How to Make Rotisserie Chicken

I know it’s tempting to just grab a bird at the store, but once I show you how to make rotisserie chicken at home, you may never buy a grocery store chicken again. No messy schlepping necessary; this easy recipe makes chicken taste special: crispy skin and juicy meat with incredible flavor.

To bird, or not to bird? That is the question! Grocery store rotisserie chicken can be, well… hit or miss. In my opinion, when rotisserie chicken is good, it’s good, but when it’s old, or dried out, (how long to they sit under those lamps, anyways?) it just sits in the refrigerator and makes me feel guilty about buying it in the first place.

I decided that the only way to make sure I had the best rotisserie chicken every time was to make it myself.

I know it’s tempting to just grab a bird at the store, but once I show you how to make rotisserie chicken at home, you may never buy a grocery store chicken again. No messy schlepping necessary; this easy recipe makes chicken taste special: crispy skin and juicy meat with incredible flavor.

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As it turns out, you don’t need a rotisserie chicken cooker, a fancy grill, or a rotisserie spit to make epic roasted chicken that’s worlds better than rotisserie chicken from Costco, Sam’s Club, or some other grocery store. The best rotisserie chicken recipe? All you need is a few spices, a chicken, and an oven (or a crockpot).

I’ve perfected the rotisserie chicken dry rub, which can be made in big batches to use when you need it. Make a chicken (or two) on the weekend to eat throughout the week. Bring one to your mom, or your neighbors who just had a baby.

Then use the leftovers in one of my favorite recipes down below.

I know it’s tempting to just grab a bird at the store, but once I show you how to make rotisserie chicken at home, you may never buy a grocery store chicken again. No messy schlepping necessary; this easy recipe makes chicken taste special: crispy skin and juicy meat with incredible flavor.

Do I have to truss the chicken?

Well, no. You’re an adult with your own heart and mind, and trussing chickens should only be done of your own free will.

Having said, I hope you do. Trussing your chicken ensures an evenly-cooked, juicier bird.

Read my full post over here on how to truss a chicken.

At first glance it may seem unnecessary, but trussing a chicken for roasting ensures delicious, evenly-cooked poultry that looks as good as it tastes. Here I’ll show you how to truss a chicken using twine, to make your best roast chicken yet. 

How to Make Rotisserie Chicken in the Oven

The key to making authentic rotisserie chicken is the dry rub: dried thyme, paprika, garlic powder, and onion powder. A little salt and pepper, too.

  1. Brush a little olive oil all over the bird to help the dry rub adhere to the skin while cooking. Then
  2. Use the dry rub generously, patting the chicken to make sure the rub sticks.
  3. Next, I move the chicken into a roasting pan. This could be a glass baking dish, a heavy duty roaster, or even a cast iron skillet.
  4. I bake my rotisserie chicken at 425 degrees for 70-80 minutes, until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees.

After baking the chicken, you can devour it immediately or place it in a crock pot for a few hours to keep it warm for later.

I know it’s tempting to just grab a bird at the store, but once I show you how to make rotisserie chicken at home, you may never buy a grocery store chicken again. No messy schlepping necessary; this easy recipe makes chicken taste special: crispy skin and juicy meat with incredible flavor.

How to Make Rotisserie Chicken in a Slow Cooker

Making rotisserie chicken in a crockpot or slow cooker might not make the skin as crispy as when you roast in the oven, but it will still give you succulent, tender results.

  1. Transfer your spice-rubbed chicken to a slow cooker.
  2. Cook on HIGH for 3 to 4 hours or LOW for 6 to 8 hours.

Can you make Rotisserie Chicken in a toaster oven?

Some larger, countertop toaster ovens can accommodate a whole chicken, but I recommend that you check with the manual first just to be on the safe side. If your oven has a rotisserie feature, then go ahead and try it, and let me know how it went!

