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Cilantro Lime Whole Roasted Chicken

Cilantro Lime Whole Roasted Chicken

Cilantro Lime Whole Roasted Chicken

February 8, 2018
: 4
: 20 min
: 50 min
: 1 hr 10 min

This cilantro lime marinade is a delicious choice for our whole roasted chicken. Roasting the chicken whole allows it to stay super moist and the light bright flavors practically taste like spring on a plate!


  • 1 4-5 pound whole chicken
  • ¼ cup roughly chopped cilantro, plush more for garnish
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tsp lime zest
  • 1 ½ tsp lime juice
  • 2 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 TBSP olive oil for marinating
  • 2 TBSP olive oil for the pan
  • Step 1 Heat oven to 400°F and arrange a rack in the middle. Pat chicken dry with paper towels. Remove any innards from the cavities and discard.
  • Step 2 Season the chicken generously with kosher salt. Combine half of the lime zest with cilantro, garlic, lime juice and olive oil in a small bowl and mix until evenly combined.
  • Step 3 Loosen the skin from the breast and legs of the chicken and, using your clean hands, spread the mixture underneath. Rub the remaining mixture all over the outside of the chicken. Set aside for 20 minutes before roasting.
  • Step 4 Drizzle the remaining olive oil into a large cast iron pan or oven-safe skillet, coating the bottom. Place the chicken breast-side down and roast for 30 minutes. Remove from oven, carefully flip the chicken, then continue to roast, basting every few minutes, about 25 minutes more (about 45 to 50 minutes total).
  • Step 5 For the last 5 minutes I turned it on convection oven to crisp up the skin. Remove the chicken from the oven, allow to cool slightly and then carve for serving.


In my opinion, the best weeknight dinners are the ones that end up being so much easier than you expect. Especially now that I’m a working Mom and time is my most valuable commodity! This whole roasted chicken is the perfect example of one of those meals. Something I never would have dreamed of cooking on a weeknight, but decided to this week since it was a (possible) snow day the next day. And besides the fact that I burned my hand in the process (more to come on that in a minute), it was a home-run in almost every respect.


Easy? Surprisingly yes!

Delicious? You bet!

Something the whole family would enjoy? No questions asked!


I loved the idea of using cilantro (since we had a bunch leftover from making guacamole for the super bowl) as the base of our marinade. The cilantro-lime pairing was such a tasty way to elevate this dish.  As I described it to Marc, it tasted like “spring on a plate.”



Probably the most difficult part of pulling this dish together is the last step, carving the chicken (when its fresh out of the oven no less!), but I left that onerous task to Marc. This is a great video from our favorite kitchen hero, Gordon Ramsay, showing you the easiest way to tackle it.


So the only real hurdle I faced in tackling this recipe (besides accidentally puncturing the skin when I flipped it halfway through) was my momentary lapse in kitchen safety when I grabbed the scalding handle of the skillet, fresh out of the 400 degree oven. I clearly had learned my lesson by the time I took this final photo below, but can you say OUCH?! Let’s just say I went to sleep clutching my ice pack that night…




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