Classic Oven-Roasted Chicken with Lemon, Thyme, and Garlic

The fam isn’t quite as green as I am, so asking for a meatless Easter would have been as easy way to turn them off of eating sustainably.  Instead, I decided to go over-the-top impressive to show them how delicious eating fairly-raised, locally produced meat can be!  When buying your free-range, grass-fed chicken, remember that there will be other delicious dishes for them to enjoy, so don’t give into the impulse to buy more than you really need!  Eco-friendly eating = Wallet-friendly eating!

I don’t have a picture of the finished chicken, because as soon as the bird was done resting, it was being served!  Nonetheless, I hope you enjoy this classic lemon, thyme, and garlic crusted roast chicken!

Classic Oven-Roasted Chicken with Lemon, Thyme, and Garlic:

Herb and Garlic Rubbed Chicken (Pre-Roasting)

Equipment:

  • Small heavy-bottomed roasting pan (that can be used on the stove after baking if you want to make gravy with the brown bits), small bowl, measuring spoons (optional), fine grater/zester, paper towels, knife, cutting board, oven

Ingredients:

  • 4-7 lb whole chicken, rinsed and patted dry (mine was just under 5 lbs)
  • 6 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • 1 bunch of thyme leaves, chopped (ended up being around 3 Tbsp chopped, I think)
  • The leftover stems from the thyme – don’t discard yet!
  • Zest from one lemon
  • That same lemon, quartered
  • 3 Tbsp evoo
  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 450 F.  Mix the garlic, thyme, lemon zest, and evoo together in a small bowl.
  2. Make sure you’ve rinsed and patted your chicken dry with paper towels, then put it in the roasting pan.  Give it a good rub down with a couple big pinches of salt and pepper.  Then, give it a rub with the oil/herb mixture (front and back. Set aside a tsp or two of the thyme mixture for your gravy later if you’re making some).  Place the lemon quarters and the thyme stems inside the chicken cavity.  Use your knife to cut a whole in the back flap of skin, and tuck in and secure the legs (or use kitchen string to tie them together).  Bend the chicken’s wings backwards, so they’re securely tucked in front.
  3. Bake at 450 F for 20 mins, then reduce the heat to 375 F, and bake for about another hour (depending on weight).  You’re chicken is done when a meat thermometer stuck deeply into the thickest part of the thigh reaches 185 F.
  4. Remove the chicken from the oven, and pick it up and tilt it to let the juices drain into the roasting pan (for gravy if desired).  Let the chicken rest on the your serving platter for 5-10 mins, and cover with aluminum foil to keep hot until serving.
  5. ENJOY!!
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