How to Roast 2 Chickens

What’s better than one rotisserie chicken? Two rotisserie chickens! It doesn’t take any more time, plus it’s a smart way to use that large turkey roaster you bought and only use for Thanksgiving. Making two chickens will ensure there’s lots to eat in the days to come. Or you can make two and give one to someone in your life who needs a good meal.

Learn how to make Rotisserie Chicken at home using a simple spice blend and a whole chicken or any combination of chicken pieces. Slow-Cooker friendly!

All you have to do is make a double batch of dry rub and place the chickens next to each other in a larger roaster to cook.

When you make your own Rotisserie Chicken, how long do you cook it?

If you’re using an oven, roast the chicken uncovered at 425 degrees for 70-80 minutes, until it reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees. Also, I use chickens that are an average weight of 4-5 pounds each.

If you’re cooking Rotisserie Chicken in a crock pot, it will take 3-4 hours on the HIGH setting, or 6-8 hours on the LOW setting.

I know it’s tempting to just grab a bird at the store, but once I show you how to make rotisserie chicken at home, you may never buy a grocery store chicken again. No messy schlepping necessary; this easy recipe makes chicken taste special: crispy skin and juicy meat with incredible flavor.

How long can Rotisserie Chicken stay in the refrigerator?

To keep your chicken fresh, refrigerate the rotisserie chicken in shallow airtight containers or wrap tightly with heavy-duty aluminum foil or plastic wrap. Properly stored, cooked rotisserie chicken will last for 3 to 4 days in the refrigerator.

What can you make with Rotisserie Chicken?

Maybe the best part about making your own rotisserie chicken at home is that there are a million rotisserie chicken recipes you can make with the leftovers. Here are some of my favorite last-minute meals you can make:

If you ever find yourself wondering “Where can I find Chicken Alfredo near me?” the answer is closer than you think: One Pot Chicken Alfredo can be made right in your own kitchen. It’s comfort food at its finest, and this recipe is the easiest, creamiest, most comforting version out there.

Is Rotisserie Chicken gluten-free?

Yes, it is! Roasted chicken is a delicious gluten-free main course— as long as you make it yourself, so you know exactly what your ingredients are.

Rotisserie Chicken nutrition

If you’re curious about how healthy Rotisserie Chicken is, see the nutrition label below for specifics. When you make your own food, you get to steer clear of sodium, dubious hydrogenated by-products, and stabilizers. All we’re using here is chicken, spices, and a little olive oil.

I love a rotisserie chicken as much as the next person, so I decided to create the perfect rotisserie chicken seasoning that skips all the preservatives and lets the chicken really shine. A little smoky and a whole lot of delicious—this seasoning blend works beautifully for all your chicken recipes, in the oven or on the grill.
4.97 from 27 votes
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How to Make Rotisserie Chicken

I know it’s tempting to just grab a bird at the store, but once I show you how to make rotisserie chicken at home, you may never buy a grocery store chicken again. No messy schlepping necessary; this easy recipe makes chicken taste special: crispy skin and juicy meat with incredible flavor.

Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Calories 347 kcal

Ingredients

  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 (4 to 5 pound) whole chicken (see notes)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

Instructions

  1. Move an oven rack to the lowest position and preheat oven to 425 degrees.

  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the paprika, thyme, garlic powder, onion powder, and 2 teaspoons salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper.

  3. Remove giblets from chicken (if present) and brush the outside of chicken with olive oil. Rub the spice mixture all over the outside of the chicken (I like to use disposable gloves).

  4. Truss the chicken if desired. Place in a baking dish or on a rimmed baking sheet.

  5. Bake uncovered until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees, about 70 to 80 minutes. Brush the chicken periodically (every 20 minutes if desired) with the juices that have accumulated in the bottom of the dish to prevent it from drying out.

