Roasting two chickens at a time is brilliant because you have dinner for tonight and a second chicken that you can use to meal plan for the week.

We love whole chicken recipes from Instant Pot Whole Chicken to our popular Spatchcock Chicken. If you are a fan of rotisserie chicken with that crispy salty skin and juicy center, this recipe is a must-try!

Two whole roasted chickens in a roasting pan

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Whole Roasted Chickens Recipe

We often buy the 2 whole organic chickens at Costco and roast them together. It doesn’t take much more effort or time for double roasted Chickens. P.S. Keep this in mind also for the holidays because Roasted Chickens look glorious on a Thanksgiving table.

Be sure to save those pan drippings for making the best chicken gravy. It’s the same concept we use for making turkey gravy and you’ll be amazed how easy it is to make a super flavorful pan dripping gravy.

When Buying Chickens: select ones that are fairly equal in size for even cooking so they are done at the same time. If you only have one in-oven temperature probe, put it into the larger chicken to ensure they are both fully cooked through to a safe temperature. 

Ingredients for stuffing and seasoning whole roasted chicken

How to Roast 2 Whole Chickens

  1. Preheat oven to 425˚F with rack in the lower third of the oven.
  2. Slice onion – Line a large roasting pan with onion slices and drizzle with olive oil.
  3. Prep Chickens – Remove giblets from chickens and pat dry inside and outside with paper towels. Season inside each chicken with 1/2 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp black pepper then stuff with 2 lemon quarters, 1/2 garlic head, and 2 sprigs of rosemary. Set chickens over onions, breast-side-up.
  4. Secure Chickens – Tie legs together with kitchen string and tuck the wings under the chicken so they don’t scorch. 
  5. Brush with butter – melt butter and season each chicken generously with 2 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp black pepper. Roast according to the time chart below.

Pro Seasoning Tip: Butter chickens one at a time and season immediately after adding melted butter. The seasonings will stick better before the butter firms up on the cold chicken.

How to stuff, season and roast a whole chicken

Juicy Chicken Tip: Once the chicken is out of the oven, let it rest for 15 minutes before slicing into it. This allows the chicken to relax and re-absorb some juices.

Whole roast chickens resting on a platter

How Long to Roast 2 Whole Chickens?

You should always check your chickens for doneness with a thermometer inserted into the deepest part of the thigh and make sure it reaches at least 165˚F and you should see the juices run clear when you cut between the leg and thigh. To be extra safe, we let the chicken go 5 degrees higher. Use this chart to estimate roasting times when baking two chickens at 425˚F:

  • 2 Chickens (4 lbs each): Bake 1 hour 15 min to 1 hr 30 min
  • 2 Chickens (4.5 lbs each): Bake 1 hr 30 min to 1 hr 45 min
  • 2 Chickens (5 lbs each): Bake 1 hr 45 min to 2 hrs
Roasted chicken baked to the perfect temperature

How to Make Pan Dripping Gravy:

Just like with our Turkey Gravy, making a Chicken Gravy from pan drippings is so easy and will create the most flavorful gravy that is better than any powdered or pre-made gravy mix. We had just a little over 1 cup of pan drippings (after fat was removed), but the amount can vary..

  1. Strain pan drippings through a fine sieve, discarding solids.
  2. Spoon off 4 Tbsp fat and add that to a small saucepan. Skim off and discard any remaining oil.
  3. Make a Roux – Place the saucepan over medium heat, add 2 Tbsp flour and whisk for 1 to 2 minutes until lightly golden.
  4. Add drippings – Add 1 cup of pan drippings and whisk until thickened and bubbling. Add about 1/2 cup water or milk, or to reach desired taste and consistency. Bring back to a simmer and remove from heat.
Step by step how to make chicken gravy from pan drippings

Common Questions:

How do I roast 1 chicken?

If you are looking to roast a single chicken, check out our Juicy Roast Chicken and Vegetables recipe for timing. A single chicken will roast a little faster than two.

What can I use the carcass or bones for?

Keep the chicken bones and carcass to make a rich and flavorful chicken bone broth.

Do I need a rack for roasting chicken?

Lining the pan with slices of onions serves as a ‘rack’ for the chicken while adding great flavor to the drippings for gravy.

What kind of roasting pan should I use?

Use a roasting pan that is large enough for 2 chickens to fit without being squished together. We use this Cuisinart large roasting pan.

Serve With

We love to serve this as a main course with simple fresh salads and vegetable sides:

Chicken drumstick served from whole roasted chicken

Make-Ahead

You can completely assemble your whole chickens: stuff, butter, and season your chickens then cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. Leave it at room temperature for 30 minutes before baking.

Use Leftover Chicken for:

Roast 2 chickens at the same time to save time, money on your energy bill and dishes. You can also use leftover chicken to make these tasty chicken dinners for the week (and none of these dishes will taste like leftovers).

