Cooking a whole chicken may be intimidating, but it’s actually a lot easier to make than you think! They are the perfect main course to serve for holiday dinners, family dinners, or to make for meal prep (shredded chicken anyone?).
So if you’ve picked up a whole chicken from the grocery store and are wondering "how to cook a whole chicken", then you are in the right place. We are sharing over 10 of our best whole chicken recipes including roasted chicken, whole chicken in the instant pot or crockpot slow cooker, spatchcock chicken, and more!
Best Whole Chicken Recipes
Easy Dutch oven whole roast chicken with the crispiest golden skin is juicy, tender and succulent and packed with flavour. Just takes 15 minutes to prep.
Instant pot whole chicken with gravy is tender, juicy, and flavorful. It's the fastest way to cook a whole rotisserie chicken for dinner in just 40 minutes.
Quick and easy roasted spatchcock chicken (butterflied chicken) seasoned with garlic and thyme is juicy, tender, delicious and flavourful with minimal prep.
Pesto whole chicken baked over a bed of vegetables is the juiciest and most flavorful chicken you’ll ever taste. Quick and easy to prep and pop in the oven.
Easy Greek lemon garlic whole roast chicken is tender, juicy and succulent with the crispiest skin. Prep this flavourful one pan meal in just 15 minutes.
Harissa spatchcock chicken (butterflied chicken) is juicy and tender, has the crispiest skin, and is packed with flavor from red pepper harissa paste.
Slow cooker whole chicken is soft and tender and literally falls off the bone. It is the easiest way to cook a rotisserie chicken with a few minutes prep.
Store leftover chicken in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3-4 days.
To reheat, preheat oven to 325F. Place chicken on a casserole dish or quarter sheet baking pan and cover the bottom with some chicken broth or water (to prevent burning of any drippings). Loosely wrap the chicken in aluminum foil which helps hot, humid air circulate around the chicken, resulting in evenly heated, juicy leftover chicken. Bake for 10-20 minutes, depending on the size of the chicken. You can also break it apart and reheat leftovers in the air fryer at 350F for 5-10 minutes until warmed through.
See individual recipes for full storage details.
What to Do with Leftover Chicken
You can reheat leftovers an enjoy this as is, or shred the meat and use in to make:
- soups such as Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup, Chicken Noodle Soup, or White Chicken Chili
- sandwiches and rolls such as Chicken Salad or Vietnamese Summer Rolls with Chicken
- salads such as Vietnamese Chicken Salad and Greek Chicken Salad
- stuff it in Chicken Enchiladas, White Chicken Lasagna, or Chicken Pot Pie
Browse all of our Shredded Chicken Recipes.
If you are planning to use leftovers in this way, I would recommend separating the meat from the bone before refrigerating. That way, it’s easier to use when you want it.
More Chicken Recipes
- 60 Best Chicken Recipes
- 50 Chicken Breast Recipes
- 10 Best Chicken Wings
- 60+ Easy Dinner Ideas
- 40 Best Thanksgiving Main Dishes
Did You Make Any of These Whole Chicken Recipes?
Please leave a comment and rating below, and let me know what you thought of this round up of the best whole chicken recipes. Be sure to snap a picture and tag me on Instagram @aheadofthyme or share it on the Pinterest pin so that I can follow along.Print
- 1 whole chicken (3 pounds)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- ½ tablespoon Italian seasoning
- 1 tablespoon salt
- ½ tablespoon ground black pepper
- 1 apple, sliced
- 1 large yellow onion, sliced
- 1 head garlic, cut in half
- juice from ½ lemon
- 2 tablespoons melted butter, divided
- 2 carrots, chopped into 2-inch long pieces
- 1 medium potato, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
- 1 teaspoon parsley, finely chopped
- Preheat oven to 400 F. Bring the chicken out of the fridge and allow it to come to room temperature (about 30 minutes), this will ensure even cooking. Pat dry the whole chicken completely with a paper towel before adding seasoning. This helps create an extra crispy skin when roasting.
- In a small bowl, add olive oil, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper, and mix well with a spoon to combine. Generously smear the seasoning mixture over the whole chicken inside and out. Using disposable gloves to make it easier. Make sure the seasoning covers all over the whole chicken including the inside cavity of the chicken.
- Stuff the cavity of the chicken with half the apples, half of the onion, and half of the garlic.
- Truss the chicken by tying the chicken snugly with kitchen string so that the wings and legs stay close to the body. This helps cook the whole chicken evenly.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine lemon juice, 1 tablespoon melted butter, and remaining vegetables (carrots, apples, onions, garlic and potatoes). Toss to combine.
- Spread the vegetables evenly inside the Dutch oven and place the whole chicken on top. Make sure the breasts of the chicken face upward. Brush the outside of the chicken evenly with the remaining tablespoon of melted butter. Cover the lid and roast the chicken for 30 minutes.
- Remove the lid and continue to cook until the internal temperature reaches 165F, about 20-25 minutes more. You can check the internal temperature by sticking a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the breast.
- To make chicken skins extra crispy and browned, turn on the broil setting to HI and let it broil in the oven for additional 5 minutes. Brush extra melted butter over the skin.
- Remove the Dutch oven from the oven and let it sit at room temperature for at least 10 minutes before serving because the chicken is still cooking gradually due to the residual heat.
- Serve with the vegetables, a sprinkle of parsley and a drizzle of extra juices from the pan on top.
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Rest Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 1 hour
- Category: Chicken
- Method: Bake
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: whole chicken recipes, roast chicken, whole roast chicken, how to roast a chicken, how to cook a whole chicken