This last Thanksgiving, I successfully roasted my first turkey! It was a huge thing, 14 pounds I believe... for just a party of three. A little over the top, but a huge accomplishment in my book. About a week ago Jordan and I went grocery shopping and I picked up two 5.5 pound whole chickens. Each of these would be much easier and more practical for three people.
This recipe is super simple, and one of the best to follow if you've never roasted a whole chicken before! It took me 30 minutes to prepare, working with a completely thawed chicken.
(Actually, I realized just how new I was at roasting chicken... small font because because I'm embarassed, but I actually put the chicken upside down in the pan! You will want to follow the same directions but actually place the chicken breast side up... I wasn't paying attention, and I have the back side up. Oops. It was still super yummy, but no crispy seasoned skin on the breast meat! Sad. Healthier, but sad.)
Ok, here's the easy recipe:
Simple Garlic Roasted Chicken
- 5-6 pound whole chicken (thawed completely)
- 1 onion
- 2 large Idaho potatoes or 4 smaller, such as Yukon Gold
- 4 carrots (I actually used about 1.5-2 cups frozen sliced carrots since I had them on hand)
- 1 lemon
- 1 head of garlic
- salt & pepper
- 2 tablespoons butter, melted
Start by preheating the oven to 425 degrees. Then, cut up the onion, cut the potatoes into quarters and slice the carrrots. Place them into the bottom of a large pan.
Next, ready the garlic and lemon. I roughly exposed all the cloves and gave it a very rough, thick chop. No need to peel. Half the lemon.
Place the chicken on top of your veggies in the pan, and stuff the inside with the lemon halves and all the garlic. Shove it! It will fit, trust me.
Next, rub plenty of salt and pepper all over that chicken! Sprinkle some salt and pepper over the veggies, too.
To finish preparing, spoon the melted butter all over the chicken skin. This will get the skin all brown and crisp while in the oven!
Place in the oven uncovered for 1.5 hours. That should be the perfect cooking time for a nice, tender chicken. To easily check if it's thoroughly cooked once the timer goes off, simply poke the chicken with a fork inbetween the leg and thigh, push a little around the punture and watch for the liquid that will run out. If it runs clear, it is done. If you see blood, it isn't done yet.
Mine was perfectly done at the 1.5 mark.
Take the pan out of the oven, and take out the chicken. I placed it on a large, clean cutting board. Immediately cover the chicken with foil. Since I was low on foil (a.k.a. out of foil), I covered it with a clean dish towl. Let the chicken sit for at least 15 mins. This will allow the chicken to reabsorb the juices.
Place the pan of veggies back into the oven for 15 mins to continue cooking.
Once the veggies are done, or for me, once the boss man walked through the door - carve that chicken and dig in! Serve those 8 pieces with the vegetable mix.
Yum. Since a 5-6 pound chicken will typically serve about three people, we had plenty of meat leftover. I plan on recycling the leftover meat for tonight's meal! I scavanged and shredded all the nice meat I could find, and plan on making chicken tacos tonight!