Roasted Garlic-Lemon Chicken

roasted garlic-lemon chicken

Recipe by Marge Perry and David Bonom

  • Cook Time
  • Prep Time
  • 11 1/3 cupsServings


  • 3 chickens (4 3/4 to 5 lbs. each), giblets removed
  • 3 tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 lemons—zested (1 tbsp.) and juiced (1/2 cup)
  • 1 tsp. ground coriander
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 18 cloves garlic


1. Position racks in the top and bottom thirds of the oven; preheat to 425°. Grease two large baking sheets.

2. Let the chickens stand at room temperature 30 minutes; pat dry. In a small bowl, mix the butter, 1 tbsp. zest, coriander, garlic powder, 2 tsp. salt and 1 tsp. pepper; rub over the chickens. Stuff each chicken with 6 garlic cloves. Using kitchen twine, tie the legs of each chicken together and tuck the wings under the breasts. Drizzle 1/2 cup lemon juice over the chickens and place 1 chicken on one baking sheet and 2 chickens on the other.

3. Roast the chickens, switching baking sheets halfway through cooking, until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh (not touching bone) registers 165°, about 45 minutes. Cool completely.

4. Keeping the light and dark meats separate as you work, remove the thighs, drumsticks and wings from the chickens; shred the meat to measure 5 cups, discarding the skin and bones. Cut the chicken breasts from the bones, discarding the skin; dice enough to measure 4 3/4 cups. Slice enough of the remaining chicken breasts to measure 1 1/2 cups.

And ... Freeze: Portion the meat into freezer bags labeled by recipe: 1 1/2 cups diced breast (Pickled-Veggie Chicken Salad); 1 1/2 cups sliced breast (Broiled Eggplant & Chicken Parm); 2 1/4 cups shredded chicken (Sweet Potato & Red Curry Shepherd’s Pie); 1 3/4 cups diced breast (Creamy Chicken Risotto); 2 3/4 cups shredded chicken (Chicken Enchiladas); and 1 1/2 cups diced breast (Greek-Style Chicken Soup). Press out any air, seal and freeze. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight or microwave 5 to 9 minutes on the defrost setting.