Natasha's Kitchen Cookbook

Two Whole Roasted Chickens + Chicken Gravy

4.98 from 46 votes
Author: Natasha Kravchuk
Two roasted chickens in pan
We love roasting 2 chickens at once. It takes almost the same amount of time and you can enjoy one for dinner tonight and use the second for meal prepping the next few days.

Ingredients 

Servings: 12 people

Ingredients for Roasting 2 Chickens:

  • 2 whole chickens (5 lb each), giblets removed, patted dry
  • 5 tsp fine sea salt, divided
  • 2 tsp ground black pepper, divided
  • 4 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 large lemon, quartered
  • 1 garlic head, halved crosswise
  • 4 rosemary sprigs, divided
  • 2 medium onions, sliced to 1/4” thick rings
  • 1 tsp olive oil

Chicken Gravy – Optional:

  • 4 Tbsp oil , skimmed from pan drippings
  • 2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup liquid drippings
  • 1/2 cup water or milk, added to taste and desired consistency

Instructions

How to Roast 2 Whole Chickens:

  • Preheat oven to 425˚F with a rack in the lower third of the oven (you want the whole chicken to be in the center of the oven).
  • Line a large roasting pan with onion slices, drizzle with olive oil.
  • Remove giblets from chickens and pat dry inside and outside with paper towels. Season inside each chicken with 1/2 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp black pepper then stuff each with 2 lemon quarters, 1/2 of garlic head and 2 sprigs rosemary.
  • Place chicken over the onions breast-side-up. Tie legs together and tuck the wings under the chicken so they don’t scorch.
  • Melt butter and brush top and sides of chicken and immediately season each chicken with 2 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp black pepper. Butter and season chickens one at a time so the butter doesn’t solidify making it difficult for seasoning to stick.
  • Bake at 425˚F for 1 hour and 45 minutes to 2 hours, depending on the size of your chicken or until the internal temperature at the deepest part of the thigh reaches 165˚F, and juices run clear when you cut between the leg and the thigh.* Rest chicken for 15 minutes after it comes out of the oven before slicing and serving.

To Make Chicken Gravy:

  • Strain pan drippings through a fine sieve and discard the solids. The drippings sit for a minute and you’ll notice the fat will float to the top. Spoon off 4 Tbsp of fat and add that to a small saucepan. Skim off and discard any remaining excess fat on your drippings.
  • Place the saucepan with fat over medium heat then add 2 Tbsp flour and whisk to combine. Continue whisking for 1-2 minutes until lightly golden. Add 1 cup of pan drippings and whisk until thickened and bubbling. Add water or milk to desired taste and consistency. I added about 1/2 cup milk. Bring back to a simmer, whisking constantly then remove from heat.

Notes

*Bake according to the time chart. I like to let the chicken go 5 degrees higher to be safe when cooking a whole chicken. Estimated times for 2 chickens:
  • 4 lbs each: Bake 1 hr 15 min to 1 hr 30 min
  • 4.5 lbs each: Bake 1 hr 30 min to 1 hr 45 min
  • 5 lbs each: Bake 1 hr 45 min to 2 hrs
**Nutrition label is for chickens only and does not include gravy. 

Nutrition Per Serving

319kcal Calories3g Carbs22g Protein24g Fat8g Saturated Fat1g Trans Fat119mg Cholesterol1058mg Sodium298mg Potassium1g Fiber1g Sugar1203IU Vitamin A9mg Vitamin C24mg Calcium2mg Iron
Nutrition Facts
Two Whole Roasted Chickens + Chicken Gravy
Amount per Serving
Calories
319
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
24
g
37
%
Saturated Fat
 
8
g
50
%
Trans Fat
 
1
g
Cholesterol
 
119
mg
40
%
Sodium
 
1058
mg
46
%
Potassium
 
298
mg
9
%
Carbohydrates
 
3
g
1
%
Fiber
 
1
g
4
%
Sugar
 
1
g
1
%
Protein
 
22
g
44
%
Vitamin A
 
1203
IU
24
%
Vitamin C
 
9
mg
11
%
Calcium
 
24
mg
2
%
Iron
 
2
mg
11
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chicken gravy, two whole roasted chickens, whole roasted chicken
Skill Level: Easy/Medium
Cost to Make: $$
Calories: 319

Natasha Kravchuk

Welcome to my kitchen! I am Natasha, the blogger behind Natasha's Kitchen (since 2009). My husband and I run this blog together and share only our best, family approved and tested recipes with YOU. Thanks for stopping by! We are so happy you're here.

Read more posts by Natasha

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Recipe Rating




Comments

  • Marjorie
    May 10, 2024

    Question: if cooking uncovered at that temperature for that length of time, aren’t you at risk of the skin burning?

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      May 10, 2024

      Hi Marjorie, I haven’t had that experience following this recipe as written.

