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Mom’s Roast Chicken

This is the best way to cook a whole chicken that roasts up super juicy with crisp, golden skin. It's simply seasoned, but packs in so much flavor. —James Schend, Taste of Home Food Editor
  • Total Time
    Prep: 15 min. + chilling Bake: 35 min. + standing
  • Makes
    6 servings


  • 1 broiler/fryer chicken (4 to 5 pounds)
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • Minced fresh thyme or rosemary, optional


  • Rub outside of chicken with salt and pepper. Transfer chicken to a rack on a rimmed baking sheet. Refrigerate, uncovered, overnight.
  • Preheat oven to 450°. Remove chicken from refrigerator while oven heats. Heat a 12-in. cast-iron or ovenproof skillet in the oven for 15 minutes.
  • Place chicken on a work surface, neck side down. Cut through skin where legs connect to body. Press thighs down so joints pop and legs lie flat.
  • Carefully place chicken, breast side up, into hot skillet; press legs down so they lie flat on bottom of pan. Brush with oil. Roast until a thermometer inserted in thickest part of thigh reads 170°-175°, 35-40 minutes. Remove chicken from oven; let stand 10 minutes before carving. If desired, top with herbs before serving.
Nutrition Facts
5 ounces cooked chicken: 405 calories, 24g fat (6g saturated fat), 139mg cholesterol, 760mg sodium, 0 carbohydrate (0 sugars, 0 fiber), 44g protein.
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