My Tangy Green Olive Chicken


There is nothing I love more than roasted/baked chicken! Great lobster doesn’t even come close for me.

But please note that there is an absolute must for this dish to be as delicious as it should be: the quality of the produce. Your chicken must be free range and corn-fed!


An easy way to know if a chicken is of the very best quality is this: the meat should be brown once cooked and it must stick to the bone.

Regular supermarket chicken might be OK for chicken fingers, but it is NOT OK for a proper chicken dish like this or coq au vin.



– One chicken

– Green olives (seedless – enough to fill your chicken’s behind – usually 1/2 pound – I would have said 3 fists but…). Also note that your olives should have a strong brine/pickle taste. Sometimes in the US, preserved olives are kept in plain water and are completely tasteless.

– Thyme, New Orleans Bay Leaves and Rosemary

– 4 large garlic cloves

– Salt and black pepper

– Canola oil


– Put all the ingredients in layers insite your bird

– Add lots of oil inside and on top + salt on top

– In the oven in a dish for 45mn at 480°F (turn the bird once at half time)

– Add the olives around the chicken 20 to 30 minutes before the end of the cooking time

I think this dish goes best with home made mashed potatoes like here or sautées potatoes (using a non stick pan and very litle oil)


79 Comments Add yours

  1. Hubby’s favorite… anything chicken!

    1. My French Heaven says:

      I’ll make him one when you are here!!!! Truly my favorite dish 😉 🙂

  2. Lola Rugula says:

    3 fists? You slay me! 🙂 This looks amazing – a definite “must make” for me.

    1. My French Heaven says:

      It is so easy Lola and truly my favorite dish of them all…

  3. Rosa de los Vientos says:

    Dear Stéphane, why do you use canola oil? Is there a special reason. Just curious. A big hug! Rosa

    1. My French Heaven says:

      Because after olive oil it is the most healthy choice (or so I’m told). Big hug to you too dear Rosa! 😉

      1. Rosa de los Vientos says:

        Merci, Stéphane!!! xx

  4. Looks great! The age of the chicken is also important. Much better if it’s at least 100 days old.

    1. My French Heaven says:

      You know, here they like them young when they are still “poulets”, but I agree with you and like them a little older. The very best you can get here is called Chapon. It’s basically a eunuch coq (ha ha coq :))

      1. I know about capon and would love to find a source for that here! The older ones have so much more flavor.

  5. wonderful. And I have to agree about the chicken note at the top. I gave cage free corn fed chicken a try one, and I never looked back. Not only it taste incredible, the texture of the protein and the juiciness were much better too. They are a bit more expensive, but not by a lot. Your presentation is beautiful. I could eat roasted chicken everyday ahahahah

    1. My French Heaven says:

      Me too! LOL 🙂

  6. Xavier Yes says:

    I’m a sucker for anything with chicken, but this just blows everything else out of the water. Fantastic!

    1. My French Heaven says:

      I hope you try it Xavier! 😉

  7. Photo Girl says:

    Yum! That looks wonderful!

    1. My French Heaven says:

      Thanks Shelley!!

  8. Cooking a chicken at 250 Celsius? New Orleans Bay leaf?
    Are you sure of the temperature … 250 Celsius is about the maximum a home oven reaches.
    Beside the label, what is different with the New Orleans Bay leaf?