  6. Serve immediately or place in a slow cooker for up to 8 hours on the lowest possible heat setting.

Recipe Notes

  1. 4 to 5 pounds of chicken pieces such as breast, thighs, or quarters may be substituted for the whole chicken. Reduce total baking time to 30 to 45 minutes.
  2. After rubbing on the spice blend, he chicken can be refrigerated for up to 24 hours before baking. 
  3. To cook your Rotisserie Chicken in a slow cooker, transfer your spice-rubbed chicken to a slow cooker in Step 4. Cook on HIGH for 3 to 4 hours or LOW for 6 to 8 hours. 


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Learn how to make Rotisserie Chicken at home using a simple spice blend and a whole chicken or any combination of chicken pieces.

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69 comments

  1. Oh my gosh, Meggan, this is one gorgeous chicken! I’m a huge sucker for rotisserie chickens but I’ve never tried to make my own–TOTALLY pinned to make this weekend!!

  2. Finding this here is a great coincidence, Meggan, because I bought a supermarket rotisserie chicken last night for dinner and found myself thinking that it would be great to roast my own and get that same tasty skin and fall-of-the-bone effect. So thanks for the recipe and tips!

  3. My hubby LOVES skin-on, bone-in chicken while I am not a fan… but this recipe seems like we can meet in the middle!

  4. Love rotisserie chicken- definitely need to give this recipe a go!

  5. Funny, I love how you say to put in crockpot to simulate headlamps or being in plastic bags. :D This does look delicious! I love easy tasty recipes !

  6. I love rotisserie chicken and I don’t always have time to run to Costco. This looks so easy and so delicious! Pinning!

  7. Can you cook it in the crock pot instead of the oven?

    • You absolutely can, Melissa. The reason I like to bake it first is to get the skin some crispness. But, it is definitely still delicious just cooked in a crock pot! I’d think 4 hours on high would do it, or 6-8 hours on low, but just be sure to check the temperature of the chicken (it should hit 165 degrees).

  8. Is the chicken supposed to be covered or uncovered?

    • I roast it uncovered, Darlene. Because it has the bones and skin, it doesn’t dry out in the oven even though it’s uncovered. I’ll add this info to the recipe, thank you!

  9. Thank you for the super quick reply! Can’t wait to try it!

  10. If I have a gas stove do I still need to put it on the lowest rack?

  11. I have got to try this! I imagine it’s even more cost effective if I purchase whole chickens in bulk :D

  12. I tried this recipe tonight and it was absolutely awesome. I will definitely never have to buy another rotisserie chicken and wonder how much MSG and bad oil I am eating. My 7-year-old granddaughter gave it a huge thumbs-up. The spice mixture is perfect, thank you so much for sharing this recipe.

    • I’m so happy to hear that Belinda! Thank you so much for letting me know. :) It’s definitely a favorite around here. I make one every Sunday!

  13. I made this tonight and it turned out awesome! Thank you! It’s hubby approved (:
    One tip I would give is to make sure you consistently baste the meat as it can dry out quickly.

    • Hi Courtney, thank you so much! I appreciate the tip too. I will definitely add that in the recipe. Good call. So glad you enjoyed it! Thanks again and take care. :)

  14. Hi Megan
    If I wanted to make two 5 lb chickens at once how long should I cook for?

    • Hi Christina, it will be about the same amount of time or possibly an extra 10-15 minutes. If you have a roasting pan large enough, just nestle them side by side. It will not take significantly longer to roast 2 vs. 1. So roasting 2 is a great idea! Thanks for your question.

  15. This is so easy! In the midwest we have Smart chicken and they are big, clean birds. Not the chicken with yellow skin:( Great meal and hopefully their will be enough leftover for my lunch tomorrow!

  16. This will be added to my recipe book as ”woah-dang chicken’!!! Amazing!! My chicken was almost 6lbs and 1hr20mins was perfect!! And then I boiled the carcuss for chicken stock! I am done spending $8-$10 on a rotisserie chicken that’s been under a heat lamp for hours when I can get a whole chicken for $5 and make this!! Yes!! 

