There’s more than one way to roast a chicken. Of course, you can stick it in the oven in a pan or rack, but there’s actually a better way to go about it, especially if you want it crispy—the vertical roaster.
It might not look like much, but a vertical roaster will make your chicken, quail or turkey taste infinitely better. Plopping chicken on the apparatus so that the bird is completely upright will help it cook evenly, so you’ll end up with browner, crispier final product. Plus, you won’t have to tie the bird up or turn it while it’s cooking like you would with a pan or rack.
Most vertical roasters are made out of metal or clay. But you’ll want to carefully consider which material best suits your cooking style before purchasing. It’s worth shelling out for a good one, too, as a flimsy roaster may cause your chicken to capsize in the oven. Here are four that are built to last.
1. Emile Henry Chicken Roaster
Emile Henry’s vertical roaster is a high-quality ceramic tool that can be used in the oven or on the grill. Manufactured in France, its glaze is scratch-resistant and can withstand temps of over 900 degrees Fahrenheit, so you won’t have to worry about treating it too delicately. It’s even dishwasher safe, which makes cleaning easy. And, should anything ever happen to it, the vertical roaster comes with a 10-year warranty.
Pros: A high-quality roaster that can withstand very high temperatures.
Cons: Bright red color may not be for everyone.
2. Fox Run Vertical Chicken Roaster
Most vertical roasters are only about 6 inches tall—Fox Run’s is 7.5. That might sound like an inconvenience at first, but it will actually allow you to cook larger poultry than other roasters. Plus, it’s made of nonstick iron, so you’ll never have to worry about your chicken coming undone after it’s been cooked.
Pros: Capable of cooking larger poultry.
Cons: You’ll have to buy a separate pan component to roast veggies with it.
3. Norpro Vertical Roaster
Not all roasters are easy to store away once you’re done crisping your chicken. Larger apparatuses meant for turkeys, in particular, can be a real pain. Not so for Norpro’s stainless-steel roaster, which can accommodate poultry of up to six pounds, but can come apart for easy storage. The pan, which is great for roasting vegetables while in the oven, easily disassembles from the wires where the turkey is mounted. Plus, it’s dishwasher safe, adding to the hassle-free appeal.
Pros: An affordable roaster that’s great for beginners.
Cons: Because it’s made of two separate components, it’s not as sturdy as other vertical roasters.
4. Staub Vertical Roaster
Straub knows a thing or two about making quality cookware—and its vertical roaster proves the point again. Made of cast iron with a gray enamel finish, it’s a sturdy tool that will last for many years. It works well in the oven, too, as it’s capable of withstanding temperatures of up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit, and is made with a rough texture that facilitates browning. Because of the craftsmanship that goes into every piece, each is one-of-a-kind.
Pros: Made of cast iron, so it will last a lifetime.
Cons: Can’t accommodate large poultry like turkey or quail.