dense and tasty, perfect to be poured over the meat after the slices are cut.

  12. Friends, this is a little off topic, but have you smoked a chicken? We have the smoker set up and I’m just curious.

    1. Yes. Just put on the smoker and let er rip. Let internal temp (in meat near thigh) hit 160. It can take a few hours though, BUT, if you spatchcock the chicken it will be done much more quicker.
      In both cases, start breast down, then turn over. When to turn is a judgment call, but pretty much like you were grilling it.

      1. Thanks, on the list for next week, appreciate the “breast down” tip.

    2. I have great results using a smoke box with wet hickory chips inside and slow cooking on a Gas grill at about 300 degrees F. If you have a three burner grill, you turn them all up to high, and put the smokebox in. When the temperature hits 500 and the chips start smoking, turn off one burner and turn the other two down to medium-low. Put the bird breast down on the “cold” burner, close the grill, and monitor the temperature to keep it around 300.

      You will have a crispy skinned, moist inside, with a great smoked flavor. You can do it with charcoal and hickory chips mixed with the charcoal, but monitoring and controlling the temperature is harder. (I have also been told that something called the “Green Egg” is great for slow cooking/smoking chicken.)

      I have been obsessed with cooking the perfect roasted chicken, and this is the best technique I’ve come up with so far, although the high heat oven methods also work pretty well, along with blasting at high heat, then lowering the heat, covering the chicken and cooking at 275 to 300, and then blasting it with heat at the very end.

      1. I appreciate your obsession but I cannot duplicate it. Yet, sir, yet. Thanks for your detailed comments I have some friends with the equipment who could be put up to this. Thanks!

        1. Yes, this is a middle-aged obsession. The gas grill is new to me, and I am having all sorts of fun with it.

  13. This technique for cooking chicken works well with turkey and Cornish hens, too. Barbara Kafka came out with a cookbook, The Art of Roasting, some years ago and everything, even veggies, is roasted at 500 degrees. I have done that but found it works just as well at 425 with no smoke and great results. And yes, putting the breast side down in the pan helps keep the breast meat juicier. You can turn it over the last 20 mins or so if it needs to brown up. It can flatten the breast a little bit but not a big deal to us.

    We have smoked chickens, Juli, and they are very tasty, but we don’t have the smoker anymore. It just got kind of time consuming and you do have to keep an eye on it. I’d like to know if anyone has used their grill to smoke meats. I think I saw an article somewhere on how to do it.

    1. “Roasting: A Simple Art” is the correct title of Barbara Kafka’s cookbook. Sorry, I didn’t quite get it right before. It came out in 1995 and Amazon has it now for $5 new, and used copies for a penny.

  14. Wow, sorry but I don’t agree – a bigger chicken, 4lbs/2kilos and above has bigger bones, so more bone stock and more skin and more mature and tasty flesh. I live in the Uk so am maybe only applying my thoughts to the FREE RANGE (forget organic) birds I buy, but a 4lb bird feeds me if I’m alone for 5 days plus skin, bone stock and gravy from the bloody drippings in the pan (I only wish our supermarkets did them with giblets!).

    Don’t rinse the bird, the heat on cooking will kill pathogens but meanwhile if you rinse, you risk splashing them all over near your sink, and just put a loose tent of tinfoil over the top, foregt fancy butter-based basting etc unless you already have those skills or want to try them, tinfoil does the basics so you don’t have to.

    1. Have you tried Abel & Cole or Green Pasture Farms in the UK? We get a weekly delivery from A&C. For meat, they do a choice between free range or organic in a variety of weights and they always come with the neck and giblets. They also sell quite meaty carcasses (2 per pack, giblets included) for a couple of quid. I feed my family of four PLUS four cats and a dog who are raw-fed from there from £80-£110 per week, which I don’t think is bad for seasonal, organic fruit and veg and free range beasts. You can get the cupboard and cleaning stuff too if you’re so inclined and set it all up so that whatever you want is delivered at regular intervals of your choosing, e.g., tea bags once a fortnight, sea salt every four weeks and so on. Once in a while they’ll throw in a little something extra and each delivery comes with a little recipe booklet. Veg box contents usually have something interesting in them – I’d never had jerusalem artichoke or kohl rabi before I found them. Of course you can also edit your likes and dislikes so if you don’t want the ever-present spuds, they’ll replace it with one of your ‘likes’.

