roast chicken, yummy yummy: lemony chicken with meyer lemon shallot sauce

If you’re a citrus lover like me, then you know how much there is to love about winter and meyer lemon season! So when I was deciding between recipe options for our chicken this week, I instantly gravitated towards this one because of the inclusion of such a wonderful in-season fruit!


Roast Chicken with Meyer lemon shallot sauce

(inspired by recipe from Sunset Magazine)

[print recipe]


  • 1 4-5 lb. chicken
  • 1 T salt
  • 2 medium Meyer or regular lemons
  • 2 1/2 T olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 pound (4-5) shallots
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1/3 cup dry white wine


  1. Rinse off the entire chicken (inside + out!) then pat it dry with paper towels. Loosen skin of breast and thighs to work some salt under skin and rub the remaining salt all over chicken and in cavity. Chill, uncovered, at least 3 hours. (you can do this the night before too!)
  2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  3. Zest lemons. Slice 1 lemon into round slices, then quarter them; juice half of the other.
  4. Take the chicken out of the fridge and once again, pat it dry, inside and out. Now take your zest and rub as much as possible under the skin and then rub any remaining zest inside the cavity.
  5. Use a basting brush to cover the chicken all over with 1 T olive oil and sprinkle on the thyme. Put lemon slices in cavity.
  6. Roast chicken using either a v-shaped rack or a beer-can chicken holder (with white wine in the can) in a large roasting pan. Place the shallots in the roasting pan and coat them in the remaining 1 1/2 T of olive oil.
  7. Baste the chicken every 30 minutes. It should take about 75-90 minutes to cook depending on the size. (use an electronic thermometer if you have one!) Take the shallots out after 1 hour of cooking. Remove the outer skins and squeeze the insides into a blender.
  8. When done, remove the chicken from the oven and allow the juices from the cavity to pour into the roasting pan. Place it under foil on the cutting board until ready to carve. (If you used a beer-can roaster, discard the contents of the can)
  9. Pour the pan drippings into a bowl and skim the majority of the fat from the top (you only want a little in the sauce). Add them to the blender with the shallots. Then add 1/2 cup of broth and 1/3 cup of dry white wine and blend.


10. Pour the contents of the blender back into the roasting pan (look! you don’t have to dirty another pan!!!) and heat it on your stove over medium-high until it turns a nutty brown color (10-15 minutes). For me, this meant using two burners at the same time! Make sure you use a spatula to scrape up the brown bits from the bottom and incorporate them.


11. Stir in 1 T reserved Meyer lemon juice and taste. If you want more citrus, then add a bit more! Strain the sauce into a serving bowl. Carve chicken, discarding lemon slices from the cavity; serve with sauce.