Sunday Roast: Chicken with Lemon, Rosemary, and Garlic

posted in: Big Bites, Recipes | 0

Sunday evenings always call for a big roast dinner, and chicken with lemon, rosemary, and garlic is a great dish that can be recycled throughout the week. On Sunday we served it with a vegetable medley (that we later turned into a frittata) and made a fresh salad to go with the leftover chicken on Monday. If you’re feeling up for it, you can even use the rest of the meat and bones to make chicken soup. This can be eaten fresh or frozen for a rainy day.


While some may be intimidated by a big roast dinner, do not fret. Like all of our Big City Little Kitchen recipes, it is as easy to cook as it is impressive to serve.

What You’ll Need

  • 1 whole chicken
  • 1 lemon
  • 3-4 sprigs of fresh rosemary
  • olive oil
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1 tbsp of paprika
  • salt and pepper
  • baking sheet or roasting pan
  • zester or grater

Step 1:

Zest the lemon and cut it in half. Save one half as it is, and slice the other half up. Take the rosemary leaves off of a couple sprigs, finely chop your garlic, and set everything aside.

Step 2:

Rinse the chicken in cold water, cut off the tail, the neck, and any straggly bits that no one wants to eat. Rinse out the cavity and get rid of any straggly bits in there too. Sometimes the butcher leaves a sachet of unmentionables in there as well, so be sure to dispose of that. Dry the chicken thoroughly.

Step 3:

Coat all sides of the chicken in olive oil and place on a baking sheet. If you have a roasting pan, that’s even better.

Combine a couple tablespoons of olive oil with the garlic and lemon zest and massage it under the skin of the chicken. This will make the skin crispy and keep the meat moist and tender. Stuff the rosemary leaves under the skin as well. Any leftovers can be sprinkled on top.

Squeeze the juice from the halved lemon on top of the chicken, and throw it into the cavity. Stuff the remaining rosemary sprigs into the cavity as well. Then, shake salt, pepper, and paprika over the chicken and massage all over. Line the leftover lemon slices on the top of the chicken so that the juices drip over the meat while roasting.

The general rule for roasting a chicken is to roast it for 20 minutes/pound. Ours was a 3-4 lb bird, and we cooked is as follows: 20 minutes at 425, 40 minutes at 350.

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