Roasting Chicken With Stuffing


Here is your go-to guide for roasting chicken with stuffing. This method is easy to follow, and will result in a perfectly roasted chicken. I know you and your family will enjoy it. We’ve added lots of pictures so you can easily refer to them while following the directions. Let’s get started! Roasting chicken with stuffing is the easiest way to cook a tender and juicy chicken. All the ingredients are mixed into one meal with multiple gravy choices.

Roast Chicken with Sourdough Stuffing

Stuffing turns a standard roast chicken into something special. Tying the legs helps the bird cook evenly and keep its shape, so it looks gorgeous when you bring it to the table.


Roast Chicken with Sourdough Stuffing

A sourdough stuffing adds a twist to this nostalgic roasted chicken recipe. Everyday Food editor Sarah Carey teaches you how to make this classic dish.

Recipe Summary


20 mins


1 hr 30 mins



Roast Chicken with Sourdough Stuffing


Ingredient Checklist

  • 1 thick slice rustic sourdough bread, cut into 3/4-inch cubes (2 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 stalk celery, diced small
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves or 2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh thyme
  • 1/2 to 2/3 cup chicken broth
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 chicken (about 5 pounds)


Instructions Checklist

  • Step 1Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Bake bread in a single layer until dry, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl. In a medium skillet, melt butter over medium. Add onion, garlic, and celery, and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add thyme, and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir into bread, then stir in enough broth to make mixture evenly moist but not wet. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Step 2Pat chicken dry. Season inside and out with salt and pepper. Stuff cavity, tie legs together, and tuck wings underneath. Roast chicken until an instant-read thermometer inserted into thickest part of the thigh registers 165 degrees, about 1 hour (tent exposed stuffing with foil, if overbrowning). Let rest 10 minutes before serving.

Cook’s Notes

Stuffing and Tying

1. Stuff the Bird
Fill the cavity with stuffing, but don’t pack it in tightly.

2. Tie the Legs
Use kitchen twine to tie the legs together; a bow is easy to untie when the bird is done.

Classic Roast Chicken with Sage and Onion stuffing

A chicken is everyone’s favourite Sunday dinner. There are so many ways of cooking it, but after many decades of practising we find this is the best method and really reliable We’ve included two of our favourite stuffings here, so take your pick.

Classic Roast Chicken with Sage and Onion stuffing


Serves 4 – 6


The Chicken

  • 1 x 1.5–1.8kg chicken, giblets removed and trussed
  • 25g butter
  • ½ lemon
  • 100ml white wine or vermouth (optional)
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Sage & Onion Stuffing

  • 15g butter
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • zest of ½ lemon
  • 5 fresh sage leaves, finely chopped, or 1 tsp dried sage
  • 100g breadcrumbs
  • 1 egg

Sausage Meat Stuffing

  • 15g butter
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 200g sausage meat
  • 1 apple, grated
  • a few sprigs of thyme, finely chopped

The Gravy

  • 1 tbsp flour
  • 100ml white wine
  • 300ml chicken stock

Cauliflower Cheese

  • 1 large cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 500ml whole milk
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 mace blade
  • a few peppercorns
  • 30g butter
  • 30g plain flour
  • ½ tsp mustard powder
  • pinch of cayenne
  • 100g Cheddar or Gruyère, grated
  • sea salt and white pepper


