Dry Brined Roast Chicken is the ultimate in tenderness, juiciness and taste. After trying dry brining, you’ll never go back to the wet brine!
Ingredients for Dry Brined Roast Chicken
I used the following ingredients for the dry brined roast chicken: Whole chicken, Kosher salt, baking powder, lemon, orange, and olive oil. I added carrots, onions, and potatoes for a complete meal!
You’re probably familiar with wet brining whereby the chicken or other meat is submerged in a salted water solution for a period of time. In fact, you’ve likely brined chicken or turkey before. While this works well, dry brining is even better because it doesn’t soak the skin and plump the meat with water. The result is crispier skin and better tasting chicken! For more information about dry brining versus wet brining, check out Serious Eats.
The dry brining uses two simple ingredients – Kosher salt and baking powder.
If you use regular table salt instead of Kosher salt, you need to reduce the amount.
You might be scratching your head over the baking powder. However, because the baking powder is slightly alkaline, it raises the pH levels in the chicken’s skin. This allows for a more efficient break down of the skin’s proteins. The result – a crisper, more evenly browned skin!
Dry Brining the Chicken
I started by combining the Kosher salt and baking powder in a small bowl.
Then, I patted the chicken dry with paper towels. Next, I sprinkled on the salt mixture and rubbed it all over the chicken. Once the chicken was well coated, I placed it into the refrigerator, uncovered for about 6 hours. The reason that I left it uncovered was that I wanted the surface to dry out somewhat. This enhances the browning of the skin.
Roasting the Dry Brined Roast Chicken
I removed the chicken from the refrigerator about an hour before I was ready to cook it. The reason was that I wanted the chicken to warm up a bit.
While the chicken was sitting at room temperature, I combined some small quartered new potatoes, carrots, and onions in a bowl. I added some oil, salt, and freshly ground black pepper, and gave the vegetables a stir.
I dumped the vegetables into a large cast iron pan – I always roast my chicken in a cast iron pan.
Now for the chicken. I didn’t rinse the dry brine off the chicken. I stuffed the chicken cavity with lemon and orange halves and tied the legs together with kitchen twine. Then, I rubbed the skin all over with some oil and placed the chicken on top of the vegetables in the cast iron skillet. Next, I inserted a thermometer probe into the thickest part of the chicken breast.
I popped the chicken into a preheated 425° F oven until the breast temperature registered 150° F and the thigh had reached 170° F. This took about an hour. I removed the chicken from the oven and covered the cast iron pan with aluminum foil for about 20 minutes.
The result was an amazing roast chicken. It was juicy, incredibly tender, and perfectly cooked. The roasted vegetables were also perfectly cooked and an awesome accompaniment to the Dry Brined Roast Chicken. Yum!
Dry Brined Roast Chicken
- 5 pound chicken, giblets removed
- 1 Tablespoon Kosher salt (See Note 1)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil (See Note 2)
- 1 lemon, cut in half
- 1 small orange, cut in half
- 1 1/4 pounds small new potatoes, unpeeled and quartered (See Note 3)
- 2 cups carrots, peeled and cut into 2-inch sticks (See Note 4)
- 1 large onion, peeled and quartered
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil (See Note 2)
- 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Trim excess fat from chicken; pat dry with paper towels.
- Combine salt and baking powder in a small bowl. Sprinkle on both sides of chicken; rub into skin with hands. Refrigerate uncovered for 6 hours.
- Remove chicken from refrigerator one hour before roasting.
- Stuff cavity with lemon and orange halves. Tie legs together with kitchen twine. Rub all over with vegetable oil. Insert temperature probe into thickest part of chicken breast, making sure that it is not touching any bone. Set aside.
- Preheat oven to 425° F.
- Combine potatoes, carrots, and onions in a bowl. Add vegetable oil, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine. Spread on bottom of 12-inch or 14-inch cast iron pan.
- Place prepared chicken in center of vegetables.
- Roast chicken until breast temperature reaches 150° F, and thigh temperature reaches 170° F, about one hour. Remove from oven, and tent with aluminum foil for about 20 minutes.
- Yield: 6 servings.
Chula's Expert Tips
- The dry brine here uses Kosher salt. If you use regular table salt, you should reduce the amount of salt in the dry brine from 1 tablespoon to 2 teaspoons.
- May also use vegetable oil.
- May also use small unpeeled red potatoes, or peeled russet potatoes. Just make sure that the potatoes are cut into bite-sized pieces.
- May also use baby carrots.