Chile-Maple Roasted Chicken 

Chile-Maple Roasted Chicken, Antoni in the Kitchen by Antoni Porowski, Photography by Paula Brissman.

Chile-Maple Roasted Chicken, Antoni in the Kitchen by Antoni Porowski, Photography by Paula Brissman.

Antoni Porowski, the food and wine guru on Netflix’s sensation Queer Eye, meets people where they live—literally. With appealing vulnerability, he shows cooks of all levels how to become more confident and casual in the kitchen. The verve and naturalness of his approach earned raves from Food & Wine and Bon Appétit to GQ and the New York Times, which noted his dishes prove that “sometimes simple is anything but simplistic.”

Some of the recipes in this book are weeknight healthy-ish meals, while others are perfect for off-the-cuff entertaining. Visual stunners, they’re often composed of fewer than five ingredients. Whether Bastardized Easy Ramen; Malaysian Chili Shrimp; Roasted Carrots with Carrot-Top Pesto; or Salty Lemon Squares, all can be carried off with panache, even by beginners.

Antoni in the Kitchen is available at and

Antoni in the Kitchen, Antoni Porowski


Chile-Maple Roasted Chicken


A roast chicken is a blank slate. Once you have the technique down, you can apply any flavors you like. This recipe came about when I lived in Brooklyn and was studying acting, and cooking for my roommates, PJ and Ben, also fledgling creatives. Using the only spices we had in the larder, plus the insanely good maple syrup my father sends me from Vermont, I made this ad hoc and utterly delicious dish. It’s now my numero uno.


4 tablespoons (½ stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature

2 tablespoons pure maple syrup

2 teaspoons chili powder

2 teaspoons ground dried chipotle chile or ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 (4 ½ – to 5-pound) chicken

Kosher salt

½ lemon

½ small onion, unpeeled, cut into wedges

5 garlic cloves, gently smashed but not peeled

Freshly ground black pepper


Heat the oven to 425ºF, with a rack in the middle.

In a small bowl, stir together the butter, maple syrup, chili powder, and chipotle powder or cayenne until smooth.

Pull off and discard any excess fat around the cavity and neck of the chicken, then pat the chicken thoroughly dry, inside and out. Season the cavity with salt. Squeeze the lemon juice into the cavity and toss in the lemon half, along with the onion and garlic. Starting from the edge of the cavity, slip a finger under the skin of each breast and loosen the skin from the meat of both the breasts and thighs, then spread half of the maple butter mixture under the skin. Rub the remaining butter on top of the skin, then season with 2 teaspoons salt and a generous pinch of pepper.

Place the bird breast side up in a roasting pan or 9-x-13-inch baking dish and roast for 15 minutes. Reduce the heat to 350ºF and continue roasting, basting occasionally with the juices, until the juices run clear when the thigh is pierced with a fork, or an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh reads 165ºF, 65 to 75 minutes more. Remove the bird from the oven and let rest in the pan for 15 minutes.

Baste the chicken with the juices. Transfer to a cutting board and let rest for 5 minutes more, then carve and serve.

Chile-Maple Roasted Chicken is excerpted from ATONI IN THE KITCHEN © 2019 by Antoni Porowski with Mindy Fox. Photography © 2019 by Paul Brissman. Reproduced by permission of Rux Martin Books/Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved.

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