      Reply

  • Carmella
    April 12, 2024

    This looks so good and I’m sure it’s tasty- just wondering if you used convection or not before I start!

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      April 12, 2024

      Hi Carmella! I think you could but I would not know how to make adjustments to time/temperature without testing it. Sorry I can’t be more help.

      Reply

  • Jordan Eisenman
    January 6, 2024

    Natasha I went above and beyond your cookbook is on display in a rack on the kitchen countertop and when my wife cooks with your recipes like this one they come out perfect and plates get cleaned! I even cook with your recipies and they come out perfect each time!

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      January 6, 2024

      I’m so glad to hear that, Jordan! Thank you.

      Reply

  • Rhonda
    November 20, 2023

    Can I use two 9×13 pans instead of a roasting pan? Would brining help? Our family doesn’t like turkey so we are doing chicken.

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      November 20, 2023

      Hi Rhonda, we recommend a roasting pan, if you have a roasting pan as opposed to baking on a baking sheet, the drippings are more likely to collect instead of evaporating out.

      Reply

  • Cindy Tschann
    October 18, 2023

    Hello Natasha! What if i cooked the chicken in a roasting bag? Would this make the chicken less flavorful?

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      October 19, 2023

      Hi Cindy, I haven’t tried this specific recipe in a roasting bag to advise. If you experiment, let me know how you liked the recipe.

      Reply

  • Barb Champagne
    October 9, 2023

    This turned out beautifully, juicy and flavourful. The gravy was amazing! Each of my chickens was a little over 5 pounds and the timing posted was perfect (2 hours)

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      October 9, 2023

      Wonderful! Thanks a lot for sharing, Barb. We’re happy to know that you loved it!

      Reply

  • Maxine Hopkins
    September 30, 2023

    I will defiantly try this one . I lost all my recipes when I moved. Thank Heavens for you Natasha, you have saved me .

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      September 30, 2023

      I hope you love it, Maxine!

      Reply

  • Elena
    March 14, 2023

    What time is it going to be if I’ll roast 1 chicken instead of two?

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      March 14, 2023

      Hi Elena! The time can differ so I recommend checking your chicken for doneness with a thermometer inserted into the deepest part of the thigh and make sure it reaches at least 165˚F.

      Reply

  • Pat O’Connor
    March 12, 2023

    Does this recipe require periodic basting to keep meat moist?
    If so, how regularly?
    If not, it sounds so easy and I’ll definitely try it.

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      March 13, 2023

      Hi Pat! No, it is not necessary. I hope you try and love this recipe. 🙂

      Reply

  • Mary
    February 9, 2023

    This is a great recipe, the chickens came out super moist and very delicious!

    I found that I didn’t really have any drippings in the pan, really just the oil that I drizzled in the bottom before cooking. Do you have any suggestions on how to make sure the chickens stay moist but there’s still enough drippings for the gravy?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      February 11, 2023

      Hi Mary, if you have a roasting pan as opposed to baking on a baking sheet, the drippings are more likely to collect instead of evaporating out. Also, some smaller, leaner, pasture-raised chickens just may not produce much drippings. In that case, you an add a good chicken broth to the pan to deglaze and increase the volume. I’ve done that before and it still makes a tasty gravy.

      Reply

  • Svetlana
    February 4, 2023

    Hi Natasha! I’ve been making your roast chicken over vegetables regularly. My youngest who doesn’t normally like chicken begs for it! However, I noticed that just one chicken is not enough for my family. Is it possible to do two chickens on top of the veggies in that recipe? Or should I do one of the chickens on a separate pan over onions?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      February 5, 2023

      Hi Svetlana, I think the best thing to do is to cook the chickens in one pan and the veggies in another pan and remove the veggies when they are done since 2 chickens take longer to roast than a single chicken.

      Reply

  • Esther
    December 14, 2022

    Hello! Would this work with two skinless whole chickens? Should I cover it? Thanks in advance!

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      December 14, 2022

      Hi Esther. In my experience, roasting without skin causes the meat to be very dry. I think covering will definitely help but a large portion of the fat comes from the skin and that is what helps it maintain its moisture as it roasts.

      Reply

  • Fatima slavin
    November 13, 2022

    Hi Natasha.I have been cooking your recipies for a wilemEvery time I got so many compliments. LAST NIGHT I made a dinner party for my husband’s birthday.I made 2 roasted chickens,beets with arugula salad.Pasta salad, riasted potatoes.For desert chocolate cake and blueberry and lemon.Thanks to you i had no left overs.😍😍

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      November 13, 2022

      Belated Happy Birthday to him! Great to hear that the dishes were a hit!

      Reply

  • Mary
    October 9, 2022

    Today we are celebrating Thanksgiving. My 2 chick’s are in the oven now, can’t wait till I smell the herbs in the kitchen.

    Just wondering- do you cover the with fold or lids?

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      October 10, 2022

      Hi Mary! I bake this uncovered.

      Reply

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