Winner, winner, chicken dinner. That is pretty much my life’s mantra. I LOVE CHICKEN! I don’t know what it is exactly, other than it’s just the most comforting protein. I’ll be honest though, eating meat is something I have to consciously do. I know that I’m not a vegan or vegetarian even, but it’s never at the forefront of my mind. And now, especially that I have Type 1 and poultry is what I call a “free food,” (meaning I don’t have to take insulin for it), it’s more important than ever to fine tune my poultry skillz. (Yes, skillz with a Z like Skillz from One Tree Hill.) Anyway, this is my introduction to the happiness I call Maple Butter Whole Roasted Chicken.
I’ve recently found out that it’s extremely hard to lose weight and exceptionally easy to gain it with Type 1 diabetes. As if I didn’t already have genetics against me, now this! (choose positivity, Karlee). So, my goal is to cut my calories and my carbohydrates. Cutting calories has never been too hard. But, since my tendency is to crave a chip over a chicken, it might be a little difficult to switch my mindset as far as cutting carbs.
This change has inspired me to develop more whole-roasted chicken recipes. Really, my favorite is the Orange Rosemary Chicken I posted a few months back, and I’ve always just kind of lived there. I need to stretch my wings and see what else I can do with a whole roasted chicken or “fauxtisserie chicken.”
The story behind making a maple butter sauce was basically “Hmmmm maple chicken sounds good.” Just kidding. Did you know that maple is actually a season? It’s RIGHT when winter ends and spring begins. They call it maple sugaring season in New England, and it starts at the end of February and goes to the beginning of April. How cute is that? So, while yes, I am very intentional about cooking seasonally, I had no clue how spot-on I was with this recipe’s timing.
Also, how badly do I want to go to New England right now? I’ll give you a hint: so bad.
As with all chicken recipes, this one is pretty simple. If you have the time, brine your chicken overnight in salt water. Just submerge your chicken in a salt water solution of 1 tablespoon salt per 1 cup of water, and leave in the fridge over night or for at least 8 hours. It really does make a world of difference in taste and juicy tenderness. But, if you have a chicken in your fridge and you want it for dinner, like, NOW! then it’s totally fine to skip the brining process. No harm, no foul.
I feel like I usually divide my recipes into two categories; 1. Weeknight meals and 2. Weekend meals. This recipe definitely falls under both. It’s a perfect Sunday dinner recipe and a great weeknight comfort meal too. This chicken is definitely worth a try. Serve it with a side of sweet potatoes or some corn bread. Anything really! Just make sure that you eat it with a Massachusetts accent.
Never trussed a chicken? Here is a helpful video!
Maple Butter Whole Roast ChickenPrint Recipe
- 1 whole roasting chicken
- 2 sweet onions, peeled
- 1/2 cup butter
- 2 teaspoons real maple extract
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Quarter two sweet onions and place in the bottom of a large casserole dish or cast iron skillet reserving one or two quarters for stuffing inside the chicken.
Pat the chicken dry, remove the innards and put one or two onion quarters inside . Truss the chicken, and set on top of the onions.
Melt butter in a saucepan and whisk in the maple extract, honey, apple cider vinegar, and salt.
Brush the mixture over the entire chicken. Once the whole bird is covered in maple butter, pour the rest on top of the chicken. Place in the preheated oven bake for 30 minutes for each pound of chicken. Baste and rotate the chicken every 30 minutes. Chicken is done once it registers 165 degrees on a meat thermometer. Begin checking internal temperature after 1.5 hours. Cover with foil once the skin reaches your desired browned color. Let rest for 10 minutes before serving.
If you are gong to brine your chicken, the ratio is 1 tablespoon of salt per one cup of water. I usually only use 2 teaspoons of salt per cup of water since it can make the smaller cuts of your meat too salty.