Sunday roasted chickens at Gran’s house are some of my most cherished memories. Living halfway across the world really makes me miss those days with the family. Recreating the meals that my mom and gran made helps me feel at home again and a roast chicken on a Sunday definitely hits the spot.
While this isn’t a recipe that had run in the family, the pesto reminds me of the lazy days where my mom would make pasta with basil pesto and the roast chicken reminds me of pretty much every visit to Gran’s house. We have been obsessed with her chicken since we were littles! I don’t know what she does but her chicken (no matter if it’s schnitzel or a roast), it is magical every time.
I love how easy this recipe is to make too! That is the beauty of an oven, you just need to season and add the right ingredients together and you let the oven do the rest.
This is a super simple recipe but the results are mouth-watering. You can also use any cut of chicken. I used chicken leg quarters for this one because I love how the skin goes all crispy… and, to be honest, it was the only thing in my freezer. If you use skinless breasts I would just recommend checking on it more often as they get dry more quickly but any cut with skin and bone will come out perfect every time.
If your chicken is frozen, you can throw it straight into the oven too. I actually prefer my chicken frozen sometimes because then it makes a lovely sauce in the pan while roasting. And, trust, when you pour this sauce over your rice or couscous, you will thank me.
I always find that homemade pesto is waaay better to use than store-bought because it is fresher and tastier. Also, you get to control exactly what goes inside (huge benefit). So if you want to try making your own pesto, take a look at my homemade pesto recipe here.
Roasted Pesto Chicken
- 100g basil pesto
- 4 chicken leg quarters
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 handful baby tomatoes (optional)
- 50g asparagus (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celcius
- Place the chicken in the pan you are going to roast it in. Take the pesto and spoon it over each of the chicken leg quarters
- Season with salt and pepper then drizzle about 1 tablespoon of olive oil over the chicken then rub the pesto into the chickens until they are fully covered
- Place the garlic cloves whole in the bottom of the pan and place the pan in the oven for 30 minutes
- After 30 minutes, turn the chickens over and scatter the baby tomatoes and asparagus (if using) around the pan
- Place back in the oven for a further 20 minutes then change the oven to the grill function to really crisp up the skin for 10 – 15 minutes
- I would recommend serving this with either rice or couscous and don’t forget to pour the juices at the bottom over for extra flavour