Roasted Chicken 101

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Tarragon Roasted Chicken

You’ve probably made roasted chicken a million times and a million ways and each time it came out different. No matter how you and I season our birds, we’re all aiming for the same goals: juicy, moist, and tender where it ALMOST falls apart when sliced. I have some simple tips that could be a real game changer for your next roasted chicken. This method is FOOL-PROOF! Guaranteed!

  • 1, 3-4 pound chicken with giblets removed
  • 2 tablespoons of softened unsalted butter
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons chopped tarragon
  • 1 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 1/2 an onion quartered
  • 1/2 a lemon
  • 1/2 cup of water
  • 1 bunch of peeled and chopped carrots
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 large bunch of fresh red radishes
  • parsley for garnish
  • good EVOO (Extra virgin olive oil)
  • Butcher’s twine

Preheat oven to 450˚F. Pat your chicken dry with a paper towel. Doing this ensures that your skin browns evenly and the fat renders without steaming the chicken (We want thin crispy browned skin.)

In a small bowl, make a paste out of the butter, salt, tarragon, and garlic. Using your fingers slowly open the pockets between the skin and the meat of the chicken. Do this gently and take some butter and smear it under the skin and on top of the skin.  Stuff the chicken with the quartered onion and half a lemon. Tie the legs together with twine and tuck wings of the chicken behind its back side.

Pour 1/2 cup of water into roasting pan. Place the chicken on a roasting rack then set on the roasting pan. If you do not have a rack, you can place 4 ramekins upside down and then place the chicken on top. Rub chicken with some good olive oil.

Place chicken on bottom middle rack in oven and bake for 30 minutes. The skin should begin to brown nicely. Loosely cover the roasting pan with foil and lower the temperature to 350˚F and cook for another 30 minutes. Lower temperature once more to 325˚F and cook for another 30 minutes. Add in your root vegetables around the chicken. Drizzle lightly with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Cook for 1 more hour. Once done, let the chicken rest for 5-10 minutes so the juices redistribute.

Serve your chicken by placing vegetables on a large dish and set chicken on top. Garnish with fresh chopped parsley.


  • If you do not have tarragon, you can use a medley of fresh thyme and rosemary, or even sage.
  • You can also substitute chicken broth for water.
  • Skip the butter and use only olive oil if you wish but I think butter really gives the chicken an OOMPH factor that olive oil lacks.

I hope this recipe becomes an addition to your go-to recipes. Happy Eating!


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