How to Roast a Frozen Chicken

There are going to be two different kinds of people reacting to the title of this post. One group of people are going to say “Yes! Please teach me how to roast a frozen chicken! I’ve been wondering how to do it.” The other group of people will be saying “who the heck doesn’t know how to roast a frozen chicken?”

how to cook a chicken from frozen

So, here’s my message to the second group of people. If you know how to roast a chicken it is most likely because somewhere along the line someone taught you how to do it. Maybe a parent, or a grandparent, or even a friend. However, not everyone is taught what we may feel are some basic skills in life that every adult should know.

So, if you are in that second group of people, thank God for those people in your life who taught you how to cook a chicken.

If you are in the first group, let me say how awesome you are for searching out how to cook a chicken instead of resorting to saying, “I can’t cook.”

And just for the record, I have spent much of my life being part of the first group for many things.

But, I am a firm believer that in an age where information is available with a click of a button, the sky is the limit on what you can learn. As long as you have the drive and determination, you can learn how to do just about anything.

I say “JUST about anything” because there are a few things some of us just can’t learn. Like, for me, I can’t learn how to be co-ordinated on a sports field. Or how to sing like Celine Dion. Or how to get my children to stop leaving Lego as traps on the floor. You ain’t felt pain till you stepped on a lego. Am I right, parents?

No amount of YouTube videos or online tutorials will teach me those things.

But aside from that, there’s quite a bit I can learn from the Internet.

I used to cook a whole chicken in the crockpot. The Internet said it would be delicious. I just did it because it seemed easier and let’s be honest, I like to take shortcuts. Throw the bird in the crockpot, turn it on, and eat it 8 hours later. Except that even though the Internet said it would be delicious, it never was. It was more like boiled, soggy chicken.

You can also learn from the Internet what NOT to do.

Anyways, I wanted to cook it in the oven so it wasn’t soggy and would get that nice, crispy skin. But I also didn’t want it to be dry. That’s where slow cooking in the oven at a low temperature comes in.

Now, before you think that sounds too labor intensive, I promise you it isn’t.

So, here’s how to do it.


Okay, I guess the title might be a bit deceiving. You aren’t actually cooking a frozen chicken. I just like to keep you on your toes. I mean, the chicken IS frozen because you’ve stored it in your freezer, but you are going to thaw it out first. I like to put mine in the fridge the night before. If it is still really frozen by mid-morning I put it on my counter until it’s defrosted completely.

However, let me put in a disclaimer. Most food safety professionals will tell you to not leave meat on the counter. So this is one of those situations where I am telling you to do as I say, not as I do. 🙂 I recommend thawing your chicken in a cold water bath in your kitchen sink. If the chicken isn’t too big it will still cook all the way through in three hours if it is still a little frozen.

Once it’s unfrozen you will want to remove any giblets in the cavity. That’s the inside part of the chicken. Usually when I buy them they don’t have any giblets, but every once in awhile I end up with a brand that puts them in there. So, just be sure to check.

Next, put the bird in the pan. If you want, you can put it on a bed of diced potatoes, but you don’t have to.

Rub oil all over the chicken and cover with spices. I use salt and pepper, garlic powder, and sometimes sage. Rosemary or thyme are good options.

how to roast a frozen chicken

Stick it in an oven that has been preheated to 300 degrees Fahrenheit. You don’t have to cover the chicken because of the low temperature we are cooking it at.

So, how long does it take to cook a whole chicken in the oven?  You are going to cook the chicken for three hours. The reason for cooking it so long at a low temperature is because that is what will make the chicken juicy and tender. Because no one likes dry chicken.

You will want to baste it. Basting is just pouring the fats and juices over the chicken while it cooks. I just use a brush and dip it into the bottom of the pan where the juices have gathered. I baste after 1 hour, then every 30 minutes afterwards. However, there have been times I have been distracted and missed basting, and it’s still turned out very delicious. Basting will just prevent it from drying out too much.

how to roast a chicken from frozen

After the 3 hours take it out. I like to slice through the top of the chicken to make sure it’s completely cooked through. You don’t want the chicken to be pink at all. If it is pink put it back in the oven.

That’s basically all there is to it! Pretty simple, huh? Things always feel more complicated before you attempt them. Once you cook a tender, crispy chicken like this in the oven you will want to cook it like this all the time.

So, now you know how to roast a frozen chicken. Go buy a chicken, invite some friends over, and have a feast.

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