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dinner irl: pineapple roasted chicken

For many (many!) years I had a love-hate relationship with the whole roasted chicken.

Loved the beautiful finish.

Loved all that crispy skin.

Loved the pop-into-the-oven ease.


Hated the challenge of getting it cooked all the way through without drying it out.

Hated having to spend time carving when I just want to sit down and EAT.

And really – really – hated the mess of the carcass, juices, etc., all over the cutting board.

And then I came across a recipe for cut-up roasted chicken with root vegetables – and I’ve not roasted a whole chicken since. Here’s why:

1. Less mess. Seriously – no carving? Oven-to-table in a flash? I’m in.

2. Faster. Smaller pieces mean less cooking time – perfect for even the busiest weeknight.

3. Crispy skin! If you love crispy chicken skin (and who doesn’t?) this method is a charm. The chicken pieces all lay flat, getting even exposure to the oven heat. So each piece gets its own perfect little cap of crisp, delicious skin.

pineapple roasted chicken

This easy, yummy recipe perfectly illustrates the beauty of this technique – but you can apply it to any of your favorite chicken dishes. Just remember these rules:

* Season the skin well. If nothing else, plenty of salt and pepper.

* Brown it! Before you pop the chicken in the oven be sure to brown the pieces – skin side down – in a screaming hot skillet. This ensures the crispiest skin (you’ll still get nice browning if you skip this step and just put the chicken straight in the oven but it won’t be as crispy).

* Halve the breasts. For even easier, foolproof results, cut the breasts in half. You’ll wind up with 10 pieces instead of 8, and they’ll be closer in size to one another – resulting in more consistent cooking time.

If you’ve never roasted chicken this way I’d love for you to take your favorite “whole chicken” recipe and give it a try – and of course, let me know what you think!

Pineapple Roasted Chicken
from Real Simple

1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
3½–4-pound chicken, cut into 10 pieces (cut the breasts in half)
Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
½ fresh pineapple, sliced ½ inch thick
1/2 jalapeno pepper, sliced (more if you like things spicy)
2 garlic cloves, crushed
¾ cup pineapple juice
¼ cup apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons light brown sugar
1 tablespoon paprika

Place a rack in upper third of oven; preheat to 425°. Mix coriander, cumin, and cayenne in a small bowl. Sprinkle chicken pieces with spice mixture, pressing to adhere. Season with salt and pepper.

Heat oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Cook chicken, skin side down, until browned and beginning to crisp – about 5 minutes. Transfer chicken to a plate and arrange pineapple slices in pan. Place chicken, skin side up, on top. Transfer to oven and roast until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of thigh registers 165°, 40–45 minutes.

About halfway through the cooking time bring jalapeno, garlic, pineapple juice, vinegar, brown sugar, and paprika to a boil in a small saucepan and cook until thickened and syrupy.

When chicken is done, brush with glaze and roast for 2 minutes; repeat with any remaining glaze. Transfer chicken and pineapple to a platter. Serve with rice, and pan juices if desired.

(print this recipe)

This delicious recipe brought to you by Sheri Silver

pineapple roasted chicken

For more “dinner irl” tips and recipes, check out my Pinterest board. And don’t forget to tag me on Instagram with your favorite #dinnerirl!


  1. Sandra on January 12, 2016 at 3:33 pm

    I avoid roasting whole chickens too! The last one I made was the Zuni Cafe one that is part of their signature salad. The mess! It’s so amazingly good but the mess!!!

    I have a Donna Hay honey lemon chicken that I make as well. Chicken pieces like this so yummy AND less clean up. I also do chicken legs/thighs and skip the other pieces.

    • sherisilver on January 12, 2016 at 4:02 pm

      Agreed! And you make another good point – using pieces means you can make what your family likes (Mike likes white meat, I like dark)! xo