    1. My French Heaven says:

      Yes I’m sure of the temperature, at least with my oven. My oven reaches 275°C actually, but that’s on the convection/normal setting. You can cook it at 230 but it obviously depends on the size of the birds and will require a longer cooking time. I always do 250 for 45 mn and it is always perfect. That’s with a 3 pound chicken. Free range chicken takes longer than regular chicken to cook. The meat is tighter… As for Bay Leaves, I mention New Orleans bay leaves because that’s the only place in the States that I could ever find some that taste exactly like they do in France. The fresh (or dry) ones I found in other parts of the country are incredibly sweet and will completely ruin a dish or sauce. This of course depends on personal taste…

      1. It could be that the New Orleans bay leaf and the one in France have a different taste. However, bay leaf taste is so subtle that it is automatically overpowered by the Rosemary. I assume you are using fresh rosemary sprigs in the chicken. Cheers

        1. My French Heaven says:

          That’s one of the differences: bay leaf in France has a very powerful fragrance, at least as strong as rosemary

          1. Vinny Grette says:

            I’ve never met a bay leaf yet that had any taste… next time I’m in France, I’ll check that out 🙂

          2. My French Heaven says:

            They are very fragrant here…

  9. Kate says:

    Merci pour la belle recette – pourtant il serait sympathique d’avoir la température pour le four aussi en degrés celsius – à moins que votre site soit reservé à vos chers amis des States?

    1. My French Heaven says:


  10. elsonsequeira says:

    Like always, looks lovely Stephane 🙂 How have you been

    1. My French Heaven says:

      I’ve been fine. How about you? Just came back from the States. No need to tell you it was a food fest for me… I do love those ribs and burgers!!! 😉 🙂

      1. elsonsequeira says:

        Im good too mate… Im sure you had fun visiting the states… 🙂 hope all is good otherwise 🙂

  11. PotSoup says:

    Beyond Scrumptious! And that’s just by looking t a photo.

    1. My French Heaven says:

      It is my favorite dish!! 😉

  12. Looks superb. I’ll have to try it especially with the olives…I think olives are delicious and most flavorful. Thanks for sharing.


    1. My French Heaven says:

      You can also stuff your chicken with fresh thyme 😉

      1. Awesome! Thanks for sharing.


        1. My French Heaven says:

          You are most welcome!

  13. Eliza B says:

    Agreed, nice chicken makes everything better. My grandmother, who does not splurge on much, extolls the virtues of a nice, organic chicken for making everything from stock to a fancy roasted dish. The first time I had chicken from a farmer who grew, fed, and butchered his chickens all by himself, it was life changing. Ahh I love food. Thanks for a beautiful post!

    1. My French Heaven says:

      Absolutely right Eliza! There is nothing like organic produce; both for taste and health… People need to be reminded of that.

  14. daniellajoe says:

    I love the taste of real chicken lol I need to try this recipe 🙂

    1. My French Heaven says:

      Please do Daniella!!!

  15. I love the idea of combining the flavours of chicken and the nutty green olives Stephane. Just a question though – do you put some of the olives into the chicken along with the spices and then the remainder around the chicken later? And 480F – do you keep the temperature this high all the way through the cooking?

    1. My French Heaven says:

      Yes, I keep it that high, but I check on it often. As for the olives, I sometimes stuff the chicken with it, but then I have to take them out about 10 minutes before the end and place them around the bird so they soak up some of the gravy…

      1. Ahhhh – right, I’ve got it! 🙂

  16. Vicki (from Victoria A Photography) says:

    Looks absolutely delicious. I never would have thought of putting olives inside a chicken before.
    (and I agree with you about the free range. Apart from giving the chickens happier lives, you don’t get those enormous pockets of fat in free range chickens).
    I’m a big fan of black olives – we get several varieties in the local market deli here in Melbourne.

    I also like lemon verbena leaves pushed under the breast skin of a roast chicken, with a lemon cut in half tucked into his insides. In fact, I’ve got roast chicken for dinner tomorrow night and I might just do the lemony thing with it.

    1. My French Heaven says:

      I’ve never tried with black olives, but it might be nice to combine your lemon chicken recipe with black olives from the French Riviera…

  17. Steve says:

    Off to New Orleans for three days of work, but this will be my week-end “recovery” dish.

