Roasted Chicken with Allspice and Citrus

Chicken with Allspice and Citrus

Roasted Chicken with Allspice and Citrus ~ this gorgeous sheet pan dinner is a fabulous way to celebrate fresh citrus! I brush the chicken with a delicious pomegranate allspice glaze and everything cooks together on one pan.

An indescribably wonderful dish - you'll never go back to plain roast chicken again!

Chicken with Allspice and Citrus

Wake up roasted chicken with citrus fruit!

We all know that an extra hot oven does wonderful things to chicken, but did you also know that it has the same transformative effect on citrus? And isn’t it also wonderful that sunny citrus fruit comes into season right smack in the middle of winter, just when we need a little brightening. This dish not only cheers me, but actually helped to warm a very nippy kitchen today. I’d say it’s the perfect dinner to lead the charge into January.

Chicken Roasted with Allspice and Citrus

Roasted chicken on a sheet pan = convenience and less clean up

Like the vast majority of dishes I share here, this one is super quick and easy, in fact the hardest part by far is cleaning the baking sheet afterwards. Be sure to line it with parchment or foil because the natural sweetness of the citrus glaze will caramelize right onto the pan. In other words, what makes it especially delicious also makes it a holy terror to clean up. I love this beautiful chicken, I could eat it every night for the entire month. It’s not quite a 30-minute meal, but it’s darn close. It’s also a one pan wonder, the chicken gets nice and crispy golden without any pre-browning.

Roasted Chicken with an allspice and citrus glaze

Is rinsing raw chicken necessary?

I don’t bother to rinse the chicken beforehand, I like it to be as dry as possible because that helps the sauce cling to the meat, and it helps everything get nice and crispy in the oven. The practice of rinsing raw chicken is outmoded and isn’t necessary. In fact studies have found that rinsing can actually spread germs, rather than control them. And the heat of the oven will take care of any potential bacteria anyway. So skip the messy rinsing, your chicken will be the crispier for it.

Preparing Chicken with Allspice and Roasted Citrus

The pomegranate allspice glaze makes this chicken spectacular

Whisk together the simple sauce, or glaze, made from olive oil, pomegranate molasses, allspice, salt and pepper, and brush it on the chicken. If you absolutely can’t find pomegranate molasses, which is pomegranate juice that has been reduced down to a thick syrup, I suppose you could substitute some lemon juice and honey, but I really recommend the molasses. The flavor is unique and really special. It will be in the International section of your grocery store, and  Amazon always has it, in a pinch. The allspice adds a warm spicy clove type flavor that makes this dish so special. The sauce is inspired by the dressing on this Tomato, Onion and Roasted Lemon Salad.

Chicken with allspice and citrus

Everything cooks together on the sheet pan

You’ll thinly slice your citrus and arrange them around and underneath the chicken. Finish with a good sprinkle of sea salt, fresh cracked black pepper and some fresh thyme. The hot oven does the rest in about 35 minutes. I baste the chicken with the remaining sauce once or twice, and garnish with more thyme.

Roasted chicken with allspice and citrus

You’ll eat the roasted citrus slices, peel and all, just remove the bitter seeds

The citrus is sliced so thinly that it will caramelize in the oven, and it becomes soft and delicious enough to eat whole. Because you will be eating the whole fruit, be sure to wash it well before slicing, and remove any seeds first. I sliced the fruit between 1/4 and 1/8 inch…any thicker and they will not cook through as well, any thinner and the slices will basically just disintegrate. I use an inexpensive mandoline slicer to do the job quickly and easily. I sliced up Meyer lemon, blood orange, Cara Cara orange (a pinkish sweet orange) and a Satsuma tangerine. Skip the grapefruit and lime, they’d be too bitter for this.

Roasted Chicken with Allspice and Citrus

Almost too pretty to eat!

Roasted Chicken glazed with allspice and pomegranate

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3.54 from 102 votes

Roasted Chicken with Allspice and Citrus

Roasted Chicken with Allspice and Citrus ~ this gorgeous sheet pan dinner is a fabulous way to celebrate fresh citrus! I brush the chicken with a delicious pomegranate allspice glaze and everything cooks together on one pan.
Course Dinner Recipes
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Yield 4 servings
Author Sue Moran


  • about 6 legs and 2 bone-in skin on breasts or you can use a whole chicken cut in pieces, or use your favorite parts, thighs would work Allow 2 pieces per person.
  • 1 blood orange
  • 1 Meyer lemon
  • 1 satsuma tangerine
  • 1 small Cara Cara orange


  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp pomegranate molasses
  • 1 tsp ground allspice
  • a dash of salt and a few grinds of pepper


