Christmas Chicken – Easy Chicken Recipes

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This Christmas Chicken is slathered in herb butter and roasted on a bed of oranges, lemons, and garlic and then garnished with pomegranate seeds for tons of fa-la-la-la-flavor!

overhead view of christmas chicken in a cast iron skillet.

What’s in Holiday Chicken?

This Christmas chicken uses one whole chicken that gets coated in an herb butter made of sage, thyme, parsley, orange zest, salt, and pepper and is roasted with citrus, white wine, and garlic to delicious, juicy perfection.

  • Chicken: We used a 4 lb. whole chicken for this recipe, but you’re welcome to use this recipe on other cuts of chicken.
  • Butter: Butter is used to make the herb butter that coats the chicken. Use unsalted!
  • Herbs: A blend of sage, thyme, parsley, and orange zest is mixed with butter to make a delicious herb butter.
  • Citrus: Oranges and lemons give this juicy roast chicken the perfect amount of acidity.
  • Salt and Pepper: Salt and pepper will make all the flavors in this recipe pop.
  • Garlic: Garlic is essential for deepening the flavor of this festive chicken.
  • White Wine: Use a dry white wine like Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, or Pinot Grigio.

Variations on Merry Christmas Chicken

  • Chicken: Rather use chicken breasts or chicken thighs? Go for it! Just adjust the cooking time as necessary. They will cook much quicker.
  • Herbs: Sub out any fresh herbs for your favorites. Rosemary would be a super tasty addition! 
  • Pomegranate Seeds: Try fresh or frozen cranberries instead of pomegranate seeds.
  • Spice It Up: Add a kick of spice with some crushed red pepper, paprika, or cayenne.
step by step photos for how to make christmas chicken.
Can I cook a whole chicken from frozen?

Nope! You’ll want to let the chicken thaw in the refrigerator for 5 hours per pound, or about 20 hours, before roasting it!

How long does it take to roast a whole chicken?

At 425°F, it should take about 50-65 minutes to cook a whole chicken.

How do I make Christmas chicken crispy?

To make the skin crispy, transfer the chicken to a rimmed baking sheet and place it under the broiler for 4-5 minutes. Let the chicken rest for 10 minutes before slicing.

What can I do with the leftover juices from roasting a whole chicken?

You can easily turn those juices into a chicken gravy! Simply melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a saucepan, whisk in 2 tablespoons of flour, then add the chicken juices and cook until thickened. Salt and pepper to taste and serve with the chicken.

three-quarters view of christmas chicken on a white oval serving platter.

How to Store and Reheat Holiday Roast Chicken

Store leftover Christmas chicken in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat chicken pieces in a baking dish with a bit of chicken broth in a 350°F oven for 20-25 minutes, or until warmed through.

How to Freeze Christmas Chicken Dinner

Freeze Christmas chicken cut into pieces in an airtight container or Ziplock bag for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.

overhead view of christmas chicken cut into pieces in a cast iron skillet.
overhead view of christmas chicken in a cast iron skillet.


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