The secret to an easy juicy roast chicken is to slow cook it first, then just pop it into a hot oven for 10 minutes to brown the skin and whisk up a quick gravy. It takes mere minutes to prepare to put in the slow cooker making Sunday Roast Chicken a dinner you can serve up any day of the week!
Most of these still made a tasty chicken. But none were The One. Then I came across Thomas Keller’s brined roast chicken (PS he is a super star “serious” chef, owner of Per Se in New York and the French Laundry in San Fran). Brining infuses the chicken with amazing flavour as well as trapping the juices. You will be amazed how juicy the chicken breast is. I’ve shared a recipe using this brining method –Succulent Roast Chicken. It’s dead easy, and making the brine is quick but then you need to wait for it to cool then leave the chicken in it at least overnight.
So for all those days that I want to make roast chicken but don’t have the time to brine, I make this Slow Cooker Lemon Garlic Roast Chicken. It’s a recipe I came up when I got my first slow cooker, just one of those things you throw together that’s actually a success and ends up being a keeper for life. I change up the herbs, sometimes I omit the lemon and use onion instead, sometimes I rub the chicken with other spices. But I always use this same method.
1.5kg/3lb whole chicken
2 lemons (medium), 1 cut into 4 wedges and 1 cut in half.
1 head of garlic, cut horizontally
10 sprigs of thyme
1½ tbsp olive oil
1½ tsp salt
1 tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper
2 tbsp plain flour
¾ cup chicken stock / broth
¼ tsp Worcestershire sauce
¼ tsp soy sauce
1 tbsp butter
Salt and pepper to taste
Extra lemon wedges
- Step 1
Rinse chicken and pat dry. Season inside and outside of chicken with salt and pepper.
- Step 2
Rub 1½ tbsp olive oil over skin of chicken.
- Step 3
Reserve 2 garlic cloves (being 4 halves), then stuff the remaining garlic into the cavity along with the 4 lemon wedges and half the sprigs of thyme.
- Step 4
Place a rack inside the slow cooker so the chicken is elevated off the base. If you don’t have a rack, then get some foil and scrunch into balls (about the size of a golf ball) and place these on the bottom of the slow cooker. You will need 5 foil balls.
- Step 5
Place the chicken into the slow cooker on the rack (or foil balls).
- Step 6
Squeeze the juice of the 2 lemon halves over the chicken.
- Step 7
Mince the 2 garlic cloves (reserved from step 3) straight onto the top of the chicken. Top with remaining thyme sprigs on top then slow cook on high for 4 hours or low for 8 hours.
Resting and Roasting:
- Step 8
Preheat oven to 220C/430F.
- Step 9
Remove chicken from slow cooker carefully and place on a baking tray. Cover loosely with foil and rest for 20 minutes. If your slow cooker finished cooking more than 1 hour ago (which is most of the time in my case), you won’t need to do this step as your chicken is already rested.
- Step 10
Remove foil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, drizzle over 1 tbsp olive oil and place in oven.
- Step 11
Roast for 10 to 15 minutes until skin is browned and slightly crisp.
- Step 12
If your slow cooker has a sauté setting, you can make the gravy in your slow cooker. If you don’t, simply pour the juice into a small saucepan and make the gravy on the stove.
- Step 13
Remove some of the juice in the slow cooker so you are left with 1½ cups of liquid.
- Step 14
Add the butter, stock, soy sauce and worcestershire sauce, bring to simmer then add flour and whisk until combined and no lumps remain.
- Step 15
Simmer for 30 seconds to 1 minute until the sauce thickens. If it is too thick (which depends on how much fat was in the liquid) just add a splash of water until you achieve your desired consistency.
- Step 16
Optional: strain before use.
- Pour gravy into gravy boat. Place chicken on a serving platter. Scatter over parsley and serve with lemon wedges, if desired.