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How to Roast a Chicken

Learn How to Roast a Chicken to a Juicy Golden Brown Perfection

A perfectly roasted chicken has a succulent, juicy meat, and a crispy, brownish exterior. Here are some tips to roast chicken properly.
Sonia Nair
Last Updated: Mar 6, 2018
Roasted chicken is a classic dish that can be prepared in different ways. While some people prefer to roast chicken on high heat, others may go for slow cooking. It can be prepared with or without stuffing. You may baste the chicken or do away with that. You may truss it or leave it loose, while cooking. It can be roasted whole or in pieces. So, there are umpteen methods of preparing roasted chicken.
Tips to Roast a Chicken in the Oven
  • In order to roast a whole chicken, you can buy a frozen or fresh bird. Frozen ones have to be thawed overnight.
  • Clean the chicken, and remove the giblet and excess fat inside the cavity. It is always better to roast the chicken with its skin on, as it is the skin that retains moisture and makes the flesh juicy.
  • Once washed, pat the chicken dry with a clean cloth or paper towels. Add the seasonings and stuffing.
  • If you want a simple roasted chicken, then, brush it with butter/olive oil. Rub both the outer and inner surfaces with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
  • The choice of seasonings is entirely yours. You may also use herbs, like rosemary, thyme, tarragon, and sage, for seasoning. Even garlic cloves, onion slices and lemon/orange wedges can be used for this purpose.
  • Place the chicken with its breast side up, on a roasting rack that is kept on a shallow baking pan. You may either truss it, but trussing is not needed for small birds. It is normally done in case of heavy stuffing, or if the bird is very big.
  • Place the baking pan in the oven that is preheated to 375º F. The cooking time may vary with the size of the bird.
  • Cooking time for roasting chicken can be calculated by adding 20 minutes for every pound of the bird, and an extra ten to 20 minutes. So, a four-pound bird may take around one hour 40 minutes to get roasted properly. In case of stuffed chicken, an extra 20 minutes cooking may be required.
  • You have to use a meat thermometer to check the doneness of the bird. If properly cooked, the thermometer will register a temperature of 180ºF, when inserted into the thigh.
  • Basting can be done by removing the baking pan at regular intervals and pouring the juices collected in the pan, over the chicken. Once done, remove the oven-roasted chicken and serve after 15 to 20 minutes.

In order to roast chicken breasts, all you have to do is to place them on a baking sheet lined with heavy duty foil and add the seasonings. Bake the chicken breasts for around 40 minutes, in the oven preheated to 350º F.
If you are using a gas grill, then turn on the burners, and keep them on high, before closing the lid for 10 to 15 minutes. After that, open the lid and turn the heat to low, leaving a single burner on high. You have to cook the marinated chicken breasts over the burner on high heat. Allow each side to cook for around three to four minutes each. Once done, move the chicken to the cooler side of the grill. You may brush the chicken with barbecue sauce, and cook for ten minutes, before turning the side. Cook for another five to seven minutes. If done, you can remove the chicken from heat. Otherwise, cook further and check for doneness in between.