  • Set oven to 475F
  • Cut the chicken breasts in half crosswise.
  • Wash and dry the citrus fruit. Using a mandoline slicer, slice them between 1/4 and 1/8 inch thick. Remove any seeds. Note: I used all the lemon, but only about half of the other fruits.
  • Line a baking sheet (the kind with sides) with parchment paper or foil. Set down a few slices of the fruit, and then lay out your chicken pieces, making sure not to crowd the pan. if you are making extra, use another pan rather than crowd the chicken.
  • Whisk together the sauce ingredients and brush it onto each piece of chicken. Arrange slices of citrus around the chicken. You may not need all the slices.
  • Shower everything with a little bit of sea salt and some fresh cracked black pepper.
  • Roast for about 35 minutes. I baste the chicken a couple of times with more sauce.
  • Serve with more fresh thyme.

Cook's notes


  • Use bone-in, skin-on chicken...the meat will stay moister and you will get a great crispy brown result.
  • You could, if you have the time, marinate the chicken in the sauce. This isn't necessary, but it's an option if you are thinking ahead.
  • Wash your fruit well with soap and water since you will be eating the rind.  Organic is always a good choice.
  • Slice the citrus fruit with a mandoline slicer to get very thin, even slices.  I slice them between 1/4 and 1/8 thick.  Be sure to remove the seeds after you've sliced the fruit (they don't taste good!)
  • This dish requires high heat...make sure your oven temperature is accurate.  I use an inexpensive oven thermometer (my grocery store sells them in the kitchen section) to check.  475F sounds high, but it's the right temp for this dish.
  • Line your pan with parchment or foil, otherwise the food will stick.  And make sure you use a baking sheet with sides!
  • I like to cut the breasts in half so the pieces of chicken are relatively the same size and will cook evenly.
  • You can finish the dish under the broiler if for any reason you didn't get quite enough charring on your fruit.
The nutritional information for recipes on this site is provided as a courtesy and although tries to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures are only estimates.

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  • Reply
    Becky | The Cookie Rookie
    January 3, 2015 at 4:31 pm

    These photos are unbelievably gorgeous!!! i want to jump into the screen! Thanks for share, just beautiful!

  • Reply
    Averie @ Averie Cooks
    January 3, 2015 at 1:32 pm

    I don’t even eat meat and this is some gorgeous chicken! The colors are just stunning, Sue! Pinned!

    • Reply
      January 3, 2015 at 2:12 pm

      Awww, thanks Averie!

  • Reply
    Vicki Bensinger
    January 3, 2015 at 6:01 am

    What a beautiful dish and perfect for the winter weather. I haven’t used pomegranate molasses in quite sometime but will pick some up. I’m assuming you used bone-in pieces. I over looked it if you said that. Really nice recipe. Thank you for sharing.

    • Reply
      January 3, 2015 at 8:02 am

      Definitely bone in pieces for this dish, at least I meant to, I mistakenly picked up boneless breasts, but that was a mistake. The bone in keeps the chicken moister. Thanks Vicki!

      • Reply
        Vicki Bensinger
        January 4, 2015 at 6:36 am

        I agree the bones keep the meat more moist however if you used boneless chicken breasts with the skin on and it tasted great I’m all for it. My family prefers it that way, plus the cooking time is less. I think it’s a beautiful dish and look forward to trying this very soon.

  • Reply
    January 2, 2015 at 10:47 pm

    WOW!!! This is GORGEOUS!!!

  • Reply
    Laura (Tutti Dolci)
    January 2, 2015 at 9:42 pm

    Roasted chicken has never looked so good, I love the citrus and thyme with this!

  • Reply
    January 2, 2015 at 7:50 pm

    Oh my this looks and sounds amazing! The photos are totally gorgeous!

  • Reply
    January 2, 2015 at 3:09 pm

    Looooove this. Oh my gosh, this chicken looks amazing!! I am super obsessed with citrus right now, so I am definitely going to have to make this.

    • Reply
      January 2, 2015 at 3:46 pm

      I hear you, I can’t get enough citrus, to the point of probably annoying my readers 🙂

  • Reply
    Pamela @ Brooklyn Farm Girl
    January 2, 2015 at 1:43 pm

    You just made me change my grocery order to include all the ingredients for this recipe. What a gorgeous roasted chicken!

    • Reply
      January 2, 2015 at 1:47 pm

      Oh wow, that’s my goal! I hope you can find the beautiful citrus, it’s in all the strores out here in CA. Thanks for visiting Pamela!

  • Reply
    January 2, 2015 at 9:30 am

    This looks amazing! So bright and healthy. Definitely going to try this soon!

  • Reply
    Jennifer @ Seasons and Suppers
    January 2, 2015 at 8:10 am

    Wow! What a beautiful dish to start out 2015! Love citrus this time of year.

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