Black Lemon Chicken

13 Reviews 2 Pics
  • Prep

    35 m
  • Cook

    1 h 5 m
  • Ready In

    2 h 30 m
Chef John
Recipe by  Chef John

“In this simple roasted chicken dish, the warm sauce or dressing is built from the dark caramelized lemon and chicken drippings, broth, and lemon juice. For the wilted greens, you can use romaine lettuce, watercress, arugula, or spinach.”

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Adjust Servings

Original recipe yields 20 servings



  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
  2. Drizzle vegetable oil in a large roasting pan.
  3. Whisk lemon juice, olive oil, black pepper, salt, cayenne pepper, and cumin in large bowl.
  4. Place chicken in lemon mixture and turn it several times to coat each side. Place chicken breast side down in the marinade, and set aside for 30 minutes.
  5. Place chicken breast side up in the prepared roasting pan. Pour about 1/4 of of marinade into the chicken cavity. Brush remaining marinade on the top and sides of the chicken.
  6. Sprinkle rosemary, thyme, and salt over top of chicken.
  7. Tie chicken legs together with kitchen twine.
  8. Roast chicken uncovered in the preheated oven for 45 minutes; remove from oven and spoon juices accumulated in the pan over chicken. Pour 1 cup of chicken broth into the pan and continue roasting until chicken skin is browned and meat is no longer pink, about 30 minutes. An instant-read thermometer inserted into the center should read at least 165 degrees F (74 degrees C). Remove from the oven, spoon juices accumulated in the pan over chicken again, and cover loosely with aluminum foil for 20 minutes.
  9. Remove chicken to a platter, draining any juices from the cavity into the pan; cover chicken with aluminum foil and set aside.
  10. Set the roasting pan on the stove top over medium-high heat; add 3/4 cup chicken broth and boil, scraping any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until sauce is reduced by about half, about 10 minutes.
  11. Slice chicken into 8 pieces and serve over shredded lettuce in a large bowl. Pour 2 to 3 tablespoons of pan sauce over the top, tossing to slightly wilt the lettuce leaves. Serve with additional sauce on the side.

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Reviews (13)

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Delicious chicken recipe! I Only changed it a tiny bit. I didn't have any thyme, so I just left it out, but I added minced garlic to the marinade, and stuffed the chicken with half a lemon, half an onion, and a few garlic cloves before tying the legs together. I also added 3 cut up russet potatoes to the bottom of the pan, to cook with the chicken, and then stirred them every time I took the chicken out. The potatoes were absolutely delicious! They soaked up everything that was good about the chicken marinade and came out a little tangy and super savory. Next time I'll have to adjust the cooking time, though, the chicken was just a tad too pink after we cut it open.



This recipe was a hit with me & my family. Next time I make this, and there will be a next time, I will roast the chicken at a higher temp so it will brown better. I used fresh rosemary and thyme which gave the chicken great flavor. The wilted romaine salad under it was very good also.

Nadine Gizak

Nadine Gizak

I have made this recipe a few times. Both as written and with my own additions. My family prefers double the cumin and cayenne, an addition of garlic along with the spices, and a bit of cream when reducing the sauce. I always use fresh herbs (use dry to fresh conversions), and fresh ground peppers and cumin.

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Amount Per Serving (20 total)

  • Calories
  • 321 cal
  • 16%
  • Fat
  • 28.8 g
  • 44%
  • Carbs
  • 1.6 g
  • < 1%
  • Protein
  • 13.4 g
  • 27%
  • Cholesterol
  • 53 mg
  • 18%
  • Sodium
  • 205 mg
  • 8%

Based on a 2,000 calorie diet



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Roasted Lemon Herb Chicken


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Easy Lovely Lemon Chicken