Lemon Herb Brown Bag Chicken

A simple brown paper grocery bag is all you need for delicious, flavorful chicken.
  • Makes: 10-12
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour, 30 minutes
  • Difficulty Rating: Easy


  • 1 standard-size brown paper grocery bag, clean with minimal writing
  • 1 fresh roasting chicken, about 5-7 pounds
  • ½-¾ stick butter, divided
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon smoked ground paprika
  • 1 small onion, peeled and quartered
  • 1 large shallot, peeled and quartered
  • 1 large lemon, seeded and cut into eighths
  • 2-3 sprigs each fresh herbs, such as parsley, sage, rosemary or thyme, divided


  1. Move rack to the lowest position in the oven. Heat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Remove giblets from chicken and any excess fat. Thoroughly wash chicken and pat dry. Brush 3-4 tablespoons melted butter all over outside of chicken.
  3. Generously sprinkle chicken inside and out with salt and pepper. Sprinkle outside of chicken with smoked paprika. Finely chop herbs to measure 2 tablespoons and sprinkle on outside of chicken.
  4. Stuff chicken with onion, shallots, lemon and remaining herbs. Open the brown paper grocery bag with seam-side down; smear 1-2 tablespoons of softened butter all over the top middle inside of the bag. Place chicken inside the bag, fold the top closed and tuck it under the chicken.
  5. Grease bottom of broiler pan (do not use rack) and place bagged chicken in pan. Place pan on the lowest rack in the oven making sure the bag doesn’t touch the oven top or sides.
  6. Roast chicken for 1 hour, 30 minutes. Remove from oven and carefully open the bag to release steam. Insert a thermometer into the thickest part of the thigh. Once the temperature reaches 165 degrees, remove from oven and let chicken stand 10 minutes.
  7. Remove onion, shallots, lemons and herbs from the cavity before carving.