Ina Garten Roast Chicken Recipe

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Ina Garten Roast Chicken Recipe

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Ina Garten Roast Chicken Recipe

Ina Garten’s Perfect Roast Chicken Recipe

Ina Garten, the beloved Barefoot Contessa, is renowned for her elegant yet approachable recipes, and her roast chicken is no exception. This classic dish is a staple in many households, known for its juicy meat, crispy skin, and delicious aroma. Here’s how to make Ina Garten’s famous roast chicken that’s sure to impress your family and friends.


  • 1 (5 to 6-pound) roasting chicken
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 large bunch fresh thyme, plus 20 sprigs
  • 1 lemon, halved
  • 1 head garlic, cut in half crosswise
  • 2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter, melted
  • 1 large yellow onion, thickly sliced
  • 4 carrots, cut into 2-inch chunks
  • 1 bulb of fennel, tops removed, and cut into wedges
  • Olive oil


  1. Prepare the Oven and Chicken: Preheat your oven to 425 degrees F. Remove the chicken giblets and rinse the chicken inside and out. Pat the outside dry with paper towels.
  2. Season the Chicken: Liberally salt and pepper the inside of the chicken. Stuff the cavity with the bunch of thyme, both halves of the lemon, and all the garlic. Brush the outside of the chicken with the melted butter and sprinkle again with salt and pepper. Tie the legs together with kitchen string and tuck the wing tips under the body of the chicken.
  3. Prepare the Vegetables: Place the onions, carrots, and fennel in a roasting pan. Toss with salt, pepper, 20 sprigs of thyme, and olive oil. Spread around the bottom of the roasting pan and place the chicken on top.
  4. Roast the Chicken: Roast the chicken for about 1 1/2 hours, or until the juices run clear when you cut between a leg and thigh. Remove the chicken and vegetables to a platter and cover with aluminum foil for about 20 minutes.
  5. Carve and Serve: Remove the string from the legs before carving. Slice the chicken onto a platter and serve it with the roasted vegetables.

Tips for the Perfect Roast Chicken

  • Choosing the Right Chicken: Opt for a fresh, organic chicken for the best flavor and tenderness.
  • Seasoning: Don’t skimp on the salt and pepper. Seasoning the inside and outside ensures every bite is flavorful.
  • Resting Time: Allowing the chicken to rest covered in foil after roasting helps retain its juices, making the meat more tender and flavorful.
  • Vegetable Variations: Feel free to experiment with different vegetables like potatoes, parsnips, or sweet potatoes.

Side Dishes to Pair with Roast Chicken

To complement your roast chicken, consider serving it with these side dishes:

  • Mashed Potatoes: Creamy mashed potatoes with a hint of garlic pair wonderfully with the chicken.
  • Green Beans Almondine: Fresh green beans sautéed with almonds and a touch of lemon zest add a refreshing crunch.
  • Buttery Dinner Rolls: Soft, warm rolls are perfect for sopping up the delicious chicken juices.


Ina Garten’s roast chicken is a timeless recipe that combines simplicity with rich, comforting flavors. Whether you’re a seasoned cook or a kitchen novice, this dish is easy to prepare and guaranteed to impress. Enjoy this perfect roast chicken as a centerpiece for your family dinners or special gatherings, and savor the joy it brings to your table.