Herby Roast Chicken

Herby Roast Chicken

I’m going to try and make this post simple for you. Google how to cook the perfect roast chicken and you get SO much conflicting advice. Good Food says one thing, Delia says another. Looking for something a bit more scientific? Heston Blumenthal has you covered (warning: you’ll need a meat thermometer and brine)! But does it really have to be that difficult?

When it comes to cooking a roast chicken I use some simple principles and manage to get a moist (but most importantly cooked) chicken every time. It’s full of flavour and tastes great. Read on to find out how to cook the perfect Herby Roast Chicken!

Size matters

I’ve been told an average-size chicken weighs about 1.5kg and will feed 4 people. But let’s be honest, whether or not a chicken is going to feed your family depends on how greedy they are!

I usually cook for 5 or 6 people and always opt for a 2kg bird. There may be leftovers but they’re perfect for sandwiches, salads or chicken supreme!

Make sure you buy the best chicken you can get – that does mean free-range and organic. We don’t want any guilt with our dinner, nor any chemical nasties. If you opt for a corn-fed chicken you’ll be getting a more fatty bird. We’re going to be smothering this thing in butter and a little oil so no need to hunt a corn fed chicken down if they don’t do them in your local supermarket.

Herby Roast chicken

Hot stuff!

People get really worried about knowing when a chicken is done. You don’t want a dry chicken but you also don’t want food poisoning…here it can come in handy to have a meat thermometer to hand. The chicken is cooked when a digital meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh reads 65-70C.

If you don’t have a thermometer then you can opt for the traditional method of checking. Simply insert a skewer into the thickest part of the thigh, if it comes out piping hot when touched to the back of your wrist and the juices run clear your chicken is done! 

And relax…

No I’m not talking about you! I’m talking about the chicken!

People often skip this crucial part but for the best results you need to let your chicken rest. This will ensure you have perfectly moist, tender meat. Leave it for a minimum of 15 minutes (uncovered is fine, but pop on some tin foil if it’s going to be left somewhere drafty) or for up to 30 minutes.

I promise you the chicken won’t go cold! In fact it will initially continue to get hotter despite being out of the oven. Sounds strange but trust me it’s true.

Herby Roast Chicken the perfect Sunday lunch or celebratory dinner. Get the recipe at Supper in the Suburbs

The recipe

This all sounds simple stuff, and really it is but apply these simple principles to my recipe below and you will have one tasty bird. Lemon, herbs, garlic and butter are the perfect addition to chicken. Don’t skimp on the flavour or the fat, you’ll thank me later.

Herby Roast Chicken the perfect Sunday lunch or celebratory dinner. Get the recipe at Supper in the Suburbs

Herby Roast Chicken

This Herby Roast Chicken is the only recipe you need for a classic Sunday Roast Dinner.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 30 mins
Total Time 1 hr 45 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine British
Servings 4 people
Calories 488.93 kcal


  • 1.5 kg chicken (1 medium chicken)
  • 1 lemon
  • 5 cloves garlic skin left on
  • 1 bunch rosemary
  • 1 bunch thyme
  • 150 g butter
  • 2 tbsp mixed herbs
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • Salt and pepper


  • Pre-heat your oven to 200C (180C for fan assisted ovens) or Gas Mark 6.
  • Place the chicken into a roasting tin (preferably on top of lots of lovely root veggies) and untruss (cut the strings off) the bird.
  • Stuff the cavity of the bird with a lemon that has been cut into two halves, the garlic cloves and a handful of fresh rosemary and thyme.
  • Next, find where the skin has slightly pulled away from the breast meet (near where the cavity opens up) and run your hands underneath the skin, over the top of the bird. Do this gently so as not to tear the skin.
  • Stuff the pocket you've created with the butter mixed with the dried herbs.
  • Rub the skin with a little olive oil and liberally sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  • Cook for 25 minutes before turning the oven down to 170C (150C fan assisted) or Gas 3½ and cook for a further 40-55 minutes depending on size.
  • Once the bird is cooked through (see notes) leave to rest in the roasting tin for 15 minutes (the perfect amount of time to make your gravy) before serving.


Got a chicken that weighs more or less than 1.5kg? Cook it for 25 minutes for every 500g, plus an extra 30 minutes.


Calories: 488.93kcalCarbohydrates: 6.28gProtein: 35.36gFat: 35.56gSaturated Fat: 9.49gTrans Fat: 0.17gCholesterol: 139.13mgSodium: 168.15mgPotassium: 465.14mgFiber: 1.25gSugar: 2.56gVitamin A: 551.78IUVitamin C: 22.93mgCalcium: 90.01mgIron: 2.35mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

See, I told you it was easy!

Maple Roasted Veggies with Pecan Crunch

Serve with…

You’ll need a couple of side dishes to go with your chicken but don’t worry my fellow bloggers have you covered! Why not pick a couple from the list below.

And for afters…

17 thoughts on “Herby Roast Chicken”

  • This looks totally mouthwatering! Great tips too. I usually use a roasting bag if I am in a hurry and the results are always perfect. But prefer this method when I have bit more time to spare.

    • Roasting bags are so clever aren’t they! Only problem we have is our oven is so tiny and I seem to always catch them on the heating element at the top! Next thing you know – sizzled roasting bag stuck to the chicken 😛

    • Thanks Ren! You’ll definitely want to keep an eye out for my maple glazed roast veggies with pecan crunch which I’ll be sharing on Sunday 😉

  • We are definitely greedy for roast chicken in my house! We buy a big one for leftovers but then eat too much of the roast. I always get a fair bit off after though, for various tasty leftover recipes. Love the herby recipe you have shared!

    • Haha I know that feeling Kavey! I often try to cook extra so we have lunches and dinners for the week but often it all gets snaffled!

  • That chicken looks divine, perfectly roasted. I always buy a bigger chicken than we need so there will be plenty of leftovers!

  • Wow your chicken photographs look so vivid, I just want to stick my fork into the computer and eat – totally lush! Thanks for including my side dishes:-)

  • solid advice for good roast chicken here! I haven’t roasted anything yet this fall…been grilling weather through much of it but I’m ready to turn to roasting now.

  • I second using a meat thermometer; it takes the worry out of knowing whether or not meat is done cooking! Another great idea is to use an additional thermometer to monitor the temp of the oven or grill, since the temps aren’t necessarily consistent.

    But on to your chicken now. AMAZING! That is one beautiful roasted chicken. 🙂

    • That’s a really good idea Julie! I use my oven thermometer when baking cakes so why not when cooking neat. Fab tip

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.