Stove top roast whole chicken

How to Roast a Whole Chicken - 4 Recipes to Save Time and Money

The smell of fried chicken conjures up many memories of Sunday dinners during my childhood. It was a family favorite. Growing up I thought roasting a chicken was too hard and labor intensive to try on my own, so I never tried. Buying each part of the bird seemed easier, even if the price per pound was more expensive.

But then I got aggressive trying to save money on groceries and realized how easy and economical it is to roast a whole chicken. I take the meat from a whole chicken and turn it into four dinners for my family.

Why Buy a Whole Chicken?

Buying a whole chicken is the cheapest way to buy chicken. My favorite national brand routinely sells for $ 0.99 a pound about every six to eight weeks, and I always pick up one or two. Occasionally the price drops to $ 0.79 a pound and I will buy three or more chickens and keep them in my freezer. When you consider that the whole chicken contains the breast meat, which has a regular retail price of $ 1.99 a pound, you can see the savings in buying it whole.

Some people argue that you are also paying for the bones and other parts that are deemed unusable. However, these bones and frequently discarded parts can be used in recipes, and they will stretch your grocery lady even further if you use them to make chicken broth for soups, chilli, and sauces.

By roasting chicken at home and making chicken broth you take control of the ingredients like salt content and seasonings. Many of the ingredients needed to roast chicken and make the broth are kitchen items, and you have most of them on hand.

How to Roast a Whole Chicken

You will need a five to seven pound whole fried chicken.


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Remove the chicken from its packaging and also remove the bag of giblets that will be stored in the chicken. Put the giblets in a container and put in the refrigerator for later.
  3. Rinse the inside and outside of the chicken, and use paper towels to dry the outside. Place the chicken on a frying pan.
  4. Sprinkle the inside of the chicken with a teaspoon each of salt and pepper. You can also fill the inside of the chicken with a quartered lemon, cloves of garlic, and fresh herbs like parsley, thyme, or rosemary. Raw chicken and its juices contain harmful bacteria, so be sure to wash your hands, sink, and countertop area where you are handling the chicken.
  5. Tuck the wings under the chicken to avoid burns. When the chicken is stuffed, tie the legs together with kitchen twine.
  6. Rub a tablespoon of butter on the outside of the chicken. Sprinkle with a teaspoon each of salt and pepper.
  7. Optional: Spread diced vegetables, such as potatoes, carrots, or parsnips, to fry the chicken. The fried vegetables will be a wonderful accompaniment to your chicken meal.
  8. Cook at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for about 20 minutes per pound to roast the chicken to the correct internal temperatures. The USDA recommends a minimum safe internal temperature for poultry of 165 degrees Fahrenheit, as measured by inserting a nutrition thermometer into the thickest part of the meat without touching the bone.
  9. When the chicken is done roasting, take it out of the oven and let it sit for 20 minutes. Avoid the urge to cut into the chicken before the 20 minutes, as this will drain the juices from the bird and dry out the chicken.
  10. After 20 minutes, carve the meat and serve.

Cut or mince the leftover meat and store in 1 1/2 cup servings for future meals. The leftovers are stored in the refrigerator for up to five days or in the freezer for up to six months. Don't throw away any of the unused chicken bones, parts, or skin - save them instead to make your own homemade chicken stock.

How to make chicken broth

There are two ways to prepare homemade chicken broth: on the stove or with a saucepan. I prefer the crock pot method because I rarely have four hours of time when I'm at home. However, either method gives you the same end result: delicious homemade chicken broth.

Crock Pot Method


  • 2 stalks of celery, cleaned and cut into large pieces
  • 2 large carrots, cleaned and cut into large pieces
  • 1 large onion, peeled and quartered
  • 1 whole clove of garlic, outer paper layer removed, cut in half crosswise
  • 10 sprigs of parsley
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 teaspoons of salt
  • 8 to 10 whole black peppercorns


  1. Place any unused chicken bones, parts, and skin in a 6-quart saucepan. You can also include the innards that were in the bird to begin with. Throw away the liver, however, as it will overwhelm your stock and give it a bitter taste. Using the innards is completely optional.
  2. Add the ingredients listed above.
  3. Fill the crock pot with water and cover the chicken and vegetables. Put a lid on the crock pot and set it on low.
  4. Simmer for 8 to 10 hours, or overnight while you sleep.
  5. Let the finished fabric cool down a little. Remove any large pieces and pour the material through a fine mesh sieve into a large 4 1/2 quart bowl.
  6. Discard all chicken parts and vegetables. Your chicken broth is now ready to use.
  7. If you are not going to use the supply right away, let it cool completely and store it in the refrigerator overnight. Remove any fat that has floated to the top. Stir the storage container well and pour it into freezer containers.

