Rock Salt Roasted Chicken

For years I’ve been buying rock salt (otherwise known as ice cream salt) in bulk. To make ice cream, you ask? Ha! My kids wish. Nope. To make roast chicken! Seriously. Stick with me here.

This recipe was passed on to me by my Aunt Marilyn who got it from a friend of hers who happens to be an amazing Italian cook. You might think that roasting a whole chicken on a bed of rock salt would be asking for a big, salty problem. But you would be wrong, no offense. Instead, the rock salt base locks in the moisture and flavor to create the most juicy, tender, tastiest chicken. Ever.

When you consider the thousands upon thousands of recipes that call for cooked, shredded chicken, I wouldn’t blame you if you are skimming the rest of this long-winded post so you can get in the kitchen and make this pronto. Plus, you can save the bones (I prefer not to say carcass because I just don’t like that word and dang it, you just made me say it) and make your own chicken stock to freeze for later use.

What To ServeI make this recipe frequently for Sunday dinner and serve it with cheesy potatoes, rolls, a green salad and steamed veggie. However, if I’m being completely honest, 5.5 times out of 10 when I make this, I scrap the whole nice-dinner theme and we load the tender chicken onto rolls with mustard and sharp cheddar cheese and stuff our faces that way. Embrace the rock salt and make this chicken. No matter how you use it, you are bound to fall in love.

P.S. In an effort to avoid cleaning my toilets, organizing the chaos that exists underneath all our beds and folding the clothes in the dryer, I reorganized my Pinterest food boards instead. For a long time I’ve only had one food board (shocking, I know) but I have caved and reorganized it into several different boards to make my menu planning life easier (and subsequently deleted the old board). I still have my Made It…Loved Itย  board (some of those get posted, some don’t) and my favorite Mel’s Kitchen Cafe Favorites, too. Happy pinning!

Rock Salt Roasted Chicken

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Rock Salt Roast Chicken {Basically The Best Roast Chicken Ever}

Rock Salt Roast Chicken {Basically The Best Roast Chicken Ever}

Note: You can freeze the cooked and cooled chicken in resealable freezer bags for 1-2 months. Here is a great list of recipes that use cooked, shredded chicken - or just enjoy this chicken on it's own with a few delicious sides.


  • 1 whole chicken
  • 4 pound box rock salt (also called ice cream salt)
  • 1 lemon
  • 3-4 sprigs parsley
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and sliced


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Line a 9X13-inch pan with foil for easy cleanup and pour the rock salt into the pan, evening it into a thick, smooth layer. Remove and discard anything (like neck, gizzards, etc.) from inside the chicken, if included, and rinse the chicken inside and out, draining thoroughly. Generously salt and pepper the inside and outside of the chicken. With a fork, poke holes all over the lemon. Put the lemon, parsley and garlic into the cavity of the chicken. Secure the chicken closed with a toothpick or two. Place the chicken on the bed of salt.
  3. Bake for 40 minutes. Carefully flip the chicken over and bake for another 40-50 minutes until cooked through (the chicken should register 165 degrees on an instant-read thermometer at the thickest part of the chicken breast).

Recipe Source: from my Aunt Marilyn by way of her friend, Rosanna P.

108 Responses to Rock Salt Roast Chicken {Basically The Best Roast Chicken Ever}

  1. Allie says:

    When you say salt and pepper the inside and outside of the chicken, do you mean with rock salt as well? Or is the rock salt just for the bed?

    Thank you!

  2. Emily says:

    Hi! I just made this and it was delicious – thank you so much for the recipe! I didn’t use as much salt as you suggested and it turned out wonderfully, the skin was crispy and flavourful, the meat was so tender. Thank you again ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. Sara Miller says:

    Made this today for Sunday dinner, and it was delicious! I used the rock salt as well without worries. Highly recommend for anyone wanting a new way of cooking chicken. The meat was very moist and preparing/cooking it was a breeze.

  4. Melanie says:

    Super moist and delicious! My kids gobbled it up serving after serving (after serving)…

  5. julie says:

    Mel, What can I say????? Hands down the BEST roast chicken EVER!!!!!! Love, love, love it!!!! Thx for posting..

