Classic Roast Chicken with Lemon and Rosemary

Jill Holtz

September 2, 2020

roast chicken with lemon and rosemary

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This is my mother’s recipe for roast chicken which I have adopted as my own go-to for roasting chicken, it’s a very simple one and easy to throw together but has lots of flavour.

Try my Classic Roast Chicken with Lemon and Rosemary, perfect for a Sunday (or even a mid-week) roast.

Roast Chicken with Lemon and Rosemary

If you’re not sure about the rosemary as it does tend to be a herb with a strong flavour, trust me, this recipe for roast chicken ends up being really subtle but delicious. My kids always put their hands up first for the chicken legs!


  • 1 free range chicken
  • 1 lemon
  • 2 sprigs of rosemary
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • 4-5 garlic cloves


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  1. Preheat your oven to 180deg C / 350F / Gas Mark 4
  2. Cut the lemon in half and stuff both halves into the cavity of your chicken along with the sprigs of rosemary.
  3. Season the top of the chicken with salt and pepper then rub some olive oil onto the skin.
  4. Place into your roasting pan along with garlic cloves.
  5. Roast your chicken according to its weight – 20 minutes per pound of weight + 20 minutes or 40 minutes per kg of weight + 40 minutes. It’s ready when the juices run clear when you insert a fork or skewer.
  6. Don’t forget to rest your chicken for 15-20 minutes to allow time for the juices to run.
  7. You can use the juices as a makeshift gravy or make a proper gravy if you like to do that.

Sometimes I add potatoes cut in half to the bottom of the roasting tin for the last 40 minutes of roasting so they get all delicious with the garlic and chicken juices.

Afterwards I pick off the remaining chicken meat and use it for another meal and I then make some chicken stock for soup or risotto.

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Classic Roast Chicken with Lemon and Rosemary

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