If you’re one of our meal plan subscribers, then you may have seen this recipe pop up on your app or downloadable meal plan recently. Rosemary Roasted Chicken is a staff favorite here at the office. (After taking these photos, we actually stood around the kitchen island and picked the chicken clean!) So we’re here today to show you how to take this simple, versatile recipe and double its awesomeness (and make your busy week extra easy, too).
Roast chicken recipes only have to appear complicated and chefy when you present them at the table (and your guests ooh and ahh, of course). In reality, baking up a whole chicken is truly easy. Don’t be intimidated by fears of Thanksgiving and turkeys roasting for hours and hours. Chickens are their smaller, less intimidating cousins!
For our recipe, all you have to do is place the chicken on a rack in a roasting pan and mix together a superfast rub of rosemary, salt, and pepper. Brush the outside of the chicken with oil, sprinkle with the herb mixture…and that’s it. Trust us. There’s no need to get fussy with kitchen string (unless you want to). Add some broth to the roasting pan to keep things nice and juicy, and pop the pan into the oven. Unlike a turkey, the chicken will be done in about an hour, giving you plenty of time to clean up the kitchen or prep the side dishes.
If you’re concerned about doneness, we suggest gifting yourself a thermometer you like and feel comfortable using. Digital read thermometers don’t have to be expensive. (This Weber version is only $10.) Test the bird for doneness by putting the thermometer in the meaty part of the thigh (underneath the drumstick).
The leg should be fairly easy to wiggle when the chicken is done. If it has a lot of resistance, there’s a good chance your bird isn’t ready yet. The juices should run clear too.
Want to really stretch your budget and your cooking—and make your weekdays easier? Make two birds at once! Not only can you prep both birds at the same time, but you can bake them together too. Place them facing in opposite directions in your roasting pan, and rotate the pan when you baste the chickens with the pan juices. Serve one bird for dinner, and shred the meat from the second. Either freeze the shredded meat or use it in another recipe later in the week (or keep it for lunches. Hello yummy chicken salad!).
And don’t forget the carcasses! Boil down the carcasses for homemade chicken broth. Now that’s stretching your budget and your time.
- 1 (5- to 51/2-lb) whole chicken
- 1 small lemon, cut in half
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 2 Tbsp chopped fresh rosemary (or use dried rosemary)
- 2 tsp kosher salt
- 11/2 tsp seasoned pepper (or use pepper)
- ½ cup chicken broth
- 2 Tbsp butter, melted
- Preheat oven to 450°F. Rinse chicken, and pat dry with paper towels; place lemon halves inside cavity. Place chicken, breast side up, on a greased rack in a shallow roasting pan. Brush outside of chicken with oil.
- Combine rosemary, salt and seasoned pepper; sprinkle mixture over chicken. Pour broth into pan.
- Bake 20 minutes. Reduce oven heat to 375°F, and bake 30 minutes longer. Baste chicken with pan juices; drizzle with butter. Bake 20 to 25 minutes longer or until a meat thermometer registers 165°F and juices run clear. Let stand 10 minutes before slicing.
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