  1. If you have time, the day before you roast your chicken, take it out of any packaging, put it on a plate and sprinkle it inside and out with salt. Leave it in the fridge overnight, loosely wrapped in kitchen paper. An hour before you want to start roasting the chicken, remove it from the fridge so it can come up to room temperature.
  2. To make the sage and onion stuffing, melt the butter in a frying pan, add the onion and cook it over a low heat until it’s very soft and translucent. Tip the onion into a bowl and let it cool, then add the lemon zest, sage and breadcrumbs. Season well with salt and pepper, then add the egg and mix thoroughly.
  3. If making the sausage meat stuffing, melt the butter and fry the onion as above, then add the sausage meat, apple and herbs.
  4. Preheat the oven to 220°C/Fan 200°C/Gas 7. Weigh the stuffing and add it to the weight of the chicken so you can work out the cooking time. The chicken will need 20 minutes for every 500g, plus 15 minutes at the high temperature to begin with. Fill the cavity of chicken with your chosen stuffing, making sure you leave a little space between the stuffing and the top of the bird, just to let the air circulate. If you have any stuffing left over, put it in the neck end.
  5. Put the chicken in a roasting tin, rub the butter all over it, season, then squeeze the juice from the lemon half over the top. Add the white wine or vermouth with 100ml of water, or simply use 200ml of water.
  6. Put the chicken in the oven and roast it for 15 minutes. Turn the heat down to 180°C/Fan 160°C/Gas 4 and continue to roast for the time you’ve worked out. You can test for doneness in a variety of ways. If you have a probe or meat thermometer, the stuffing and the thickest part of the chicken should be 75°C. Or if you pierce the thickest part of the thigh with a skewer, the juices should run clear. The legs should also feel loose when you wiggle them.
  7. Once the bird is cooked, remove it from the tin and cover it with foil to keep it warm while it rests. Pour the juices from the tin into a jug and strain off any fat, then set the juices aside. 
  8. To make the gravy, sprinkle the flour into the roasting tin and place the tin over a low heat. Stir the flour into the scrapings at the bottom of the tin to make a roux, then pour in the white wine. Let this bubble up, then gradually add in the defatted pan
    juices and the chicken stock. At this point you can transfer the gravy to a
    saucepan if you like – the roasting tin should look clean. Simmer until you
    have a thin, tasty gravy to serve with the chicken and all the trimmings.
  9. For the Cauliflower Cheese.This is cooked in the oven at 180°C/Fan 160°C/Gas 4, so it can go in with the chicken or you can pop it into the hot oven while the chicken is resting.
  10. Bring a large saucepan of water to the boil and add salt. Add the cauliflower and cook it for 4 minutes until it’s tender when pierced with a knife. Drain the cauliflower thoroughly and put it in an ovenproof dish.
  11. Pour the milk into a saucepan and add the bay leaves, mace and peppercorns. Place the pan over the heat and bring the milk almost to the boil. Remove the pan from the heat and leave the milk to infuse for a while, or at least until you’ve made the roux.
  12. Melt the butter in another pan. Add the flour and stir in the mustard powder and cayenne. When you have a smooth roux, keep stirring for a minute or so to cook the flour a little. Strain the milk into a jug and add it to the roux, very gradually to start with and making sure you stir it to a smooth paste with each addition. When the texture is like a liquid sauce, you can add the milk in larger quantities, continuing to stir constantly until it is all incorporated. Add 75g of the cheese and stir until it has melted. Check for seasoning and add salt and pepper, preferably white, if necessary.
  13. Pour the sauce over the cauliflower and sprinkle the rest of the cheese on top. Put the dish in the oven and bake for about 30 minutes until the top is brown and bubbling. Serve with the roast chicken.

Roast chicken with mixed mushroom stuffing

  • Calories70735%
  • Fat49.4g71%
  • Saturates14.1g71%
  • Sugars2.4g3%
  • Protein55.8g111%
  • Carbs7.9g3%


  • olive oil
  • 1 onion , peeled and finely chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic , peeled and finely sliced
  • 500 g mixed, interesting mushrooms (such as shiitake, oyster, chestnut etc) , cleaned – large ones chopped up, small ones ripped up
  • 1 bunch fresh thyme
  • 1 lemon
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 large handful pine nuts
  • 2 large handfuls fresh white breadcrumbs
  • 1 free-range egg , beaten
  • 1 whole higher-welfare chicken , approximately 1.5kg


  1. You don’t often see whole chicken that’s been stuffed like this. I think that’s a real shame because it adds such beautiful flavour and the natural juices from the chicken will give you the most gorgeous stuffing.
  2. Preheat your oven to 240°C/475°F/gas 9. Heat a good lug of olive oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat. Add your onion and garlic and cook for about 10 minutes until soft, but not coloured. Add the mushrooms with the leaves from a few of your thyme sprigs. Turn the heat up to high and fry for 5 to 10 minutes until the mushrooms go slightly crispy. Remove from the heat, grate in the zest of the lemon and season well. Tip into a bowl and leave to one side to cool.
  3. Once the mixture has cooled, use clean hands to mix in the pine nuts and breadcrumbs, then add the egg. Carefully, push your fingers between the meat and skin on the top of the chicken then gently create a pocket for the stuffing. Push a quarter of the stuffing into this pocket and roll the remaining mixture into balls and pop to one side. Cut your zested lemon in half and place in the chicken cavity with the remaining thyme sprigs. Pop your chicken in a roasting tray, drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Place in the preheated oven and turn the heat down to 200°C/400°F/gas 6. Cook for 40 minutes, then add your mushroom stuffing balls to the tray. Return to the oven and cook for a further 35 minutes until gorgeous and golden. To check your chicken is cooked, stick a skewer into the fattest part of the thigh – if the juices run clear, your chicken is done. Leave to rest for 10 to 15 minutes, covered loosely with tin foil, then serve with fluffy roast potatoes and seasonal greens.

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