Meat, Seafood, & Poultry

Chicken in a Pot

This chicken-in-a-pot recipe requires only a few minutes of prep and is ripe for improvisation. Plus, the au jus that is the byproduct of a slow braise takes this dish into the sublime category.

Did someone say chicken?

In case you couldn’t tell by previous posts, my family eats a lot of chicken. Let me rephrase that – Troy  eats a lot of chicken, I eat some chicken, and Sage is a vegetarian. But, Troy’s a hearty eater thanks to his former bodybuilder lifestyle, and we manage to down the equivalent of one to two birds each and every day.

Back in November, I started buying whole birds instead of the skinless, boneless chicken breasts that we were used to getting. Granted, I had no idea what to actually do with said birds at the time (and what is up with those paper packages of guts that are always stuffed in their cavities?!)! But, when you have a fridge with six taking birds taking up valuable real estate and a hungry husband, you quickly figure things out. In this post, I shared a recipe for a simple roasted chicken that literally takes 30 seconds of prep. And, in this post, I offer up a short video tutorial instructing one how to quickly quarter a whole roasted chicken.

While roasted chicken is a super easy dinner fix, it – like anything eaten in excess – gets old quickly. That’s where this chicken in a pot recipe comes in. It’s an uncomplicated alternative to roasted chicken that requires a bit more prep, although some of it is negated by the shorter oven preheat time.

Plus, you get a great au jus, which will turn into a delightful chicken-flavored Jell-O once refrigerated.

I believe that Julia Child would call it an aspic. Regardless of what you call it, it’s actually pretty damn tasty, so long as you don’t stuff it with pineapple pieces and fold in sweetened whipped cream.

Here’s the recipe, although it’s meant to be broken. Oh, and be sure to view the short video tutorial that follows to see me in action! (If you dig the video, I’d love it if you’d like, comment, and/or share it. Just sayin’). Salut!

Here’s the recipe.

Chicken in a Pot

Print Recipe
Cooking Time: Prep time: 5 minutes; cook/braise time: 1 hour, 42 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 whole chicken
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1/2 a medium onion, chopped
  • 1-2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1 or 2 bay leaves
  • a sprig of rosemary
  • salt
  • freshly cracked pepper
  • 1 glug extra virgin olive oil
  • fresh lemon juice from up to half a lemon

Instructions

1

Preheat oven to 250°F. Coat the chicken with a fairly liberal amount of salt and pepper.

2

Place a dutch oven on a burner and set the flame to medium-high. When hot, pour in the olive oil. Add the chicken (breast side down), then toss in the onion, celery, garlic, bay leaves, and rosemary between the sides of the pot and the chicken. Cook undisturbed for seven minutes or so, until it takes on a lightly golden shade. Flip the bird over, give the vegetables a light stir, and cook for an additional five minutes.

3

Turn off the burner and cover the dutch oven with aluminum foil (shiny side down). Place the lid on top of the foil and place the pot in the oven. Cook for 1.5 hours.

4

Remove from oven and place the chicken on a carving board. If there is any doubt as to its doneness, feel free to temp it - it should register at least 165°F in the meatiest part of its thigh. Tent lightly with foil and let rest for 20 minutes.

5

Pour the liquid in the pot into a fat separator and press out the liquid that's trapped inside the now mushy vegetables. Let sit for a few minutes, then pour the jus (but not the fat) into a small saucepan set over to a low flame. Add a small amount of lemon juice, to taste. When hot, remove from heat.

6

Once the chicken has rested, quarter or carve it, and serve with the au jus. Salut!

Notes

Just FYI, every single thing in this recipe - excluding the bird and oil - is essentially optional. Yes, it will taste better if you follow it to a T, but if you don't have fresh rosemary laying around, it's not worth making a grocery store run. That is all.

 

Chicken in a Pot


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14 Comments

  • Reply
    yogafire
    March 10, 2016 at 12:29 pm

    OK, so all I could think of during around the 1 min mark was… how on earth is your dutch oven so clean?! Is it new? What is your secret for cleaning? 🙂

    Mine is also enameled but looks like this after.. wow, it’s been almost 10 years! I hope this isn’t an indication that the enamel has worn off. I like to think of the stains as battle scars from all the searing and braising! Even the outside has gotten darker at the bottom!

