Whole Roasted Chicken


A Whole Roasted Chicken seasoned with your favorite rub. This is a weekly favorite and we also shared some of our variations. Leftovers are perfect for sandwiches or slicing up and topping a salad, or sometimes my girls like to eat cold chicken. Freeze leftovers and use for soups like chicken soup. Size will determine time it takes to cook but it can take 2-3 hours. Make sure chicken is fully defrosted before cooking or it will take much longer and certain parts will reach fully cooked before others.
Whole Roasted Chicken Recipe


  • 1 3-5 lb whole chicken
  • Rub of your choice
  • Spray Pam or a pat of butter.

Optional Ingredients If you Like to Stuff Your Chicken

We like to stuff it with any of the following however we have also omitted stuffing it when I'm pressed for time or out of things and there wasn't a noticeable difference in taste.
  • 1 small onion quartered
  • 1/2 lemon sliced
  • 1 or two sprigs of rosemary coarsely chopped
  • 1 sprig of thyme
  • 3-4 cloves of garlic sliced

Other Materials

  • Baking dish or roasting pan lined with foil.
  • Rack for whole chicken to sit on while cooking.(See suggestions below)
  • Meat Thermometer (see suggestion below)


  • Remove chicken from packaging, check inside the cavity of the chicken and remove any items (neck, liver, etc) and pat dry with paper towel.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  • Place chicken breast side up on rack in lined pan.
  • Season with the rub of your choice over entire chicken. We even put a little on the inside.
  • Spray a oil on the top of chicken or put a small pat of butter on the top of the chicken.
  • Stuff cavity with mixture of onion, lemon, garlic slices. Gives a nice fragrance while baking. (optional)
  • Insert thermometer for safe cooking results. Be sure it's an oven safe probe. We showed our favorite below.
  • Roast in the preheated oven until chicken reaches 180 degrees F (83 degrees C) and is cooked through and juices run clear. Cooking time will vary depending on the size of the bird.
Season the chicken liberally with your favorite rub.

Tips and Suggestions

  • I love my digital thermometer. It is easy, accurate and worry free. The probe goes into the meat or chicken and the oven door can close safely on the wire it is attached to which plugs in to the monitor which is often magnetic and stick on the oven door or sit on the counter. A loud alarm goes off when it hits the right temperature. This way I don't have to keep sticking in a thermometer to check the temperature and opening the oven door repeatedly.
  • I found a good place to stick the probe is between the drumstick and the body of the chicken.
  • Line pan with foil or parchment paper for easier clean up.
  • If you don't want the chicken to sit in the drippings while cooking, set a low rack in the pan and place chicken on top. See the pan I listed below with a rack.
  • Use extra chicken for other recipes.

Below are some of our variations of Whole Roasted Chicken as well as instructions for the instant pot and the Foodi Air Fryer. We do prefer our whole roasted chicken prepared in the oven because of the crispy skin but we have tried all different methods.

Paprika Chicken

  • Instead of a rub sprinkle Paprika all over the chicken with some seasoned salt and garlic salt.

Lemon Pepper Chicken

    Another favorite variation is Lemon Pepper. We have tried many different brands from Weber, Trader Joes, to Lawry's. The Trader Joes was good but a bit strong on the pepper flavor for my kids. We really liked the Walmart brand of Lemon Pepper. Great thing is its very cheap...you do need to sprinkle whichever one you choose to use liberally to get a strong flavor. I also like to get a fresh lemon and grate the skin and sprinkle a little all over the chicken for an extra bit of lemony flavor.

Instant Pot 6 Quart or 8 Quart

    Super easy...just season, add a cup of chicken broth. Gently place chicken on top of the trivet. Note that you need a much smaller chicken for the 6 quart. It will come out like a rotisserie chicken. Note that it will not be crispy. We prefer the oven as the best method.
  • Select manual setting; adjust pressure to high, and set time for 28 minutes.
  • When finished cooking, naturally release pressure according to manufacturer’s directions, about 20-30 minutes. Let rest 10-15 minutes.

Ninja Foodi Air Fryer

    This produces a slightly more crispy skin but we still prefer the oven but it is a quick way to make it so when I need it to cook faster, this is the method I use.
  • Pressure cook: 22 minutes
  • Pressure release: 5 minutes
  • Air crisp: 8-18 minutes

Some of the Items Mentioned Above

Other recipes you might like

Here is another favorite of ours, our crispy Oven Fried Chicken