I first tried roasted rosemary chicken when my family and I were traveling in the Philippines sometime before the pandemic. It was in a restaurant in the province of Laguna. The ingredients, especially herbs and vegetables were taken from their farm in their herb garden behind the restaurant. It was impressive. The roasted rosemary chicken recipe here, however, may not be the same as it was inspired by another recipe – from a friend.

Roasted rosemary chicken? That was my reaction when a friend suggested this recipe when I remarked that I was busy and that I want something cooked quickly. I was not worried about the time even though I knew that roasting chicken does not come in a jiffy.  What took me was the herb. – I thought aloud “rosemary?” My friend was confident that this would turn out great.

Why did I doubt rosemary? Because I thought I knew one thing: that rosemary is an herb that – well, in my opinion – is good with beef! That opinion changed after I gave my friend’s suggestion a chance.  Yeah, I admit to the term “opinion” because indeed, it was. Rosemary is in fact, used in chicken, pasta, vegetable, and meat dishes.


What is roasted rosemary chicken?

Rosemary chicken is a simple, fragrant chicken dish that’s perfect for entertaining. It’s easy enough to make and can be served hot or cold as part of an antipasto platter or on its own with some crusty bread. You can use any kind of chicken you like: dark meat from the breast or thighs, or even skinless breasts. If you want to serve it hot, just pop it in the oven when you start cooking your other dishes. For best results, marinate the chicken overnight so that all the flavors have time to meld together.


Recipe ingredients

The key ingredient in this recipe is rosemary. Although fresh rosemary leaves have a very distinct flavor that’s hard to capture in a dried form, this recipe can be versatile with using either. To get the full effect of the herb, buy whole bunches of rosemary sprigs, and remove the leaves individually. This way, you’ll always have the freshest rosemary available. When using the dried counterpart, use half the suggested portion, i.e., one tablespoon dried versus 2 tablespoons fresh.

Fresh garlic is an ingredient that is an ultimate flavor enhancer. This recipe calls for a couple of garlic cloves not only to augment the flavor of the dish but to complement the other ingredients.

Fresh parsley leaves also belong to the repertoire of herbs for roasted rosemary chicken. Other ingredients at fresh lemon juice, salt, black pepper, and butter.


How to cook roasted chicken

Marinating the chicken will allow the flavors to penetrate deeper into the meat. The longer it sits in the marinade, the more flavorful it becomes. So if you are going to cook it right away, then don’t worry about marinating it too long. However, if you plan to let the chicken sit for a few hours before serving, then go ahead and leave it in the marinade for at least 6-8 hours before roasting it over medium-high heat. This might sound like the prep time is longer, but the flavor is more pronounced and the baking time or roasting time is shorter.

Again, you can use a whole chicken or simply parts in this recipe, like chicken thighs, breasts, or legs. I use whole chickens and cut them into halves leaving the chicken skin on after brushing them with the herb-and-butter concoction. I put them on the baking dish, roast them for more or less an hour, depending on how many pieces I have, and not worry about having to use a meat thermometer.


How to serve roasted chicken

Serve this dish with steamed vegetables, like green beans and carrots, and you are good to go; it is a complete meal by itself. You can also serve this, along with the vegetables, with steamed rice,  any fried rice, dinner rolls, or flatbread.  This recipe is a good option during busy weeknights.


Cooking tips:

Use unsalted butter so that the dish to not become too salty.

Put the chicken and the herbs and butter in a resealable plastic bag, shake to make sure that the meat is covered by the mixture before marinating or cooking.

Add tablespoons extra marinade to the chicken in between cooking time so that the chicken remains to be moist. One tablespoon olive oil can also do the job.

You may want to add lemon halves in the baking dish for that extra aroma.

Cook down the dish after cooking for about 2-3 minutes before serving.

Roasted Rosemary Chicken

Course Main Dish
Cuisine American
Keyword Roasted rosemary chicken, roasted chicken, rosemary chicken, roasted rosemary chicken recipe
Prep Time 2 days 25 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Author Magida


  • 3 chicken halves
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 tablespoons butter melted
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2-3 pieces onions, halved
  • 1 tbsps fresh rosemary leaves chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh parsley chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • juice of one lemon
  • preferred vegetables (sweet potatoes, carrots, bell peppers, green beans)


  1. Rub chicken pieces with salt and pepper.
  2. Heat the olive oil and butter in a pan over medium-high heat.
  3. Add garlic, parsley, and rosemary leaves. Turn off the heat.
  4. Brush with butter and herbs mixture.  (You can marinate the chicken from here or take it straight to the oven which was previously reheated to 350 degrees F.)
  5. Add halved onions and preferred vegetables and sprinkle with remaining herb and butter mixture.

  6. Bake for 60-75 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.
  7. Spoon the sauce on the bottom of the baking dish over the chicken.
  8. Adjust the oven settings to broil (400 degrees F) and cook for another 10-15 minutes or until the skin is slightly seared.





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