Greek Lemon-Garlic Chicken (Kotopoulo Skorthato)

Greek Lemon-Garlic Chicken (Kotopoulo Skorthato)

The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 100 mins
Total: 115 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
1565 Calories
83g Fat
90g Carbs
113g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 1565
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 83g 107%
Saturated Fat 19g 97%
Cholesterol 400mg 133%
Sodium 941mg 41%
Total Carbohydrate 90g 33%
Dietary Fiber 10g 36%
Total Sugars 6g
Protein 113g
Vitamin C 55mg 275%
Calcium 155mg 12%
Iron 12mg 66%
Potassium 3082mg 66%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

In Greek: κοτόπουλο σκορδάτο, pronounced koh-TOH-poo-loh skor-THAH-toh

This is a traditional Greek chicken dish served at festivals and holiday celebrations that happens to be one of the easiest recipes to make, and one of the most tempting to eat. You simply roast chicken pieces and potatoes in an oregano, garlic, olive oil, and lemon juice mixture. You can lessen the garlic if it is not one of your favorite flavors; don't worry—the classic tastes of lemon and oregano will still make this dish uniquely Greek. 

Make sure you use Mediterranean oregano for this dish—even better, a Greek variety. You don't want to use Mexican oregano as it has hints of licorice and citrus while the Greek version is more savory and earthy tasting. 

Because the recipe includes chicken and potatoes all you need to round out the meal is a nice salad of cucumbers and tomatoes


  • 3 1/2 pounds potatoes

  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

  • 3 1/4 to 3 3/4 pounds chicken, quartered

  • 1 heaping tablespoon dried oregano, preferably Mediterranian

  • 8 cloves garlic, finely chopped

  • 1/2 cup olive oil

  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

  • 1 large lemon, sliced into crosswise pieces

  • 1 1/2 cups water, more if necessary

  • Cucumber-tomato salad, optional

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients. Preheat oven to 350 F/176 C.

    Greek Lemon-Garlic Chicken (Kotopoulo Skorthato) ingredients

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  2. Peel the potatoes and cut into quarters, lengthwise. Salt and pepper the chicken and potatoes.

    seasoned pieces of chicken, seasoned potatoes in a bowl

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  3. Transfer chicken to a roasting pan and add potatoes, placing on and around the chicken. Add oregano, garlic, olive oil, and lemon juice, distributing evenly across the pan. Add the slices of fresh lemon.

    potatoes, chicken and lemon on a baking sheet

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  4. Add water and roast uncovered for a total of 1 hour and 40 minutes. Halfway through (at 50 minutes), turn the chicken and continue roasting.

    baked chicken, potatoes and lemon on a baking sheet

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  5. Check periodically to make sure there is still a little water in the pan. If needed, add 1/4 to 1/2 cup more. Remove from the oven when the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 165 F. Serve with the cucumber-tomato salad, if desired.

    Greek Lemon-Garlic Chicken (Kotopoulo Skorthato) on a baking sheet

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  6. Enjoy!