Whole Roasted Chicken on a Bed of Cauliflower

A whole roasted chicken is dramatic enough on its own. It’s one of those great kitchen tricks (that’s actually easier than it appears) every home cook should have in his or her back pocket. But this version? Above and beyond. We tried roasting an entire chicken over a layer of cauliflower “steaks,” and the result is pretty glorious. The vegetable soaks up flavor from the chicken and gets crispy and caramelized around the edges. The chicken roasts to perfection and doesn’t get soggy on bottom. And, another plus: No need for gravy. Turn the pan juices into a fast, tangy vinaigrette with some herbs and lemon juice.

whole-chicken-cauliflower
Photo by Roland Bello
Whole Roasted Chicken on a Bed of Cauliflower 3.3 47 5 1
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  • Serves 4
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  • Nutritional Information
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    Nutritional Information

    Per Serving

    • Calories 671 calories
    • Fat 46 g
    • Sat Fat 10 g
    • Cholesterol 166 mg
    • Sodium 808 mg
    • Protein 55 g
    • Carbohydrate 9 g
    • Sugar 4 g
    • Fiber 4 g
    • Iron 3 mg
    • Calcium 69 mg
A whole roasted chicken is dramatic enough on its own. It’s one of those great kitchen tricks (that’s actually easier than it appears) every home cook should have in his or her back pocket. But this version? Above and beyond. We tried roasting an entire chicken over a layer of cauliflower “steaks,” and the result is pretty glorious. The vegetable soaks up flavor from the chicken and gets crispy and caramelized around the edges. The chicken roasts to perfection and doesn’t get soggy on bottom. And, another plus: No need for gravy. Turn the pan juices into a fast, tangy vinaigrette with some herbs and lemon juice.

Ingredients

  1. Check 1 small head cauliflower, sliced through the stalk into 1-inch “steaks”
  2. Check 6 tablespoons olive oil Kosher salt and black pepper
  3. Check 1 3½- to 4-pound chicken
  4. Check ¼ cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped
  5. Check 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  6. Check 2 tablespoons capers

Directions

  1. Heat oven to 400° F. 
  2. Place the cauliflower in a single layer on the bottom of a large roasting pan. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons of the oil, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper.
  3. Place the chicken on top and drizzle with 1 tablespoon of the oil, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Roast until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the thickest part of a breast and thigh (avoiding the bone) registers 165° F, 50 minutes to 1 hour, 10 minutes.
  4. Transfer the cauliflower to a serving dish.
  5. Let the chicken rest for 10 minutes before carving on a cutting board.
  6. Transfer the chicken to the serving dish with the cauliflower. 
  7. Pour 3 tablespoons of the pan juices into a small bowl. (If you don’t have enough pan juices, make up the difference with water; first spoon water into the roasting pan and scrape up the browned bits.)
  8. Add the parsley, lemon juice, capers, and the remaining 3 tablespoons of oil and mix to combine. 
  9. Serve the sauce over the chicken and cauliflower.