Healthy and Sane

My first whole roasted chicken

March 28th, 2010 · 25 Comments · chicken, entertaining

Hi, hi, hi!

I’m up bright and early on this chilly Sunday morning. I started an 8-week photography class this past Wednesday and our first assignment is to buy a disposable camera and take 36 pictures with it… on film. Who does that anymore, right? lol The point is to force us to think about composition, balance, etc. without worrying about the technology part; and also to provide some distance between when the picture is snapped and when you get to look at it. A fresh set of eyes is good in many aspects of our lives 😀

So I will be braving the elements today because that’s the only time I’ll be able to catch daylight before this Wednesday. I may combine this experiment with some exercise while I’m at it. We’ll see 😉

In other exciting news – I roasted my first whole chicken last night!!! This past week was eat-out heavy and last night marked the first night of dinners in. I’m hoping we can make it for at least a week 😉 The best part was that we were spending some time in with a few old college friends. We haven’t seen them since our wedding and it was such a treat having them in town. So yeah, I am trying to come up with a go-to recipe repertoire for entertaining. For now I have two – goat cheese, pecan and date stuffed pork tenderloin (delicious but I’ve done it a million times already) and sweet-spicy glazed salmon (Pete and Erin hate fish so no go on this one). I heard that roasting a chicken is super easy so I thought it would be fun to give it a go. How does this look?


For my first roasted chicken ever, I consulted the Food Network – more specifically Barefoot Contessa’s recipe for the perfect roast chicken. Perfect chicken? That sounds pretty good to me! 😉

I stuffed the chicken with lemon halves, garlic halves (as per Ina’s recipe) + thyme and rosemary sprigs. For the veggies I cut up a pound of parsnips and almost a whole bag of baby carrots (all we had, I forgot to buy extra carrots by mistake) which I tossed with 1T of EVOO and S&P. Under the chicken they went. Oh I brushed the outside of the chicken with 1T of EVOO too :) Ok, now they went into the oven…. and 30 minutes later, a pound of small red potatoes cut in half and tossed with 1T of EVOO, S&P also joined the party. 😀 All together, an hour and a half later – we had dinner!! :mrgreen: [Don’t forget to let it rest for 20 minutes!]



My carving skills left a lot to be desired, but we still had plenty of food.


Proud roasted chicken mama 😉


Let’s EAT! … and drink. I had 2 small glasses from this bottle. Not bad.


… and of course some chicken and LOTS of veggies! The chicken was nice and moist but the veggies stole the show for me. The parsnips and the carrots, especially. They caramelized and soaked up all the chicken juices. They tasted like melt-in-your mouth candy – SO amazing. We all loved them.


Mmm, veggies. My only regret is not doubling the amount of parsnips. I bought 2 lbs but then chickened out (hehe, no pun intended) that it would be an overload.


Yum, yum, yum. A little dessert after dinner was the perfect way to end the meal (more details on the dessert to come in the next post).


Happy Sunday! I’m off to get ready for my in-laws’ arrival. More entertaining. Love it! 😀

Have you ever roasted a chicken before? Any tricks of the trade you’d like to share here? I liked this recipe a lot but I think next time I’m going to try rubbing the chicken with herbs under the skin.

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25 Comments so far ↓

  • #1 - Jessica @ Dairy Free Betty

    Wahoooooooo way to go girl!! :) I am going to make one this week!!! :)

  • #2 - Run Sarah

    Love the photo of you – your apron is adorable! Excited to hear the details of that amazing looking dessert, too!

  • #3 - Eve @ nutritionbyeve

    Congrats! It looks absolutely delicious. Tomorrow I’m going to post about roast chicken, so it’s funny timing. One of the most important things I believe is brining – it allows for a super moist chicken every time.

  • #4 - Erin

    Thanks again for having us! Everything was so yummy and I definitely should not have gone back for more cake. I was sooooo full, but it was worth it. Come visit!

  • #5 - Matt

    I love roast chicken! I just wing it (hehe) and brush it with olive oil, salt, pepper, and whatever spices I have on hand. Always comes out great!

  • #6 - a

    Looks delicious !

    I cook whole chickens a couple ways.
    Sometimes I will take a large-ish chicken and fill it with stuffing and vegetables. Cook it on a rack with onions, garlic, water, splash of white wine . Basting until golden .

    Other times I will cook un stuffed, rubbed with evo or i cant believe its not butter , sprinkled with paprika and salt and pepper OR salt and pepper , thyme and rosemary . No liquid . Cook uncovered for half the time, covered for other half.

