Originally posted September 09, 2011

basic roast chicken

basic roast chicken by joanie

I never had home-roasted chicken growing up so it was something that seemed foreign and exotic. Seriously. I've had birds with head and feet, but roasted chicken was something other people ate. I'd see them in the grocery store. They looked and smelled terrific, and until recently, I had no idea they were easy to make. Now I sometimes serve one when my mom is over just to be "ethnic."

This is my basic recipe, and when I make a chicken I usually add to it: garlic, fresh thyme, whatever. And no oil. The chicken supplies its own.

You can spatchcock the chicken to shave off about 15-20 minutes of cooking time and end up with a more evenly cooked bird. Basically, you butterfly the chicken.


  • 4 lb chicken
  • 1 tbsp kosher or sea salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
6 servings


Preheat oven to 400ยบ.

Wash and dry the chicken inside and out. Place it breast-side up on a cast-iron skillet.

Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Place the skillet on the lowest rack in the oven and cook for about 1 hour. Keep an eye on it. If the top gets too brown, you can tent a little bit of foil on top.

Remove and let sit for 10 minutes before carving and serving.

90 minutes



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