Cooking a whole chicken?


Okay, I have a whole chicken to cook and I’m not quite sure what to do with him (or her). Do I have to remove anything from the inside? (Please say no.)

Some of the recipes call for wing tips to be removed. What are those?


You must revove anything loose in the cavity. Usually, the heart, gizzard, neck and liver are wrapped and put into the cavity, but not always. You can cook those down for gravy by covering them with water, add salt and pepper, cover the pot and cook very slowly for a couple hours.
The wing tips are at the end of each wing. I never remove them but that’s just choice.
there are many things you can do with a whole chicken.
My favorite 2 are:
Plunk it in a covered pot or a crockpot for a few hours, debone it, add onion, salt, pepper, carrots, potatoes to the broth and make some dumplings to boil with the veggies.
OR, just roast it in a covered roaster, 20 mins. per lb. Remove the lid of the roaster the last 30 mins. to brown it.


First, yes, most likely there is “stuff” inside the chicken. It will be in a bag, but will have the neck and stuff like that in there. I just take them out and toss them. Some people use the stuff to make stuffing or filling.

I don’t cut off the wing tips, they are really just the tips of the wings. But there is little to no meat on them and they can burn.

I then coat the outside with oil. Yes, your hands get really messy. I then sprinkle Italian Seasoning over the oily skin.

Bake for about 15 to 30 minutes on 450/500 or until the skin is nice and brown.

I, then, cover the breast meat with tin foil. I make a triangle and cover it, leaving the leg uncovered. It is best to make the triangle to fit before you start to bake it. Otherwise it will be hot and oily when you are trying to fit the foil on the chicken.

Drop the temp down to 350, and bake until the breast meat is 160 degrees. I think it takes about an hour to roast it. Maybe longer, but not much.

Yum, I need to get a chicken to make for this week.


Yes, you must remove everything inside and rinse inside and out with cold water. Pat dry with clean towel. I have surgical gloves that I wear when prepping food. This way if I have to stop to care for baby or answer the phone or whatever, all I have to do is strip them off into the trash real quick.

Preheat over to 475

put enough water (or preferably beer) to cover bottom of roasting pan

mix soft (but not melted) butter, pepper, thyme, and dill together

using a slender knife, put butter mix between the skin and the meat on the breasts and back. (it’s not hard, the skin pulls away like saran wrap) then rub exterior and interior of chicken with remaining butter.

Tuck wingtips in and place in roaster breast side down.

Roast for about 10 minutes then reduce oven temp to 375 and roast for another 20 mintues.

Turn chicken to breast side up and roast about another 30 minutes or until skin is a nice carmel brown shade. Let set uncovered for 15 mintues to lock in the juices before “cutting”. No cutting should be needed, meat should fall right off the bone.


Thank you, catsrus…now to go find some latex gloves…

(kidding. well, sort of.)

ETA: hahaha!! i posted before I read Martha’s reply…funny, I’m glad I’m not the only one thinking of not touching that goop.


I usually use kosher salt (kind of a coarse salt) to scrub the inside out after having removed the assorted innards. I also like to wash the outside as well, then pat dry. Make sure you wash your hands (or discard your gloves) after touching the raw poultry as you won’t want to cross contaminate any other food or surface you come in contact with.

Roasting is good, another, if you have a grill is to grill it. I usually do it beer can style (albeit with a diet coke can as I don’t drink beer from cans). Just google for beer can chicken.

You also want to season the beasty. Salt, pepper, rosemary, thyme and sage make good seasoners (or they sell a mix called poultry seasoning).

Bon appetit!


I recently started roasing mine in an open shallow casserole dish on top of a roasting rack. This way the bird does not sit in the fat. The skin gets all toasty brown too. Also, I’ll stuff the inner cavity with peeled pearl onions which cook up oh so tasty!! You can also stuff it with lemons. My fave herb to season a whole chick with is herb de provence, makes the kitchen smell lovely!!

Oh, and you’re probably cooking a she, I think most roasters are hens. A capon is a he, a big rooster. I could be wrong, but that’s what I remember hearing.

Have a roasting good time!


