Sumac Orange Roasted Chicken with Butternut Squash

Sumac Orange Roasted Chicken with Butternut Squash

It’s time to begin our November series of Thanksgiving recipes! We have all had to adapt our normal holiday plans and schedules in 2020, but we hope that this roast chicken will help provide a tasty alternative to your smaller gathering.

This simple and elegant recipe will treat your family to a juicy chicken with a nice crispy outer layer. The dominant spice is sumac, and it gives the chicken a slight tartness that marries so well with Thanksgiving’s staple cranberry sauce. We hope you all have a lovely November and stay safe as we come closer to the holidays!

Sumac Orange Roasted Chicken

Prep Time 4 hrs 30 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 25 mins
Course dinner
Cuisine American, Arabic, Middle Eastern
Servings 6 people


  • 4.5-5 lb full raw chicken
  • salt
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter softened to room temperature
  • 2 tbsp sumac
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp freshly grated ginger
  • 1 orange
  • 1/2 lemon

Bed of Vegetables

  • 1 butternut squash
  • 1 onion
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 2 1/2 tsp sumac
  • 2 tbsp olive oil


  • Wash raw chicken with water and remove chicken giblets
  • Pat chicken dry with paper towel
  • Liberally salt the inside and outside of chicken
  • Use 2 tbsp of room temperature butter to coat the chicken. Also, add butter under chicken skin by separating chicken skin from meat while still keeping edges attached. Evenly spread butter on outside and under chicken skin
  • Zest orange and set zest aside. Cut orange in half.
  • Mix 2 tbsp sumac, 1 tsp cumin, 1/2 of orange zest and freshly grated ginger together in a small bowl. Rub mix evenly on the outside of the entire chicken.
  • Cut onion into quarters
  • Stuff chicken with quartered onion, orange halves, and lemon half
  • Tie chicken bottom together with twine to close open cavity. Tie chicken legs together
  • Cover chicken and place in the fridge and let rest for 4 hours. Cover other half of orange zest and save for later

Prepare vegetable bed

  • After 4 hours, remove chicken from fridge and let rest in room temperature for 30 mins
  • Preheat oven to 400 F
  • Peel and chop butternut squash into 1.5 inch cubes
  • Chop onion into 5-6 pieces
  • Mix together olive oil, sumac and salt and evenly coat onion and butternut squash
  • Place vegetable mix into 9 x 13 baking dish
  • Place chicken on top of vegetable mix and tuck wings under chicken
  • Insert chicken in preheated oven and cook for 1 hour 25 minutes or until chicken temperature is 165 F using a meat thermometer. If the outside is looking too dark, but the inside temperature of the chicken is not at 165, cover dark edge of chicken with foil and stick back in the oven until fully cooked
  • Right when you pull chicken out of oven, sprinkle vegetables with other half of orange zest and mix in
  • Let chicken rest for 10 mins before serving

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