Easy Roast Chicken

| April 2, 2017 | 10 Comments

Easy Roast Chicken, recipe, with step-by-step, photo illustrated recipe on Taste of
Follow our easy, step-by-step, photo illustrated recipe for making this deliciously simple Roast Chicken. Preparation is quick, and you can sit back and relax as it roasts in the oven. Your family will love this, and love you for making it for them. Printable recipe included.


Roast Chicken, slider.
Easy Roast Chicken Recipe

I love pretty much any recipe that includes chicken. How about you?

This Roast Chicken is super easy to make, and if you monitor the temperature as it’s roasting, it will turn out very moist and tender for you. You can thank me later. Smile.

Mama most often just fried chicken for us. Sometimes, she would place a little barbecue sauce on some chicken pieces and roast it up in the oven. I liked that too, but her fried chicken was always best.

I’ve written many times about Mama cooking Sunday dinner for about 12-15 family and friends each week. She’d get started before church, then finish once she got back home.

I have vivid memories of sitting around that large oval dining room table, filled with bowls of beans, potatoes and greens, and a large platter of fried chicken. And, let’s not forget those Buttermilk Biscuits.

Roasted chicken, or baked chicken as it’s sometimes called, just wasn’t one of those dishes she would prepare very often, for whatever the reason, but it was always mighty tasty when she did.

So, is it roasted, or is it baked? I had to look it up to see what the difference might be.

It seems that any food that has “solid structure,” like any type of meat or vegetable, is roasted. Other things that do not have that “solid structure” starting out, but will once cooked, are considered to be baked. This would include things like cakes, bread and casseroles. Who knew?

This then, is roasted chicken. Easy roasted chicken.

In order to keep it simple, I didn’t include roasting the chicken with vegetables in the printed recipe. It wouldn’t have added much more to it, but you can certainly just roast the chicken by itself if that’s all you need. You might prefer some other type of side dishes with your chicken instead.

As it would happen, I had a few vegetables on hand that I decided to toss into the roasting pan while the chicken was in the oven. It makes for a quick and easy meal, so do consider it at least.

Once the chicken is done, you could easily use the pan drippings to make gravy, but again, I didn’t include that in the recipe itself.

You’ll need a chicken that weighs about 3-4 pounds. The one that I found turned out to weigh in at a little over 6 pounds, but that just meant leftovers, and leftovers mean chicken sandwiches. How good is that?

So, if you’re ready for a really quick and easy chicken dish, one that you can place in the oven then sit back and relax while it’s roasting, then let’s head for the kitchen and… Let’s Get Cooking!


Roast Chicken, ingredients you'll need.
Easy Roast Chicken: You’ll need these ingredients.

NOTE: Your chicken needs to be about room temperature before it goes into the oven. You can let it reach this temp by letting it sit out for about an hour before you start preparing it, or you can let it sit out a bit once it’s prepared, before placing it in the oven. Thank you for listening. Smile


Roast Chicken, trim excess fat, and remove any giblets.
Open up your packaged chicken, and remove any giblets that might be stuffed in the cavity of the bird. Some will have the giblets, some will not. It just depends on the company you buy your chicken from. I also like to trim away any excess fat that might be around the opening of the chicken.

You can save the giblets, and the fat, for making stock or gravy later on if desired.


Roast Chicken, rinse the inside and outside of the chicken well.
Place the chicken in your sink, and rinse it inside and outside using cold running water.


Roast Chicken, rinse inside the neck cavity as well.
Be sure to rinse inside the neck cavity area too.


Roast Chicken, pat the chicken dry with paper towels.
Grab a couple of paper towels, and pat the chicken dry. And yes, I did the inside.


Roast Chicken, sprinkle the inside with salt and pepper.
Sprinkle the inside of the chicken with salt and black pepper.

I was using whole peppercorns in a grinder, which takes two hands to do. Thus, I didn’t get a picture of me actually adding the pepper. My camera has a timer, so I was able to use both hands to add the salt, the pepper just required a little more effort. But, you get the idea… right?


Roast Chicken, truss the chicken if desired.
To truss – or – not to truss? That is the question.

I opted to tie up the legs of the chicken. Some folks prefer to just let them spread out, saying it helps the chicken thigh meat to cook more evenly. I don’t have any real facts on that being right or not.

If you decide to truss the chicken, use some kitchen twine, and wrap it around the legs, and the tail of the chicken and pull tight. Tie the ends together.


Roast Chicken, add vegetables if desired.
Vegetables are optional.