    1. My French Heaven says:

      Oh have some BBQ shrimps at Brennans in my honor. New Orleans is such a great place for foodies… I wish I was there with you. We’d have such a great time. Our bellies would explode though… I just came back from the States and brought lots of Cajun seasonning back (can’t find it here…)

  18. Amanda says:

    This looks so so good. I may have to do this tonight. I love olives. It’s simple enough for a weeknight too!

    1. My French Heaven says:

      Simple and delicious. My kind of dish 😉 🙂

  19. The green olives with the chicken sound like a winner combination…thanks for sharing!

    1. My French Heaven says:

      You are most welcome dear Laila!

  20. Conor Bofin says:

    Lovely recipe. Lovely photos. 100% on the chicken. It is very difficult / very, very expensive to source such birds here.
    This is delicious,

    1. My French Heaven says:

      It is getting harder here as well. I’ve been trying to find a farmer who’d kill the birds just for me so I can get the blood for my coq au vin. It’s just that I’m worried about the hygiene of it all and plucking the feathers is not my idea of a fun activity… 😉

  21. ladyredspecs says:

    Mmmm my death row dish, crisp roast chicken, organic, free range, roasted whole in the charcoal BBQ. Now I just have to roast a chicken for dinner!!!!!

    1. My French Heaven says:

      Your death row dish?! I LOVE IT 😉 🙂

  22. Trini says:

    Everything about this dish looks perfect! Looks and sounds completely satisfying and delicious.. thank you for the inspiration 🙂

    1. My French Heaven says:

      Satisfying is the right word. My version of soul food 😉 🙂

  23. That looks absolutely delicious – I’m a big fan of olives too.

    1. My French Heaven says:

      Thanks! Try it and let me know what you think. The olives have to be really good quality though…

  24. You’re right – nothing beats roast chicken!

    1. My French Heaven says:


  25. Karie Engels says:

    Reblogged this on and commented:
    Another masterpiece from My French Heaven…take some time and visit several of the posts on their site when you read the remainder of this piece. – Karie

    1. My French Heaven says:

      Thanks so much for the reblog and sweet comment Karie!!

      1. Karie Engels says:

        You are so very welcome! It is a mesmerizing post 🙂

  26. Dina says:

    Now that is what a call a real tasty chicken dish, mmmmmhhh with olives, the pure sight of ot makes my mouth water. Great post and excellent recipe, Stephane! I look forward to trying it out.
    Best regards from the Rhine Valley

    1. My French Heaven says:

      Let me know how you like it Dina! 🙂

  27. Looks amazing! Have to try this recipe next. I love your recipe posts!

    1. My French Heaven says:

      Thanks so much! I hope you enjoy it. Do make sure you use tasty olives and none of the crap they sell in cans… 🙂

  28. Yum!! It’s lunch time but I have no chicken. 😦


    1. My French Heaven says:

      Oh noooooo! I’m so sorry. I feel like the devil tempting you like this… That’s OK, have one of those incredible Chicago pizzas. That will hit the spot 😉

      1. I have to admit I prefer thin-crust pizza, preferably made in a wood-burning oven, but… 🙂

        1. My French Heaven says:

          Oh stop it! It’s almost dinner time here and I’m starving! 😉 We are such foodies aren’t we J?

          1. We are and thank goodness for that! Here’s what I may have for lunch, my own little creation: chickpeas or black beans on the bottom topped with chopped, marinated artichoke hearts, topped with chopped avocado, sprinkled with some of the marinade. Easy, delicious and healthy.

          2. My French Heaven says:

            Oh stop it. I’m having chicken soup and a piece of fruit…:(

  29. Looks fabulous, Stephane! Love love love green olives 🙂

    1. My French Heaven says:

      Oh me too! Sometimes I eat them like candy in front of the TV 🙂

      1. Leilani says:

        Same, here. I even like the seeded ones. I savor them longer. Beautiful chicken! I could eat roast chicken every day. Especially if it looked like this.

        1. My French Heaven says:

          Roast away my dear Leilani!

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