Spiced Whole Chicken with Greek Yogurt Marinade

Inspired by Bon Appetit.


  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Aleppo pepper (or 2 teaspoons dried crushed red pepper plus 2 teaspoons Hungarian sweet paprika, plus additional for sprinkling)
  • 1 cup plain whole-milk Greek-style yogurt (8 ounces)
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 teaspoons coarse kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 garlic cloves, peeled and flattened
  • 2 unpeeled lemons: 1 thinly sliced into rounds, 1 cut into wedges for serving
  • 1 whole chicken (about 4-5 pounds)


Step 1: Marinate the Chicken

  1. Prepare the Spice Paste:
    • If using Aleppo pepper: Place in a large bowl and mix in 1 tablespoon of warm water. Let stand until a thick paste forms, about 5 minutes.
    • If using dried crushed red pepper and paprika: Place in a large bowl, stir in 2 tablespoons of warm water, and let stand until a paste forms, about 5 minutes.
  2. Mix the Marinade:
    • Add the Greek yogurt, olive oil, red wine vinegar, tomato paste, 2 teaspoons of coarse salt, and 1 teaspoon of black pepper to the spice mixture in the bowl. Whisk to blend.
    • Stir in the flattened garlic cloves and lemon slices.
  3. Marinate the Chicken:
    • Pat the whole chicken dry with paper towels. Rub the marinade all over the chicken, including under the skin and inside the cavity.
    • Place the chicken in a large resealable plastic bag or a covered dish and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, preferably overnight.

Step 2: Roast the Chicken

  1. Prepare the Oven:
    • Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C).
  2. Roast the Chicken:
    • Place the marinated chicken on a roasting rack in a roasting pan. Sprinkle with additional salt, pepper, and Aleppo pepper or paprika.
    • Roast in the preheated oven for about 1 hour and 30 minutes, or until the internal temperature reaches 165°F (75°C) and the skin is golden brown and crispy. Baste the chicken with the pan juices every 20-30 minutes.
  3. Serve:
    • Remove the chicken from the oven and let it rest for 10-15 minutes before carving.
    • Serve with lemon wedges for squeezing over the chicken.