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Roasted lemon basil chicken

December 6, 2009

This roasted chicken has a history. The first time I did something like this was here as an inspiration from Retorte.

Today I do the full chicken with sweet potatoes.

Before cooking:

It’s very much like the first time as far as how it’s dressed.

  • 4 tbls Pesto — if you don’t have pesto, you can use fresh basil and garlic and make a paste of that.
  • zest of two lemons
  • juice of half a lemon
  • extra salt and lots of black pepper
  • olive oil to make the paste a bit easier to slather over the chicken

Mix these ingredients up and coat the chicken with the resulting paste.

I added sweet potatoes to cook with the chicken which are, of course, optional. You can put another kind of potato or none at all.

Roast according to your preferences when roasting a chicken. I did this one on 375 degrees for a little over an hour. It turned out wonderfully succulent. I don’t really know the first thing about roasting chickens when it comes to the finer points in terms of how to heat the oven, etc. This one took much less time than I thought it would.

Fresh out of the oven:

8 Comments leave one →
  1. December 6, 2009 9:15 am

    Hello Monica, I followed you from Yes We Cook. I really like your recipes, and I made this one just now. The only thing I did different was I brined the chicken first. The kitchen smelled wonderful and my son kept coming back to the kitchen to ask, “is it done yet?”:) I also wanted to let you know about our exciting food blogger cookbook contest we just announced this week!
    For the next three months, food bloggers can submit their photography, writings, and original recipes to The public can view all submissions on the website and vote for their favorites. That feedback and editors at both Andrews McMeel Publishing and will determine 100 entries chosen for inclusion in “The Foodista Best of Food Blogs Cookbook.” Each winner will receive a free copy of the cookbook. More info available here: Thanks!

    • December 6, 2009 5:15 pm

      thanks Alisa…
      I would like to learn brining…sounds great.

      I will see if I have time to visit your contest. Sounds like fun.

      thanks for stopping by.

  2. December 6, 2009 10:42 am

    This looks so savory and delicious. I love that you covered it in pesto. The pesto would also go really well on the sweet potatoes.

    I’ve never roasted a chicken before. My father scared me out of it when he told me I would have to check the cavity for innards. I’ve gone the pre-cut chicken pieces route ever since.

    I’m excited to hear about your first yeast adventure! Don’t be scared, it’s easier than it looks.

    • December 6, 2009 5:12 pm

      the chickens I buy never have the guts and it bums me out frankly…those are great in stock and chicken soup…

      in any case…I hate handling meat…I am a reluctant meat eater…I don’t like being responsible for the death of animals…I’ve also tried being a vegetarian and I know good practices and I simply don’t feel well without meat in my diet…

      so I had to get over the meat handling issue…I suggest you do to!! Whole chickens are inexpensive and delicious…

      I agree the pesto is good on the potatoes…I actually put the potatoes back in the oven with the meat juices so I did eat them that way…I should have written that in the post.

  3. December 6, 2009 2:23 pm

    This sound like a fabulous meal…I love the sweet potatoes roasted with the chicken…delicious!

  4. December 6, 2009 6:16 pm

    That dish looks wonderful! I love the idea of roasting the sweet potatoes with the chicken and the pesto sounds delicious!

  5. December 7, 2009 10:58 pm

    Sweet potatoes and chicken are a good combo. Love it. And a roasted chicken is always a good choice. We roast alot of chicken in our household!

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