If I have convinced you to give whole chickens a place in your life, you are probably wondering how in the world to prepare them. If you are intimidated by cooking a whole chicken, you are not alone!!!! Many people I talk to do not know what to do with a whole chicken! Surprisingly, preparing them is very simple. Don’t be afraid of them!!!!! You can do it – I promise!
There are 2 ways that I prepare my whole chickens:
In the oven and in the pressure cooker – depending on the time of year, and what I am using the meat for.
Use the oven when:
- You want that amazing, crispy chicken skin
- You want that roasted goodness filling your home
- You are going to be home for a couple of hours before dinner AND it’s less than 100 degrees outside.
Use the pressure cooker if:
- It is hot outside & you don’t want to run the oven, or when
- You don’t have time to be at home for a couple hours before dinner AND you’re putting the chicken inside meals (rather than eating as a stand-alone roasted chicken and veggies meal)
The chicken cooked in a pressure cooker is perfect to put inside of meals, but none of us here love to have it on its’ own.
You can choose to forego the veggies and just do the chicken. Personally, I have never tied up my chicken (who has time for that on a Tuesday??) The important thing to remember is that the chicken needs to be brought to 160 degrees to be safe to eat. Investing in a simple meat thermometer is a solid decision. Using a meat thermometer allows you to trust that you can safely cook large pieces of meat. And… as mentioned in my book, cooking large pieces of meat is one of my best tips for saving time and money in the kitchen here at Dinner for a Dollar.
Here is a great guide from Hip Pressure cooker on how long to cook things in a pressure cooker. If you read toward the bottom, you can see that they recommend a 30 min cook time – adding 10 min for frozen and allowing for a natural release. Personally, I have found that I need to add another 10-15 min to this – making my cook time 40-45 minutes++, but their guide is a good starting point for you to experiment with. Use your meat thermometer to get your chicken to 160 degrees here too.
Also note, I not only love my Instant Pot pressure cooker for whole chickens, & bone broth, but there are several more reasons why I love it so much – be sure to check out why in my blog post here. And if you are in the market for one, you buy one from Amazon here.
I hope that I have convinced you to give whole chickens a chance!!!!
They really are amazing for stretching those dollars and saving you time and energy in the kitchen. If you give them a chance, I know you will quickly realize why they are at the center of my meal plans and why I use them so often.
To challenge you to not be Chicken of The Chicken… be watching out for our Whole Chicken Challenges!!! And be sure to catch my Facebook Live where I show you how to cook a whole chicken!