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The Best Simple Roast Chicken

The Best Simple Roast Chicken

This is the best simple roast chicken I’ve ever made! We’ve had such hot weather lately that it was wonderful to wake up to a cool and overcast day which always means cooking a comforting meal. I went online in search of some dinner inspiration and found Thomas Keller’s simple roast chicken recipe on Epicurious. I have made a lot of roasted chicken and I have to say this one may be my new favorite. The key to Keller’s amazing simple roast chicken is making sure it’s completely dry before seasoning, that it’s properly trussed, and simply seasoned with lots of Kosher salt and a bit of freshly cracked pepper, to taste. You don’t add anything that could produce steam such as lemons, onions, or other veggies to the cavity and then you roast the chicken at a high temperature. The final result is a very juicy roast chicken that is perfectly cooked and has really crispy skin. Keller serves his chicken with butter slathered on the pieces and mustard on the side. The chicken was incredibly easy to make, made the house smell fantastic, and was a hit with the whole family. I will most certainly be making this simple roast chicken again and again!

The Best Simple Roast Chicken

How to Make the Best Simple Roast Chicken

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.

Carefully rinse the chicken, then dry it VERY well, inside and out. The drier the meat and skin, the better because you don’t want the chicken to steam while it roasts.

Season the cavity well with kosher salt and freshly cracked pepper. Add the thyme sprig to the cavity. Truss the bird. Side Note: Trussing the bird helps the chicken to cook evenly, and it also makes for a more beautiful roasted bird. 

Season well with kosher salt all over the bird evenly–the chicken should have a nice uniform coating of salt which will result in a crisp, salty, flavorful skin.

Season the entire bird with some freshly cracked pepper, to taste.

Place the chicken in a large cast iron skillet or roasting pan and place into the preheated oven. Leave it alone. Don’t baste the chicken or add butter because this will create steam. Cook until a meat thermometer in the thigh reaches 165 degrees and the juices run clear, about 50-60 minutes.

Remove from the oven and set the chicken on a cutting board to rest for 10-15 minutes.

The Best Simple Roast Chicken

The Best Simple Roast Chicken

The Best Simple Roast Chicken

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Resting time before carving: 15 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
Course: Main
Cuisine: American
Servings: 4 - 6
Author: Pam / Original by Thomas Keller found on Epicurious

Equipment

  • Cast Iron Skillet

Ingredients

  • 1 (3 lb) whole chicken
  • Kosher salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste
  • 1 sprig of fresh thyme
  • 2 tbsp butter, if desired
  • 1-2 tsp Dijon mustard, to taste, if desired

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. 
  • Carefully rinse the chicken, then dry it VERY well, inside and out. The drier the meat and skin, the better because you don't want the chicken to steam while it roasts.
  • Season the cavity well with kosher salt and freshly cracked pepper. Add the thyme sprig to the cavity. Truss the bird.
    Side Note: Trussing the bird helps the chicken to cook evenly, and it also makes for a more beautiful roasted bird. 
  • Season well with kosher salt all over the bird evenly--the chicken should have a nice uniform coating of salt which will result in a crisp, salty, flavorful skin. 
  • Season the entire bird with some freshly cracked pepper, to taste. 
  • Place the chicken in a large cast iron skillet or roasting pan and place into the preheated oven. Leave it alone. Don't baste the chicken or add butter because this will create steam. Cook until a meat thermometer in the thigh reaches 165 degrees and the juices run clear, about 50-60 minutes. 
  • Remove from the oven and set the chicken on a cutting board to rest for 10-15 minutes before carving. 
  • Serve chicken with the butter and Dijon mustard on the side. Enjoy.
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3 Comments

  1. That is just about my normal way of raosting a chicken but sometime I also make a parsley and thyme stuffing as well. Delicious. Stay safe, Diane