Good Enough to Eat, The Chicken Series – From Whole Chicken to Bare Bones

I’ll be totally honest. Despite the fact that I LOVE to cook and experiment with different foods, new vegetables and different cuts of meat, the ability to use a whole chicken has always eluded me. Well, maybe not eluded me, but it certainly scared the hell out of me. It was always so much easier to just get the dang thing pre-cut, already prepared into breasts, or thighs, things that I could use, that were easy. But have you noticed that when things are easy, they are also expensive?? And once we made the choice to go only with sustainable, organic and local free-range chickens that price went WAY up. Like holy hell that chicken is worth it’s weight in GOLD.

Once we joined our local CSA, the choice for a pre-cut, prepared bird also went FLYING out the window. Because they only came whole… Like, an ENTIRE chicken. And with the fact that the whole chicken was expensive (but delicious, and free-range, organic and every other thing I needed it to be) I knew that the days of just using chicken breasts were OUT the window. But how was I going to get my money’s worth out of this amazing bird when I really had no idea what to do with it?

So there was a lot of trial and error. There were some completely destroyed chickens… overcooked and underwhelming. But I persevered!! And one day, that chicken came out DELICIOUS. Like, moist and tender, flavorful and DAMN good.

And I managed to stretch that chicken into THREE meals that lasted us about a week.

Now THAT’S getting your moneys worth out of a whole chicken.

So I’ve done all of the leg work and will be giving you guys some options for how to use an entire chicken. Because it’s a great alternative to the pre-cut chicken breasts and thighs, tends to be less expensive, and it means that you can start buying organic free-range chickens if you have been put off by the price tag in the past. Did you know that Costco has even started carrying organic whole frozen chickens? If you have a big freezer, grab a couple of those babies at a SUPER cheap price and give it a try!

Stage One – The WHOLE Chicken. 

Roasting the Perfect Chicken.

Cutting up Your Chicken Yourself

Stage Two – The Leftovers.

What to do with that Leftover Chicken??

Stage Three – The Carnage

What to do with the Leftover, Leftover Chicken?

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How to cook a whole chicken from It's Fitting www.its-fitting.com

 

 

Comments

  1. ItsaFitting says

    Hahaha, since I haven't really posted anything, I doubt it.. but thanks for the vote of confidence!!

  2. ItsaFitting says

    It's funny, I have SO many chicken recipes and ideas for this that it's almost a little bit overwhelming. :-)

  3. AHPhoto says

    I can't use a whole chicken. Like I just can't do it. And I was raised on a farm. Go figure. Maybe on of these days I will try it but unless I am rolling in the dough prolly not gonna be for a looooong while. Kudos to anyone who can though!! =)

    Happy SITS Day!!

    • Ashley @ It's Fitting says

      Thanks so much for stopping by last week! And LOVE using the whole chicken because you’re right, chicken broth tastes SO much better when it’s homemade.

  4. Venus says

    We're lucky enough to get whole pastured chickens at our local co-op and we LOVE them. I use a quick brine recipe from Michael Ruhlman and then we dry rub and cook the whole bird on the grill. I can't possibly hope to describe how YUMMY it is! I'm glad you've found your way to the whole chicken club, I look forward to reading your recipes!

    • Ashley @ It's Fitting says

      Ooooh this sounds delicious! I’ll have to look that rub up. Thanks for stopping by last week, and apologies for the late response. My comments went wonky!

  5. Venus says

    We're lucky enough to get whole pastured chickens at our local co-op and we LOVE them. I use a quick brine recipe from Michael Ruhlman and then we dry rub and cook the whole bird on the grill. I can't possibly hope to describe how YUMMY it is! I'm glad you've found your way to the whole chicken club, I look forward to reading your recipes!

  6. says

    I used to cut up whole chickens. One day my eldest was making the chicken dance by wiggling the drumsticks. All of a sudden she burst into tears and said, that's where the feet go. Now, all three girls are doing organic chicken and paying a lot. One belongs to a CSA but veggies and flowers only. Again, I love your website. Crisp, clean, easy to read the content. Have a great SITS day.

    • ItsaFitting says

      Thanks Sheila! Yeah, we are lucky in the fact that my 3 year old has been to the farm while they "harvest" chickens and seems to be pretty ok with where they come from and what we eat. We try to keep it matter of fact, but it can be kind of hard. Thank you so much for stopping by!

  7. says

    I used to cut up whole chickens. One day my eldest was making the chicken dance by wiggling the drumsticks. All of a sudden she burst into tears and said, that's where the feet go. Now, all three girls are doing organic chicken and paying a lot. One belongs to a CSA but veggies and flowers only. Again, I love your website. Crisp, clean, easy to read the content. Have a great SITS day.

  8. lyzamay says

    Happy SITS day! You make a really good point about the cost. We have a local farmer that sells whole chickens for $6/lb. I have such a hard time spending that even though I know all the benefits. I will bookmark your site to check out what else you have to say about chickens.

  9. lyzamay says

    Happy SITS day! You make a really good point about the cost. We have a local farmer that sells whole chickens for $6/lb. I have such a hard time spending that even though I know all the benefits. I will bookmark your site to check out what else you have to say about chickens.

  10. dtothedoro says

    This is good info here. I've always had a hard time with whole chicken too. It doesn't help that chicken is my third choice for meats(behind beef and seafood). But I know I need to embrace it more, as it's a healthy source of protein! Happy SITS Day!

    • ItsaFitting says

      I'll be honest, making chicken always kind of scared me. But once i got the hang of it it's a STAPLE in our house!! Especially because it can be so versatile and healthy!!

  11. dtothedoro says

    This is good info here. I've always had a hard time with whole chicken too. It doesn't help that chicken is my third choice for meats(behind beef and seafood). But I know I need to embrace it more, as it's a healthy source of protein! Happy SITS Day!

  12. ItsaFitting says

    I'll be honest, making chicken always kind of scared me. But once i got the hang of it it's a STAPLE in our house!! Especially because it can be so versatile and healthy!!

  13. ItsaFitting says

    Thanks Sheila! Yeah, we are lucky in the fact that my 3 year old has been to the farm while they "harvest" chickens and seems to be pretty ok with where they come from and what we eat. We try to keep it matter of fact, but it can be kind of hard. Thank you so much for stopping by!

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