Roast chicken guide: How to roast a chicken

You'll be roasting chicken like a pro with these roast chicken tips and recipes from the Canadian Living Test Kitchen.

By CanadianLiving.com

roast chicken

As you eagerly tear into your next juicy roast chicken, consider that your ancestors have enjoyed cooking roast chicken for thousands of years.

While the exact date of domesticated chickens is unknown, most experts agree we’ve been relishing roast chicken since 6000 BCE - 5,500 years before our first domestic turkey roast.

A brief background of cooking chicken

The chickens we know and love (Gallus domesticus) descend from one or more jungle fowl species still present in India and Southeast Asia. Providing both eggs and meat plus easy to feed and transport, domestic chickens quickly clucked their way into China, Africa and the Middle East. Chickens slowly trickled north into Europe around the 5th century BCE, but once there became a principle source of food.

Unlike other meats, chicken is enjoyed universally across all meat-eating cultures, countries and religions. There is no end of chicken dishes across the globe, reflecting its culinary versatility and cultural significance.

Today, we know chicken is an excellent source of lean protein, amino acids, niacin, vitamin B6, iron and zinc. Chicken is also high in tryptophan – the feel-good amino acid – which may explain its comforting effect on those ill in body or spirit.

In this collection of roast chicken cooking articles and recipes, you'll find everything you need to make a successful roast chicken dinner from chicken thawing techniques, roast chicken cooking recipes and side dishes to the best roasting pans for succulent roast chicken.

Roast chicken cooking tips for beginners from The Canadian Living Test Kitchen
Types of chickens to roast
Discover six popular roast chicken choices that are perfect for any occasion.



How to thaw frozen chicken safely
Test Kitchen tips to defrost poultry from your freezer safely to make a tender roast chicken.



How to stuff a whole chicken
Learn the Test Kitchen's fool-proof method for stuffing roast chicken, plus our best stuffing recipes.



Roasting pan results for cooking the best roast chicken
Which roaster makes the best roast chicken and potatoes recipe? We tested 5 roasting pans to find out.



How to carve roast chicken
Learn how to carve up a roast chicken and arrange on a platter




Roast chicken recipes
roast chicken Roast Chicken Dinner
In this tribute to Amber's beloved Quarter Chicken Dinner from Swiss Chalet, the potato rounds (in place of french fries) are a big hit, and Gail approves of the added veggies and the super-easy dipping sauce. Round out the meal with fruit for dessert.

roast chickenClassic Roast Chicken and Gravy
Tested and true, this is the bet roasted chicken recipe the Test Kitchen has ever made. Learn how to make an impressive classic dish.



roast chickenRoast Chicken with Raisin Stuffing
One of the most delicious Mennonite dishes is a roast chicken, stuffed with a raisin-studded bubbat or quick bread that bakes right in the chicken cavity.


roast chickenLemon Herb Roast Chicken
This simple and delicious chicken is a perfect family weekend meal for everyone to pitch in with the tasks. Stuffing the chicken with a lemon and onion adds lots of flavour to both the bird and gravy.


Lemon-Rubbed Roast Chicken
Christine Cushing's mom loves the flavours of lemon and thyme in this dish. “My mom adores how super-crispy and lemony the chicken skin gets,” says Cushing. “She always snatches the skin from other people's plates.”

roast chickenHoisin-Glazed Roast Chicken
Time-saving tip: Bottled minced gingerroot and garlic can be found either separately or combined in the produce section. Cutting chicken in half reduces roasting time from 1-1/2 hours to 30 minutes. Or use chicken parts.

roast chickenSpice-Rubbed Roast Chicken
North African–inspired spices rubbed over chicken locks in juices and brings out flavour.



roast chickenRoast Chicken with Lemon, Garlic and Rosemary
Roast chicken with simple classic flavourings is the perfect Sunday dinner. With a large chicken, there will be leftovers for sandwiches the next day or to chop and use in a salad.


roast chickenGarlic Roast Chicken with Matzo Stuffing
Toasted whole wheat matzo gives this stuffing wonderful flavour and texture. If you have schmaltz (rendered chicken fat) on hand, substitute it for the oil in the stuffing for added flavour.


roast chickenHoney Roast Chicken with Onions and Figs
Honey and figs provide a glossy companion for this holiday entrée.




roast chickenRoast Chicken with Bacon Sage Stuffing
A traditional Sunday meal that has been Tested Till Perfect in the Canadian Living Test Kitchen.



roast chickenItalian Roast Chicken and Potatoes with White Wine and Sage
Italians have endless variations on chicken roasted with potatoes but none better than this sage-infused one, in which white wine makes a glorious sauce.


roast chickenRoasted Chicken on a Bed of Plantains and Onions
Use firm plantains, which won't go mushy when browned. Try smoked paprika for a different flavour, or try sweet paprika.



Classic roast chicken side dish recipes
Foolproof Gravy
Pull-Apart Dinner Rolls
Buttermilk Biscuits
Mashed Potatoes
Perfectly-Crisp Roast Potatoes
Herbed Carrots
Steamed Green Beans


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