I like to put some chopped onion, garlic and maybe a cut up lemon and/or orange inside (peel and all), maybe a little sherry or marsala poured into the cavity as well, then rub the outside with butter and herbes de provence.


You guys are making me hungry…



That’er make some good gravy!


That’s so true.

Giblet Gravy

Wash thoroughly the liver, gizzard, and heart; cover with water and cook until tender. Drain off the water and save. Chop the giblets fine. Pour off most of the fat in which the poultry has
been cooked, leaving about 1/4 cup of it in the pan. Add 3 T. flour and blend well. Stir over low heat until lightly browned. Measure the giblet water, adding enough water to make
about 3 cups. Pour slowly into the browned flour, cooking and stirring constantly until the mixture thickens. Add giblets and cook for a few minutes longer. Season with salt and pepper to taste.


I love to put a whole chicken in the slow cooker and cover it w/ BBQ sauce. The house smells fabulous while it’s cooking.


Sounds like I found another Alton Brown fan?! This is exactly how he does his turkey for Thanksgiving – YUM! I stuff a lemon and a few cloves of garlic inside too before roasting…

oooorrrr…you can brine it overnight (4hrs at least) in a bucket/pot of cold water with salt and sugar and spices of choice, then roast it – super yummy; and you can cook a brined bird to 190 without it drying out one little bit (i know, I’ve done it…LOL!)


Bee, we must have been separated at birth! :smiley: My favorite and most flavorful way of roasting a whole chicken is squeezing fresh lemon all over it, putting the lemon skins inside the cavity, dusting the chicken with kosher salt, coarse black pepper and herbes de Provence - YUM!


The easy way to do a whole chicken is put in a big stockpot and boil it until all the meat comes off the bones. Then you can use the meat however you want, and use the stock to make soup–just add veggies of choice, and when they are done, add noodles and serve. Yummy!


When Grandma would make a chicken or turkey, my aunt and I would literally fight over who got the heart.


I agree - you’re all making ME hungry too.


has it been plucked and cleaned? I used to buy Amish free range chickens but I had to have my neighbor clean them up for me to the stage of your average plastic-wrapped chicken. Yes, there is probably a paper or plastic bag in side with the neck and gizzards (like a turkey) just pull it out. wear rubber gloves if squeamish. save it to throw in for making broth when the chicken is done and you just have a carcase left. The wing tips are the skinny little ends of the wings, (the crunchy part with no meat on buffalo wings). you can snip them off, or you can leave them on and tuck them under the wings, or use the in trussing if you are stuffing the chicken.

Depends on how old the bird is how you cook it. Nearly impossible to buy a stewing hen any more, most likely you have a roaster. cook like a small turkey, see your big fat cookbook for times and temp. about 20 min a pound at 325, longer if you stuff it. better to put a celery stalk, one carrot and half an onion in the cavity (remove before serving) for flavor, and bake the stuffing in a casserole.


I didn’t figure that she had time for the brine.

I love Good Eats. :thumbsup:


I may have grown up in Kansas but I was never a willing farm girl. :slight_smile:

YES it is plucked and cleaned!!! How cute that you asked though. It’s an organic “smart” chicken. I think “smart” is the brand…maybe.

I’m so squeamish about this that I’m making DH have the honors of sticking his hand around in there tonight and we’ll just have it tomorrow. I know, pathetic.


I found a nice one.

Preheat the oven to about 150 degrees celsius (about 300 fahrenheit - should be fairly low temp).

Roughly (very roughly) chop 2 medium carrots, a large onion, a medium red sweet pepper and a large stalk of celery.

Peel (but don’t chop) a whole head of garlic. Stick half the garlic, half the onion, a sprig of sage and a couple of sprigs of parsley into the cavity. Stick the chicken in a casserole and surround with the rest of the veg.

Sprinkle with loads of Italian mixed herbs or herbes de Provence, a bit of salt and half a dozen or so whole peppercorns, and pour about 1.5 cups of chicken stock over it.

Slow cook for 3 hours or so, turning over half way - the chicken will probably fall off the bone by this stage, and you can make gravy out of the pan juices (mash the garlic a little and strain it and everything else out) or just use them as they are. Deeelish!

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit