The Best Dry-Brined Roast Chicken Recipe

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Karla March 4, 2021

How To Make Dry-Brined Roast Chicken

This easy dry-brined roast chicken rubbed with a simple lemon-thyme spice rub makes delicious and tender chicken meat with a golden crispy skin once done!

Preparation: 5 minutes
Cooking: 1 hour 20 minutes
Total: 1 hour 25 minutes

Serves:

Ingredients

  • 1chicken,(5 to 6 lbs)
  • 1lemon
  • 2tbspolive oil
  • tspkosher salt
  • tspfreshly cracked pepper
  • tspthyme,dried

Instructions

  1. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and set a baking rack on top or use a roasting pan with a roasting rack.

  2. Zest and quarter the lemon.

  3. Combine the lemon zest, juice from ¼ of the lemon, 1 tablespoon of olive oil, 2½ teaspoons of salt, pepper, and thyme together in a small bowl.

  4. Save the lemon quarters (even the one squeezed dry) to insert into the cavity.

  5. Pat the outside of the chicken dry with a paper towel.

  6. Slide the fingers between the skin and the breast meat to loosen the skin.

  7. Try to separate the skin from around the legs as well.

  8. Rub ¾ of the spice mixture under the skin and into the breast and leg meat.

  9. Rub the remaining spice mixture inside the cavity of the bird. Insert the lemon quarters in the cavity.

  10. Truss the chicken by cutting a piece of kitchen twine, about 15-inches long.

  11. Tuck the wings under the bird as best it can be done.

  12. Center the twine under the back end of the chicken so equal lengths of twine are where the wings were tucked in.

  13. Lift up each side of the twine crossing it over the top of the bird’s body, wrap it around the legs.

  14. Tie the legs together.

  15. Place the bird, baking sheet and all, into your refrigerator uncovered for 24 to 72 hours.

  16. When ready to roast, move the oven rack to the second-lowest spot in the oven.

  17. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

  18.  

  19. Transfer the baking sheet from the fridge to the counter.

  20. Rub the outside of the chicken with 1 tablespoon of olive oil, ¼ teaspoon of kosher salt, and a few cracks of fresh ground pepper.

  21. Place the baking sheet into the oven and roast for 1 hour at 375 degrees F.

  22. Then turn the oven up to 425 degrees F for the remaining 20 minutes or until the temperature in the thickest part of the breast reaches 160 degrees F.

  23. Check the chicken at the 45-minute mark and baste it. There may be a need to tip the pan a little to the corner to get to the juices.

  24. If there’s no baster, just use a long-handled spoon to scoop up and pour the drippings over the chicken.

  25. Continue to baste every 15 to 20 minutes until it reaches a deep, rich, golden color, the skin is crispy, and the chicken has finished cooking through.

  26. Remove the chicken from the oven when the temperature in the thickest part of the breast reads about 160 degrees F.

  27. Let it rest for 5 minutes. The temperature will continue to rise to reach 165 degrees F.

  28. If there’s no thermometer, that’s ok. The chicken is cooked through when the juices run clear when sliced.

Recipe Notes

  • If there’s no room in the refrigerator, it’s ok to put the chicken on a plate and transfer it to the baking sheet when ready to roast the bird.
  • The chicken will look a little desiccated after the 24 to 72-hour rest. That’s a good thing, as it means will chicken will have crispy skin.

Nutrition

  • Calories: 711.40kcal
  • Fat: 52.01g
  • Saturated Fat: 13.88g
  • Trans Fat: 0.29g
  • Monounsaturated Fat: 23.65g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat: 10.42g
  • Carbohydrates: 1.99g
  • Fiber: 0.67g
  • Sugar: 0.37g
  • Protein: 56.07g
  • Cholesterol: 225.00mg
  • Sodium: 749.75mg
  • Calcium: 42.20mg
  • Potassium: 600.76mg
  • Iron: 2.96mg
  • Vitamin A: 123.98µg
  • Vitamin C: 12.89mg
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