    • This makes me so happy ‘Gena! I love hearing people will cook more at home – it tastes better, usually costs lest, the benefits go on and on. I love this rotisserie chicken recipe so THANK YOU for giving it a chance. So glad you liked it! Take care. :)

  17. This dish was a hit with the entire family. Chicken was moist and 10x better than store bought!! We will be making this again and again!

    • SO GREAT to hear that, Stacy! Thank you. :) It’s a hit for me as well, we make it all the time!

  18. I have a 11lb chicken how much longer should I cook it?

    • Hey there! Wow, that is one big chicken. I have never tried this recipe with such a large bird, but here’s what I found on AllRecipes. The cooking method is different from mine, but it sounds logical to me. First, roast the chicken at 450 degrees for 10 minutes (to crisp the skin). Second, roast the chicken at 350 degrees for 20 minutes per pound (220 minutes). That comes out to 230 minutes total, or nearly 4 hours. I would definitely baste the chicken often to prevent it from drying out. I think it should work but if you’d like to report back and let me know, I would appreciate it! I’ll look for a bird that large so I can test it myself. Thank you!

  19. It won’t dry out in crock pot ? Cooking it right now ! Lol 

    • Hi Monique! It shouldn’t dry out in a crockpot. All the moisture gets trapped in those, so it’s more like steaming. :) You should be good! Thank you! :) I hope you love it!

  20. I am going to make this Sunday.  I hate to seem foolish, but do I cook this breast up or down.  In  the picture it looks breast down?
    As you can tell I am not a great chicken cook.

    • Breast up! Cook it breast up. Sorry about that, I will have to rephotograph this, ha ha. You are clearly not that bad of a cook! :D

  21. HI.       Have a a George FOREman rotisserie and i am just  wondering how long would you rotisserate for and at what temperature  

  22. This is in the oven now, hopefully you get to answer it in time lol! It’s been in about 20 minutes and there’s no juice to baste it with, is that OK?

    • Hi Amanda! What I do if there is no juice (and I need to update the recipe to say this, so thanks for reminding me) is to brush it with extra olive oil. That’s what I do. It’s not required, but if you are worried about the chicken drying out, do that! I hope you love it. I make 2 of these every weekend! Thanks for your comment!

  23. I made this last week with a 4 lb chicken and it was the most tender, most juicy rotesserie chicken we have ever had! I’m making it tonight, but the only chix available were slightly larger (mine is about 5.5 lbs) how much longer would you extend cooking time for?

    • Hi, Sarah! I would actually just check it at 70 minutes and in 10-minute increments after that. It might end up being the same. When I do 2 chickens, it’s the same amount of time (obviously that’s two chickens, not 1 chicken double the size, but I still thought it would take longer and it didn’t). Sorry I don’t have an exact answer, but it will probably be close to about the same, possibly 10-15 minutes longer. Thank you!

  24. Do you cook it the entire time in the oven on 425 or lower it at some point. Thank you

  25. Do you cook on 425 the whole time. I have a 6 lb hockey. Or do you turn down after a while?

    • Hi Kimberly, I cook it at 425 the whole time. I baste it periodically so it doesn’t dry out. You could definitely turn it down after a while if you wanted to. I have seen recipes like that, and especially since it’s a 6-pound bird. I just don’t know exactly what the cooking time would be if you turned it down at some point. You’d just have to check it, but obviously it would work! Thanks for the question. It’s a good one.

  26. This is such a great, simple recipe! I’m glad I came across your blog!

  27. Great recipe. My family gobbled it up happily.

  28. This looks great! Question: if I were to bake the chicken in the oven, and then transfer to a slow-cooker…would I add the juices from the oven pan to the slow cooker as well? Thanks!

    • Hi Amber! Yes! Why not? I don’t think it’s required, but why waste them? I would definitely do that. I will update the recipe so this is clear. Thank you for the question!

  29. Delicious recipe! I bought a whole chicken on a whim because they were on sale but had no clue how to cook one. I assumed it would take forever to cook but that was not the case at all!

