I always had a fear of making a whole chicken – just looked like it was involved and intimidated me. Well, this is probably one of the most simplistic meals you can ever make! Plus it’s great for stretching out over a few meals and transitioning into new meals! A real time-saver! I will show you how I take my chicken and the next night have a fantastic and healthy soup – Italian style!
- A whole roaster chicken – I used an 8 lb. for this recipe
- 2 TBSP Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 5 celery stalks, chopped
- 5 long carrots, peeled and chopped
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 16 oz. chicken broth
- 1 TBSP dried rosemary
- 1-2 Tsp. garlic powder (depends on how much you like garlic)
- 1 Tsp. dried thyme
- Salt & Pepper to taste
- Dried Parsley (or fresh if you have it) couple shakes to give chicken some green color
Preheat oven to 350. In a roasting pan, place all the chopped vegetables (celery, carrots and onion) on the bottom of the pan.Remove the chicken from package. Be sure to remove the insides. I bought a Giant brand chicken – which came out delicious but the insides were not tucked into a nice little bag – had to get my hand in there and pull out – Perdue comes packaged in a nice little bag – easy for removal. I went with the sale….
Rinse the inside and outside of the chicken thoroughly with cold running water. Place chicken on rack (make sure the plastic circle timer (popper) is on top) in roasting pan – I use a 9 x 13 stoneware pan and put a rack in there. Works great! You don’t have to go out and buy a roasting pan. Dump in the chicken broth. Then drizzle the EVOO on top of the chicken – coating the top and sides well (this is my secret ingredient to make the chicken moist). Next cover with salt & pepper to taste. Evenly distribute the remaining dry herbs (rosemary, garlic powder, thyme and parsley). Tie up the ends of the drumsticks together so that the opening is now closed. I use pins to close it up or you can use string.
Depending on the chicken weight, it should take about 1 hour 45 minutes to 2 1/2 hours. I set my oven timer about 15 minutes sooner than what the directions call for on the packaging. I like the meat to be moist, not dry! So as soon as the timer pops up, shut the oven and let the chicken sit in there for another 5-10 minutes – no longer! Then remove and let sit out for at least 10 minutes on the counter before slicing. It will retain it’s juices more this way.
IMPORTANT: Save all drippings, veggies in roasting pan and of course remaining meat on chicken. Do not discard – we are using this for the soup on the next post! Page down on how to start STEP 1 for soup. So easy!
Serve with brown rice, mashed potatoes, pasta, or whatever your preference. I made this with brown rice, broccoli and I actually had some stovetop stuffing so I finished that off. And of course I had a salad with this meal! Enjoy! So easy. Now look at my next soup recipe so you can make easy peasy, chicken tortellini soup!
Step 1 for Soup: After eating your chicken from the night before, set aside a large soup pot. Dump in everything remaining in the bottom of the roasting pan (all liquids and veggies) into the pot. Don’t worry about the fat. Just be sure to not get any bones in there. Shred all of the remaining meat off the chicken, be sure to get both dark and light meat. Put it all in the soup pot. You will be surprised how much you get off that guy! Now add the 2 containers (32 oz. each) of chicken broth. Put a lid on the pot and refrigerate over night. See soup recipe next.