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How to Bake a Chicken

Our kitchen expert helps you roast a chicken to perfection -- a technique every cook should master. A bed of vegetables adds flavor to your roast chicken without adding sodium, plus the vegetables ensure that you don’t need a roasting rack to make this popular recipe.

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I??m Lauren with Better Homes and Gardens Test Kitchen. Roasting a chicken is a technique every cook should master, and with our Secrets to Success, you can cook it to perfection every time. Let me show you what I??m talking about. The really interesting secret is to roast on a bed of vegetables like thick slices of onions, stalks of celery or big chunks of carrots. The whole idea is to elevate the bird off of the bottom of the pan, so the air circulates and it doesn??t steam in its own juices. Of course a roasting rack works fine too, but if you don??t have one or don??t want to mess with cleaning one, this vegetable rack is a flavorful solution and you can even eat the rack. This secret isn??t just for chicken. It works for turkey, pork and beef roasts too. Since air circulation is so important in roasting, tent the chicken loosely with foil before putting it in the oven. The foil will trap heat of it and keep the temperature around it more even. But be sure the foil is loose or steam will get trapped inside and make the skin soggy. One last thing to keep in mind, always let the roasted chicken rest for at least 15 minutes before carving. Now, this is critical. The rest period allows juices to redistribute and will help ensure tender, juicy meat. Better Homes and Gardens has the secrets to success for a perfect roasting every time.