apple roasted chicken pinterest post

2-Minute Prep Apple Roasted Chicken

Need a quick-and-easy protein for the week? This apple roasted chicken has a slight sweet-and-savory flavor that pairs well with a variety of sauces, soups, and salads. If you often find yourself searching for a protein to add to your meal – this is a great solution to have on-hand. Read the post below to learn Chef Kenzie’s tips and tricks for preparing your whole chicken and serving it throughout the week.

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2-Minute Apple Roasted Chicken: The Science

It may sound unconventional to add apple to your roasted chicken – and the reason ISN’T for an “apple flavor”. Instead, I (Chef Kenzie) use applesauce for it’s sweetness – more specifically, its sugar content. Why? During cooking, sugar and protein undergo a chemical reaction called the “Maillard Reaction” – creating a beautiful brown color on the outside of a protein and a slightly “charred”, savory flavor. The Maillard Reaction is an important concept in cooking – and is often used by chefs when preparing any type of protein.

In this recipe, the Maillard Reaction occurs between the sugars from the applesauce and the protein from the chicken. However, the Maillard Reaction is not the only flavor-enhancing component of this recipe. The following ingredients also contribute to the development of flavor…

  1. Butter: the sugar content (lactose) also undergoes a Maillard Reaction and caramelization. The fat itself adds richness.
  2. Lemon Juice: the acid from the lemon juice will help tenderize the protein, creating a juicy and tender piece of meat.
  3. Salt: the salt helps retain the moisture within the chicken, keeping the juices INSIDE for a flavorful piece of meat.

2-Minute Apple Roasted Chicken: How to Use

Although this chicken is quite flavorful – it doesn’t have a pronounced (or specific) flavor profile. The ingredients in this recipe simply elevate the natural flavors of chicken – without adding extra spices or herbs. Therefore, this chicken can be used in a wide variety of applications. I recommend preparing this recipe on the weekend for use throughout the week. Try serving it with the following…

  1. Serve over a Grain-Free Waffle with fresh avocado, vegetables, and dressing/sauce of choice
  2. Chop or shred and serve in soups
  3. Use in place of chicken thighs in our Chicken Salad with Grapes and Walnuts (Always Hungry? g. 252)
  4. Mix with eggs to make a morning stir-fry/hash, an omelette, or a crustless quiche
  5. Serve in a Basic Socca Wrap (Always Delicious pg. 198) with dressing/sauce of choice and vegetables for a quick on-the-go lunch wrap.

Do you have another idea? Comment below how you would serve your apple roasted chicken! Post a picture in our Facebook Group to show us your meal – we always love to see what you’re cooking!

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apple roasted chicken

Apple Roasted Chicken

This 2-minute prep apple roasted chicken is a must-have in your fridge for a quick and delicious protein to add to your meals.
Prep Time 2 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
Course Meat
Cuisine American

Ingredients
  

  • 4 lb whole chicken, bone-in, skin-on
  • ½ cup applesauce (homemade)
  • ¼ cup butter, chopped into cubes
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp salt

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 425°F.
  • Place whole chicken on a sheet pan. Pat dry with a paper towel.
  • Pour lemon juice and salt over the chicken. Massage into the skin to fully coat the chicken.
  • Add applesauce. Massage into the skin to fully coat the chicken.
  • Place the cubes of butter on top and underneath the chicken.
  • Roast at 425°F for 10 minutes, then reduce heat to 350°F and cook until fully cooked through (internal temperature of 165°F).
    NOTE: The time will vary depending on the size of your chicken. For a 4 lb chicken, estimate about 1 hour and 20 minutes (about 20 minutes per pound of chicken) at 350°F (plus the initial 10 minutes at 425°F.)

Notes

The nutrition of this recipe will vary depending on which type of meat you choose from the chicken (the breasts, the thighs, the wings, etc.). Each part of the chicken can be equally substituted in recipes that use the same part (ie: use the chicken breast from this recipe in place of a regular chicken breast in another recipe). Keep in mind, if you serve the chicken with the skin, it will be slightly higher in fat content. 
Keyword Meat

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