Buttery Sage Roasted Chicken with Lemon Garlic Sauce

This chicken will feed the whole family – 6-8 servings. The sauce is an alternative to a traditional gravy but equally delicious – if not more! This recipe is flexible with the herbs.  Add any you like: rosemary, thyme, or herbs de Provence are all great options.


  • 1 whole chicken (best quality you can find)
  • 1 onion, sliced into half moons
  • ½ cup (1 stick) butter/ghee (unsalted)
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • 1 lemon, halved 


  • Set butter out and let come to room temperature.  Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  • Chop onion in half moons and spread out at the bottom of a 9×13 baking dish or roasting pan of your choice.
  • Then, in a small mixing bowl, mix butter (or ghee), sage (or herbs of choice), garlic powder, salt, and pepper.
  • Use your hands to spread the butter herb mixture both underneath and on top of the chicken skin.  Get to as many places as possible and don’t be hesitate to be generous.
  • Place the chicken breast side down in the baking dish.
  • Place both lemon halves and the garlic cloves in the chicken’s cavity.  Tuck in wings and tie legs with together with kitchen twine.  (This isn’t necessary but I like to do it to keep it compact.)
  • Place in the oven uncovered and cook for 75-90 minutes.
  • Check on it every twenty minutes and when the skin looks crispy and done, loosely place aluminum foil over the top to keep the skin from continuing to crisp.
  • You know it is done when a thermometer reaches 165 and all the juices run clear (no pink).
  • Remove the chicken from the baking dish.
  • Carefully (because this is very hot!) pour the cooked onions and juices from the chicken into a blender.
  • Carefully remove the two lemon halves and the garlic cloves.  Squeeze the juice from the lemons into the blender as well as the 3 cooked garlic cloves.
  • Blend well holding the top down with a towel to prevent hot splatter.  Be very careful!
  • Taste test the sauce.  Add water if it needs to be thinned.  Add salt and pepper if needed.
  • Carve the chicken and top with the sauce!

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