I’m dishing up some incredibly succulent baked chicken and gravy over rice today. This oven-roasted whole chicken was cooked to moist perfection and then drizzled with a delicious apple cider gravy. A fluffy bed of brown rice catches any excess gravy because trust me, you’re not going to want to waste a drop. This cider gravy is so amazing that I could pretty much drink it (but I’ll try to restrain myself).
For Thanksgiving last year, I roasted a turkey with some apple cider gravy that was pretty darn good. And that scrumptious gravy led me to a realization.
Somehow, I have managed to reach my fourth decade of life without owning a gravy boat. Fortunately, I’m not afraid to make do with what I have. So, enjoy these photos of cider gravy in a cream pitcher. 🙂
I’m going to need to pick up a proper vessel for gravy soon. This chicken and gravy over rice recipe is an easier spinoff of my Thanksgiving recipe. By using chicken instead of turkey, I can make this all year long if I want to.
And I think that I might want to do just that! I’ve made this several times already and I have no plans to retire this recipe anytime soon.
So, I most definitely need to shop around for a gravy boat. The cream pitcher only holds a small amount of this mouth-watering cider gravy. It’s not really cutting it.
Unrelated, I had mused in a previous post about the benefits of purchasing whole chickens versus pricier chicken pieces. One advantage of using whole chickens is that you can save the chicken carcass and make bone broth. You can find my extremely easy (and economical!) bone broth Instant Pot recipe here.
Can you find the added sugar in this recipe?
You may notice in the (non-AMP) header of this website that I promise recipes with “no added sugar.” Well, guess what?
This recipe does contain some added sugar. I thought I’d be upfront about it. Can you find it?
If you answered “cider,” that’s not correct. Technically, the ingredients list of the recipe below contains no added sugar. Nevertheless, the finished recipe does contain some added sugar. Are you feeling confused?
Apple cider and 100% fruit juices are not considered added sugars, even though all (or most) of the fiber was removed. However, we are reducing the cider in this recipe (i.e., evaporating water) to make the gravy. According to the FDA, foods sweetened with concentrated fruit juices are considered sugar-sweetened foods.
Essentially what is happening is we are concentrating the sugar in the apple cider. We’re turning the cider into a source of added sugar in this recipe.
No worries, the added sugar here is a relatively small amount per serving. However, I thought I’d use this post as an opportunity to clear up what counts as added sugar. There’s a lot of misunderstanding surrounding this topic.
I see fruit concentrates used as sweeteners in many recipes promoted as healthier. The truth is that these dishes contain high-calorie sources of added sugar. They’re only a little better than recipes made with other added sugars (and likely won’t help with a weight loss goal).
I love to use fruit as a sweetener in my recipes, but I try to use whole, unconcentrated fruits. For example, I often use bananas or dates in my overnight oatmeal. These recipes use fruits that have been pureed but not cooked down or concentrated.
So now that I’ve cleared that up, how about we get to the recipe?
And now for the disclaimer…
All recipes on this website may or may not be appropriate for you, depending on your medical needs and personal preferences. Consult with a registered dietitian or your physician if you need help determining the dietary pattern that may be best for you.
The calorie information is an estimate provided as a courtesy. It will differ depending on the specific brands and ingredients that you use. Calorie information on food labels may be wildly inaccurate, so please don’t sweat the numbers too much.
For more information on how the three recipe levels may help with a weight management goal, refer to this post. Let’s get cooking!
Chicken and Gravy Over Rice
- 1 cup brown rice, dry
- 4-5 lb whole chicken (1.8-2.3 kg)
- 1 fresh rosemary sprig
- 1 fresh parsley sprig
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 small shallot, quartered
- ½ lemon
- salt and pepper
- 12 ounces asparagus, frozen (340 grams; I used Trader Joe's frozen grilled asparagus)
- 1 cup apple cider
- 2½ tablespoons butter, divided
- 2 tablespoons whole wheat flour
- 1 cup chicken broth
- Preheat the oven to 425°F (218°C).
- Cook the brown rice in water on the stovetop according to package directions. It will take 45-60 minutes, so it is important to get it started first.
- Remove the giblets from your chicken and reserve to use in another recipe. Place the chicken in a roasting pan with a rack. The chicken should be placed breast side up. Fold the wing tips under the chicken so that they do not burn.
- Juice the half lemon. Remove the leaves from the rosemary and parsley sprigs.
- Rub the outside of the chicken with the olive oil and sprinkle the chicken with salt and pepper. Put the squeezed lemon rind, quartered shallot, and leafless parsley and rosemary sprigs in the cavity of the chicken.
- Put the chicken in the oven and bake for 35 minutes.
- While the chicken bakes, combine the cider, ½ tablespoon of butter, and the lemon juice on the stove top. Let it gently simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Finely chop the parsley and rosemary leaves. Set aside.
- After the chicken has roasted for 35 minutes, brush it with half of the cider reduction and bake for 5 minutes. Remove it from the oven, brush it with the other half of the cider reduction, and bake for 5 minutes more.
- Check the internal temperature of your chicken with a meat thermometer to ensure it has reached a minimum of 165°F (74°C). If it has, tent the chicken in foil and let it rest outside of the oven for 15 minutes while you make the gravy.
- In a small pan, whisk the whole wheat flour and 2 tablespoons of butter together until well-combined. Add the drippings from the chicken roasting pan, the broth, and the fresh herb leaves. Whisk the gravy until thickened (approximately 10 minutes).
- Steam or microwave the frozen asparagus.
- Plate ¼ of the rice and put some roasted chicken on top. Drizzle the chicken with the gravy. Put ¼ of the asparagus on the side. Get ready for some deliciousness!
This is a level 3 recipe (weight maintenance and active lifestyles). The calorie count on this recipe is for a meal that contains the following:
- 4 ounces (113 grams) of cooked chicken breast (including meat and skin)
- ¼ of the brown rice (¼ cup of dry rice which equals approximately ¾ cup cooked)
- ¼ of the asparagus (3 ounces/85 grams)
- ¼ of the gravy (an unapologetically generous portion)
What’s your favorite place (online or brick-and-mortar) to shop for kitchen and dining ware, such as gravy boats? I think it’s about time to retire my cream pitcher in its current role!