Roasted chicken is a very good dinner that many people like to make fairly often. If you’re hoping to have it for dinner soon, your first instinct will be to put it in the oven.
The majority of people who roast chickens cook them in their ovens. What are you supposed to do if your oven is broken or you don’t have a traditional oven, though?
What options do you have when trying to roast a chicken without an oven? Keep reading to learn about several methods that can get you good results, even when you don’t have an oven to use.
1 – Grab a Cast-Iron Skillet
You could use a cast-iron skillet to roast something on a stovetop if you have access to one. The basic idea behind this process is that you’ll be putting a chicken in the cast-iron skillet and then roasting it on a gas or electric stove.
It doesn’t require you to have an oven to get this done, but you will need some type of stove solution. Some people have standalone stoves that are small and don’t include ovens, but this isn’t all that common in America.
You can certainly buy portable stoves that you can plug into electric outlets and use whenever or wherever you need them. There are even portable stoves that you can purchase that will allow you to cook things when you’re out camping using gas.
Just place the chicken in the cast-iron skillet along with some water and seasonings. You should be able to get very good results when roasting a chicken in this fashion.
If you don’t have a cast-iron skillet, you should know that they aren’t prohibitively expensive or anything. You could buy one if you find this to be an easy solution to your problems.
See my article on how to roast vegetables without an oven.
2 – Large Pots Might Work Too
When you don’t have a cast-iron skillet that you can utilize, a large pot is going to do just as well. You’ll just need one that is large enough and deep enough for you to roast a chicken.
If you have a pot that you would normally use to make chicken noodle soup or something such as that, it’s probably going to work nicely. It just needs to be deep enough to fit the chicken that you plan on roasting comfortably.
The only issue with this idea is that sometimes it can be tough to use a large pot on certain portable stoves. Assuming that you don’t have a full-sized stove to use, it might be tough to fit a large pot on some portable stove burners.
Just ensure that the pot is the right size that it will be able to heat evenly when placed over the burner. Remember to position the pot on the center of the burner so that the heat will be distributed evenly and everything will go smoothly.
3 – You Could Build an Earthen Oven
This idea is only going to be practical for people with a lot of time on their hands and an abundance of patience. You could choose to build an earthen oven such as the ones that people used to use back in the 1800s.
You can roast and bake things inside of these earthen ovens as you would a standard oven. You build them out of sand and clay, but it isn’t necessarily going to be the easiest thing to do in the world.
For most people, this idea is going to be a curiosity and an interesting thing to read about. Actually going out and building an earthen oven might not be something that appeals to you.
Even so, there are tutorials about how to do it online that will come in handy. If you want to build your own outdoor oven that will help you to roast and bake things, then it’s worth a shot if you’re so inclined to try.
4 – Solar Ovens Might Work
Solar ovens might work to roast a chicken if you’re in a pinch. These portable ovens are most often used by people who go camping a lot.
They’re great for camping because they allow you to bake and roast things even when you don’t have access to electricity or gas. You can just place a cooking pot or pan in the solar oven and let the power of the sun do its thing.
How good will a roasted chicken turn out in a solar oven? Well, that might depend, but you should be able to get decent results if you understand how to approach things right.
The danger will be ensuring that you roast the chicken well enough to be satisfied without overdoing it. Temperature regulation might be hard, and this means that this idea might not be great for many people.
5 – Roast a Chicken Over an Open Flame
One idea that might occur to you early on is that you could roast a chicken over an open flame. This is actually a pretty good idea, and you can set things up to roast a chicken outside pretty easily.
All you need to do is make some type of a spit where you can hang the chicken and turn it over the open flame. This allows you to make a type of rotisserie chicken that will taste really good.
Is this the exact same as roasting a chicken in the oven, though? No, it’s kind of different, and the taste is likely going to be a lot different than what you would achieve roasting a chicken in the oven.
You can still use the same type of spices or rubs that you would normally use, though. If you like to cook outdoors, then this might even become your preferred way of cooking a whole chicken even when you get a working oven again.
6 – Try a Crockpot
One of the most popular ways to roast a chicken without a standard oven is to just throw it in a crockpot. This is probably the most practical solution on the list if you have a crockpot that you can use.
This will allow you to make a roasted chicken that will be very tender. You can cook it slowly if you want to, and it’ll be a good experience overall.
The only thing you’ll need to do is make sure that you buy a crockpot that will fit the chicken that you wish to roast. Some small crockpots might not suffice, but larger ones will do nicely.
Crockpots can be great to have around, and owning one will make not having access to a standard oven a lot more bearable. It’s definitely worth looking into purchasing one if you’re going to be without an oven for a while.
Roasting a chicken without access to an oven is completely possible. There are quite a few ways that you can go about doing this, depending on what you have access to.
You can try to roast a chicken on the stove if you have a large pot or a cast-iron skillet. It’s also easy enough to just throw a chicken in a crockpot when you want to enjoy a tasty meal.
Hopefully, you have a better idea of which route you’ll want to take now. Don’t fret because you can still enjoy roasted chicken even if your oven is out of commission.
Sarah is the founder of Baking Kneads, LLC, a blog sharing guides, tips, and recipes for those learning how to bake. Growing up as the daughter of a baker, she spent much of her childhood learning the basics in a local bakery.