  • #7 - Adrienne

    Yes! Roast chicken! Try the zuni method next time – you salt it three days before cooking, it’s amazing! I’ve got a chipotle roast chicken in the oven now – it’s from the April Bon Appetit – you mix butter with chipotles and spices, then rub it under and over the skin of the bird. So far it smells pretty freaking good :)

  • #8 - Carly

    Love the pic of you in the apron holding the platter of food. You look like such the awesome hostess :)

  • #9 - Liz

    I have only roasted a whole chicken a couple times and never been impressed with the results. It seems like it doesn’t get enough flavor, and I really hate messing with raw chicken, especially with bones and skin (I’m prissy, I guess!). But I feel like it’s something I should work on perfecting. Yours looks delicious!

  • #10 - RunToTheFinish

    man that new kitchen is turning you in to quite the chef!! I am way to lazy to do a whole chicken

  • #11 - Lauren @ Eater not a runner

    I love roasting chickens! It is SO easy. A little butter on the skin does wonders :-)

  • #12 - Megan (from Happily Healthy)

    Im going to be roasting my first chicken tomorrow and you’re my inspiration! After reading your post this afternoon I went out and bought a chicken! I’ll follow a recipe similar to yours! Thank you!

  • #13 - Lele

    Like 90% of the fun of roast chicken for me is the awesome veggies underneath! And yours is GORGEOUS! Go you!

  • #14 - Madeline - Greens and Jeans

    Seriously girl, that picture of you in your cutie pie apron is wonderful!

  • #15 - Shannon

    I have never roasted a whole chicken. I am very impressed!

  • #16 - Elina

    Run Sarah, Carly, Madeline – thanks! I’m kind of obsessed with this apron. Just got it as a gift from my co-workers. :)

    Eve – I need to try brining. I’ve never done it but I totally see how it can “seal” the moisture in the chicken.

    Erin – thanks so much for coming. We had such a good time. Oh and I totally could have more cake. I was starving when I woke up. Better double up next time 😉

    A- thanks for your tips. I can’t wait to give them a try next time. I’m on a whole roasted chicken kick now. lol

    Adrienne – I’ve never heard of the zuni method. Going to research it asap. Hope your chicken came out well… sounds amazing!

    Liz – for a second there I was grossed out (and I never am!) but then I forgot about it. Hehe. Maybe you should try a few of these tips here? They all sound great!

    RunToTheFinish – a whole chicken is so easy. Being lazy is actually the perfect reason to do it. You get a lot of bang for your buck and can eat the leftovers in a bunch of ways (+ I plan on making chicken stock with the bones).

    Lauren – does butter taste different from oil? My recipe called for butter but I used EVOO. Figured it would be healthier and taste the same. I don’t really eat the skin but maybe as a treat it could be good.

    Megan – yay. Let me know how it goes :)

  • #17 - KellyB

    I love making roasted chicken and it gives you lots of meals for the week after wards. I’ve done both the EVOO and butter. I’ve also stuffed the cavity with garlic. But I’ve never cooks veggies in the same dish as the chicken, I always thought they’d get to mushy and the whole raw chicken thing. I’ll have to give that a try.

  • #18 - Christie {Honoring Health}

    I don’t eat much meat anymore but I do like roasted chicken from time to time. My favorite is to cook it in a really hot oven (425*) for 15 mins per lb and I do the math based on the actual weight to make sure it does not dry out. I season the outside with olive oil, salt, pepper and herbs de provence and then put lemon, onion and garlic cloves inside. Delish!

  • #19 - Kerstin

    Yay for your first roasted chicken – it looks perfect! Cute apron too :)

  • #20 - Carrie @ I See Monsters

    Your chicken is gorgeous.

    Potatoes and carrots roasted in the chicken juices/fat is pretty much the tastiest thing ever. Next time I’ll have to add parsnips next time!

  • #21 - sister inna

    wow that chicken really does look amazing. lol the only way i “make” roasted chicken is when i buy it pre-made at whole foods. hahahaaa!
    love that photo of you — soo cute. and your arms look awesome ( as always)

  • #22 - Sophie @ yumventures

    My mom loves to mix butter and fresh herbs together and stick it under the chicken skin…its amazing!

  • #23 - Shannon

    wow, what a meal! i have never roasted a chicken (or anything else for that matter) and yours looks great! although i am craving those veggies a bit more :)

  • #24 - Cara

    Yum! Can’t go wrong with roasted chicken, it’s definitely an essential to have up your sleeve :) and roasted parsnips – totally yummy! I agree, I would be all over the veggies too.

  • #25 - Lara (Thinspired)

    That chicken is truly a beauty! I have never had a chicken turn out that purty, and I’ve roasted a fair few now! :( The veggies do look gorgeous and carmelized…parsnips are the best :)

    My only “trick” with the chicken is the lemon inside…but it looks like you covered that 😉