This recipe for Cast Iron Lemon Rosemary Chicken is one I’ve made time and time again—it’s an easy family favorite and company-worthy, too. Even though this dinner is relatively easy to throw together, we consider it a special treat around our house because every single person (even the tiny one) loves it. I’m a big fan of rosemary-anything and my five year old will eat just about any food that has been drenched in lemon. Plus, who could say no to crispy chicken skin? There is almost nothing better!
You can use any bone-in chicken pieces for this recipe, just adjust cooking times accordingly. We typically use white meat (bone-in chicken breasts), but I’ll use chicken thighs or drumsticks too if our freezer is overflowing with bulk buys. This chicken comes out perfect everytime and is full of bright, lemony herbaceous flavor. I like to use baby red potatoes in this recipe — they get a little crispy on one side and are delicious after soaking up the lemon-rosemary scented chicken drippings. Carrots can easily be added in for a more colorful dinner if you’ve got them handy.
It’s filling enough all on its own, but if you’re craving a dinner veggie, I like to roast up a pan of sesame-dijon Brussels for a side.
Here’s the recipe:
- 2 large bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts
- 8 baby red potatoes (if you only have medium-sized red potatoes, use 4-5)
- 2 TBSP fresh rosemary leaves, plus 2 whole sprigs fresh rosemary
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
- 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
- 2 tsp Kosher salt
- 2 lemons
- 2 TBSP extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
- Splash of white wine (opt)
- On a cutting board, make a neat pile of 2 TBSP rosemary leaves, the smashed garlic, 2 teaspoons salt and the red pepper flakes. Finely chop, mince and mash into a paste with a large, sharp knife. Transfer to a bowl. Add the zest of one lemon to the bowl. Juice both lemons (save the halves for later!) into the bowl, add the olive oil and stir to combine. Add the chicken to the bowl and turn to coat on all sides. Let the chicken hang out in the bowl until ready to cook.
- Meanwhile, microwave (or boil, if you're fancier than me) the baby red potatoes for just a few minutes until tender. When cool enough to handle, cut into quarters or halves, depending on size/preference.
- Preheat the oven to 450 F.
- Heat a big cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Once heated, place the chicken and marinade in the skillet, skin-side down. Cover with a lid and cook until the skin gets nice and brown, about 5 minutes.
- Flip chicken on its other side and add a splash of white wine and the potatoes to the skillet. Drizzle potatoes with olive oil and give them a good sprinkling of kosher salt. Add the rosemary sprigs and the squeezed lemon halves to the skillet. Transfer the entire dish to the oven and cook, uncovered, until completely cooked through and the skin is crisp (about 20 minutes depending on its thickness).