Best ever maple glazed bacon chicken or turkey is succulent and loaded with flavour. The breast stays gloriously moist and the bacon adds its smoky goodness to the meat and flavours the juices for an outstanding gravy.
The bird is marvellously golden brown and glistening with a delicious maple syrup, orange juice and dijon mustard glaze and perfumed from inside with the flavours of onion and thyme that add to the gravy juices.
How to Brine Chicken or Turkey is a perfect recipe to prepare for holiday celebrations when your looking for an impressive centrepiece for your meal whether you’re using a large chicken, whole turkey, turkey crown or turkey buffet.
We have a post on how to brine a turkey or chicken that delivers a supremely moist, plump and perfectly seasoned bird How to Brine Chicken or Turkey that you will need to start a day or two earlier.
It may seem like a lot of pfaffing about when really the brine does all of the work, so we feel it’s a step worth doing to deliver a bird that’s the talk of the table, and let’s face it that’s our aim.
You can still go ahead and roast the chicken without this step but check it out and at least give it a test run to see the difference. Amazing!
How to prepare the best ever maple glazed bacon chicken, or turkey
First up you are going to prepare a simple but delicious glaze made up with maple syrup, fresh orange juice and dijon mustard that you whisk together and that job is done.
Next prepare your bird by placing a generous amount of fresh thyme stems and quartered onion into the interior of the bird – really any combination that floats your boat could be used, think garlic, sage, rosemary, lemon or orange slices even a drizzle of beer has been known to find its way into the bird, use your imagination.
Truss your bird (see notes below) and place an onion that has been sliced into discs about 1cm (1/2 inch ) thick to act as a trivet for your bird to sit on. The onion almost melts into the pan juices adding to the amazing flavour.
Pop your bird on top of the onion slices and season with salt and pepper. You need to use a pan that the bird preferably fits into somewhat snugly, we used a cast iron frypan.
The reason for this is if you were to use a much larger pan the delicious juices will evaporate and you’ll not end up with enough juices to make the gravy with.
Lay out a sheet of baking paper and lay strips of bacon closely together the width of the birds breast and sides. Proceed to weave the bacon across the strips until you have a woven layer of bacon – see video for instructions
Laying the bacon weave on paper allows you to easily lift the bacon and place it over the bird. Tuck the bacon into the creases of the wings and legs so it’s secure. To prevent the bacon from curling while cooking secure the ends of the bacon weave with toothpicks – DON’T FORGET TO REMOVE THEM BEFORE SERVING!
Calculate the cooking time for the Best Ever Maple Glazed Bacon Chicken
The cooking time is calculated at 25 minutes for every 500gm (1lb 1oz) that the bird weighs.
If you had a bird that weighed 1.5kg or 3lb 3ounces the calculation would be as follows:
1.5kg divided by 500gm = 3 (3.3lb divided by 1.1 = 3)
Now multiply the divided answer in this case 3 x 25 minutes = 75 minutes cook time
Using the thermometer pierce the chicken in the thickest part of the birds breast, also the chicken thigh and the fattest part of the wing, the temperature should be above 74c (165f)
If using a fork or skewer pierce the chicken in the thickest parts as mentioned above, if the juices run clear the bird is cooked. However, if the juices run with a pinkish blush continue to cook the bird longer.
Why truss the bird?
A properly trussed bird keeps the legs and wings tucked in and gives the bird a compact shape.
Watch How To Make The Best Ever Maple Glazed Bacon Chicken – finger lickin
Check out our delicious stuffing recipe
Bacon and cranberry stuffing is crusty golden brown on the outside and moist and savoury on the inside.
Call it stuffing or dressing, either way you’ll end up with individual balls of deliciousness with just enough toasty crunchy bits to satisfy everyone, and let’s face it that’s the best part.
Prepare and freeze these ahead of time for Thanksgiving or Christmas and it’s one off your long list of dishes to prepare.
We would love to hear from you in the comments below when you make best ever maple glazed bacon chicken.
Golden brown chicken that's moist, succulent and glorious to look at along with a delicious glaze of maple syrup, orange juice and dijon mustard and a gravy that's so full of flavour it's ridiculous. Enjoy.
- 1 fresh chicken or turkey weighed and cooking time calculated - our chicken weighed 1 1/2 kg (3.3 pounds)
- 2 medium onions
- 1 bunch fresh thyme
- 12-16 pieces short end bacon
- 125ml (4.2 fluid ounces) maple syrup
- 60ml (2 fluid ounces) fresh orange juice
- dijon mustard to your taste - about a tablespoon or so
- 1 - 11/2 tablespoons plain (all purpose) flour depending on how thick you like your gravy
- 2 cups chicken stock
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 fresh chicken (ours weighed 1 1/2kg / 3.3 pounds) if you're brining your bird beforehand you'll need to calculate how long to brine for - click on this link..... How to Brine Chicken or Turkey
- calculate the cooking times - see calculate the cooking time above
- select a pan or frypan that the bird fits snugly into
- preheat oven to 180c (360f)
- mix maple syrup, orange juice and dijon mustard in a small bowl and separate enough of the glaze in a separate bowl to do a final glaze
- cut 1 onion into quarters and place in the cavity of the chicken along with the thyme sprigs
- truss the chicken with string - check out our video above if you're not sure of how to truss.
- lay a sheet of baking paper on the bench and lay half of the bacon pieces one way slightly overlapping each piece
- thread the remaining bacon across the strips till you have a sheet of woven bacon - see video
- season chicken with salt and pepper
- lift the paper and cover the breast and sides with the woven bacon
- tuck the bacon between the body of the chicken and the legs and wings then using toothpicks pin the ends of the bacon to the bird to prevent the bacon curling up - see video
- cut the second onion into discs 1cm (1/2 inch) thick and place on the base of your cooking pan to act as a trivet
- place the chicken on top of the onion slices
- bake chicken and halfway into the cooking time begin to baste the chicken with the glaze and repeat this every ten minutes or so
- bake till juices run clear depending on the cooking calculation you did earlier
- remove chicken from the oven and brush with the reserved glaze using a clean brush or ladel to stop any cross contamination, then transfer to a serving platter and cover with foil while you make the gravy
- if the chicken was small and had a short cook time you may need to turn the grill on for a couple of minutes to achieve the deep golden colour - don't walk away and leave the chicken as it will only need 2-3 minutes
- leave the onion slices in the pan and over a medium heat add the flour and whisk till you have a paste and the flour has taken up the juices in the pan - see video
- add chicken stock and whisk to incorporate the flour paste
- allow the gravy to bubble over a medium heat and continue whisking for a few minutes to cook out the flour and season to taste
- strain gravy and discard the onion
- serve with the glorious chicken and enjoy!
Amount Per Serving Calories 1196Total Fat 81gSaturated Fat 27gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 50gCholesterol 261mgSodium 3873mgCarbohydrates 24gFiber 1gSugar 12gProtein 87g
Nutritional information provided here is only intended as a guide.