This amazing Roast Chicken is perfectly seasoned with garlic, butter and herbs for maximum flavor. Crispy, golden skin, juicy, flavorful meat and easy enough for weeknights! Everyone needs this deliciously simple roast chicken recipe in their repertoire! It’s a recipe that works equally well for Sunday dinners, dinner parties with friends or a hearty weeknight meal.
Best Roast Chicken Recipe
Growing up, my Nana would make one of two meals on Sunday for after church: Pot Roast or Roast Chicken. Both were the homey type of comfort food that would warm you from the soul out. Paired with creamy mashed potatoes and homemade dinner rolls and it was a meal that our family could gather around and enjoy together.
These days, I make a roast chicken a couple times a month because it’s simple, quick, affordable, and any leftovers are easily used in a variety of recipes.
This particular version of oven roasted chicken is loaded with herbs and garlic for a robust, savory flavor that is sure to make your tastebuds happy. It really is the best roast chicken recipe!
Oven Roasted Chicken
Oven roasted chicken is a recipe that all cooks need to have in their back pocket. It’s a recipe that works equally well for Sunday fall dinners, dinner parties with friends, or simply a hearty weeknight meal. It takes just minutes of prep and then the oven does the hard work which gives you a chance to whip up a couple sides for dinner.
An oven roasted whole chicken is an impressive dish to serve with it’s crispy, golden skin and juicy, flavorful meat. No one has to know how easy it is!
How Long To Roast A Chicken
I like to roast my chicken at a higher temp, 425°F. At this temperature, it takes roughly 20 minutes for every pound of chicken. If the chicken is larger than 5 pounds, reduce the temperature about an hour into roasting and tent the chicken with foil so it doesn’t get too dark before it has a chance to cook through. This roast chicken recipe is super adaptable and versatile so virtually any size chicken will work here.
What To Serve With Roast Chicken
This roast chicken recipe is so versatile that it goes with most any side dish. We frequently like to serve with potatoes of some sort, a salad and fresh baked rolls or bread. If you have time, use the drippings from the roast chicken to make a gravy. You can use my turkey gravy recipe and just sub in the chicken drippings. Delish! Here are a few favorites:
- Mashed Potatoes
- Twice Baked Potato Casserole
- Cheesy Potatoes (Funeral Potatoes)
- Berry Salad
- Broccoli Salad with Bacon
- Pea Salad
- Dinner Rolls
- Homemade Crescent Rolls
- Homemade Cornbread
This simple roast chicken recipe calls for just a handful of ingredients that when combined produce big, bold flavor. As always, you can find the full printable recipe with complete instructions in the recipe card at the end of this post. Let’s take a look at what you’ll need:
- whole chicken – I like to use chickens that are about 4 to 5 pounds. Let the chicken sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes before roasting.
- sea salt and fresh ground black pepper – to season the chicken. This is the first layer of flavor.
- lemons – you”ll need to juice the lemons first and then cut into quarters. The lemon juice gets combined with the butter mixture and the lemon quarters will be added to the cavity.
- olive oil – helps the chicken to brown and adds flavor.
- garlic cloves – I like to really mince them fine so there’s not big chunks of garlic.
- fresh parsley – the parsley is chopped and added to the butter mixture. If you have a few sprigs leftover, go ahead and add them to the cavity.
- fresh rosemary – love the flavor the rosemary adds to the butter mixture.
- dried oregano – fresh can be used but it’s a little harder to find than the rosemary and parsley. Double the amount if using fresh.
- unsalted butter – go with unsalted if you have it. The butter needs to be softened to room temperature so it’s easy to spread on and in the chicken.
- fresh rosemary – you’ll need a few sprigs for the cavity.
- garlic – you need garlic for the herb butter mixture as well as for the cavity of the chicken. Peel away most of the dry skin and then slice in half horizontally so the garlic heads are exposed.
- onions – the onions elevate the chicken from the bottom of the pan adding more flavor as well as helping the chicken to cook more evenly. I like to slice them in rounds about half an inch thick.
How to Roast a Chicken
- Preheat the oven to 425°F and spray a baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Place onion slices on bottom of the baking dish for the chicken to sit on and place chicken on top.
- Pat chicken dry with paper towels and loosen the skin on the top of the chicken.
- Season the chicken liberally with salt and pepper.
- Combine the lemon juice, olive oil, minced garlic, parsley, chopped rosemary, oregano and softened butter.
- Rub butter mixture over the entire exterior and interior of the chicken making sure to coat the top of the skin as well as rub under the skin that you loosened.
- Stuff the cavity with garlic, rosemary sprigs and quartered lemons. Tie the legs together, tuck wing tips under and place the chicken breast side up in the prepared baking dish.