      1. Message to evillil, Im in the uk I will give those suppliers a try thanks. Just wondering if I can ask a few tips on the kind of meals you put together. The money you spend is so reasonable to feed a family of for. Id appreciate any tips you may be ableto give.


        1. Another good supplier in the U.K. for meat only (they don’t do veg) is Roaming Roosters. We had tried out Devon Rose but weren’t happy with them and just got an order from Roaming Roosters last week, all grass fed, totally and truly free range.

          I bought the weekly box and then added on extras I wanted to bring it up to a fortnights worth, included things like oxtail and lambs liver and real beef dripping along with the usual suspects, cost was £100 for a fortnights meat for family of four (and we have a large quantity of meat at each meal!) They have gluten free burgers and sausages and will replace the ones in the weekly box with the gluten free if you ask them and they also threw in 2 meaty chicken carcasses for making stock for free on request.

          Have had the whole chicken, I overcooked it by accident and thoguht it looked dry but amazingly the meat was lovely and tender despite my bad treatment! Their bacon is lovely, hand cured (not sure about nitrate situation, haven’t asked) and we’re having leg of lamb tonight. Would definitely recommend them.

  15. I think I have you beat here….I marinate the chx in some olive oil, wine, herb & salt (tiny bit of tamari or lemon too!) while it comes to room temp. I put a pan in oven that I can later put on stovetop (like a big oven safe saucier) and preheat BOTH to 450 degrees. When ready, I pull pan out and put chicken directly into it (starts cooking immediately), back in oven and set for 30 mins (med size, 3 more or so for larger) and then turn oven OFF and set timer for another 30 mins (+) and do not open oven door. Once that timer goes off, you pull out the world’s most perfectly moist and crispy chicken. Remove chicken from pan and tent it (foil) to sit for 20 more minutes. Then, you take pan and put over med-high heat on stove and scrape all the brown bits and drippings, add some wine, reduce, add some chx stock and viola!! Best chicken ever. Even better than rotisserie! It’s also awesome with some thick onion slices on bottom of pan before putting chicken in so that you’ve got a heap of carmelized onions to have with it.

  16. I highly recommend spatchcocking the bird as it cooks in half the time, and it cooks much more evenly!

    1. I had to look that up! Will try it. That might be funnier than saying “First, you roast a chicken.” Ergo first you “spactchcockenzi” the chicken.” (I tried to make a German verb, sorry). That’s an awesome idea. I’m kind of in silly mood, but serious about my chickens so please forgive me.

  17. I usually cook my birds on low heat in a meat smoker and they always come out great. I would never have thought to do it at that high of a temp! I will have to try it next time i do it in the oven.

  18. Ok – so followed this recipe last night, as I had a chicken to cook anyway. It turned out wonderfully! I didn’t quite believe it would work (there are so many ‘perfect’ chicken recipes). I had a 4lb bird and roasted for 50 mins. The skin was perfectly crispy and flavoursome, the meat was juicy and tasty.
    Plus – this is just so convenient, 50 min roast! No, basting for hours, no faffing around, no spatchcocking, no bricks! This will be my go to recipe for roasts now.

  19. Made this tonight – spectacular. Made a dry rub of fresh sage, rosemary, thyme, salt, pepper and garlic. Some slices of lemon in the carcass. Followed the recipe otherwise to a T. Amazingly crispy on the outside (for my fiancé) and juicy on the inside. Thank you!!!

  20. Any easy way for a roast chicken is to first put it on its side in a hot cast iron skillet (with some olive oil at the bottom), fry it like that for 5 or 6 minutes, then swap sides. After the second side is cooked for 5 or 6 minutes, put it in the oven, 20 minutes a side, at 375, with a final 20 minutes breast side up.

