Rotisserie chicken has saved more than one of us when looking for a weeknight dinner option that is quick and tasty. Even when they have a bad reputation of being way too bronzy and past their prime time, this pre-cooked chicken option can turn into a delicious and convenient meal when we find the right one. However, it might take a good eye to spot the juiciest bird at the grocery store and learning what to look for beyond the plastic container. Here are some useful tips you might want to keep in mind next time you buy a rotisserie chicken.
A rule of thumb we should follow when we are shopping for rotisserie chicken is always picking the heaviest one. Sure, timestamps can give us an idea of just how long a chicken has been sitting under a heat lamp, but the most accurate way to pick up the freshest is by weighing it. The longer the bird is heated, the more juice will have evaporated when we buy it. Therefore, the heaviest chicken should be our pick, as it will be the juiciest one, too.
There will be times when we won’t be able to carry every chicken to find the heaviest one, and in those cases, we should go for the looks of the chicken. Even when it sounds like an obvious common-sense thing to do, looking for the prettiest bird available is an excellent move. Particularly, look for the one that looks evenly brown, and with taut skin. When the juices of the chicken evaporate under the heat lamps, the meat loses its color and it shrivels, too. So, if you find something that doesn’t appeal to your eye, leave it behind and follow your gut.
Every supermarket and grocery store have different standards, and while some will display their chickens as they cook, others tend to prepare their food inside their kitchens. Most of the times, when stores roast their birds where shoppers can see them, this means that they have fresh chicken for sale. This way we know we are not getting some sketchy bird that might have spent too much time under the heat. If a store doesn’t display their rotisserie, don’t be afraid to ask how often they restock their birds.
Now, the majority of us opts for buying pre-cooked rotisserie chicken because it offers a quick and tasty meal without having to go through the trouble of cooking it. However, even when we are buying this for time-saving reasons, we should try to avoid those who already come seasoned and choose plain chicken instead. The artificial flavors and seasoning stores use on their chicken usually gives a metallic, fake taste, so it is always best to season them ourselves, using fresh ingredients and staying away from over-salted flavors.