Spice-Rubbed Roast Chicken with Two Sauces


At his chicken-focused restaurant in Atlanta, Bantam + Biddy, Shaun Doty uses an Old Hickory rotisserie to cook his birds, which are coated with a lemony fennel-seed rub.

Spice-Rubbed Roast Chicken with Two Sauces

© Con Poulos

Active Time:
25 mins
Total Time:
2 hrs 25 mins
2 to 4

The choice of sauces to serve alongside includes smoky piri piri and Dominican wasakaka, made with onion, chiles, and herbs.


Spice-Rubbed Roast Chicken

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 garlic clove, minced

  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest and 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

  • 1 tablespoon minced rosemary

  • 1 tablespoon ground fennel seeds

  • 1 tablespoon freshly ground pepper

  • One 3 1/2-pound chicken, chilled

  • Kosher salt

  • Piri Piri Sauce, for serving

Wasakaka Sauce

  • 1/3 cup fresh lime juice

  • 1/4 cup water

  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1/4 cup minced garlic

  • 1/4 cup minced red onion

  • 3 fresh red chiles, such as cayenne, stemmed, seeded, and thinly sliced crosswise

  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley

  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped oregano

  • Kosher salt

  • Freshly ground black pepper


Make the chicken

  1. In a bowl, whisk the oil, garlic, lemon zest and juice, rosemary, fennel seeds, and pepper. Rub the mixture all over the chicken, inside and out. Let come to room temperature.

  2. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Twist the wings of the chicken behind the back and tie the legs together; set breast side up in a roasting pan. Season all over with salt. Roast for about 55 minutes, until the juices run clear when an inner thigh is pierced. Transfer to a carving board and let rest for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, make the Wasakaka Sauce

  1. In a small saucepan, combine the lime juice with the water and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat and stir in the remaining ingredients. Let the sauce cool.

To serve

  1. Cut the chicken into 8 pieces and serve with the Wasakaka and Piri Piri Sauces.

Make ahead

The Wasakaka Sauce can be refrigerated overnight; serve at room temperature.

Suggested Pairing

Rich, savory roast chicken pairs well with full-bodied Chardonnay; this lemony dish is nice with a bright white Burgundy.

Related Articles