Perfect Simple Roast Chicken

6 servings
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 55 minutes
Total Time 1 hour

The PERFECT Simple Roast Chicken Recipe that makes the crispiest skin, juiciest chicken with just five minutes of prep and one hour in the oven. Never buy store-bought rotisserie chicken again!

You’ll love having this roast chicken recipe in your back pocket for recipes like Classic Chicken Salad and Classic Chicken Pot Pie because you’ll have white meat for recipes and an entire rest of your bird for a delicious meal for your family. The best of all worlds.

Roasted Chicken in baker ROAST CHICKEN RECIPE

Knowing how to roast a chicken is a skill I have taught to a number of client’s kids over the course of my time as a private chef and this exact method is the one I teach. It’s the classic American meal, the best roast chicken, a starchy side dish and roasted vegetables. You will love this recipe so much you’ll be roasting chicken every week.

The results are the same each time, perfectly crispy skin, totally juicy chicken and pan juices (once you skim the fat) that I love to spoon over Easy Mashed Potatoes for the ultimate in amazing dinners.

The method for this chicken is from Thomas Keller, a chef worthy of admiration and respect who’s kitchens are full of magic. I’ve had the good fortune to enjoy the food in his restaurants including this delicious Roast Chicken recipe and I can tell you, you can forget Costco chickens, store rotisseries and all the other methods you’ve ever used.

This is the one you want. It is the best chicken you’ll ever make.

Plus, if you want to top the chicken with the best sauce you’ve ever eaten in your life, may I humbly recommend Zankou Chicken Garlic Paste (Copycat). This is the garlic paste legends are made of in the Los Angeles area and the reason Zagat loves Zankou Chicken so much. Zagat says this of the sauce:

“Devotees ‘dream about’ the ‘juicy, flavorful’ rotisserie chicken at this ‘popular’ Mediterranean fast-food chain cherished for its ‘glorious’, ‘kick-a**’garlic sauce of the gods’ that will make you want to ‘buy a tub, take it home and put it on everything you eat for the next week.'”

Just saying, make the sauce too. You won’t regret it.

The first time you make this recipe, make it as written. Next time try new ideas. We like to sometimes add crushed cloves of garlic and wedges of lemon to the chicken cavity or use Italian seasoning on the chicken.

You can also add root vegetables to the baking dish (we sometimes even roast this chicken in a large cast iron skillet), but if you add vegetables please remember the cooking time will change significantly as the vegetables will absorb a lot of heat meant for the chicken.

Sliced Roasted Chicken in pan

How to Roast a Chicken:

  • Remove the giblets – there are organs usually in the cavity of your chicken, be sure to remove these (and discard them).
  • Pat dry the entire chicken – I use paper towels for this.
  • Season the chicken inside and out – Use salt and pepper on the whole bird, do not forget the cavity.
  • Truss the chicken – Tie the legs tightly together with kitchen string, tuck the wing tips under and place the chicken breast side up.
  • Start high, finish low – Cook at 425 for 15 minutes before lowering to 375 for an additional 45 minutes.
  • Let it rest – Let your chicken rest for 5 minutes before serving.

When you roast a whole chicken you want to be sure to pay attention to the size of the chicken. A four pound chicken will likely finish cooking in 30-35 minutes at the lower temperature while a 6 pound chicken may take 50-55 minutes.

The roasted chicken will also leave behind the most amazing pan juices in the roasting pan. Once you spoon off the excess fat you can serve the pan juices over the chicken breast meat or you can thicken it with a bit of cornstarch whisked with cold water that you heat up in a small saucepan to make a quick gravy.

To serve the chicken let it sit once it comes out of the oven for five minutes. This is to be sure that it is holding an internal temperature of 165 degrees (use a meat thermometer to be sure) for at least 5 minutes for food safety (Per the USDA).

How to carve a Roast Chicken:

Place chicken on a cutting board and cut off the breast meat first removing the crispy skin with the chicken breast pieces. Slice the breast meat into thick slices.

Cut off the legs and wings and place onto a large plate. Using a large knife cut through the backbone and cut out the chicken thighs and place them on the plate then arrange the chicken breast onto the plate and serve the pan juices on the side to prevent the chicken skin from becoming soggy. You can also top with fresh herbs or a bit of unsalted butter and a sprinkling of kosher salt to finish.

This is the perfect roast chicken to serve on a weeknight, a date night, for a holiday meal or for meal prepping. It’s versatile enough for any meal.

Rotisserie Chicken in baking dish

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Roast Chicken Recipe

The PERFECT Simple Roast Chicken Recipe that makes the crispiest skin, juiciest chicken with just five minutes of prep and one hour in the oven. Never buy store-bought rotisserie chicken again!
Yield 6 servings
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 55 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Author Sabrina Snyder


  • 4-5 pound chicken , giblets discarded
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon thyme


  • Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
  • Dry the chicken with paper towels inside and out then season with salt, pepper and thyme.
  • Place into baking pan and cook for 15 minutes, then lower heat to 375 degrees and cook for 40-45 minutes or until the middle of the thigh reads 165 degrees on a probe thermometer.


Calories: 312kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 27g | Fat: 22g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 109mg | Sodium: 489mg | Potassium: 274mg | Vitamin A: 205IU | Vitamin C: 2.6mg | Calcium: 16mg | Iron: 1.3mg

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the cookbook Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients, published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

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  1. I have made this recipe 3 times. I am about to prepare #4. The only variation is that I have the chicken cut into 2 halves. I only cook for one. But no more. Preparing a whole chicken is better. Best roast chicken and the crispy skin- oh my! Thank you for creating this recipe.

  2. Simply the easiest and most delicious chicken I’ve made in a long time. Juicy and tasty. Can’t wait to try this again with suggested garlic, lemon, and Italian spices.

  3. Made this for dinner tonight. Followed the recipe. It was perfect! My husband said it’s the best roasted chicken he has ever had.

  4. I actually roasted a 7lb chicken using this recipe and them used the pan drippings to roast some small yellow potatoes. The dinner was fabulous! Will use the extra chicken for another meal tomorrow. So easy, so tender, so delicious. Thanks for posting this! ?