The Secret To Making The Best Roast Chicken? Your Hair Dryer

Perfect Roast Chicken

When I cook a whole chicken at home, I usually use my rotisserie-style chicken method and discard the skin. I’ve never really explored the possibility of making great crispy chicken at home, but I decided to give it a try after coming across this strange but effective hack!

Yes, you’ll probably feel a little bit crazy upon bringing your hair dryer into the kitchen to help prepare roast chicken, but the results are well worth that momentary discomfort. A hair dryer makes it quick and easy to dry out chicken skin, ensuring it gets deliciously browned and crispy in the oven.

If you feel skeptical about this method, it may help to know that I had similar reservations before trying it for myself! But this crisp, juicy, flavorful roast chicken is truly worth the leap of faith, and I know you’ll love it too — even if you have to endure a few odd looks for using your hair dryer in the kitchen!

Related: How To Make Flawless & Juicy Chicken Breasts Every Time

Perfect Roast Chicken

How To Make Perfect Roast Chicken With A Hair Dryer

Ingredients:

  • 1 whole chicken (3-5 lbs.)
  • Kosher salt
  • 3-4 cups roughly chopped vegetables
  • 2 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • Salt-free seasoning mix

Sauce Ingredients (optional, see Step 6 below):

  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 2 Tbsp flour

Directions:

Perfect Roast Chicken

Step 1 – Prep

The first step is to prep the chicken a day or two before you plan to cook it. Use a few paper towels to pat the bird dry inside and out, and if your chicken comes with giblets, discard them or freeze them to use later.

Perfect Roast Chicken

Once the bird is dry, season it generously inside and out with kosher salt (about 1/2 to 1 teaspoon per pound). Set the salted chicken on a wire rack over a large plate or platter, then place the whole thing in your fridge.

Let the chicken chill uncovered for at least 24 hours, or up to 48 hours. The skin should look translucent and be firm to the touch.

Perfect Roast Chicken

Step 2 – Dry

A couple of hours before you plan to eat, take the chicken out of your fridge and fetch your hair dryer. Using the cool or low-heat setting, use the dryer to dry out any remaining moisture on the skin, paying attention to the top, bottom, and inside of the bird.

Related: 23 Unexpected Things You Can Do With Your Hair Dryer

Perfect Roast Chicken

Step 3 – Assemble

Put your chopped veggies in a big mixing bowl, add a bit of vegetable oil, then use your hands to toss the veggies until they’re evenly coated.

Perfect Roast Chicken

Next, use your oily hands or a pastry brush to coat the chicken skin with the remaining oil. Add a bit more, if needed, to completely coat it.

Perfect Roast Chicken

Finally, season the chicken all over with your preferred salt-free seasoning. (Why salt-free? The chicken has already been salted, so adding any more salt could easily make it too salty. I like Lawry’s Salt-Free seasoning mix if you need a recommendation!)

Perfect Roast Chicken

Finally, arrange the oiled veggies in a 12-inch cast-iron skillet or 3-quart baking dish. Place the seasoned chicken on top of the veggies, breast-side up.

Perfect Roast Chicken

Step 4 – Roast

Place the skillet or dish in the center of your cold oven, then set the oven to preheat to 350°F. When the oven signals that it has reached 350°F, set a timer for 10 minutes, then increase the temperature to 375°F and cook for another 10 minutes.

Continue increasing the temperature every 10 minutes in 25-degree increments until you reach 450°F (about 50 minutes).

Perfect Roast Chicken

Once the oven reaches 450°F, continue cooking the chicken until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the breast reads 155°F. It should take about 20-25 minutes more — about 70-80 minutes of total cooking time.

When the chicken is done, it’ll be browned and crispy and the veggies should be a bit charred.

Perfect Roast Chicken

Step 5 – Rest & Serve

After cooking, transfer the chicken to a cutting board and let it rest for at least 20 minutes before cutting or slicing. (The rest is crucial — it will prevent the moisture from leaking out and leaving you with unfortunately dry chicken!)

After allowing it to rest, simply carve the chicken and serve. Yum!

Perfect Roast Chicken

Step 6 (Optional) – Make The Sauce

The chicken is delicious as is, but you can make a simple sauce to add even more flavor! While the bird is resting, place the pan of drippings on your stovetop over medium heat. Add the chicken stock and the juice of half a lemon, and continue cooking until the sauce starts to bubble.

Meanwhile, in a separate pan, melt the butter and stir in the flour to make a roux. When the sauce starts bubbling, add the roux and stir thoroughly until the sauce is smooth and thickened. Season to taste, and serve the sauce alongside the chicken and roasted vegetables.

Perfect Roast Chicken

I like to think this photo almost speaks for itself, but you’ll have to try this chicken dish for yourself to know just how delicious it is!

What’s your favorite way to cook chicken?

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Jill Nystul (aka Jillee)

Jill Nystul is an accomplished writer and author who founded the blog One Good Thing by Jillee in 2011. With over 30 years of experience in homemaking, she has become a trusted resource for contemporary homemakers by offering practical solutions to everyday household challenges.I share creative homemaking and lifestyle solutions that make your life easier and more enjoyable!

About Jillee

Jill Nystul

Jill’s 30 years of homemaking experience, make her the trusted source for practical household solutions.

About Jillee

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  • The technique looks great, but i’m wondering about the briny drippings being too salty. I’m also wondering about the veggies: if you left the peels on the potatoes and carrots, would those char, then you eat around it to the roasty parts? Because I bet the veggies add a lot of flavor to the drippings. (slurp.) Lastly – on those few occasions when I make a roux, I start with the fat & flour, brown it, then add the cooking liquid. Is this more like adding cornstarch to thicken the sauce?

    • The roux method or cornstarch thickening method will both work wonderfully here. I don’t mind the roasty bits of veggies, but you could definitely cut them off or eat around them. :-)

  • I made this tonight and the chicken was deliciously roasted with an amazingly crisp skin. But the vegetables were filled with the juices/fat that ran out of the chicken. The edges of them were browned, but I couldn’t eat them because of all of the chicken juices.

    • I’m glad you liked the chicken! Sorry about the veggies! You could always omit the veggies from this recipe and cook them separately, next time. :-)

  • Good thing I hung onto my hair dryer. This is strange but I can see why it will work. Cannot wait to do it. Chicken is about all I eat of meat anymore. I just can’t do it.

  • OMG, yes, this sounds weird, but after seeing this recipe, which looks amazing, I knew I got to give this a try. will e making tomorrow. Yummy!

  • are the vegetables crucial in this recipe? I am a low carb eater so am liking the meat recipes but need to watch my vegetable intake.

  • Hi Jillee, I was happy to see your recipe on roasting chicken, however, have you thought of the bacteria blowing around when you blow dry your chicken? There’s a possibility this could be a no no.
    Keep up the excellent ideas that you send our way.
    Claire

    • A good question. Although I wouldn’t think that a thoroughly dried chicken that has been well-salted and sat in frig for 2 days would have any kind of bacteria problem.

  • I tried to print this with the “Print Friendly” option, and it gave me 30 pages to print. Not very print friendly. Can you adjust it for the recipe only? Thnx.

    • Once you get the print friendly if you hoover over a section it lets you delete it. You can go through deleting pictures…..anything you don’t want/need on your copy. This lets people have as much or as little as they like. Hope it helps.

    • I do! It’s a green button towards the bottom of the post (before the comments). After clicking on that button, you can choose to remove the images, make them smaller, remove any text you don’t need… :-)

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