Roasted Lemon Chicken with Fennel


Believe it or not, but this was my first time roasting a whole chicken. I’ve done chicken breasts and heck, even a whole turkey, but never an entire chicken.

Maybe I was a little intimidated by the whole process. I don’t know. But let me tell you, this was one of the best chickens I have ever tasted. And it was ridiculously easy.

The method to the chicken was stuffing it with a whole lemon, cut into halves, some sprigs of fresh thyme, and a healthy dose of pepper and salt. Then I rubbed the outside of the chicken with olive oil and salt and pepper. I roasted fennel, onions and teeny tiny potatoes along the borders around the chicken. The roasted vegetables came out incredible, especially the fennel, it caramelized on the bottom making it incredibly flavorful and dreamy.

Perfect dinner to make for the love in your life:)


Roasted Lemon Chicken with Fennel

this recipe was moderately adapted from Barefoot Contessa

1 6 pound fresh chicken, giblets removed and chicken rinsed

1 garlic head, cut in half crosswise

2 lemons, sliced in halves

10-15 sprigs of fresh thyme

2 large fennel heads, sliced in halves, or quarters

1 cup of baby carrots

Fine-grain sea salt

ground pepper

1 1/2 cups of teeny tiny potatoes, or red potatoes (cut in halves)

1 large red onion, cut into quarters


Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.

Rub salt and pepper on the inside of the chicken. Stuff the inside with the lemon halves, garlic and a few sprigs of fresh thyme and close by crossing legs and tying with baking twine. OR, you can do a little trick I learned by cuttingĀ  a small slit in the skin by the opening on the left side of the chicken, crossing the right leg over the left then taking the end of the right leg and tucking it into the end of the slit skin.

Drizzle the outside of the chicken with olive oil, salt and pepper, and rub it in.

Toss vegetables with a little olive oil and a sprinkle of salt and pepper in a bowl.

Place chicken in a roasting pan and veggies along the borders of the chicken. Toss a few sprigs of thyme around the border with the vegetables.

Bake for 90 minutes or until the chicken juices run clear when sliced between the leg and the thigh.

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  • Kelsey
    Posted February 19, 2012 at 6:28 AM | Permalink

    Yum. I have some lemon and fennel siting around waiting for a recipe:) My favorite part about roasting a chicken is making homemade broth from what’s left.

  • Posted February 26, 2012 at 8:40 PM | Permalink

    Hey Kelsey,

    Never made my own stock before, will have to try!

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