What’s more comforting than a roasted chicken? For many of our chefs, it’s their go-to Sunday dinner. Pair it with a salad or crispy potatoes, and a roasted bird can be a healthy and satisfying meal. Follow this guide and learn how to roast and carve a half chicken at home. It’s a skill you’ll use over and over again. 

half chicken with roasted potatoes and salad
Half of the chicken, all of the fun

When it comes to roasting, a bone-in skin-on chicken just brings more flavor. The skin is crispy and flavorful, the pan drippings can be used to make delicious dressings and sauces, and the bones can be reserved for stock.

To make this dinner possible, Blue Apron partnered with Pasturebird to send sustainably-raised high-quality half chickens. Even though we love a whole bird, there are some advantages to working with half chicken at home. Once it’s butchered, a half chicken can lay down flat, so it will cook more evenly. We recommend roasting cut side down, which means that you’ll get as much crispy skin as possible, since it’s all exposed to the air. 

Carving a half chicken is a cinch: all you need is a sturdy knife and a few tips. We separate ours into four pieces so that it’s easy to serve. 

carve a half chicken
Separating the leg and thigh

To get started, use a sharp, sturdy knife to cut along the leg of the roasted and rested chicken, separating the thigh and breast. Cut the breast in half crosswise through the bone (keeping the wing intact), to form two pieces. Watch the video below for a step by step demonstration.

To separate the drumstick and the thigh, the trick is finding the joint. Just wiggle the drumstick and place the knife right at the connecting point. This way, you’re not trying to saw through bone. With a little pressure and a sturdy knife, the drumstick should pop away easily. If you like, you can also cut through the joint connecting the wing to the breast. 

Serve the carved chicken with salads, crusty breads, savory pan sauces, or roasted vegetables.