You can easily skip this part if desired. I didn’t include anything about vegetables in the ingredients or the printable recipe, but I had them on hand, so I decided to use them.

I’ve sliced an onion, and cut some small red potatoes into halves and added them to the pan I’m going to roast the chicken in. I also had some baby carrots, and tossed them in too.

Next, I drizzled a little olive oil over the vegetables, then added a sprinkling of salt and pepper. I tossed them around a bit to coat the vegetables with olive oil, then spread them out to use the onions to place the chicken on.

I always like to line my pans with aluminum foil for easier clean up.

If you don’t want to add vegetables, then just proceed to the next step below.


Roast Chicken, place the chicken in the pan.
Place the chicken in your roasting pan.


Roast Chicken, tuck the wings under the chicken.
Tuck the wings under the chicken.

I didn’t notice it until I started editing the photos, but the tip of the chicken wing had popped back out from under the chicken when I took the photo above. I fixed it before proceeding though.

It was just a little slippery.


Sprinkle the chicken lightly with salt.


Roast Chicken, add the black pepper.
Sprinkle the chicken with some black pepper.

Again, I’m using cracked black pepper from my pepper grinder. You could certainly use regular ground black pepper if that’s what you have on hand.

I might have even added a bit of Rosemary to the chicken, but only because I had just recently bought some of that as well.

Make the recipe your own by adding any spices you prefer.

Please note that I am NOT adding any oil, butter, or even covering the chicken before it goes into the oven. You don’t need to do either.

TO START:  Place the chicken in a preheated 425F degree oven.


Roast Chicken, roasting time and temp.
Roasting Instructions: Please follow carefully. 

Start the chicken in a pre-heated oven set to 425F degrees.

Let the chicken roast for 15 minutes at this 425F degree temperature.

REDUCE the temp down to 350F degrees after 15 minutes, and let the chicken roast for about 20 minutes per pound, or until the internal temperature of the thigh meat reaches 165F degrees.

A digital thermometer will be one of your best kitchen gadgets, so if you don’t own one, may I suggest you add one soon. If you overcook the chicken, the meat will be dry.


Roast Chicken, remove when done, and let rest 10 minutes prior to slicing and serving.
Check the temperature of the chicken by inserting a digital thermometer into the thickest part of the thigh meat. Again, the internal temp should read 165F degrees to be considered done.

When the chicken is done, remove it from the oven.

Let the chicken rest for at least 10 minutes before slicing and serving. This will help the juices to redistribute inside the bird.


Roast Chicken, enjoy.

This turned out really moist and tender I thought. I do hope you’ll try our Easy Roast Chicken recipe and let me know how you like it.

And, you know me, the leftovers make some really great sandwiches. Smile.


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Easy Roast Chicken recipe, with printable recipe, as seen on Taste of

Easy Roast Chicken

  • Author: Steve Gordon
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Yield: 2 - 4 servings 1x
  • Category: Main Dish, Chicken
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: American


Follow our easy, step-by-step, photo illustrated recipe for making this deliciously simple Roast Chicken. Preparation is quick, and you can sit back and relax as it roasts in the oven. Your family will love this and love you for making it for them. Printable recipe included.



  • 4-lb Chicken
  • Salt
  • Pepper


Preheat oven to 425F degrees.

  1. Chicken should be about room temperature before cooking.
  2. Remove any giblets from the inside of the chicken.
  3. Trim away any excess skin or fat. Set aside with giblets, or freeze for stock.
  4. Rinse the chicken, inside and out, under cold running water.
  5. Pat dry with paper towels.
  6. Salt the inside of the chicken.
  7. Tie the legs of the chicken together, sealing the cavity, with kitchen twine.
  8. Place chicken in a roasting dish of choice.
  9. Salt the chicken all over.
  10. Sprinkle black pepper all over the chicken.
  11. Place in oven, and let bake for 15 minutes at 425F degrees.
  12. REDUCE temp to 350F degrees, cook chicken until done. About 20 minutes per pound.
  13. Internal temperature of the chicken should be 165F degrees when done.
  14. Remove chicken from oven. Let rest for 10 minutes prior to carving and serving.
  15. Use pan drippings to make gravy if desired.
  16. Enjoy!


The pan drippings can be used to make gravy if desired. Adding vegetables to the roasting pan just makes the recipe an even easier meal for dinner.

Keywords: Easy Roast Chicken Recipe, made from scratch, chicken with vegetables, southern recipes


Your Comments:  Don’t you just love anything chicken? I’d love to hear your thoughts on our recipe. It will only take a minute or two for you to leave your comments in the section below. I’d love to hear from you.