    Also, I appreciate the tip for covering with foil and then with the lid. I wish I knew you earlier – all our braising liquid had evaporated between the lid and pot until we figured out foil was a good solution. What does using the shiny side down for the foil do?

  • Reply
    Kristi Smith
    March 10, 2016 at 4:51 pm

    I LOVE your dutch oven, yogafire! It has clearly seen much love 🙂 Mine is maybe 4 years old, and we use SOS pads to keep it clean. The outside – especially the handles – is another story, though.

    The foil tip is awesome, right?! I’m not sure where I first came across it, but it was likely in Cooks Illustrated. It makes such a difference!

    • Reply
      Darryl
      March 13, 2016 at 7:55 pm

      When I had and enamel dutch oven, I had the best luck cleaning it with powdered kichen cleanser. I would make a paste, let it sit for a little while (15 -30 minutes) and then use the rough, “scrubby” side of damp sponge to get off the baked on crud, inside and out. This method also works really well for cleaning a cold oven.

      • Reply
        Kristi Smith
        March 13, 2016 at 11:25 pm

        Thanks for the tip, Darryl…I will have to try this on my oven!

  • Reply
    Darryl
    March 13, 2016 at 7:49 pm

    Wow you guys really are chicken lovers! I am really digging your no-fuss meal prep recipes and videos. We tend to rotate meats in my house, otherwise everyone gets bored and I find them venturing out for fast food versus eating what I’ve taken the time and energy to cook. Do you have any quick and simple recipes (and hopefully upcoming videos) for other meats/main courses?

    • Reply
      Kristi Smith
      March 13, 2016 at 11:17 pm

      I soooo hear you! We don’t rotate meats nearly enough, mostly due to economics (as Troy eats an insane amount of it). But, I’d love to explore other meat/main courses. We’ve been expanding our go-to repertoire a bit lately, so I’ll post some of those in the very near future. It will give us an excuse to eat more steak, lol.

      • Reply
        Darryl
        March 14, 2016 at 11:53 am

        Sounds like a perfect excuse to eat more steak. Interested to see how you cook yours. I’m usually a griller, but have been working on an indoor bake an sear method.

        • Reply
          Kristi Smith
          March 14, 2016 at 2:54 pm

          I keep things super simple – right now, I’m just searing in on the stove in a cast iron skillet. Normally, we’d grill, but we’re out of propane at the moment. I’ll have to peak at Cooks’ methods, as I have a hunch that my technique could improve!

          Can I come over for dinner?!?!

          • Darryl
            March 14, 2016 at 9:06 pm

            You’re welcome anytime!!!

            With a little insight from Cooks, I’ve been baking my steaks at 275 on a wire rack on a rimmed baking sheet until they reach about 100 (for medium; about 20 iminutes) and then searing in a cast iron skillet for about 3 minutes on each side followed by a 10 minute, foil tented rest…super simple and decadent!

          • Kristi Smith
            March 15, 2016 at 8:46 am

            Hey, that’s a great tip! I’ll have to try doing that tonight. I picked up a gorgeous ribeye last night that is waiting to be cooked. After all, you requested a non-chicken recipe, and I felt compelled to oblige :P. Of course, the result won’t be anything new (except for maybe the pan sauce). Thanks!

          • Darryl
            March 15, 2016 at 11:18 am

            How sweet of you to take one for your followers…Enjoy!!!

          • Kristi
            March 15, 2016 at 8:14 pm

            LMFAO, right?! If nothing else, I am team player 😀

  • Reply
    sofia
    February 3, 2017 at 10:50 am

    Thanks Kristi! I needed this today 🙂

    • Reply
      Kristi
      February 3, 2017 at 11:28 pm

      I’m so glad, Sofia! You are very welcome 😊 This is seriously my go-to recipe, and it never gets old. Swap the celery out for fennel to get a different but equally delicious dish …

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