Healthy Recipe: Roast Chicken with Smashed Potatoes and Garlicky Jus

I’m taking a stand for this recipe. It gets a bad rap in online reviews, but with some minor tweaks, I find it to be delicious and a little “fancy-seeming” (my technical term for when your guests are impressed but what you’ve done is really quite easy).


The original version is from Cooking Light, my modifications are below. Note: in my recipe, you leave the skin on while the chicken is resting, so that the meat doesn’t dry out. However, if you want the nutritional information provided to be strictly accurate, remove the skin just prior to serving.

Another note – if you’re like me and love garlic and wine, you’ll want to put the jus on everything ever. Enjoy!


Cooking spray
1 lemon, thinly sliced
1 (4-pound) whole chicken
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4 sprigs fresh rosemary
1 whole garlic head
1 cup dry white wine
1 (14-ounce) can fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
1 tablespoon butter

16 new potatoes, unpeeled (about 2 pounds)
1/3 cup fat-free milk
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


1. To prepare chicken, heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add lemon to pan; sauté 3 minutes or until just slightly browned, turning occasionally. Remove from pan; cool.
2. Preheat oven to 400°.
3. Remove and discard giblets from chicken; trim any excess fat. Starting at neck cavity, loosen skin from breast and drumsticks by inserting fingers, gently pushing between skin and meat. Combine 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper; rub salt mixture under loosened skin. Insert lemon slices in a single layer under loosened skin. Place rosemary inside body cavity. Lift wing tips up and over back; tuck under chicken (tie legs together with twine if necessary to hold in place). Place chicken on a roasting pan coated with cooking spray. Lightly coat chicken with cooking spray. Remove white papery skin from garlic head (do not peel or separate cloves). Place garlic head in pan.
4. Bake at 400° for 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350° (do not remove chicken from oven); bake an additional 40 minutes. [If you want everything to be done at the same time, start the potatoes (step 7) when your timer for this step has 10 minutes left.] Remove garlic and let cool. Bake chicken for up to 20 more minutes, or until a thermometer inserted in the meaty part of thigh registers 165°. Remove from pan; let stand 10 minutes. Loosely cover chicken; keep warm.
5. Pour drippings into a bowl or measuring cup; let stand 10 minutes (fat will rise to the top). Discard fat.
6. Separate garlic cloves; squeeze to extract pulp. Place pan over medium-high heat. Stir in drippings, garlic pulp, wine, and broth; bring to a boil, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Cook 10 minutes or until sauce is slightly thick. Remove from heat; stir in butter.
7. To prepare potatoes, place potatoes in a saucepan; cover with water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes or until very tender; drain. Return potatoes to pan. Mash with a potato masher to desired consistency. Add milk and remaining ingredients; stir until combined. Serve chicken with gravy and potatoes.

Nutritional information (entire recipe makes about four servings: 4 ounces chicken, 1/4 cup jus, and 1 cup potatoes): 533 Calories, 12.7 grams Fat, 46.3 grams Carbohydrates, 54.9 grams Protein

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