Whole30 Heroine Chicken

Heroine Chicken.  My love and of cooking and family and knowing the importance  of sitting around a table with people I love and sharing food is not only one of the greatest pleasures but necessary for my soul.  So, when my family’s much loved dish caught the eye of the editor of a start up on-line magazine, he asked me to contribute weekly.  Well, I didn’t know how to write, but I did speak the language of food. Heroine Chicken went viral and thus began my food blogging life.  My little Instagram account has not been the same since!

The trick is to marinate 48 hours before roasting.  Now, you may see this recipe and say “oh, lemon chicken”, but there is something about the combination of ingredients, marinade and time that is a little piece of magic that I am not going to question.

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Whole30 Heroine Chicken

  • Author: nocrumbsleft
  • Prep Time: 10 min (48 hr marinating)
  • Cook Time: 1 hr
  • Total Time: 1 hr 10 min
  • Yield: 4-6 servings


  • 1 butterflied chicken
  • 2 tbsp kosher salt
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 tbsp peppercorns, crushed into good-sized pieces
  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 6 cloves of garlic, chopped fine
  • A couple of handfuls of chopped flat-leaf parsley


Butterfly the chicken or have the butcher do it for you. Salt the chicken well with kosher salt — make sure every crevice is covered

In a bowl mix lemon, peppercorn, olive oil and garlic. (Important: make sure the peppercorns are crushed into large pieces.)

Place the chicken in a 24-40 cup container with lid. Make sure that the container is deep enough (I use a 16? ish x 10? ish x 5?ish deep) This recipe is all about the marinade so it’s important that the container fits the chicken or you will lose marinade.


Pour half of the marinade evenly over the bird. Sprinkle with half of the parsley, about a handful. Flip the chicken over and evenly cover the other side of the chicken with the rest of the marinade. Then sprinkle the remaining parsley. Marinate for 48 hours.

When the chicken is done marinating, wipe off the excess marinade and parsley.  Then, roast the chicken skin side up in a 375°F oven for about 45 minutes. As quickly as you can, baste with the chicken fat, close the oven and bake for another 15 minutes.

If the chicken is not brown enough, baste again, turn up to 425° and bake for 5 more minutes. If the wing tips are getting too brown, cover them up with foil.


I recommend making some extra wings and thighs for leftover lunch to-go tomorrow.  If you want to do more than 4 wings and thighs, just double the marinade. Make sure that you put them in a large enough container so that everything is covered with the marinade.

39 thoughts on “Whole30 Heroine Chicken

  1. Oh wow 😍😍

    Have you checked out my new blog post? Let me know your thoughts 💗💗💗

  2. Should I even bother if I can only marinate for 12 hours? Or, just wait for another occasion when I have 48 hours as directed?

  3. Whats your time / temperature recommendation for larger chickens? 5-7 lbs?

  4. Hi- thanks for the recipe! My fridge runs cold. If the oil in the marinade congeals- is the meat still marinating? Thanks!

    1. Hi Sue, My oil always partly solidifies, it is still okay and if you want you can scoop it up and smear on the chicken, like you would a herbed butter. I do that when I go to flip the bird half way through. My opinion is that, yes, it is still marinating even if your oil congeals, it is still on the bird 🙂

      1. Yes that’s absolutely fine to do that and of course Olive Oil always congeals in the fridge

    2. It congeals probably for most people, be sure to flip the chicken in the middle of the marinating time.

    3. That’s totally normal. That is what oil does in the refrigerator. No need to scoop any out. Just be sure to flip in the middle of the marinating. Once it gets in the pan to roast, it will all come together

  5. Can this be made without the garlic due to an allergy to it. Thank you

    1. Not for this recipe, But check the blog for grapefruit chicken

    2. That would be a different recipe and would not work for my Heroine Chicken. Feel free to try my Grapefruit Chicken and then leave off any garlic on that one. Let me know how it goes for you.

  6. This was so delicious! How can I be a tuse the juices from baking? Do you have a special magic elixir from this specifically?

    1. Delicious in everything, including pasta, rice, in Minestrone Soup… Anywhere you want delicious flavor.

  7. Hi Teri,
    This sounds delicious!
    What size chicken do you use?

  8. I made this tonight for the first time and it was seriously so good. I cant wait to make it again. My 3 year old loved it!

  9. Can you marinate the chicken in a large ziplock bag?

    1. We did that and are cooking tonight (for the first time). I’ll let you know how it goes.

      1. vicky zimmerman May 27, 2020 — 1:11 pm

        How did it go, young whippersnapper? VZ

  10. Hi! Can I bake potatoes in the pan with the chicken as it’s baking? Thanks!

  11. Oh my gosh! This chicken is amazing! So juicy and tasty! I was a little worried about butterfly cutting a chicken open, but I DID IT! And marinaded it for 48 hours as instructed, and it was seriously delicious. My 6 year old ate like a mountain man and my 4 year old had his FILL as well! Juicy, tasty, worth the wait!
    Thank you Teri for sharing!

    1. Thank you so much…

  12. I was so intimidated to cook a whole chicken. No idea why. This was my first whole chicken recipe. Followed the instructions exactly and it was perfect!!! I ate it by itself and it was wonderful. Had leftovers on salad, so delicious!! Highly highly recommend!

    1. Thank you so much… I would be thrilled if you would write the recipe

    2. Oops… I meant to say rate the recipe…If you have time I would be delighted

  13. Best Chicken Recipe EVER!! I would upload a picture, but what you’d see now is an empty plate!

  14. This chicken is AH MAZE ING. I don’t know what kind of magic goes into it but we have made it several times now and my entire family always throws down. I don’t know what kind of magic happens with the marinade but it’s the best and easiest chicken I’ve ever made.

    1. There really is a bit of magic in it… It’s one of those things that it’s not just 1+1 = 2 it’s like 2+2 is 55… Thank you so much

  15. I made this for an outdoor gathering with friends and had rave reviews. They all asked for the recipe and asked that I make it again! I grilled the chicken using the serious eats butterfly chicken method and used a probe thermometer. Juicy, flavorful and delicious. This will definitely be on rotation.

  16. Lindsey Galloway August 10, 2021 — 3:33 pm

    I’ve made this many times over the past few years and I always forget how delicious it is! Today I cooked 2, 1 the conventional way and 1 in my pellet smoker. I cooked it in 375 in a cast iron skillet in the smoker and OMG it’s amazing! Cooking it either way you won’t be disappointed.

  17. Simply the best roast chicken you could make or eat. I have made this several times and it never disappoints. I often make this for new moms, or for a meal to drop off when a friend is in need of a comforting meal. Delicious!

  18. Hey Teri! This is one of my FAVES (no surprise). I’d love to try using wings and was curious about the adjusted cooking time if we use all chicken wings (about 3 lbs from Butcher Box, yum! so they will be smaller than their GMO cousins in the big box stores). Any advice on adjusted temp, time or method (like covering in foil at any point)?

    1. You don’t need to adjust much I think it takes a full hour to do wings

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