    I will say that when I opened the oven to baste for the first time I was wecomed with a face full of smoke. There were no juices at all. I poured about half a cup of water in my pan and that fixed that! Great mix of spices – better than the store. Chicken turned out perfect and moist.

  30. can you roast vegetables in the pan with this?

    • Hi Sheryl, yes you can. However, the high temperature and amount of time it takes to roast the chicken, you may have to add the vegetables later in the cooking time. I will put this on my list to test next week so I can be more informed and update the post. It actually sounds really obvious – who WOULDN’T want to roast vegetables with their chicken?! In the meantime, if you want to try yourself, just keep an eye on the vegetables. Add them later, make sure they are coated in oil, perhaps add extra liquid to the bottom of the pan. You just don’t want them to scorch. I’ve had this problem (the scorching) with other roast chicken recipes that just assume it will all cook together fine and perfectly (such as Ina Garten’s). But it didn’t work (everything burned). The process needs some attention. Thanks for the question!

  31. OMG It was amazing Rotisserie Chicken is a favorite in our house and I need new ways to cook it. I love how easy this sounds and this looks like something my family will love!Thanks

  32. Maybe I missed it….but does these need to be on a rack in the oven since they do drip alot of grease

    • Hi Cathy, I do not use a rack (although you are welcome to). And actually, the chicken does not drip a lot of grease. Most of the time, if I have to baste the chicken during roasting time, I just olive oil because there is nothing in the bottom of the pan. This definitely depends on the chicken though! I hope this is helpful. Use a rack if you want, and if you have no grease for basting, add some. Thanks for the question!

  33. meaning a rack in the pan you cook it in

    • Yes, like a roasting rack. I don’t use one because there isn’t grease dripping in to the bottom of the pan. But you should use one if you want to! I did try putting the chicken on a bed of vegetables once and it worked very well. Thanks!

  34. This looks wonderful. I am using this recipe for our Christmas dinner this year. Cooking a turkey for just 2 has been so silly the last few holidays. I don’t know why i never thought to do a smaller chicken instead. Thanks!!!

  35. This looks awesome! I am 13 and i have 5 brothers and a dad that eat like horses (My mom and I more like humans) So this looks great. I love the spice rub idea. We have always just used Lawry’s (seasoned salt).

  36. This was the BEST chicken I’ve ever made! I’ve been on the search for different ways to cook chicken where it doesn’t feel tough in my mouth and under my fork and that’s really juicy like store bought rotisserie chicken. My Crockpot is an older model where the lid doesn’t lock and it’s either low or high. Everything I cook in there doesn’t come out right. I’ve also tried soaking chicken parts in brine and then baking it, searing it on the stove and then baking, using one of those baking bags, and covering it with tin foil as it stands up on a cone up the bum, and it all comes out less than perfect. When I picked your recipe, I didn’t have a lot of time, so I didn’t take the time to measure out the herbs and spices, so I just used a chicken rub by Emeril. I can’t wait to roast another chicken, but this time I’ll take the time to measure out your seasonings. The seasoning that I used, that fell off the bird, burned in the bottom of the pan – I don’t know if that’s normal. I also didn’t have time to hog-tie the chicken and I found out why it’s a good idea – one of the legs stuck to the side of the roasting pan. I’ll be tying it up, next time, too. I bet it keeps the legs from drying out for anyone who didn’t baste every 20 minutes. I did take the time to baste with more olive oil, however my oil also has canola, olive, and grape seed oil blend. Every time I pulled the bird out to baste, a plume of smoke came out and oil splattered. I wonder if it’s because of the oil blend. I’m going to try butter, next time. Do you think chicken stock would work? Or is the oil used to keep the juices in the bird? I wasn’t sure, but after the first 20 minutes, I turned the bird over to get crispy on the breast side and then 20 minutes after that, flipped it back over to be breast side up, again. Is that what you do, or do you just keep the bird on it’s back? Thank you so much for sharing your wisdom with all of us!!

