How to cook a whole baked chicken in a few simple steps to yield a moist, flavor-packed chicken that you can serve for dinner any night of the week.
Whole cooked chicken is one of my very favorite dishes to make. It’s great all year long, because it’s such a classic chicken main dish recipe that pairs well with all kinds of sides. I feel like a whole baked chicken might be a bit intimidating, so I’m here to show you that it’s really very simple. The moist and tender meat that you get is worth making, too. No more dried out chicken breasts for dinner.
We raised 36 broiler hens last fall with our neighbors and then the day before Thanksgiving we processed all of the birds. So I have lots of whole chickens in my freezer right now. The time and energy that it takes to humanely and respectfully raise your own meat isn’t lost on me. So I always like to treat the chicken in my freezer as something special. This recipe is a tried-and-true method for cooking a whole chicken that turns out well every time.
My family of 7 can eat a whole chicken for a meal. If your family is smaller, you should be able to make two meals out of a 5-pound chicken. If I’m wanting to stretch one chicken to two meals for my family, I’ll remove what meat I want for a later meal (normally a scant 2 cups) and serve the rest. We’ll enjoy the chicken and fill up on the sides when the chicken runs out. And then I save the bones and skins from this recipe and make stock out of them. So one chicken can be made into several meals this way which makes them very cost effective to cook whole. I’ll link to some of the recipes that I like to use my extra chicken for at the bottom of the post.