Let’s face it: roasting a whole chicken might be frightening, despite the fact that you’ve undoubtedly been eyeing that sale pricing on them. It’s not necessary to be that way! Although preparing the chicken and removing the neck and giblets may not be everyone’s favorite task, it only takes a few seconds, and you are then ready to go.
Diversity has been one of my main challenges in preparing roast chicken. Flavoring with lemon, garlic, and shallots, always seems to take center stage. And rightly so. They lend their flavor nicely. But it would seem that sweet caramelized onions and tangy apples are equally up to the task and bring an autumn-inspired twist to the table.
What is nice about this recipe is that it’s well suited for either the roasting pan or the crockpot. Where the crockpot wins for ease and convenience, roasting challenges it with crispy skin and speed. The choice is yours. But it is nice to have another recipe for the slow cooker where an ingredient list doesn’t include the words “can of” or “packet.”
For the stuffing, you caramelize onions in butter then soften the apple a little with them along with honey and some spices like thyme and pumpkin pie spice. Quick work can be made of the stuffing by using homemade canned caramelized onions. Simply substitute an amount equal to the pile of shredded apples or so.
- whole chicken or 4 bone-in chicken breasts with skin
- 1 T. butter
- ½ c. onions, thinly sliced or canned caramelized onions
- 1 baking apple, cored, shredded
- 1 T. bread crumbs
- 1 T. honey
- ¼ t. pumpkin pie spice
- ¼ t. salt
- pinch pepper
- pinch dried thyme leaves
- olive oil, salt, pepper, paprika (if roasting)
- Prepare the stuffing by melting the butter in a skillet.
- If you’re using the raw onion, add the slices to the butter and cook them until they’re soft.
- If you’re using the canned caramelized onions, add them to the butter along with the shredded apple, bread crumbs, honey, spices, and seasonings. Cook for a couple of minutes and remove the skillet from the heat.
- Separate the skin from the chicken breasts and thighs with your fingers to form pockets between the skin and the meat.
- Tuck the stuffing among the pockets, folding the skin back over into place. Secure with a toothpick if necessary.
- For the slow cooker:
- Place the chicken in the crockpot. Season with salt and pepper.
- Add a glass of water to the bottom.
- Cover and cook on high for about 5-6 hours or low for about 8 hours.
- To roast:
- Place the chicken in a roasting pan.
- Drizzle with olive oil. Season with salt, pepper, and paprika and rub it all over the skin.
- Roast in the oven at 475 degrees for about 20-30 minutes until the skin is golden and crispy.
- Remove the roasting pan from the oven and reduce the temperature to 325 degrees.
- Add a glass of water to the bottom of the pan, cover, and return to the oven for about an hour to an hour and a half depending on the size of the bird. The internal temperature should be about 170 degrees.
- Allow the fully roasted chicken to set on the counter for 10 minutes before carving to allow the juices to settle.