Just remember, all comments are moderated.  That just means that I personally read each and everyone before they are approved for viewing on our family friendly website. Thank you in advance for sharing.

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Category: Chicken, Main Dishes

About the Author ()

Award Winning Food Preservationist, Fisherman, Author of three cookbooks. "From Mama's Big Oval Table, From Mama's Big Oval Table - BOOK TWO and Carolina Christmas Sweets and Appetizers." Online Contributor to Our State Magazine Newsletter.

Comments (10)

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  1. Roy Anders says:

    I fixated your roasted chicken tonight with red potatoes and carrots it was delicious. The wife loved it too
    Thank you for the recipe and God bless you.

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi Roy, Thank you for trying our Easy Roast Chicken recipe. I’m glad you and your wife liked it. It’s my pleasure to share the recipe and thanks to you, maybe someone else will be willing to give it a try as well. I do appreciate your visit and I trust you will visit with us often. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

  2. Nate says:

    You’re not supposed to rinse raw chicken anymore. Heating to the correct temperature will kill the bacteria; rinsing will not. Washing raw meat only increases the risk of cross-contamination through splatter. This is according to the USDA (and others).

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi Nate, I’ve been reading this info from the USDA as well. I can see their point too. Some of my recipes were completed before this type of information started appearing everywhere and perhaps I should look at updating them to meet these standards. Still, old habits are hard to break. Having worked in restaurants, we always rinsed the chicken in dedicated sinks and we had a bleach and water combination that was always used after cleaning up that killed bacteria as well. I still do that here at home. And, having visited a chicken processing plant years back, iy kind of keeps me wanting to rinse those chickens before I cook them. Smile. Thank you for your comments and for bringing that up. I do appreciate you taking the time to write and for your visit today. I hope you’ll stop by again… real soon. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

  3. Jennifer says:

    We eat alot of roasted chicken generally using leg quarters and the same method works – 425 for 15mins and then lower to 350 – usually takes 50mins to 1hour total for two leg quarters. I’m really enjoying your newsletters and especially enjoying the website and going thru previously posted recipes; noticed recipe for Spanish Bar Cake from A&P which immediately made me think of the Lane Cake they sold – will definitely try the SB Cake.

  4. Marilyn says:

    Good morning,
    Your recipe is nice and simple, but I didn’t mind the last one either. I don’t eat Chitlins, never had them, but your recipes are always interesting, and the history is very informative. After all your website is “Taste of Southern” and these foods are a part of southern tradition. Keep up the interesting news, recipes and travel info. Happy Fishin

  5. Joy Lynn Risher says:

    I love roasted chicken too. It’s easy, and frees up your hands to work on anything else you are making for the meal. And leftovers are super.

    Sorry some people cancelled their subscription over the chitlins. Why would they assume they have to like everything you cook? Even you don’t like collards! Oh, well – their loss.

    Somewhere in the garage under our apartment is my cast iron chicken fryer, the one that has bumps on the underside of the lid. It’s down there because 1) I’m trying to cut down on fried foods, and 2) there is no room in our kitchen for it. It does make wonderful fried chicken, though. Now I’m hungry…

  6. Marilyn says:

    Good Morning,

    I enjoy your newsletters very much. Your history about family and the various foods is always very interesting, please don’t change a thing.
    My husband and I don’t eat much meat or poultry anymore, mostly fruit and veggies. But I do feed our sons and there families every Saturday, and I do cook chicken or pork in different forms for them. This looks like something they would love. Look forward every week for your newsletters and recipes. Good luck with your fishing.

  7. Shirley Nemeth says:

    Hi Steve,
    We had fried chicken most Sundays after church too, especially if the preacher was coming for dinner (mid-day meal) and always buttermilk biscuits. My mama made them exactly like your mama did in the recipe you posted. I mean exactly! Although she never measured the flour, lard, nor buttermilk. Hers looked like yours in the pan, with fingerprints across the top. She used an old round black pan and she always got the inside one because she liked the soft sides. We only had roasted chicken on Thanksgiving or Christmas. I don’t know if it was because they were not available or if they were, but we could not afford to buy one. We raised our own chickens. Thanks for all your recipes and newsletter. Have a great week and I hope you catch a fish. Oh, I’ve been buying fresh strawberries here in Fort Myers, FL. for the past few weeks. They’re good, but could be sweeter.

  8. Elizabeth says:

    I like this simple chicken recipe. Looks good. I also like it simple where strawberries are concerned. Plain or dipped in chocolate, and no chitlins in sight:)

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