How To Roast The Perfect Chicken

By gourmetm, Aug 15, 2011 | | |
  1. Whether you are a professional chef or your cooking experience is preparing meals for your family, roasting the perfect chicken should be a required skill. Not only will you impress family and friends, but a roasted chicken prepared one day can be delicious leftovers the next. If you are just beginning your culinary journey, perfecting the roast chicken process is easy to do and will give you the kitchen confidence to tackle more ambitious dishes.
    While there are many recipes that tout the “perfect roast chicken” with various ingredients and steps, they all have several key components in common. For a simple recipe, check out epicurious ( or Ina Garten’s ( recipe. For a more involved roasted chicken recipe, both Jamie Oliver ( and Martha Stewart ( have multiple-step processes. In addition to the recipes, below are some tips to perfecting your roast chicken.
    • Let your roasting chicken stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.
    • Rinse and pat dry your bird.
    • Use the cavity of the chicken to place lemon, garlic and herbs. The cavity will act as a steamer to infuse the bird with flavor.
    • If using a lemon, either cut it in half or poke it with holes before placing in the cavity. This will allow the aroma to seep into the meat while roasting.
    • Truss your chicken before placing into the oven. This will allow the bird to cook evenly.
    • If cooking vegetables in the roasting pan with the chicken, keep an eye on the veggies. You may need to add a little bit of water during cooking to keep them from drying out.
    • Once you remove your chicken from the oven, allow it to cool for at least 15 minutes before carving.
    Don’t stress out about carving your chicken unless you’re entering it in a carving contest (if they exist) or trying to impress a fellow chef. Otherwise, just carve with the intent to get all the meat off the bone.
    Once your chicken is carved and it’s on the platter with the roasted vegetables, sit down and enjoy your perfectly roasted chicken.

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  1. stymie72
    Best one I've ever cooked was J. Child's recipe. The leftovers were even amazing.
  2. finkel
    I'm with phatch on this one; temp? time? truss?
  3. sarahg
    Well, you could flavor inject, insert flavored meats/herbs/spices under the skin, cavity steam or brine--although if you brine you can't inject lol, but all very important techniques to get that always-perfect roasted chicken!!
  4. mid-chick
    Have you tried injecting the chicken with your flavors of choice? I think this method gives the most flavor of all. Inject, truss and cook low.....yum.
  5. indygal
    I have never had success with roasted chicken unless I brine it. No matter how I load the herbs, lemon, salt, etc onto the chicken or under the skin, it is tasteless unless brined. I'd sure like to know what I'm doing wrong. All the herbs were fresh from the garden, fresh lemon, salted inside, out and under the skin made no difference. Only brining did.
  6. phatch
    But where's the how? Temps? time? rack? vegie bed, how to truss, alternatives?