Recipe: Whole Roasted Mambo Chicken

Updated: Feb 17

This super simple whole roasted chicken is a breeze. It cooks up on a sheet pan right along with a few vegetables for a complete meal that can't be beat!

I was given Uncle Dell's Mambo Sauce to try for free and it's now become a staple in our home.

Whole Roasted Mambo Chicken

Serves 2-5 depending on the size of the chicken

All you need is a large rimmed baking sheet and a sharp knife to put this together


One head of garlic

One lemon

Carrots, one large handful per person

Whole baby potatoes or large potatoes, one large handful per person

One whole chicken, 3-5 lbs, with giblets removed

4 tablespoons unsalted butter

Uncle Dell's Mambo Sauce, about 1 cup

Black pepper


*Aluminum foil, optional


1. Preheat oven to 425 F.

2. Cut one lemon and one head of garlic in half crossways. It doesn't matter if they're pretty, they'll roast along with the chicken and add flavor.

3. Prep the carrots and potatoes, one large handful of each per person (for three people, use three large handfuls of carrots and three large handfuls of potatoes). Peel and cut carrots into one-inch rounds. If using large potatoes, wash and cut into one-inch pieces. Baby potatoes can be left whole for this recipe, though they should be washed before using.

4. On a large rimmed baking sheet, place chicken in the center breast side up and legs facing you.

5. Arrange the sliced lemon and garlic and the prepared carrots and potatoes around the chicken.

6. With a sharp knife cut through the skin connecting the leg and breast, making about a three-inch incision. Once you get through the skin there isn't much meat. Continue cutting until you hit the joint that connects the thigh to the body. Repeat on both legs. This will make it easier to tell if the chicken is done without the need for a thermometer.

7. Melt 4 tbsp unsalted butter in the microwave.

8. Drizzle butter on the vegetables surrounding the chicken (and a bit on the chicken itself if you want). Salt and pepper the vegetables and toss so they are coated in the melted butter.

9. Salt the chicken liberally as well. Then, using a basting brush or a spoon coat the chicken in Uncle Dell's Mambo Sauce. Be sure to cover the entire bird.

Mambo chicken ready for the oven.

10. Place in the oven and bake on the middle rack for 45 minutes. Note: bake uncovered if you, like me, prefer your chicken skin very dark, crispy, and caramelized. If you prefer lighter skin, cover the tray with foil for the first 20 minutes then remove foil for the rest of cooking.

11. After 45 minutes, begin to check the chicken for doneness. Test by poking a knife into leg joints (where you made the incision previously) to pierce the meat. Once the juices run clear, the chicken is done. If the juices run rosy pink, continue to bake for 5-10 minutes at a time until the chicken is done.

Mambo Roasted Chicken with dark and crispy how I prefer it. For lighter skin see the note in step 10.

12. Serve the chicken alongside the roasted vegetables, garlic, and roasted lemon. The lemon takes on a bit of sweetness with cooking and is amazing squeezed over the chicken.

Join the conversation!