Seriously easy crowd pleaser that requires next to no skills. Perfect for making yourself look like Martha Stewart in front of the in-laws, minus the prison time.

lemon butter roasted chicken


  • 1 whole chicken, giblets removed
  • 4 slices of lemon, about 1/4 inch thick
  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2 sprigs of rosemary
  • stuffing (optional – but highly recommended)
  • olive oil
  • a dash of paprika
  • salt and pepper


1. Preheat oven to 425F (220C).

2. Rinse chicken inside and out with cold water; pat dry with paper towel. Separate the skin on the breast from meat using your fingers (this is done via the neck hole). In the space between the breast meat and skin, stuff lemon (2 slices per breast), butter (1/2 tbsp per breast), and rosemary (1 sprig per breast).

3. If stuffing, fill the cavity of the bird (here’s a fantastic stuffing option). If not, skip to step 4.

4. Drizzle the whole chicken lightly with olive oil and rub into the skin. Season with a light sprinkling of paprika, and season with salt and pepper. Tie the legs of the chicken together with twine – or if you don’t have twine, you can use a thin roll of aluminium foil.

5. Bake for 1 1/2 hours, or until juices run clear when you cut between the leg and thigh. Remove from over – resist eating it straight away! – and cover with foil to let it rest for 15 minutes. This is arguably the most important part of the cooking process; any meat that is let rest will be more juicy and delicious. Serve.

serves | 4-6