How to Make Rotisserie Chicken

Once you learn how to make rotisserie chicken at home, with crispy skin and juicy meat, you won't be tempted to grab a bird at the store ever again!

Leftover rotisserie chicken can be turned into all sorts of delicious thing like Chinese chicken salad with the tastiest Asian salad dressing, chicken quinoa soup, or chicken salad. See more chicken recipes here.

Rotisserie chicken in a cast iron skillet.
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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.

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.

Once you learn how to make rotisserie chicken at home, with crispy skin and juicy meat, you won't be tempted to grab a bird at the store ever again!

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 a Rotisserie

I own the Cuisinart TOB-200 Rotisserie Convection Toaster Oven (Culinary Hill may earn money if you buy through this link). Cooking times for other rotisseries may vary.

  1. Truss and skewer the chicken (giblets removed). Coat generously with the dry rub.
  2. Insert the rotisserie skewers into the rotisserie. Cook according to rotisserie manufacturer's instructions (for my Cuisinart rotisserie, it's one hour on the "Rotisserie" setting).
  3. Let it rest about 10 minutes before carving.

How to Make Rotisserie Chicken in the Oven

  1. Truss the chicken (giblets removed), then coat with olive oil. Coat generously with the dry rub. Place in a roasting pan, baking dish, or cast iron skillet.
    Precooked rotisserie chicken rubbed with seasoning in a cast iron skillet.
  2. Bake at 425 degrees for 70-80 minutes, until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees. Baste the chicken every 15-20 minutes with juices from the bottom of the pan (or olive oil).

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.

Sauce being drizzled onto rotisserie chicken in a cast iron skillet.

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.

How to Roast 2 Chickens

What’s better than one rotisserie chicken? Two rotisserie chickens! The baking time is exactly the same! 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.

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.

Once you learn how to make rotisserie chicken at home, with crispy skin and juicy meat, you won't be tempted to grab a bird at the store ever again!

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:

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.

5 from 40 votes

How to Make Rotisserie Chicken

Once you learn how to make rotisserie chicken at home, with crispy skin and juicy meat, you won't be tempted to grab a bird at the store ever again!
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword chicken
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Calories 332kcal
  • 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

To prepare the chicken:

  • In a small bowl, whisk together the paprika, thyme, garlic powder, onion powder, and salt and pepper to taste (I like 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper).
  • Remove giblets and truss the chicken (this is recommended for even cooking).

To make the chicken in a rotisserie:

  • Skewer the trussed chicken. Rub the spice mixture all over the outside of the chicken (no olive oil necessary).
  • Insert the rotisserie skewers into the rotisserie. Cook according to rotisserie manufacturer's instructions (for my Cuisinart rotisserie, it's one hour on the "Rotisserie" setting).
  • Remove from rotisserie and let rest 10 minutes before carving.

To make the chicken in the oven:

  • Move an oven rack to the lowest position and preheat oven to 425 degrees. Place the trussed chicken in a roasting pan, baking dish, or cast iron skillet.
  • Brush the outside of chicken with olive oil. Rub the spice mixture all over the outside of the chicken.
  • Bake uncovered until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees, about 70 to 80 minutes. Brush the chicken periodically (every 15-20 minutes) with the juices that have accumulated in the bottom of the dish to prevent it from drying out (If you don't have any juices in the pan yet, you can use olive oil).
  • Remove from oven and let rest 10 minutes before carving.

To keep the rotisserie chicken warm:

  • 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. 

Nutrition

Calories: 332kcal

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  1. JOHN SAUTER

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

  2. Jessica

    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. 

  3. farahfutom

    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!5 stars

  4. 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.5 stars

  5. Nicole

    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 watch5 stars

    1. meggan

      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.

  6. Esther

    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!!5 stars

    1. Jo

      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”. 

  7. Daria Rose

    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).5 stars

  8. Tory

    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!!!5 stars

  9. Cathy Ratliff

    meaning a rack in the pan you cook it in

    1. meggan

      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!

  10. Cathy Ratliff

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

    1. meggan

      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!

  11. 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!Thanks5 stars

  12. Sheryl

    can you roast vegetables in the pan with this?

    1. meggan

      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!

  13. Soulfood

    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.5 stars

  14. Amber

    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!5 stars

    1. meggan

      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!

  15. Macey

    Great recipe. My family gobbled it up happily.5 stars

  16. This is such a great, simple recipe! I’m glad I came across your blog!5 stars

  17. Kimberly

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

    1. meggan

      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.

  18. Kimberly

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

  19. Sarah

    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?5 stars

    1. meggan

      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!

  20. Amanda

    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?

    1. meggan

      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!

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