  6. Elizabeth says:

    I have made a version of this for many years and it is always a hit- and so easy! I have always used a box of coarse kosher salt- and it works perfectly, FYI.

    I use a little higher heat, it makes a super crispy skin that my kids fight for, and the inside is incredibly tender and juicy. Good without the lemon, herbs too.

  7. Rock Salt Roast Chicken : Slot1 says:

    […] Rock Salt Roast Chicken1 whole chicken4 pound box rock salt (also called ice cream salt)1 lemon3-4 sprigs parsley3 garlic cloves, peeled and sliced    Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.    Line a 9X13-inch pan with foil for easy cleanup and pour the rock salt into the pan, evening it into a thick, smooth layer. Remove and discard anything (like neck, gizzards, etc.) from inside the chicken, if included, and rinse the chicken inside and out, draining thoroughly. Generously salt and pepper the inside and outside of the chicken. With a fork, poke holes all over the lemon. Put the lemon, parsley and garlic into the cavity of the chicken. Secure the chicken closed with a toothpick or two. Place the chicken on the bed of salt.    Bake for 40 minutes. Carefully flip the chicken over and bake for another 40-50 minutes until cooked through (the chicken should register 165 degrees on an instant-read thermometer at the thickest part of the chicken breast). Recipe from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe […]

  8. Kim says:

    Any thoughts as to whether or not I could do this in an electric roaster? I need to do a turkey and I always do it in my electric roaster and want to try the rock salt method with the turkey because I don’t feel like trying to keep a brine ice cold when it is over 100 degrees outside!

    • Mel says:

      Kim – I’ve never used an electric roaster for this type of recipe so I’m not really sure but it’s certainly worth a try!

    • Jeanine says:

      Kim did you try this in the roaster? I was thinking of doing the same thing! I don’t want to heat up my kitchen here in Vegas!

  9. ALICIA says:

    Hi Mel,

    Not sure if you have already answered this but what do you do with all the leftover rock salt after cooking the chicken? Can you reuse it or into the bin after cooking?

    • Mel says:

      Hi Alicia, I discard it since all the chicken juices have run down into it and I’m not certain it will keep well to use again.

  10. Wendy says:

    Hi Mel,
    I was wondering if the “list” of recipes using cooked chicken is inactive – or is it my computer nieivity at work again? Would love the list if it’s easily available. Thanks –

  11. nery says:

    I have used this method for chicken and turkey (YES BIG THANKSGIVING TURKEY) for over 30 years and I use coarse kosher salt______turns up wonderful every time
    For the turkey use the turkey pan and make sure you have about 1″ salt under it (or more if it is to fat) No need to turn it May need to cover with foil and baste it (or spray it) with just water Use cooking time from any poultry cooking table and a temperature thermometer – place in lower rack

    I have a question though …………anybody tried this in a crock pot ? How?
    I am afraid the salt will make the temp to rise to much (may crack???)
    Please reply if you have done it and your slow cooker survived
    healthy eating

  12. Liz says:

    My husband and I absolutely LOVE this chicken! I have made it several times now. Better yet – I have adapted it to make it in the crockpot! Do yourself a favor and try this chicken! You will not regret it!

  13. OOPS!! I checked the actual recipe and that should be 475 degrees, “very high heat” – !

  14. I was introduced to salt roasted chicken by a le Creuset saucepan recipe booklet, promising “the best tasting chicken you’ve ever had!” That recipe is similar to yours, except that it specifies a 3.5 lb chicken, then in addition to parsley, chives plus 2 T fresh herbs of choice but no garlic — then it calls for 50 minutes cooking time sitting in a 2 qt cast iron saucepan and doesn’t have one turning the bird over at all. Temp may be lower than 400 — will have to check…

    I once cooked a 3.5 lb duck this way, substituting orange for the lemon. The result was a duck unlike any other I’ve ever had: very light in flavor, not at all fatty and overly rich — delicious!!. Two friends who adamantly disliked duck tried it then both agreed that this was a duck flavor they could really enjoy.

