Whole Roasted Chicken

Inspired by Whole Roasted Chicken

My Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars


  • 1 onion, roughly chopped
  • 2 carrots, roughly chopped [or in our case, the great big 600g bag of snacking carrot batons that we didn’t finish and were threatening to go off]
  • 1 free range chicken, about 1½ kg/3lb 5oz [bargain basement frozen whole chicken works just fine]
  • 1 lemon, halved
  • small bunch thyme (optional) [If going with the bargain basement frozen whole chicken, definitely buy some fresh thyme which has a good long fridge life so long as you keep it dry, wrapped in a paper towel under its packaging]


  • [I actually followed this one to the T.]
  • Heat oven to 190C/fan 170C/gas 5. Have a shelf ready in the middle of the oven without any shelves above it.
  • Scatter the vegetables over the base of a roasting tin that fits the chicken, but doesn’t swamp it.
  • Season the cavity of the chicken liberally with salt and pepper, then stuff with the lemon halves and thyme, if using. [only deviation, I used quarters of lemon because my bargain basement frozen whole chicken was in fact that small]
  • Sit the chicken on the vegetables, smother the breast and legs all over with the butter, then season the outside with salt and pepper.
  • Place in the oven and leave, undisturbed, for 1 hr 20 mins – this will give you a perfectly roasted chicken.
  • To check, pierce the thigh with a skewer and the juices should run clear.
  • Remove the tin from the oven and, using a pair of tongs, lift the chicken to a dish or board to rest for 15-20 mins.
  • As you lift the dish, let any juices from the chicken pour out of the cavity into the roasting tin.


  • Simple and easy
  • Leavings from the whole roasted chicken can be cycled into meals later in the week… my favorite is chicken and dumplings.  The kids weren’t keen on the soft cooked carrots, so those will be going into the chicken and dumplings later along with onions and left over chicken meat.  And I boiled the chicken bones along with the lemon to make chicken stock.