    The frying it bit helps cook the dark meat without drying out the breast meat so they are finished together.

  21. I have used a chicken stand for roasted chicken for the last 10 years and always have a moist chicken with crispy skin.

    It is remarkably simple.
    Preheat oven to 425 (Fahrenheit)
    RInse (I rinse due to the yellowing of the skin from the chickens I get local)
    Pat dry
    Rub with sea salt and thyme
    Place on chicken upright stand and into roasting pan
    Place into preheated oven
    Add 4 cups warm water to bottom of pan
    Let cook for approximately 1 hour, or until thigh reaches 165.

    The water at the bottom steams the inside of the chicken while the skin gets paper thin and crisp.

    In the end, it is whatever works to make a meal that you enjoy and the leftovers are great for another meal.

  22. This is very similar to Thomas Keller of French Laundry Fame’s roast chicken recipe and it with out fail produces a chicken that has moist tender meat and skin that all the fat renders out and is paper thin, in fact shatters like glass when you tap it and tastes amazing.

  23. Okay! Just finished feasting on a 4lb organic chicken cooked exactly the way suggested. It was terrific! Absolutely delicious! Sauteed some onions in the drippings…oh yeah!

  24. Beer butt chicken all the way, so easy and always get moist chicken with crispy skin.

  25. When grilling whole chicken on your gas or charcoal grill. Just set your grill for the indirect method of grilling. Rub chicken with your favorite oil and season. Grill for one hour

  26. I tried this last night. Honestly, it was the best chicken I can remember tasting. The meat was juicy and the skin was crisp and tasty. Thank you for sharing this!

  27. Another way I use frequently to roast a bird and get great results with a large margin for error is to quarter the carcass first (which in my world equals 2 breasts, 2 legs plus the spine section as a bonus for picking or making a broth afterwards) and lay out flat in the roasting tin. I set the wings aside and save them up in the freezer to make a batch of BBQ wings as a separate meal when I have a decent stash). That way the meat is arranged in a more uniform way and cooks evenly and quickly, without any worries of over/under cooking any part.

    I usually set the oven to 150c – 160c which means an average sized chicken (starting from room temp) is perfectly edible within an hour, but retains the option to leave it cooking for another half hour or so to be super crispy and delicious. When meat tastes so good, adding additional seasoning is really unnecessary. This also means that carving is avoided since the meat literally falls apart into very satisfying chunks for portioning.

  28. This looks amazing…going to try this very soon. Have never tried to roast a chicken, always just buy the rotisserie from the grocery store.

  29. I had discovered this method not long ago. I use the cast iron skillet, preheated in the oven, and slide the chicken into it when it is ready to go. I check temp at around 50 minutes, then go from there. This is wonderful, tasty, juicy, tender. My teenage daughter usually picks at protein…she downed an entire thigh/drum quarter the first time she tried it. Just kosher salt and freshly ground pepper is all it really needs if you don’t have the fresh herbs. I found the breast meat to be very moist as well. And it is easy…this is my go to chicken recipe now.

  30. I think a good way to get juice and crispiness (especially at high temperatures) is to start roasting the chicken breast-down first to brown on the bottom, at 190C for about 2/3rds of the time and then turn it over and whack the heat up about 10 degrees for the last 1/3 with about a bit of salt and butter on top. That way the breast doesn’t dry out relative to the rest of the bird.

    Cooking time is about an hour for a medium chicken, by feel – if you wiggle a leg and the thigh joint’s loose then it’s done.

  31. I followed the recipe exactly and came out with an amazing chicken! It was the first whole chicken I’d ever roasted, and the skin was so perfect and delicious, I can’t even tell you how good it was! Thank you Mark! I will be making many more chickens in my future, there wasn’t any meat left!

  32. Finally got around to trying this. Very good. I cooked it a little long, the legs were dry, even though 4.5 lb chicken = 45 minutes. I was using a convection bake though. I think in convection maybe 35 minutes would have been perfect.