    I told my daughter about this and now we’ve decided to try this for Thanksgiving this year. The only trouble is that the local market’s ducks are bigger than 3.5 lbs, so I’ll have to guess about the cooking time…

  15. Danielle H. says:

    So…this might be a seriously dumb and/or weird question, but could I just use the same kind of salt that is sitting in my water softener downstairs? It’s what I use when making ice cream, and I’ve got a whole bin of it just sitting there. I hope the answer is yes. But if not, I will be okay too.

    • Mel says:

      Danielle – my first instinct is no. But that’s because I thought water softener salt was different than rock salt. Many people have commented on this thread that they wouldn’t use ice cream salt either because it’s not for consumption. I use it and feel fine about it but the water softener salt makes me a little nervous (although I could be proven wrong if it really is the same thing).

  16. Holly W. says:

    Hi Mel – I found your blog from a pinterest link and I haven’t been back to pinterest for a recipe since! Everything I have made so far from your site has been spot-on in terms of what I expected the end result to be.

    As far as the chicken goes… This chicken was perfect. I didn’t have rock salt, but used Kosher salt and it seemed to work just fine. While a few other readers have said they want to embellish this with additional sauces or glazes… to them I say: it’s truly NOT needed and you would lose the true flavor of the chicken. Save your embellishments for your side dishes. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Thanks for a great blog!

  17. Renee says:

    I am not a fan of bone-in chicken. I’m wondering if this recipe would also work with boneless, skinless breasts (obviously the cooking time would be greatly reduced.)

  18. Betsy says:

    I had a whole chicken just sitting around, begging to be roasted. When I saw this, I chuckled to myself and thought, Mel always says that everything is the best! I knew it would be delicious but I was not prepared for just HOW delicious it was. You are right, Mel. How could I have ever doubted it? It was the BEST! Our daughters were asleep when we finally sat down to eat which just enhanced this dining experience! I just kept shoving it in my face saying “it’s just so juicy! Why is it so juicy? I can’t believe it!” YUM YUM. Thanks again. This is my go-to recipe site and it NEVER fails. I am constantly forwarding these recipes to my friends and recommending your site. You are truly the best!

  19. AnnaW says:

    We have made this several times and its SOOO good. I am so glad I found this recipe here. We only use half a box of rock salt in our pampered chef deep covered baker and it works amazingly. We usually stuff with whatever we have on hand. onions apples etc. Its a very flexible recipe as long as you use the rock salt. Thanks Mel. We will be keeping this forever.

  20. Gail SR says:

    I have used this basic method for roasting prime rib, and it is fabulous. The method is slightly different. I seasoned my roast with salt and pepper. I lined a deep roasting pan with foil. Then I poured some rock salt in the bottom and moistened it slightly, put in the roast, and poured more rock salt over the top. (Try to cover the meat all over.) Then I tented the foil over the top of the meat and put it in the oven at 500 degrees. (Do not completely seal the foil.) Bake 15 minutes per pound. PS: I like my meat well done. The salt bits must be removed from the outside of the meat before serving.

  21. Leslie says:

    Very intrigued & after reading comments gotta try it but will have to wait until the temp here in Illinois drops below a humid 97 degrees. Found you on Pinterest. Glad I did!

  22. Jill says:

    Made this tonight for my family (used a lime instead of a lemon because I didn’t have a lemon) and it was a hit! Everyone wanted more chicken. It was moist, flavorful and gorgeous to behold. Wowee! It was also super easy to make on a day when I already had the oven going for a lot of other things. Hooray! Thank you for sharing this recipe. I will definitely be making it again – especially if I need to take a dinner to someone.

  23. Liz says:

    I made this tonight in the crockpot and it was wonderful!! I also seasoned it with lemon pepper (salt free!) My fiancรฉ and I agreed it was the best chicken I have made!! I will definitely make this a regular in my home.

  24. fmandds says:

    I made this last week and it was wonderful. Usually I always discard the skin on roasted chickens because it’s flabby and gross! This recipe made it crisp up nice and crunchy and I actually ate some of it. I put a few extra drumsticks into the pan but I don’t think they need as long to cook, so next time I’ll add them at the flipping point.

  25. Tracey says:

    Just out of curiosity, are you really using the actual “ice cream salt”? I have a box of Morton brand Ice Cream Salt, and it specifically states that it is not intended for consumption.

