Every time I think about going vegetarian, I crave Simply Roasted Chicken.
While I love eating mostly vegetarian, I just can’t give up the bird.
Roasting your own chicken is cheaper than buying one. Most importantly, you can choose a chicken based on your wallet and ethics (generic, bulk, free range, organic, etc…) and adjust the seasonings to your palate or dietary needs.
Making roast chicken at home is not only easy but rewarding, giving you meal options for the whole week.
After carving the chicken into pieces, I like to wrap up half the pieces and refrigerate them for other meals. For a great mid-week low carb dinner, we like to make chicken lettuce wraps with either Asian or Tex Mex fillings. Remove the bones and skin and shred the chicken meat. Place chicken meat on Boston or Romaine lettuce leaves and top with your favorite fillings, such as spicy ginger coleslaw or salsa, grated mild cheese and sour cream.
Add shredded, chopped or sautéed chicken to casseroles, quiches, omelets, salads and sandwiches.
Roast a chicken or two on Sunday or Monday and you have menu options all week long, from soup to potpie and beyond!
However, feel free to edit the spice blend to suit your own taste or just use your favorite premixed spice blend.
It’s best to keep the spice blend basic and add more flavors to the chicken later for your other recipes.
I think you will love this simply roasted chicken.
This basic recipe is your best kept secret to faster, easier meal times all week long!
Adapted from Barefoot Contessa, this is my favorite way to prepare chicken. Roasting a whole chicken at the beginning of the week gives you plenty of leftovers for tomorrow night’s soup, main dish salad or enchiladas.
- Roast Chicken Spice Blend
- (seasons at least 2 chickens)
- 2 Tablespoons each:
- Kosher salt
- Coarse ground pepper
- Onion powder
- Garlic Powder
- Ground Cumin
- Ground Chili powder
- 1 teaspoon cayenne (optional)
- 1 large yellow onion, peeled and cut into chunks
- ½ head garlic, separated into cloves
- 1 lemon, quartered
- 1 4-5 lb. whole chicken, giblets removed
- 1/3 cup olive or vegetable oil
- ¼ cup or more of Roast Chicken Spice Blend or your own favorite
- 1 Tablespoon each kosher salt and coarse ground pepper
- Toothpicks or cooking twine
- Cooking spray or additional oil for roasting pan
- Preheat oven to 400 F convection or 425 F.
- Make the Spice Blend: In a large bowl, mix spices together well. Store in a plastic container with a lid and label/date the container.
- Prep vegetables: Peel the onion and cut into 8 pieces. Place onion, garlic cloves (no need to peel garlic) and lemon quarters in a zip top bag. Pour a little of the oil and a teaspoon each of salt and pepper in the bag, shake, close and set aside.
- Prep chicken: Using a few pairs of disposable gloves, rinse and pat dry chicken. Place a few layers of paper towel in the sink and put chicken on top. Pour oil inside cavity and over both sides of chicken. With a fresh pair of gloves on, sprinkle chicken heavily inside and on both sides with seasoning blend. Be sure to coat chicken well all over and then add 1T each salt and pepper to both sides.
- Stuff chicken: Place onion, garlic and lemon mixture inside chicken and secure the cavity with sturdy toothpicks (do not used colored toothpicks – they will stain your chicken!) or tie up the legs with cooking twine to keep veggies/lemons from falling out.
- Prep roasting pan: Spray a roasting or broiler pan with cooking spray and line the inside of pan with aluminum foil for easy clean up. Place chicken on broiler pan wing side down (tuck wing tips under the chicken) and place in the bottom third of the oven.
- Bake for 45 minutes, then take out and flip chicken over and roast for another 45 minutes or until an internal thermometer inserted in the deepest part of the breast reads 170 F for at least 5 seconds. Start to finish cook time should be about 1 1/2 hours. When chicken is cooked through, remove from oven, partially cover with aluminum foil and let rest 10 – 15 minutes before slicing.
- Don’t skip this last step. Resting the meat (any meat!) allows the juices to stay inside the bird. ENJOY!
Now that you know how to roast a chicken, expand this technique to roast pork or turkey breast. Use the same spice mix or check out the recipe links from Barefoot Contessa recipes below: