Serve an easy no-fuzz dinner with this simple recipe of chicken roasted in a clay pot. You’ll love how tender and juice it comes out every time!
I remember clay pot chicken from my childhood. Apparently, clay pots were really popular in the US in the seventies. However, they have been around for thousands of years. Roasting a chicken in a clay pot couldn’t be simpler!
If you know me, you know that I love simple and easy. I try to keep my kitchen uncluttered, resisting any temptation to buy a gadget or tool I may only use rarely or for only one type of food.
My clay pot I love, though! Let me walk you through the benefits:
Benefits of clay pot cooking:
- simple preparation (only needs some time for soaking)
- can be a one-pot meal
- no splattering in the oven
- it’s hard to overcook
- clay pot releases steam
- meat will be very tender and juicy
- you don’t have to add any fats
How to prepare the clay pot:
Before you do anything else, soak both the clay pot and the lid in cold water. I usually do that right in my sink. You may want to move it somewhere else if you need your sink (such as cleaning your chicken). Make sure you soak the clay pot for at least 15 mins but you can also do it longer.
In the meantime, you prep your chicken. I like to take out the neck and giblets. Once the clay pot has soaked long enough, I place the chicken in the clay pot and sprinkle it with salt, pepper, and herbs. Next, I add my veggies. Potatoes, onions, and garlic cut up in pieces are great. You might like to add carrots, sweet potatoes, or any veggies you like. The best thing is that they’ll be roasting in the chicken juices. Oh, the flavors!
Now, you put the lid on the clay pot (my clay pot is nesting in the lid for soaking) and put it in the COLD oven. Never put a clay pot in a hot oven. I haven’t tried it but I imagine it might crack it. Then you turn your oven to 400˚ – 425˚ F. Obviously, roasting times will vary but for a 5-pound chicken, I like to roast it for about 1 1/2 hrs.
Carefully remove the clay pot from the oven and place it on a hot plate or wooden cutting board. Do not place it on something like cold granite. As you can see, even though there was a lid, the skin was brown and crispy. You can also see all the juices in the clay pot that the chicken released.
Recently, I made a duck in the clay pot and it came out just as great as the chicken.
Another benefit of roasting a whole chicken (or duck) is that I make bone broth from the bones. You can sip those bone broths or use them as a base for a soup. They are amazing for gut health!
How to clean and store the clay pot:
Let the clay pot cool down. Only scrub with hot water. Do not use dish soap or detergent as that is said to clog up the pores of the pot. Over the years, the bottom part of my clay pot has become darker and stained. I like to call this patina. Let your clay pot dry completely in an airy place. Once dry, store the pot nestled in the lid in a dry, cool place. Don’t tuck it away too far since you’ll love using it soon again!
You can purchase clay pots on amazon such as this one. They come in different sizes but the medium has worked great for my family. You might also find them in well-stocked kitchen stores.
Clay Pot Chicken
- 1 whole chicken, preferably pasture-raised, organic
- 3-7 medium potatoes, cut in cubes
- 1 whole onion, cut in pieces
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1. Soak clay pot and lid in cold water for at least 15 mins.2. Prepare chicken by removing neck and giblets. Season with salt, pepper, and herbs (thyme, oregano, basil etc).3. Place chicken in clay pot. Arrange veggies around chicken. Veggies are flexible, use any you like.4. Put lid on clay pot and place it in COLD oven. 5. Turn oven to 400˚ – 425˚ F.6. Depending on size of clay pot and chicken, roast for about 1 1/2. 7. Enjoy!