    • Mel says:

      Tracey – yes, I do buy the ice cream salt when I can’t find boxes of rock salt. I guess I’ve always justified it because you aren’t actually consuming the salt – although it does help impart flavor. I’m pretty sure someone said they used coarse kosher salt in place of rock salt so you may try that if you are worried about the rock salt…but I haven’t tried it myself so don’t hate me if it’s too salty. ๐Ÿ™‚

  26. Stephanie says:

    Hi Mel, I just wanted to say how amazing this chicken was! My husband and I declared this the best roast chicken recipe we have ever had! I was wanting to make this for a larger crowd so if I were to use a 10 pound chicken how much rock salt would I use? Would I still use 4 pounds? Thanks!

    • Mel says:

      Stephanie – as long as the chicken fits on the same size of pan there is no need to increase the rock salt – it’s only if you have to use a larger pan size that you’d want to increase the salt so it is at least 1 inch thick.

  27. Terry A. says:

    I tried this for the first time today, and it won’t be my last! The chicken was juicy and flavorful. (I used Kosher salt rather than rock salt.)

    Thanks, Mel!

  28. […] Recipe Credit: Mel’s Kitchen Cafe […]

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  30. Robert says:

    There’s rock salt (Brown) and rock salt (white) – white is fine for consumption.

  31. Lindy says:

    I have never made a whole chicken before so I was a little nervous. The grocery store only had a 6.35 lb chicken so I was also worried about adjusting the cooking time. However, this was amazing!!!!!!! I was dying. It was delicious. I did make a lemon, garlic, cream sauce and served it on the side and I think it made it even more delish. Thanks for the recipe! It’s incredible!

  32. Nadia says:

    The most delicious roast chicken I have ever had!! The whole family LOVED it! Thank you!!!

  33. Mel says:

    Wow! This was the best chicken ever! I was skeptical but it was so delicious. My husband and I absolutely loved it. Thank you for sharing this recipe. We will definitely be making this again!

  34. […] Roasted Broccoli Tuesday- Flank Steak with Spinach Salad Wednesday- Chicken Taco Salad Thursday- Roasted Chicken, Veggies, and Sweet Potato (and maybe a Valentine’s dessert?) Friday- Valentine’s […]

  35. Kelli says:

    A friend recommended your site to me, which I gladly have been reading & trying recipes from. By far this is one of my favorite recipes so far! It was the first time EVER that I roasted a chicken and WOW was it delicious! It had such good flavor and was so juicy, not to mention super simple to do. Thank you!

  36. Mel says:

    Karen -yes, I think you could (I’m pretty sure it’s the same philosophy) but I haven’t actually tried it so I can’t guarantee the results.

  37. Tammy says:

    This seriously is basically the best roasted chicken ever! Wow. LOVED it. Thank you!!

  38. Karen says:

    Maybe someone has already asked this question but I was just wondering if you could use a Himalayn Salt Block (which you can buy cooking grade ones) instead of the rock salt. I hate the thought of wasting rock salt each time. I’ve made the chicken and it is delicious and would love to make it more.
    Thanks so much Mel

  39. Pauline says:

    Just the best!!! Like a brined chicken. An incredible PLUS…..your home will smell amazing, even the next morning. I’ve never seen a recipe like this but will definitely be doing it again. The lemon adds great flavor, and the salt (HOW?) makes it all so moist….white and dark meat. My husband was iffy also…..found a piece of the salt in the Farro Salad I made as a side dish and thought it was glass!!!! Fantastic recipe…..THANK YOU!

  40. laura says:

    I did this last night, and it was a huge hit… we’ll be happily picking off the leftovers for a while. We used about half the amount of salt, and used sea salt (had to use what we had on hand!) and it still turned out great. And the kids loved helping with it. I blogged a bit more about it today!

  41. Mel says:

    Samantha – you could definitely do 2 chickens as long as they fit in the pan (with some space between – you don’t want them smashed up against each other). As for the glaze, I haven’t tried it but you could experiment and see how it works out. Good luck!

    G Andolina – I haven’t heard of pyrex dishes exploding in the oven but I always use my aluminum 9X13-inch pan for this and it works great.

  42. G Andolina says:

    I would caution you all NOT to use a Pyrex dish for this. there have been instances of them exploding and I can see that this might easily set up the kind of elements that lead to that. use a metal or corningware pan.
    That said I really need to try out this recipe. I like the idea of doing a couple of chickens at a time. That salt isn’t cheap.
    I wonder how cornish hens or game birds might do with this. I was thinking about duck even, but I need to see this first.

    Another thing I am thinking about is using a Silpat pad or two for turning a chicken or turkey over. I haven’t tried it yet. If anyone does soon, let me know how it worked. Make usr you wash it immediately because they absorb odors.

  43. Samantha S says:

    Also, if I wanted to feed a crowd, could I do two smaller chickens on the same bed of rock salt? Thanks so much Mel!

  44. Samantha S says:

    Do you think I could add the glaze you use for your honey roast chicken recipe to this? I want to try this one, but i am already in love with the honey roasted chicken.

  45. angie says:

    This was the BOMB!..
    Will never bake another chicken the dried out way again. My Mom declared this was the best chicken she had ever had:) even after all her research on rock salt. Since the only kind I could find was labeled “melting salt” sidewalks, driveways etc( it was pure rock salt).

  46. anne says:

    Hi Mel. I have to tell you… my husband was extremely skeptical about this rock salt chicken idea tonight. I followed your directions to the T, only I started breast side down b/c I wanted the crispy skin on top of the breast meat when it finished cooking. THIS CHICKEN WAS AMAZING!! My entire family devoured it. I fixed cheesy potatoes and grilled zucchini and mushrooms to go with it and it will go down as one of the best Sunday night dinners we’ve had in a long, long time. I will definitely roast a chicken this way again soon! Oh, and this is my first comment on your site ever… this is FAR from the first time I’ve fixed one of your recipes (the fam loves the sweet and sour chicken).

  47. Chiquita says:

    I tried this reciepe for Christmas Eve Dinner….It was a huge hit!! We absolutely loved it. I had a whole chicken and chicken thighs that we added. Super yummy. I did however substitute parsley for Italian Seasonings.

  48. Mel says:

    Connie – yes, use the entire box of rock salt.

  49. Connie says:

    Hi, This recipe sounds devine. Do you use the whole box of salt in the pyrex dish? Hope you and your family had a Wonderful Christmas. Thanks for so many delicious recipes and blog.

  50. Karen says:

    What a great idea! I never thought of using rock salt to do this! Since you do not actually eat the rock salt,the warning on the box does not apply. Of course, baking meat or fish in a salt *crust* (that is, encasing meat or fish in salt) is a well-known cooking technique that has been around since ancient times, actually originating in China. Here is a great article that explains the history of salt cooking, and it will likely answer some questions people may have:

  51. Chris says:

    I would think those luscious juices that drain from the chicken would be extremely salty.

  52. Mel says:

    Lindy – no, I only have one oven. I always make my rolls in advance and bake them before the chicken needs to go in. For the potatoes, I turn the chicken pan and the potato pan (both 9X13’s) sideways so they fit in the oven side by side and bake together. Once the chicken is done, I cover it and let it rest while I crank the heat up in the oven and cook the potatoes so they brown and bubble.

  53. Laurie says:

    I bought a box of ice cream salt to try this, but on the box it says ‘Not intended for consumption’, so my husband doesn’t want to use it.

  54. Lindy says:

    I want to make the whole combo that you typically you make for Sunday dinner including the rolls and cheesy potatoes. How do you time everything with your ovens to serve all of that? Do you have more than 1 oven?

  55. Lindy says:

    I want to make the whole combo you making for Sunday dinner including the rolls and cheesy potatoes. How do you tune everything with your ovens to serve all of that? Do you have more than 1 oven?

  56. Debbie says:

    I was planning on roasting a chicken for dinner tonight and when I read this, I figured I might as well try it. It sounded a lot easier than the maple glaze I have done in the past. It definitely was. I have a lemon tree, but it was muddy outside, so I just used an orange that I had inside and some dried parsley. And this was amazing. I am so glad you posted this today. I will probably roast my chickens this way from now on. My six year old son seriously was picking the bones. He told me I needed to make two next time. Also, I had kept my husband’s portion in the warmer, as he was getting home late tonight and was afraid it would be a little dried out. But it was still nice and moist for him. He loved it, too. Thank you so much!!

  57. Mallory says:

    Okay, I just made this and I think I might eat the whole 5 pound chicken before my family gets any! I’m 35 weeks pregnant and was really looking forward to this and it did not disappoint. I did have to cook mine longer than you did but, it was a little over 5 lbs. and my oven runs a little cold. Anyway, thanks for the recipe it was awesome.

  58. Beth says:

    I have yet to have my go to roast chicken recipe, so I need to try this a.s.a.p. I did some reading online and found out that water softener salt is basically the same as rock salt. I was able to pick up a big 20lb. Bag at my grocery store for $5. Now I just gotta wait for my chicken to thaw!

  59. Okay, I really need to try this. I can imagine that the flavor and moisture factor is awesome.

    By the way, I often get distracted from housework by messing with Pinterest. In fact, I think I need to ignore my pile of laundry and do some board re-organization myself. ๐Ÿ™‚

  60. Karen says:

    I was also wondering the same question as Patrick. What does the rock salt do? Does it add some flavor to the chicken?

  61. Patrick says:

    I’m a little puzzled by what point the bed of salt serves. The chicken just sits on top of it? Anyway, Mel, I’m a big fan of your website. P.S.: My general experience with chicken roasting is that if you roast it at 350 for 30 minutes per pound, it’ll be done but not overdone. I start breast side up and then turn it over a little more than halfway through.

    • Mel says:

      Patrick and Karen – I haven’t done any scientific studies but from the numerous times I’ve made this, my general feeling is that the salt helps lock in moisture and then creates a delicious, salty (but not overly) flavor to the outside skin and meat of the chicken. It’s kind of one of those “you have to try it to become a believer” because it took me trying it before I realized it really does make the best roast chicken. The real key to making sure chicken is cooked but not overcooked is to use a thermometer to test for internal temperature. Each oven varies in temperature (sometimes quite significantly) and chicken can become very dry if overcooked by even a few degrees. That’s why there is a range for the cooking time in the recipe. Cooking it to 165 degrees F will ensure perfectly moist chicken.

  62. Aubri says:

    Mel…this looks so interesting! I want to try it! Have you ever heard of cooking on a salt block? It’s just a big slab of salt (like this:, and the one I have is pink. My brother sent it to me for my birthday, and I haven’t used it yet. But, I’m wondering if it would have the same effect as this rock salt. He said that it gives food a wonderful salt flavor. Hmmmm…now you’ve got me thinking…and I’m excited to try this!

  63. carrian says:

    OH, heck yes! Pinning it. And I’m totally going to reorganize my boards as well

  64. lori says:

    This is my thoughts on doing a turkey, i don’t see why you could not do it. Might need 2 boxes of salt, to make up for the size difference. Like @christine said it just might be a bit tricky to flip it over. And just cook it like you would any other turkey.

  65. Alli says:

    Where do you buy the rock salt?

    • Mel says:

      Alli – I’ve always found it in the baking aisle on the bottom shelf (usually) by the other kinds of salt – like table salt, kosher salt, etc. I’ve found it everywhere from my local grocery store to Walmart.

      • Marilyn says:

        In smaller communities with animal feed stores, you can buy rock salt in 50# bags for less than $5.
        Just FYI. I use it to make ice cream, etc.

  66. Christine says:

    Mel, I also want to know if you think this method would work for a turkey? (Although it would be tricky to flip over, that’s for sure!)

    • Mel says:

      Christine (and others) – I have never used this method on a turkey but since it is so similar to chicken, I think it would work just fine. You’ll need to use a larger pan, if necessary, and probably more rock salt if the pan size increases. And obviously, if the turkey is larger than a 3-5 pound whole chicken then you’ll need to adjust cooking time. Good luck if anyone tries it! By the way, a big handful of paper towels and a large, flat spatula work great to flip the chicken (or turkey, perhaps) – grabbing onto a leg with the paper towels and using the large spatula to give it a flip.

