How To Make Classic Baked Chicken
Perfectly juicy and simply flavorful, this classic baked chicken is an easy meal to prepare, seasoned with salt and pepper, and extra-virgin oil.
Trim the chicken pieces of excess fat. Pat the chicken pieces dry with a paper towel.
Sprinkle all the sides with salt.
Let the chicken pieces sit for 15 to 20 minutes to take the chill off.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Pat the chicken pieces dry with a paper towel.
Rub olive oil over the chicken pieces and on the bottom of the roasting pan.
Sprinkle the chicken pieces all over with black pepper and a little more salt.
Arrange the chicken pieces in the pan so that all the pieces are skin-side up, and the largest pieces (the breasts) are in the center of the pan.
Don’t crowd the pan. Allow room in between the pieces.
Bake uncovered in the oven for 30 minutes at 400 degrees F. This initial high heat will help brown the chicken.
Then lower the heat to 350 degrees F and bake for an additional 10 to 30 minutes more until the juices run clear (not pink).
When poked with a sharp knife or the internal temperature of the chicken breasts is 165 degrees F, and of the thighs is 170 degrees F when tested with a meat thermometer.
If the chicken isn’t browning well enough, place the chicken under the broiler for the last 5 minutes of cooking, until browned sufficiently.
Let it rest: Remove from the oven and transfer the chicken to a serving dish.
Tent with aluminum foil and let rest for 5 to 10 minutes before serving.
If desired to make gravy with the drippings from the chicken, place the roasting pan with all its drippings on the stovetop and set the burner to medium heat.
Use a metal spatula to scrape up the stuck drippings from the bottom of the pan.
When the pan is hot, pour in some white wine or chicken stock to help loosen the drippings from the pan.
Transfer the drippings and stock/wine mixture to a saucepan and heat on medium-high until reduced to desired thickness.
Serve with steamed rice, mashed potatoes, or Spanish rice.
- Even if intended to eat the baked chicken without its skin, leave the skin on for baking because it prevents the chicken pieces from drying out while they bake. If a whole chicken was bought to start with, the chicken may have come with the neck and gizzards (often in paper in the cavity of the chicken). Use the chicken back and these giblets to make stock for gravy. Chop up the back a little, and put the back, gizzard, and neck into a small saucepan, and cover with water by a ½-inch or so. Bring to a simmer and let simmer while the chicken is baking. Then strain and use the stock for making a richly-flavored gravy.
- For thicker gravy, make a slurry with a little cornstarch or flour (1 teaspoon) and water (¼ cup), and add that to the gravy while it cooks.
- Calories: 1047.80kcal
- Fat: 75.30g
- Saturated Fat: 20.57g
- Trans Fat: 0.44g
- Monounsaturated Fat: 33.29g
- Polyunsaturated Fat: 15.42g
- Carbohydrates: 1.99g
- Fiber: 0.37g
- Sugar: 0.48g
- Protein: 85.27g
- Cholesterol: 341.09mg
- Sodium: 1143.25mg
- Calcium: 57.77mg
- Potassium: 908.30mg
- Iron: 4.33mg
- Vitamin A: 186.66µg
- Vitamin C: 7.32mg
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