This chicken was absolutely the most moist and tender roast chicken Brent or I have ever made. We were in complete awe of our success. The complex flavors and strong aromas had us smiling and drooling for days. It actually took us two days to make it, because our efforts were very much trial and error. But it was worth it. You must try this!

Indian Spiced Whole Roast Chicken

  • 1 whole, 4-pound chicken
  • 7 cloves garlic, separated into 4 cloves pressed and 3 cloves pressed
  • 3/8 teaspoon freshly grated ginger, separated into 1/4 teaspoon and 1/8 teaspoon 
  • 3 and 1/2 teaspoons graham marsala, separated into 1 and 1/2 teaspoons and 2 teaspoons
  • 1 teaspoon ground hot chili
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1/3 teaspoon powdered tarragon
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 4 tablespoons ghee (or coconut oil or olive oil)
  • 6 cloves
  • 8 black peppercorns
  • 4 cardamom pods, cracked
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 cups chicken broth, separated evenly
  • 2 tablespoons of water
  • chopped fresh cilantro, for garnish

*Note: This is a low and slow recipe. Plan to have it cooking all day.

1. Rinse the chicken inside and out, and pat it dry with paper towels or a cloth.

2. Make a paste by combining the following:

  • 4 cloves garlic, pressed
  • 1/8 teaspoon ginger, grated
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon ground chili
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

3. Rub the inside cavity of the chicken and the entire outside of the chicken with the paste.

4. Place the whole chicken in your large baking/roasting dish, cover, and allow it to marinate for 2 to 3 hours.

5. Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F.

6. Heat the ghee in a skillet over medium-high.

7. Add the onion, 3 remaining cloves of garlic (pressed), and remaining 1/4 tsp of ginger (grated) and cook until the onion is browned.

8. Add the cloves, black peppercorns, cracked cardamom pods, cinnamon stick and 1 cup of the chicken broth to the skillet mixture. Simmer for about 2 minutes, until fragrant and well blended into a baste.

9. Spread the baste over the chicken, cover and cook in the oven for at least 90 minutes, basting every 15 minutes or so with the pan juices, or until the internal temperature of the chicken reaches somewhere between 150 and 155 degrees.

10. Uncover the chicken and pour the remaining cup of chicken broth over it.

11. Turn up the oven to 410 degrees F.

12. Bake the chicken until it browns on the top and reaches an internal temperature somewhere between 160 and 165 degrees.

13. Mix the tarragon and remaining 2 teaspoons of garam masala into the 2 tablespoons of water. Then drizzle over the chicken.

14. Finish it off by sprinkling a little chopped cilantro for garnish on top.


  1. This looks amazing! I bought graham marsala about a year ago for one Indian dish and haven't touched it since. I think it's time to finally use it again. Thanks!


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