  67. angela @ anotherbiteplease says:

    I can not wait to try – especially if it is one of your Aunt Marilyn’s ๐Ÿ™‚ And wow girl to organize your pinterest I am so impressed…maybe I should do that to avoid the 3 loads of laundry I have yet to put away ๐Ÿ˜‰

  68. Andrea says:

    Thanks for sharing! I love to roast chicken as well…but I always use Kosher salt. I’ve never tried a ‘bed’ of rock salt. I’ll have to give it a try and see if it is much different from just smothering the skin in kosher salt. Also–I always roast two chickens at once..and freeze the rest of the chicken for another day. I’ll second your suggestion for making chicken broth out of the carcass. I do the same and the broth freezes wonderfully!

  69. Mel says:

    Amanda – for all that is good and righteous, don’t use the drippings for gravy. You will have a salt lick on your hands. The juices from the chicken run into the rock salt and would be salvageable. Sorry!

  70. Amanda Y. says:

    I have to admit I’m intrigued because this sounds like it is so amazing and it seems like such a simple change–I will be trying it after Christmas!

  71. Amanda says:

    My husband HAS to have gravy with the drippings any time we do a chicken, do you think it would be too salty to use for gravy?

  72. Cammee says:

    I have never heard of such a thing! I am very intriged and can’t wait to try this!

  73. rebecca says:

    Could this recipe be used for roasting a turkey?

  74. Mike says:

    I’m going to try a breast-only version, using a salt, lemon-pepper, and garlic powder mixture for the “generous” seasoning….

  75. Sally says:

    Sounds delicious!

  76. heather says:

    OK, thanks. I did an 8 lb chicken last christmas and haven’t roasted one since, so I wanted to double check because I know the smaller sizes are more common.

  77. Mel says:

    Heather – most whole chickens I’ve seen range from about 3-5 pounds. The recipe isn’t specific (that’s why there is a range in cooking time and using a thermometer to test for the perfect temperature). Just adjust cooking time based on how big/small your chicken is.

  78. heather says:

    How many pounds is the chicken?

  79. Mel says:

    Alicia – just a quick clarification – the reason I start it breast side up is so that it finishes breast side down and all the juices concentrate there to make it extra juicy; however, a few times when Brian has put it in the oven, he’s done it the reverse – and it is delicious that way, too.

  80. Mel says:

    Celeste – no, I wouldn’t recommend reusing the salt.

  81. Aly says:

    In the printable directions w/ picture, it says:
    Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

  82. Mel says:

    Alicia, I usually start it breast side up but I really don’t think it matters.

  83. Mel says:

    I can’t believe you need exact oven temps! Picky, picky. (Ok, of course you know I’m just teasing…) Sorry for the missing critical info. Recipe has been updated. 400 degrees F.

  84. Nicole Hunn says:

    I have no relatives who either have amazing recipe ideas like this or have friends who have recipe ideas like this. And definitely not a one of them is an amazing Italian cook. Lucky you! My youngest loves roast chicken with the intensity she usually reserves for bread, so I might just have to buy my baby some rock salt.

    xo Nicole

  85. StephenC says:

    Love the look of this. I’m eagerly awaiting your answers to the questions your other readers have already posed.

  86. Karen says:

    I have the same question what temp. do you put the oven on.
    Thank you

  87. Alisa says:

    I can’t wait to try this! What temperature should the oven be set at? Thanks ๐Ÿ™‚

  88. DeannaZ says:

    I am guessing you roasted this at 350-375? And breast side down first then flip?

  89. Kim in MD says:

    My family loves chicken, and I would love to try this recipe! After you correct the recipe with the cooking temperature I will print it out and give it a try! I imagine the salt also seasons the chicken as it cooks? I don’t think I have ever seen rock salt in my local grocery store. I will have to look for it!

  90. Celeste B. says:

    Can you resuse the salt or is it covered in juice?

  91. Alicia says:

    Do you recommend starting the chicken breast side down then flipping it to back side down so the breast skin gets crispy? Looking forward to trying this.

  92. Hilary says:

    This looks wonderful! I’ve never heard of roasting chicken on a bed of salt and I’m really interested in trying it! And yes, what temperature do you roast the chicken? This one is definitely going on the meal plan for next week~thanks again for another great one!

  93. Dorie says:

    Looks delicious! At what oven temperature did you roast the chicken? I wonder if I could use this method in roasting a turkey breast?

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