Budget Friendly Paleo Whole Chicken Recipe: Part 1

Maybe it’s the new wife or the food blogger in me, but a goal of mine in 2017 was to learn how to roast a whole “bird.” Even though I worked on Thanksgiving, I made it my mission to attempt to provide a traditional Thanksgiving dinner for my husband. Had the oven not started to go on fire, it might have been successful. Either way, I am excited to have learned how to prepare and cook a full bird. Whenever I have picked up a whole chicken (in the raw meat area, NOT the already cooked one, but thanks Shop Rite and Whole Foods for having antibiotic free roasted chickens), I could not even wrap my head around the complexity of it. Turns out, roasting a turkey or a chicken seems much more intimidating than it really is. The prep takes about 10 minutes TOPS, and the actual cooking time, while long, does not involve more than putting it in the oven, and waiting for it to be done.

 

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Apart from the ease of actually roasting the chicken, let’s talk budget. Organic, boneless, chicken breasts are extremely expensive per lb. I’m talking $7.99 if you’re lucky or $9.99 if you’re not.  A whole chicken, organic, at Trader Joe’s is $2.99/lb here in Jersey. At Whole Foods this week, for $1.99/lb. This meal got 2 dinners, 2 lunches, 6 bowls of soup. So we are talking 10 meals for $14.00 worth of protein. That’s $1.40 a meal! Granted, that’s just the protein, but the sides don’t add that much extra. Are you sold yet?

While I *didn’t* do this, you can easily make this a one skillet meal by roasting the potatoes in the skillet as well as some Brussel sprouts to maximize time efficiently, especially for meal prepping.

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Ingredients:

  • 1 Whole chicken
  • 3 large carrots
  • 1 lemon
  • Rosemary ~2 springs
  • Thyme~2 sprigs
  • Avocado Oil (or ghee)
  • 1 large yellow onion
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • Ground Pepper
  • Pink Salt
  • Celery
  1. Thaw out chicken, when ready to prep the meat, leave out for about 20 minutes. Take out Giblets. Preheat oven to 375. Place on large cutting board and pat dry with a paper towel. While oven is preheating, place cast iron pan into oven so it gets warm while the other ingredients are being prepped.
  2. Chop celery, carrots, and yellow onion into long pieces, chop garlic.
  3. Take avocado oil and coat entire chicken. Stuff inside of chicken with onion, garlic, rosemary, thyme, salt, pepper. Place the same mixture around the chicken, coating it evenly with salt, pepper, rosemary, garlic powder.  Slice one lemon into thin pieces and place around the chicken.
  4. Take out pan, place it on stovetop so that nothing burns. Coat bottom of pan with avocado oil, onion slices, carrots, celery, garlic cloves in the bottom of a cast iron pan.
  5. Place chicken right on top of that divine mixture, put whole chicken in the oven covered with foil for one hour. For the next 1.5 hours, leave uncovered. It should take up to 2.5 hours for the chicken to be moist, and NOT dried out.
  6. Take out chicken, check internal temperature which should be 165 F for safe consumption. Allow chicken to cool before slicing, dicing, and devouring.
  7. Enjoy this meal that you will feel SO good about, and let me know what you think!
  8. Soup recipe to come in next post!

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