Weeknight Roast Chicken

I am constantly on the search for a tasty roast bird and enjoy the fact that you can do prep and then an hour later, a piping hot bird with crispy seasoned skin comes out of the oven. Adding potatoes absorbs the salt and chicken broth flavors to make a well seasoned, roast potato.

We recently tried Cook’s Illustrated version of the Weeknight Roast Chicken using an oven safe skillet and super high temperature to make the meat tender and skin crisp.

This recipe uses olive oil instead of butter (as Ina Garten’s recipe does). Be sure to make homemade chicken pot pie or chicken stock with the leftovers.

Adapted from Cooks Illustrated September & October 2011

  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 (3.5 to 4 lb) whole chicken, giblets discarded
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 medium potatoes
  • 1  head of garlic
  • 1 tablespoon of parsley or rosemary (optional)

Adjust oven rack to middle position, place 12 inch oven safe skillet on rack, and heat oven to 450 degrees. Combine salt and pepper in bowl. Pat chicken dry with paper towels. Rub entire surface with oil. Sprinkle salt mixture and rub with hands to coat evenly. Tie legs together with twine and tuck wing tips behind back.

Cut onions and potatoes and place in pan to roast. Transfer chicken, breast side up, to preheated skillet in oven. Roast chicken until breasts register 175 degrees, 25 to 35 minutes. If roasting a larger bird, increase cooking time to 35-40 minutes. Transfer chicken to carving board and let rest, uncovered, for 20 minutes. Carve chicken and serve.


Olive oil, potatoes, parsley, garlic

Head of Garlic
Lightly seasoned potatoes
Chicken into the oven
The glorious weeknight roast chicken
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