Brown Sugar and Orange Glazed Chicken

Delicious and easy to make this orange glazed chicken is bound to be a hit. This roasted chicken is made with simple ingredients that will make a great meal for the whole family. 

I love a roasted chicken. One of the reasons I love it so much is because I don’t have to do very much work and it feeds the whole family. What makes this special is the wonderful glaze that goes on top right before you take it out of the oven. This is one of those recipes that is easily doubled but you don’t increase the cooking time which makes it great for big families or those that love meal prep. Even with leftovers this chicken makes a great addition to salad or all kinds of other dishes. 

In this recipe

This recipe is really broken down into three major portions. The chicken and fruit and veggie bed, the seasoned orange butter, and the orange glaze. There are oranges in every step of the recipe. If using fresh oranges you can make this with 6-8 large oranges depending on how juicy they are. By zesting one of the oranges that is used for juicing you will have all of the necessary components.

My only suggestion is that if you are not going to squeeze your own oranges stay away from juice made from concentrate. It will make the glaze incredibly sweet. 

Ingredients for orange glazed chicken on a cutting board
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Slice it up

When making the bed of onions and oranges you want to make sure that they are thick enough they won’t break down when they cook. You don’t need to slice the onions into quarters or halves. All you want to do is punch out the individual rings to layer with the oranges. I like the alternate layers of each. Don’t worry if it looks like they will take up the whole cast iron skillet. Once they start cooking they will soften and the mound will shrink drastically. 

slices of orange and onions on a cast iron skillet
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buttered chicken in a cast iron skillet
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baked orange glazed chicken in a cast iron skillet
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Butter it up

You really want to make sure that the butter has had time to soften. To get the best coverage you will want nice and soft butter. A tip to make sure that the butter just doesn’t slide off of the chicken is to make sure that it is dry before you spread it. You only need to take a couple of paper towels and dry off the while chicken.

Then place the chicken upside down on the bed of onions and oranges and cover then bottom. Once the bottom is coated turn it over and get the rest of the chicken also making sure to put some under the skin. 

Whole chicken on a bed of orange and onions in a cast iron skillet
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Making orange glazed chicken

The glaze only takes about 5 minutes to make as you don’t want it to be really thick once you add it to the chicken. You want the consistency to be similar to barbeque sauce. It is important however to not add the glaze too soon when baking. You want to wait until it is just about done or the inside reaches about 155-160F or around 68C. This will keep the glaze from scorching in the oven. Then once it is out of the oven hit it with another layer of glaze.

If you want a sauce to pour over the chicken afterwards then heat the juice from the pan with the rest of the glaze if there is any left and use as a gravy.

orange glazed chicken cooling in a skillet
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Looking for other roasted chicken recipes?

orange glazed chicken in a cast iron skillet
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Brown Sugar and Orange Glazed Chicken

A whole roasted chicken in a brown sugar and orange glaze with ginger and soy sauce.
5 from 11 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 8 servings
Calories 371 kcal


  • Cast iron skillet or roasting pan
  • Heavy bottomed sauce pan
  • Spatula
  • Pastry brush


  • 4 pound whole chicken
  • 3 oranges sliced
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 red onion sliced

Flavored butter

  • ½ cup butter unsalted, softened
  • 1 tablespoon ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest zest from 1 orange
  • ½ tablespoon salt

Orange glaze

  • 1 cup orange juice fresh squeezed
  • cup brown sugar packed
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons chili oil
  • ½ tablespoon cornstarch
  • ½ tablespoon ground ginger


  • Preheat the oven to 400°F, 200°C, or gas mark 6.
  • Place the onion and orange slices around the bottom of the pan in alternating layers. Then pour in the chicken broth.
  • Combine the butter, salt, pepper, garlic powder, and orange zest in a mixing bowl. Spread the butter mixture over the entire chicken making sure to get some until the skin around the breasts and thighs.
  • While the chicken is cooking add all of the glaze ingredients to a saucepan. Over medium high heat, bring the ingredients to a boil and let the glaze start to thicken about 2 minutes after it starts boiling. Set aside.
  • Place the chicken on the orange and onion slices and bake for 45 minutes uncovered. Spoon the juices over the whole chicken and cover with aluminum foil. Bake for another 30 minutes basting every 10-15 minutes. When the chicken has reached a temperature of 155°F/68°C then coat the chicken with the glaze and cook for another 5-7 minutes. Make sure the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165°F/74°C.
  • Remove from the oven and add another coating of the orange glaze.


Serving: 1servingCalories: 371kcalCarbohydrates: 22gProtein: 22gFat: 22gSaturated Fat: 6gPolyunsaturated Fat: 4gMonounsaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 0.2gCholesterol: 87mgSodium: 786mgPotassium: 440mgFiber: 2gSugar: 17gVitamin A: 377IUVitamin C: 45mgCalcium: 55mgIron: 2mg
Nutrition Disclaimer*
Keyword Brown Sugar, Glazed, Whole Chicken
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
orange glazed chicken pinterest photo
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11 thoughts on “Brown Sugar and Orange Glazed Chicken”

  1. 5 stars
    This brown sugar and orange glazed chicken is a new family favorite. This dish bursts with flavor and I will definitely make this again. Served it with your Herb Roasted Melting Potatoes. 10/10!

  2. 5 stars
    Very successful recipe. The flavor is wonderful and it’s easy to make. I made this orange glazed chicken with some baked vegetables (potatoes, onions and broccoli) and it was a fantastic meal. Thanks for sharing!

  3. 5 stars
    Sounds delicious…love the sweet and savoury combo. The glaze sounds perfect! Thank you for this weeknight dinner idea..I know the family will love it!

  4. Wow, this looks beautiful and so easy! A great showstopper meal for any occasion. Thanks for the tips on fresh vs concentrate OJ…getting my cast iron out this weekend to try this 🙂

  5. 5 stars
    We absolutely loved this brown sugar and orange glazed chicken. I served it with mashed potatoes and green beans and it was by far the star of the meal. The meat was perfectly juicy and the glaze to die for. Thanks for a great recipe.

  6. 5 stars
    This chicken was absolute perfection! The meat was so tender and juicy and that glaze, oh my. It added such a special touch.

5 from 11 votes (2 ratings without comment)

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