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Paprika-Rubbed Chickens with Roasted Garlic


Sweet, smoky paprika meets the mellow richness of roasted garlic in these perfectly spiced birds. Roasting the chickens at a lower temperature than most achieves a crisp skin without burning the paprika.

  • Prep:
  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 10

Source: Martha Stewart Living, January 2011


  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • Coarse salt
  • 2 whole chickens (3 to 3 1/2 pounds each)
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 8 heads garlic, halved horizontally


  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Mix together paprika, oregano, and 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon salt. Place chickens, breast side up, on a rimmed baking sheet, and tuck wings under. Tie legs of each bird together with kitchen twine. Pat chickens dry with paper towels. Rub skin of each with 1 tablespoon oil, then with paprika mixture. Stuff 2 garlic-head halves into each cavity.

  2. Reduce oven temperature to 400 degrees. Roast chickens for 20 minutes. Remove from oven, and baste with pan juices. Scatter remaining garlic-head halves around chicken; drizzle garlic with remaining 1/4 cup oil, then turn cut side down on sheet. Roast for 10 minutes. Tent birds loosely with foil. Roast until juices run clear and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of each thigh reaches 165 degrees, about 30 minutes more. Uncover chickens, and let rest for 10 minutes before serving with roasted garlic.

Reviews Add a comment

  • MS12137482
    21 SEP, 2013
    Good after doubling the spices and use spray olive oil
  • JennVincent
    24 NOV, 2011
    Perhaps it is a typo, but I do not understand why you would preheat the oven to 450 degrees but then cook the bird at 400 degrees. In any case, I'm not convinced that 165-degree thighs are adequate, although I did make the mistake of inserting the meat thermometer in the breast rather than the thigh, and although I waited until it had reached over 170 degrees, the thighs were undercooked. Do not make the same mistake! Cook and learn, I guess. :)
    • kglowderverizo
      25 OCT, 2016
      Preheating at the higher temp gets oven hot enough to crisp the skin at beginning of cook cycle. One turns it down at time of putting chicken in oven so it cooks at the lower temp.
  • Sheepa
    3 MAR, 2011
    This is now our go-to chicken recipe! LOVE IT! The garlic and chicken combination is just outstanding.
  • Danzier
    18 JAN, 2011
    Preheating an oven allows it to be up to temperature before you put the dish in, which lets the dish cook completely at the correct temperature rather than warming with the oven. If we don't preheat, the dish comes out wrong, and cooking time is longer to boot. I've also found that a lower temperature and a longer cooking time improves my results; I usually cook poultry around 325.
  • lattegirl09
    17 JAN, 2011
    excuse my stupidity but am I missing sometihing in step 1? It says to preheat oven to 450 degrees but it doesn't say to cook anything in that step. thanks.
  • JasonB
    10 JAN, 2011
    I know on the show Martha said to follow the recipe exactly. In the past, I have had bad experiences with roasted chicken being raw and uncooked (particularly the legs and thighs). I did a little research and decided to roast the chicken at 475. After about 30 minutes, I tented some foil around it to prevent the paprika from burning. The chicken was still undercooked after 60 minutes, so I roasted it for another 30 and it was delicious. The roasted garlic really adds a nice touch.