Honey Lime Roast Chicken

Kroger had whole chickens on sale yesterday and I had company for dinner tonight – the perfect convergence  of circumstances.  I had some jalapenos left from salsa making yesterday so I thought I’d try to find a recipe for roast chicken with a Southwestern bent.  Enter, the Food Network and their Honey Lime Roast Chicken.  Depending on the accompaniments this could either go in a Southwestern or a Caribbean direction.  I served it with Corn and Poblano Risotto so let’s call it Southwestern.

Isn’t it beautiful?!  I decided to split it down the back so that it would cook and brown a little more evenly.  That’s not as easy as it looks when they do it on TV.  I don’t have a giant pair of poultry shears so I used a giant knife and it definitely wasn’t a camera ready process.  Still, it was successful.  The marinade was really lovely.  I used the zest of a whole lime to up the citrus flavor.  That was a good call.  I used dried thyme because it’s what I had.  I left out the butter.  The chicken was moist and yummy.  Next time I would boil down the marinade in the bottom of the pan and make a yummy pan sauce to add a little more honey lime flavor to the plate.

Roast chicken is one of those things that is really easy to do; really hard to mess up; and has endless variations.  Given that whole chickens are so much cheaper than the boneless, skinless breasts that many of us buy most of the time I think I’ll plan to explore the many roast chicken options that are out there.  Even split breasts are a much better deal than boneless.  Sometimes I buy the split breasts, cut the largest piece of meat off to use as a boneless breast and use the rest to make stock.  Anyway, roast chicken makes a lovely presentation and goes with pretty much any side dish you could make.  I plan later in the week to use the leftovers from tonight with some black beans and coconut rice.  A new side and voila!, we go from Southwestern to Caribbean.

Good? Yes! My friend Tracie thought so too.
Easy? Yes. Just a quick marinade and a chicken.
Good for company? Yes. It makes a beautiful presentation. Carve it table side if you’re skilled at carving.
Special shopping? Nope.

Honey Lime Chicken


  • 1T dried thyme
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • Zest of 1 lime
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 jalapeno peppers, halved, seeded and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 whole chicken, split down the back and laid flat


Combine thyme with the lime juice, garlic, jalapenos, olive oil, honey and 1 teaspoon salt in a large bowl. Add the chicken and turn to coat. Cover and marinate 30 minutes to 1 hour at room temperature.

Position a rack in the upper third of the oven; preheat to 425 degrees F. Put the chicken, skin-side up, on a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet and tuck the wing tips underneath. Pour the marinade on top, season with salt and dot with the butter.

Roast the chicken, basting with the pan juices halfway through, until the skin is amber and a thermometer inserted into the thigh registers 160 degrees F. Transfer to a platter and let rest 10-15 minutes.


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