How to Carve a Roasted Chicken with Kitchen Shears

Plus, my go-to recipe for root vegetables and pan gravy.


Welcome to roasted chicken carving 101.

This is one of my favorite recipes to make at home— roast a chicken with root vegetables, then carve it up for a stunning, hearty dinner. After you’ve let the bird rest, you can start carving. Here, I give simple tips for carving and plating the chicken. It’s a great skill to have in your repertoire.

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Knives Used in this Video:

Multi-Purpose Shears

You will be amazed at the many uses for our multi-purpose shears—from opening packages to trimming flowers and carving a whole chicken. There's a built-in nutcracker, a jar opener, a bone notch, a lid lifter, and even two screwdriver tips, one in each handle. They're great for tightening a loose screw in the kitchen cabinet without having to go to the garage to find a screwdriver. The blades separate for easy cleaning, then lock together easily and securely for use.

Premier Boning & Fillet 6"

This beautiful knife is the right tool for two key kitchen chores—boning and filleting. When boning, the narrow, sharp, curved blade gets in close to the bone, making it easy to separate meat from bone. Shun's extremely sharp edge even cuts through fibrous material with ease. The contoured Premier handle provides a secure grip for excellent control.

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Roasted Chicken with Pan Gravy

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  • 1 whole chicken, about 3-4 pounds

  • 4 garlic cloves

  • 1 lemon, quartered

  • Handful of thyme sprigs

  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened

  • Salt

  • Pepper

  • 1 yellow onion, quartered

  • 3 cups mixed root vegetables, chopped (carrots, potatoes, sweet potatoes, parsnips, etc)

  • 1 tablespoon flour

  • 1 tablespoon butter

  • 2 cups chicken stock

Wash and dry the bird. Let it sit in the fridge for two hours uncovered.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Fold wings underneath the bird. Place garlic, lemon and thyme in the cavity of the chicken. Rub the chicken with the softened butter.

Secure legs together above the crown of the breast using butcher’s twine. Make sure the chicken is entirely coated in the softened butter and season with salt and pepper.

Place the bird in a roasting cradle/rack nested in a roasting pan. Sprinkle the onion quarters and root vegetables on the rack under and around the bird.

Let the bird come to room temperature before placing it in the oven on the center rack. Turn temperature down to 350 degrees F and roast for about 90 minutes, or until internal temperature of the deepest part of the thigh muscle reads 160 on a meat thermometer.

Remove chicken from rack, tilting to let any of the juices from the cavity pour into the pan and let rest on a platter tented with foil while you make the pan gravy. Remove vegetables from the roasting pan and place in a serving bowl. Keep warm in the oven if desired. Reserve pan drippings.

Over low-medium heat, mix flour and butter in a sauce pan to create a roux. Cook for one minute, stirring. Set aside.

Place the pan you roasted the chicken in over medium heat. Add the 2 cups of stock. As it begins to simmer, scrape pan with a wooden spoon or spatula to melt all the sticky bits into the stock. When all the bits are incorporated, simmer for another minute or two, stirring, then pour all the contents of the roasting pan into a 4-cup glass measure. Let contents settle for 90 seconds and carefully skim and discard the fat.

Place pot with roux over low heat. Add the skimmed contents of measuring vessel to the roux in thirds, stirring each time to incorporate. Bring to a simmer, stirring frequently. When the texture is up to snuff, and the consistency is that of gravy, coating a spoon, season with sea salt and serve with the chicken.