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How to Roast a Whole Chicken to Perfection!

Updated on December 17, 2014

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5 stars from 2 ratings of Whole Roasted Chicken

Roasting a whole chicken to feed an entire family may seem like an intimidating task to many, but it is actually quite easy and doesn't take very long to prepare at all.

Just follow the steps in this recipe and I guarantee you will have a perfectly roasted chicken every time.

Cook Time

Prep time: 15 min
Cook time: 1 hour 20 min
Ready in: 1 hour 35 min
Yields: 10 servings


You will need the following items:

  • Large roasting pan with a lid.
  • Cutting board.
  • Knife.
  • Vegetable peeler.
  • A shallow pan.
  • One whole chicken, about six to seven pounds.
  • Three to five carrots.
  • One yellow onion.
  • One lemon.
  • Fresh oregano.
  • Fresh sage.
  • Olive oil.
  • Paprika.
  • Garlic powder.
  • Cayenne pepper.
  • Ground black pepper.
  • Salt.


  • 1 Whole Chicken, 6-7 pounds
  • 3-5 Carrots, Julienned
  • 1 Yellow Onion, Sliced
  • 1 Lemon, Halved
  • Oregano
  • Olive Oil
  • Paprika
  • Garlic Powder
  • Cayenne Pepper
  • Black Pepper
  • Sage

Having all of your ingredients and necessary cooking utensils prepared will allow you to cook more efficiently when the time comes.

1. Remove the middle rack from the oven.

  1. Ensure that there is a lower rack in your oven, and remove any racks that are above it. This is so that you can fit the roasting pot with the lid inside the oven later on.
  2. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.

2. Slice the onion.

Slice the onion into rings and set aside, then peel and julienne the carrots (as shown in the photo below). Carrots are simply cut in half lengthwise.

3. Create a natural roasting rack.

Separate all of the onion rings from each other and spread them out in the base of the roasting pan.

Place the carrots side by side on top of the onions so that you create a natural roasting rack for your chicken to sit on.

A roasting rack allows air to circulate all around the chicken. Not only does this prevent the skin from burning and drying out, it also makes the skin crispy and brown, while sealing in the natural juices of the chicken.

Any other desired vegetables will be placed around the sides of the chicken once it is put into the pan.

Common vegetables to add to this dish are: small red potatoes, quartered; broccoli; miniature corn cobs.

4. Remove the chicken from the plastic wrapping.

Carefully remove the chicken from the plastic bag. I recommend placing it in a small tray with sides before you do this, so that when the juice spills out of the bag, it doesn't make a mess all over your counter top. Discard the juice.

5. Remove the giblets.

Remove the neck, gizzards, heart, and liver from the inside of the chicken. These are normally already pre-seperated for your convenience. Place these aside for your own pleasure, to cook later, or discard them.

If you choose to, you can wash the chicken with cold water. I believe it is an unnecessary step, since bacteria is killed on properly cooked chicken.

If you use the kitchen faucet to wash your chicken, keep in mind that the high pressure water can cause unwanted bacteria from the uncooked chicken to splatter on everything around it, (i.e. counter, clean dishes, clothing, skin). So, I suggest placing the pan, with the chicken in it, into the sink, filling up a glass of cold water, and carefully pouring it onto the chicken.

Once the chicken is clean, pat it dry with a paper towel and place it back into the pan.

6. Stuff the chicken.

Squeeze the juice from both lemon slices into the cavity of the chicken, and drop the slices inside the cavity.

Stuff two cloves of garlic, and the fresh oregano and/or sage into the cavity.

7. Place chicken inside the roasting pan.

Drizzle olive oil onto the top of the chicken and rub it into all visible areas. You can do this by hand, or by using a basting brush. I recommend using the brush in order to prevent any unnecessary spread of germs from the uncooked chicken.

8. Season the chicken.

Generously sprinkle the paprika, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, and ground black pepper onto the surface of the chicken and vegetables. Be sure to get the sides, and all visible areas.

9. Place the lid on the roasting pot.

Put the lid on the roasting pot and place the pot on the bottom shelf of the oven.

10. Roast at 425 degrees for 30 minutes.

11. Reduce heat and baste.

After the chicken has roasted for 30 minutes, reduce the heat to 350 degrees.

Using your oven mitten, open the oven and pull out the rack. Remove the lid and generously drizzle olive oil and/or chicken broth over the bird and place the lid back on the pot.

Roast for another 55 minutes.

Remove from the oven and let cool for fifteen minutes and enjoy!

Nutritional Facts

Nutrition Facts
Serving size: 4 oz
Calories 167
Calories from Fat54
% Daily Value *
Fat 6 g9%
Saturated fat 2 g10%
Unsaturated fat 4 g
Protein 25 g50%
Cholesterol 75 mg25%
Sodium 75 mg3%
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.

What is your favorite thing to do with leftover chicken meat?

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© 2013 Casey Johnson


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    • Rabadi profile image

      2 years ago from New York

      MMM, Nice Chicken thanks for this recipe! :) Now following you

    • RTalloni profile image

      RTalloni 4 years ago from the short journey

      Neat look at roasting a chicken. Leftover chicken goes in a chicken soup at our house and a home made stock/broth for it is wonderful stuff!

    • FullOfLoveSites profile image

      FullOfLoveSites 4 years ago from United States

      These are great step-by-step tips, aided by the pictures. I also like some of the chicken's innards (I usually marinade those things). Thanks for sharing your yummy recipe! :)

    • BEEZKNEEZ profile image

      BEEZKNEEZ 4 years ago

      Now I have an alternative to purchasing the Costco chicken over and over again !

    • Turtlewoman profile image

      Kim Lam 4 years ago from California

      Great tutorial! I love the use of all those healing spices, especially with fall being here. :-)

    • Kathleen Cochran profile image

      Kathleen Cochran 4 years ago from Atlanta, Georgia

      As soon as I can trust summer is really over here in the South, I'm trying this recipe! Love the roast chickens I buy at the grocery store and would love to make them (even better) at home. Welcome to HP. You're going to be a great addition. And thank you for your service to our country. HOORAH

    • MPG Narratives profile image

      Marie Giunta 4 years ago from Sydney, Australia

      Welcome to Hubpages and thanks for sharing a great chicken recipe with us. I really like the idea of a 'natural rack'. Pinned and shared