    • Esther, when I was hosting thanksgiving dinner, I always roasted the turkey breast side down for 2/3 of the time. Then flipped it to brown the rest of the time. I have carried that over to roasting a chicken. I hope you found the breast to be incredibly juicy because of your “mistake”. 

  37. Just put this one in my personal recip file.  Everything down to the cook time was reliable and my husband was crazy about the flavor.  Also, great job wth the video, very helpful and fun to watch

    • Hi Nicole, the personal recipe file is the highest praise I could ever hope for! Thank you so much. I’m so glad you and your husband enjoyed it. If you need anything else just let me know. And thanks for your kind words on the video. I have to practice more but it’s fun! Take care and thanks again.

  38. Delicious!!! I have NEVER made a roast chicken until today (can you believe that?) and after coming across your recipe the other day I just knew I had to try. The spice blend was perfect and both my partner and I loved it.

  39. I used this recipe twice but had to tweak a little both times. I replaced blended fresh onion (1.5 white onion or 2 red onion) and fresh garlic (3 or 4 cloves? I love garlic) for onion powder and garlic powder both times and added 1.5 teaspoon of sugar and 1 teaspoon of cayenne the second time. My husband likes it and suggest we serve this for our guests next time. I forgot to rub oil on my chicken the second time but it still turned out great. Your recipe is simple and so easy to follow. Thank you for such a great, simple recipe!

  40. Do you have to do this in a small dish like you show? I’m halfway there following directions to a T with a roasting pan, but barely escaped my fire alarm going off at 20 min because the juices are burning. So far I’ve basted with oil and added about a cup and a half of water total. 

  41. WHAT IS THE PORTION SIZE. 4 OZ., 6 OZ., ETC,? ROTISSERIE CHICKEN

  42. I made this last night and it was amazing! My husband cleared his plate which is saying something because I’m not a good cook at all and everyone will agree with me haha but I made this and the directions were so easy to follow and every detail was included. Sometimes with recipes I feel like I have questions that aren’t answered. It was all there! So good! I will be back to your page for more! 

    • I’m so thrilled Jennifer! For both of us. Obviously you’re well on your way to becoming a rockstar home cook, and I’m always pleased when my recipes work out for somebody. I would totally hug you if you were here. And you made the potatoes too! That’s amazing! Both of those recipes are tasty, so you have an eye for that. :D I’m glad you felt all the details were covered. And I know exactly what you mean. I test recipes constantly and I feel like sometimes I’m just blindly moving forward without all the info! Glad that didn’t happen this time. Please keep cooking, hit me up (in comments or email) if you have questions or need anything. I love it. I’m so excited. Thank you again! You made my day. -Meggan

  43. Meggan,

    I always make my “rotisserie” chickens in these crock pot. Maybe my crock pot is extra hot, but my 4 pound chicken takes only 3 hours on LOW. Pull temp is 160 degrees. Plop under broiler for a bit to crisp up the skin. Thighs are cooked through and breast is blissfully moist.

    Great dry rub. Thanks! PS: I usually park a split whole onion and some cloves of garlic in the cavity to help the breast moisture but works fine if you don’t have time/ingredients.

  44. hello, does “1 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme” mean 5.5 teaspoons ? or 0.18 teaspoons ? Thank you.

  45. Wow this recipe is amazing! Thank you for a fairly quick & very delicious meal that my whole family including my picky 9y enjoyed! I used cut up thighs & legs bc I needed to cut the cooking time, doubled your seasoning to cover all the 12 PC’s. Convect roasted at 400 for 40min uncovered. Followed all your tips & did not nd to change anything. Can’t wait to make this again!

  46. This recipe is easy and your format for reading through it rocks- thanks! I’m making it for the 4th time in two months. Love saving money with my own chicken vs the grocery store rotisserie chicken. This tastes a bajillion times better too!

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