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Classic Roast Chicken

January 4, 2023 • 0 comments

Roast chicken is a classic & simple dish that's always looked forward in our family! Quick, easy, & filling with minimum fuss - perfect for all families! When you think about the perfect roast chicken, what comes to mind? Crispy skin & white meat that's juicy, with dark meat that's cooked all the way through - am I right? Often, the simpler the dish, the more difficult it is to get right. With our birds though, we've got a nearly fool proof way to roast that bird to perfection! After the recipe- let's talk about why our birds roast up so awesome! (we'll put it below - we know you gotta get dinner going!)



Ingredients & What-Nots

  • Whole bird, thawed & dried (leave uncovered in fridge night before or paper towel it)
  • Butter, Lard, or some other fat
  • Salt
  • Any other spices/herbs (Thyme, Lemon, Rosemary, etc)
  • Glass baking dish or roasting pan
  • Oven proof cookie rack, or roasting rack if you have it



Preheat oven to 400 F

Make sure your bird is dry. I usually just use some paper towels to absord any moisture on the skin of the bird. Rub the fat all over the bird with your hand. I normally push a little butter or fat under the breast skin. Salt the bird (a couple tsp more or less depending on your preference) including in the inside.

Place the bird breast down on the rack in the dish/roasting pan. We're gonna cook the back of the bird first which will allow the juices from the thigh & drums to baste the less juicy white meat. Place in oven & roast for 15-20 mins. Then remove the dish from the oven. Flip the bird (use tongs or a few paper towels in each hand) so that it's breast side up. Place back in oven for 15-20 mins more.

When's it done?

If you have a thermometer, test the inside of the thigh - you're looking for 180 F. BUT you also want to check to make sure the juices are clear when you remove the thermometer. If they're pink or pinkish, set back in the oven for a few more mins. Also, if the juices pour out eagerly, give it a few more mins in the oven too. You want clear juices that come out slowly - that's the goal.

By now, your bird has a nice golden brown skin. Let it rest for a few minutes while you round up the family. My favorite part is the wing - what's yours?!

Pro Tip - Place rough chopped veggies under the rack in the dish - taters, onion, celery, mushrooms, garlic, etc. They'll cook in the drippings & that's one less dish to clean up!

Lots of little steps along the way made that bird in your oven. Roast chicken is a classic & simple dish that's always looked forward in our family - and our family is honored that we get to provide for yours!

Why our birds cook up different

You're not alone, many of NWA's finest chefs have talked about how differently Across the Creek birds cook up. Our birds are different than typical a store bought birds for 3 reasons - diet, pasture, & air-chilling. All three of these produce a different bird.

Diet/Feed - 99%ish of chicken grown commercially uses least cost feed - meaning that they use whatever is cheapest at the time to meet the bird's needs. (I once had a feed company try to mix pig blood into our feed to save some $$$ - nope!). We use the same feed every time and have done so for nearly a decade. I'm a big fan of full fat roasted soybeans in poultry diets, which imparts the fat & a nutty flavor that bastes the bird as it bakes in your oven. Most farms use soybeans that have had the oil chemically extracted with hexane or another hazardous solvent - once again, a big ol' nope here at ATC. 

Pasture - Important because the sun, wind, & daily movement produces skin the way a chicken was designed. A chicken expressing it's God-given chickeness creates a skin that is strong & flavorful. The forages & bugs that our birds gobble up on pasture also contribute to the overall taste, as the flavors from the land are deposited in the fat of the bird. 

Processing - We harvest seriously! We have invested in doing it ourselves & I run the processing line every Tuesday at our USDA poultry line in Winslow. During processing, store bought chicken typically goes into chill tanks - water tanks filled with sanitizing solution that kills microbes & absorbs water-weight to add to the final profit. When we process our birds, they actually hang overnight like beef. This dries out the skin, which is great for your wallet, but especially for the cooking qualities of the bird, as it dries out the skin, the secret ingredient to crispy skin on your whole bird.

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