Lemon and Quinoa-Stuffed Roast Chicken


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


Appears in

The Quinoa Cookbook

The Quinoa Cookbook

By Penny Doyle

Published 2013

  • About

Quinoa is an excellent gluten-free stuffing ingredient in place of breadcrumbs. If used in place of sausagemeat it also lowers the fat content. This recipe uses the traditional flavourings of lemon, sage and onion to bring out the delicious taste of roast chicken, while the quinoa-coated vegetables are the perfect accompaniment.


  • 1 x 1.3 kg/3 lb whole chicken
  • 15 ml/1 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 rashers (strips) streaky (fatty) bacon
  • salt and ground black pepper

For the stuffing

  • 15 ml/1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 125 g/ oz/¾ cup pearl quinoa
  • 475 ml/16 fl oz/2 cups water
  • 2 lemons, juice of both, grated rind of 1
  • 25 g/1 oz/¼ cup quinoa flour
  • 25 g/1 oz fresh sage, finely chopped
  • 25 g/1 oz capers, roughly chopped
  • 25 g/1 oz/ cup butter
  • salt and ground black pepper

For the roast vegetables

  • 600 g/1 lb 6 oz mixed root vegetables (beetroot (beet), swede (rutabaga), sweet potato, parsnip, celeriac), peeled and cut into 4 cm/ in batons
  • 25 g/1 oz/¼ cup quinoa flour
  • 15 ml/1 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
  • 30 ml/2 tbsp olive oil
  • salt and ground black pepper


  1. Heat the oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas 6. Prepare the stuffing. Heat the oil in a pan and add the garlic, onion, quinoa and water. Bring to the boil, and simmer for 12-14 minutes, until the quinoa is soft to bite. Drain off any excess water. Mix in the remaining stuffing ingredients and plenty of salt and pepper.
  2. Loosely stuff the neck cavity of the chicken two-thirds full; heat must be able to circulate inside the bird. Weigh the stuffed chicken and calculate the cooking time based on 20 minutes per 450 g/1 lb plus 10-20 minutes, and then 30 minutes resting time.
  3. Brush the outside of the chicken with olive oil, season with salt and pepper and cover with bacon rashers. Place in the hot oven for 20 minutes, then baste with the juices and reduce the temperature to 190°C/375°F/Gas 5.
  4. Par-boil the root vegetables for about 3 minutes in a covered pan. Drain, add the quinoa flour, parsley and salt and pepper, toss to coat and set aside.
  5. About 20 minutes before the end of the chicken’s cooking time, place the olive oil for the roast vegetables in an ovenproof casserole and heat. Remove the bacon from the top of the chicken, set aside, and baste the chicken.
  6. Add the quinoa-coated vegetables to the hot casserole, turning to coat in the oil, then place in the oven.
  7. When the chicken is cooked, test by inserting a skewer into the thickest part of the thigh and checking that the juices run clear, remove from the oven and set aside, covered, to rest.
  8. Increase the oven temperature to 200°C/400°F/Gas 6 and roast the vegetables for 15 minutes, until crispy.
  9. Carve the chicken and serve with the crispy bacon, a spoonful of stuffing and the quinoa-coated roast vegetables.

Nutritional Information: Gluten free Energy 778kcal/3257kJ; Protein 56g; Carbohydrate 50g, of which sugars 12g; Fat 41g, of which saturates 11g; Cholesterol 186mg; Calcium 161mg; Fibre 8g; Sodium 878mg.