The supply stays in the refrigerator for up to three days or in the freezer for six months. I like storing it in two-cup containers for future casseroles or sauces, and 32-ounce containers for use in soups or chilies. Don't be alarmed if your inventory looks gelatinous; This is a sign of really tasty stocks. It will thin out when heated.

Stove top method

  1. Place all of the chicken parts, bones, and skin in a large stock pot. Add in any other non-chicken ingredients.
  2. Cover with about six liters of water and bring to a boil.
  3. Reduce to a simmer and cook uncovered for at least four hours. Foam over any foam that rises to the surface during this time.
  4. Take off the stove and let cool down a bit. Remove any large pieces and pour the material through a fine mesh sieve into a large 4 1/2 quart bowl.
  5. Discard all chicken parts and vegetables. Your chicken broth is now ready to use.
  6. If you are not going to use the material right away, let it cool completely and store it in the refrigerator overnight. Remove any fat that has floated to the top. Stir well and pour into the freezer.

Additional recipes for your leftover chicken

1. Chicken & Broccoli Cornbread Pot Pie

This hearty casserole calls for the leftover chicken and your homemade stash. If you don't like broccoli, you can substitute another vegetable like green beans or a mixed assortment. This recipe makes four to six servings.

Filling Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons of flour
  • 1 1/2 cups of chicken broth
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped boiled chicken
  • 2 ounce bag of frozen broccoli florets
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon of Italian seasoning

Topping ingredients:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup cornmeal
  • 1 teaspoon of sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk or regular milk
  • 1/4 cup of olive oil
  • 1 large egg

Preparation of the filling

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Steam the broccoli for four minutes until tender.
  3. Heat the olive oil and butter in a large pan over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook about four to five minutes until softened.
  4. Add flour and stir well. Slowly add the stock and bring to a boil, stirring all the time. The filling begins to thicken.
  5. Add the chicken, broccoli, salt, pepper, and spices and stir to combine.
  6. Lightly coat an 11 × 7 baking pan with cooking spray or olive oil and fill the pan. Set aside to make the topping.

Topping preparation directions:

  1. In a bowl, mix the flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, salt and baking powder together.
  2. Whisk the milk, egg and oil together and add to the dry ingredients. Stir until combined only.
  3. Spread the cornbread mixture evenly over the filling. Bake for about 20 minutes, until the toppings are golden brown.

2. Zesty Chicken Chili

The tomatoes with spicy chillies provide just enough heat to make this delicious chilli. It's spicy but not hot; However, if you prefer a less spicy chili, use diced tomatoes without the spicy chilies. This recipe makes four to six servings.


  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 1 or 2 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 green pepper, finely chopped
  • 3 cups cooked Great Northern beans or two 15-ounce cans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded or minced cooked chicken
  • 1 can of diced tomatoes with spicy chilies
  • 32 ounces chicken broth
  • 2 teaspoons of caraway seeds
  • 1 teaspoon of oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt


  1. In a large stock pot, heat olive oil over medium heat.
  2. Add the onions, peppers, and garlic and cook for about four to five minutes until the vegetables are tender.
  3. Stir in the beans, chicken, tomatoes, stock, caraway seeds, oregano and salt.
  4. Bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook for an hour, stirring occasionally.

3. Chicken and black bean burritos

This is a quick dish for those busy week nights, and if you're really short on time, skip heating the burritos in a pan and just make soft tacos. This recipe makes six servings.


  • 1 teaspoon of olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped red onion
  • 1/4 cup chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons of lime juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon of cumin
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded cooked chicken
  • 1½ cups of cooked black beans or 1 can of black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup of frozen corn
  • 6 medium-sized flour tortillas
  • 6 tbsp grated cheddar cheese
  • 6 tablespoons of your favorite salsa


  1. In a large saucepan or pan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add the chopped red onions and cook until soft.
  2. Add chicken broth, lime juice, cumin, chili powder, chicken, beans and corn and stir until heated through.
  3. Spoon 1/2 cup of the chicken and bean mixture onto the tortilla and layer on 1 tablespoon each of the cheese and salsa. Fold the tortilla into a burrito.
  4. Prepare a large pan or grill pan with non-stick cooking spray. Heat the pan over medium heat and add two burritos. Place a second heavy pan on top of the burritos and cook for three to four minutes, or until golden brown.
  5. Turn the burritos over and cook the other side until golden brown. Repeat the instructions to cook the remaining four burritos.

Last word

The next time you buy whole chickens at your grocery store, pick one and roast them yourself at home. They are easy to prepare and the leftovers will save you time and money for future meals. Having chicken cooked in my freezer makes menu planning and meal preparation a breeze.

Did you roast a chicken What's your favorite leftover grilled chicken recipe?

(Photo credit: FamilyBalanceSheet)

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