- Roast for 1 hour 15 minutes. Baste at 30 minutes and then again every 20 minutes or so. Continue roasting until juices run clear or chicken has reached an internal temperature of 165°F.
- Baste again then broil for about 2 to 3 minutes or until golden brown and extra crispy. (Optional but encouraged.)
- Remove from the oven, tent with foil and let stand for about 15 minutes before carving. Drizzle with pan juice when serving.
Whole Roasted Chicken FAQs
How to store leftovers? Refrigerator: Allow the oven roasted chicken to cool down completely and then store in an airtight container in your fridge for up to 4 days. Freezer: Store cooked, cooled chicken in an airtight container or wrap the food well in freezer bags. When ready to use, remove and defrost in the microwave or remove the night before by leaving in the refrigerator. Defrost completely before.
Can I make this whole roasted chicken in the air fryer? Good news! This roast chicken recipe works in the air fryer too! Air fry at 350°F for about 30 minutes on each side. Use a meat thermometer to check for doneness. Remember you are looking for 165°F.
How to carve chicken roast? Let chicken rest for about 10 to 15 minutes. Next, place the chicken on a cutting surface. Hold it steadily with a carving fork. With a sharp chef’s knife, cut through the skin between the leg and body. Cut through the hip joint to remove the entire leg from the body. To remove the breast meat, make a long cut horizontally near the base of the chicken. Cut into slices.
How to choose the size of the chicken? A medium, 3 pound chicken will feed 3 to 4 whereas a 4 pound chicken will serve 4 to 6.
Tips and Variations
- For best results, let the chicken sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes prior to cooking for even cooking.
- Roast roughly 20 minutes for each pound of chicken.
- Don’t hesitate to add additional herbs for more flavor. This whole roasted chicken recipe only gets better with more flavor. Use your fingers to rub seasoning under the skin and into the breasts of the chicken.
- Allow the chicken to rest for at least 10 minutes before cutting. During this time, the juice will redistribute throughout the meat.
- Brushing the chicken skin with butter just before roasting will create a deeper golden color and crispier skin.
More Chicken Recipes To Enjoy
- Crispy Chicken Sandwich
- Homemade Chicken Nuggets
- Chicken Enchilada Soup
- Goat Cheese Stuffed Chicken Breast
- Chicken Piccata
- The BEST Chicken Salad
- Instant Pot Chicken Noodle Soup
- Chicken Marinade
How To Roast A Chicken
Garlic Herb Roast
- 4 to 5 pound whole chicken room temperature
- sea salt and black pepper to taste
- 2 lemons juiced and quartered
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 garlic cloves minced
- 3 tablespoons fresh parsley chopped
- 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary chopped
- 2 tablespoons dried oregano
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter softened
- 3 sprigs fresh rosemary for cavity
- 1 head garlic mostly peeled and sliced through horizontally
- 2 onions sliced about half an inch thick crosswise
- Remove neck and giblets from the cavity. Remove any feathers that might still be on the chicken. Rinse and pat dry chicken with paper towels. Loosen the skin on the top of the chicken by slowly and carefully pressing your fingers under the skin of the breast while pressing down on the breast meat.
- Preheat the oven to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and place a baking dish or roasting dish large enough for the chicken on top of the baking sheet (this is for any splattering or spills). Spray baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Place onion slices on bottom of the baking dish for the chicken to sit on and place chicken on top.
- Season the chicken liberally with salt and pepper.
- In a medium bowl, combine the juice from the lemons, olive oil, minced garlic, parsley, chopped rosemary, oregano and softened butter. Rub butter mixture over the entire exterior of the chicken making sure to coat the top of the skin as well as rub under the skin that you loosened. Finally, rub the remaining butter mixture inside the cavity.
- Stuff the cavity with garlic, rosemary sprigs and quartered lemons. Tie the legs together with kitchen string or twine, tuck wing tips under the body of the chicken and place the chicken breast side up in the prepared baking dish.
- Place the baking dish in the oven. Roast for 1 hour 15 minutes. Baste at 30 minutes and then again every 20 minutes or so. Continue roasting until juices run clear when a knife or skewer is inserted between the leg and the body. Use a meat thermometer to make sure chicken has reached an internal temperature of 165°F. If at anytime, the chicken seems to be getting too dark, tent with foil and continue roasting.
- Baste again at the end, then broil for about 2 to 3 minutes or until golden brown and extra crispy. (Optional but encouraged.)
- Remove from the oven, cover with foil and let stand for about 15 minutes before carving. Drizzle with pan juice when serving.