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Roasted Chicken Tips

I’ve recently been making an effort to incorporate more chicken into my dinner routines as my GF does not want to consume red meat every night. I include pork as a red meat, but personally I’ve always considered it somewhere in the middle.

Nevertheless, I’m willing and able to make the compromise with the caveat that the chicken has skin and bones included. Even boneless/skinless thighs aren’t that great IMO, never mind the breasts.

Had my first crack at roasting a chicken tonight. It came out pretty damn good, but I could probably improve the process a bit, and hoping my fellow meat heads can help.

I cooked up a 3.8lb chicken, so just a little one but perfect for two people. Removed the innards and patted it dry with a paper towel. I made a garlic herb butter that I attempted to rub on the meat under the skin, but that only really worked in the breast area. That seems fine to me, as the dark meat will take care of itself flavor wise.

What I found odd was that the butter would not spread over the outer layer of the skin. It got all over my hands, yes, but I could not get it to attach itself to the chicken skin. Eventually I used a spoon to spread it and that worked okay. Maybe the skin needed more time to dry?

Lastly, I cooked the bird breasts down. It resulted in the breasts being done first, yet remaining pretty moist. The dark meat needed more time, so I wound up popping those pieces back in the oven because I didn’t want to risk drying out the lighter stuff. I don’t have a meat thermometer, so just going by time and feel there.

Anyway, I’m going to plan on making these part of our weekly rotation so any tips for a better product would be great! Flavor wise, this kicked ass, but it was a sloppy affair.

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I like to split the chicken. (Cut in half) and I have found it easier to melt the butter and brush it on the chicken throughout the cooking process.

If you want to go all out. Brine it. In a mixture of kosher salt ànd sugar water for 2 hours before cooking.


(secondhand information)

Spatchcocking = faster and more even cooking

And if you don’t have the fridge space, or can’t be bothered to wet brine, dry brining works instead


I learned to roast chicken by following the Herb-Butter Chicken recipe from Great Jones Goods (highly recommended).

From experience, take your butter out beforehand to let it soften somewhat.

And if you are not going for “pretty” you can always poke holes in the skin with a fork and put the butter on the inside (my personal preference).

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X2 soften the butter first, then you can slide it under the skin

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I get ads for “Little Birds” in this thread :smiley:

All I have to add is wrap your leg bones in foil.

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  1. Get seasoning under the skin and let it dry overnight in the fridge

  2. Don’t bother with butter under the skin

  3. Instead of cooking the entire bird in one go, roast on 1 side for 2/3 of the time, flip on its back and cook for rest of the time (roast on a rack over a drip pan, not in a pan)

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You didn’t mention time or temperature, but I’d recommend 500 °F (or 450° F if using convection) for 10 minutes per pound. Breast up, no trussing, pretty foolproof. I used to do hundreds of these for wedding catering.

If it splatters, add some veggies or potatoes underneath.

For crispier skin you can rub some baking soda over it and let it air-dry in your fridge overnight.


Thanks for the replies everyone. I’ll have to follow up more specifically when I’m back on a computer.

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I made some thighs for the first time on my BBQ at the weekend and it was awesome. Just a little salt and Frank’s hot sauce. I’d been craving this for some time during lockdown with Nando’s being shut. Salvation!

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@ChickenLittle Thanks! I didn’t even think of melting the butter, that would have made my life way easier.

@alex_yu I’ve yet to hear the term spatchcock, appreciate the new knowledge dude!

@Voxel Thanks dude I’ll look that up. Pretty isn’t necessary for me, that’s a good idea.

@strongmangoals Is this so the bones don’t dry out? I didn’t seem to have any issues yesterday not wrapping them.

@anna_5588 Interesting, I’ll need to invest in a rack as I only have pans at the moment.

@Brant_Drake Hey man, so I did 15 minutes at 450* then dropped the temp to 350* for about an hour. That got it pretty close (3.7lb bird).

Handful of suggestions for letting it dry in the fridge over night. I’ll go that route next time with a similar spice package and see how it goes.

Thanks everyone!


Was also looking to start roasting chicken. Great advice here thanks everyone.