Recipe: How to Make Lemon Chicken

Wooden bowl and spoon with ginger powder on dark wood
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  • 2 hrs 45 mins
  • Prep: 15 mins,
  • Cook: 2 hrs 30 mins
  • Yield: 3 to 4 servings

I love lemon chicken! Lemon seems to compliment the chicken flavor. The spices in this dish are common in Moroccan cuisine. This chicken is not spicy, but it full of flavor. If you don't want to use a whole chicken, you can also use chicken breasts (I prefer on the bone), thighs, and legs.

What You'll Need

  • 1 whole chicken
  • 1 teaspoon coriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon saffron
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 lemon (sliced)
  • 1/2 lemon (zested) 
  • 1 onion (quartered)

How to Make It

  1. In a small bowl, combine oil, ginger, coriander, and saffron.
  2. Sprinkle salt and pepper over uncooked chicken. Next, rub oil and spice mixture all over chicken. You can use a basting brush or your hands. I prefer to use my hands.
  3. Place chicken in a baking dish, breast side up. Place two slices of lemon on top and lemon zest inside the cavity. Also, add one of the onion quarters to the cavity.
  4. Place remainder lemon slices and onion around the chicken in the baking dish.
  1. Bake uncovered for 2-2 1/2 hours, depending on the size of the chicken. Check package instructions for approximate cooking time per pound for your chicken.
  2. Cut and serve!

Lemon Chicken Serving Suggestions

Lemon chicken goes best with white rice. I would add a steamed vegetable like broccoli or green beans with tahini. Serve with limeade or lemonade.


If you have leftover chicken, do not throw it away! You have tomorrow's meal already prepared. You can cut up the chicken and make a pita sandwich. Throw together some lettuce, onions, and your leftover chicken in a pita pocket and add some tahini and you have a delicious lunch or light dinner.

Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
Calories 377
Total Fat 24 g
Saturated Fat 6 g
Unsaturated Fat 12 g
Cholesterol 105 mg
Sodium 101 mg
Carbohydrates 5 g
Dietary Fiber 1 g
Protein 33 g
(The nutrition information on our recipes is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. Individual results may vary.)