How to Get a Crispy Crust on Roasted Chicken

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It only takes a few simple steps to prepare roasted chicken with crispy skin.
It only takes a few simple steps to prepare roasted chicken with crispy skin. (Image: Eising/Photodisc/Getty Images)

When roasting a chicken, there are good reasons to leave its skin on during cooking. The skin helps the chicken retain moisture during roasting which produces a more tender bird. Also, many people love the savory flavor of golden-brown crispy skin on their roasted chicken. If you do, there are several ways to make preparing this main dish an easy accomplishment.

Things You'll Need

  • Oven
  • Whole chicken
  • Paper towels
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Shallow roasting pan with a roasting rack
  • Oven-safe meat thermometer

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. A fully preheated oven is the essential first step for crisp-skinned roasted chicken.

Remove the chicken from the package. Rinse under cool water. Use paper towels to pat the bird dry thoroughly.

Brush melted butter or rub olive oil all over the chicken before seasoning it on all sides with salt and pepper.

Place the chicken on a roasting rack to prevent it from cooking in its own juices. Skin that comes in contact with the chicken's drippings during roasting will be soggy, not crispy.

Insert the meat thermometer into the meatiest part of the chicken. Keep the thermometer tip away from bones, which can alter temperature readings.

Place the rack and chicken into a shallow roasting pan, and place the pan in your preheated oven.

Roast the chicken for 15 minutes per pound, and monitor the meat thermometer closely.

Remove the chicken from the oven when its internal temperature reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit. This is a safe temperature at which to serve chicken without having to worry about food-born illness.

Rest the chicken for five to 10 minutes. Carve it for serving.

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