How to Sous Vide a Whole Chicken

  By Jack Lawson    

April 1, 2019

There's nothing worse than dry chicken. Fortunately, sous vide allows you to cook anything from chicken breasts right up to a whole bird perfectly every time. Make sure to have a probe thermometer on hand before beginning cooking. Alternatively, use a sharp knife to cut into the thorax. If the juice runs clear without any pink your bird is done!

  • Prep: 10 mins
  • Cook: 6 hrs


1 whole chicken, butterflied

2 tsp kosher salt

3 tbsp smoked paprika

3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1 tsp cayenne pepper

2 tsp fresh thyme leaves

3 cloves pressed garlic

1/2 of a large white onion

1/2 or a large lemon

Serves 4



1Crush your garlic in a garlic press and halve both a large onion and a large lemon.

2To best remove thyme leaves from a sprig of thyme run your fingers gently towards the base of the stem while holding the tip with your other hand.

3Combine kosher salt, smoked paprika, cayenne pepper, thyme leaves and garlic until a spice powder forms.

4Slowly add the olive oil to the spice powder until a paste forms.

5Working quickly, cover the outside of the whole chicken with out spice past.

6When done, stuff the chicken cavity with half of half of one onion and half of one lemon.


1Heat water bath to 150F.

2Place vacuum sealed chicken with spice rub into water bath.

3Since this chicken will be cooking for a long time try your best to seal the top of your bath with saran wrap.

4Cook your chicken for 6 hours in the water bath.

5When done remove from bath, discard any excess liquid and pat dry with paper towel.


1Set oven to broil on high, or 400F.

2Place whole chicken in a roasting pan or on a baking sheet with a lip.

3Roast until skin is brown and crispy, no more than 7 minutes.

4Using a probe thermometer check the temperature at the thorax of the bird. This is the most difficult area to cook without butterflying your chicken. Before serving make sure that the internal temperature registers as 165F.


6 Reviews


July 11, 2020

There’s no reason to “make sure the internal temperature registers at 165F”.

Salmonella is killed instantly at 165°. It’s also killed in 3 minutes at 150°.

IOW, as long as the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 150° and is held at 150° for at least 3 minutes, any salmonella present in the bird is dead.

If, after removing the bird from the bag, you want to crisp the skin, you can hit it with a blow torch, stick it under the broiler, or on a grill – if you’d like.

To maintain the superior texture and juiciness of the meat cooked to 150°, you want to crisp the skin using a method resulting in the least increase in the meat’s temperature available to you.


November 10, 2019

“Heat water bath to 150F.” ?!?! Do you have any idea, how stupid the Fahrenheit scale is to the civilized world? Might be a nice receipt, but stopped reading at that point.


October 20, 2019

So 1 3 star and 2 5 star equals 5 star review. What a joke. The 3 star reviewer is correct z wint get 165 after 7 min.

Duk Im

July 20, 2019

Recipe is good. Thanks for the cooking times and oven finishing directions, which I will try when I sous vide whole chicken.

But the final direction makes no sense: you recommend we Cook a chicken at 150 degrees for hours, then give it 7 minutes at 400 just to crisp the skin, THEN CHECK THE THORAX TO SEE IF ITS > 165????



July 11, 2019

how many pounds of your chicken?

Ray Gonzales

April 9, 2019

Had trouble butterflying the chicken but worked!

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