Smoked Paprika Roast Chicken

This paprika roasted chicken gets a smoky-sweet kick from smoked paprika (pimentón) and a glaze of lemon juice and honey. It’s an easy recipe you can pull off on a weeknight or lazy weekend.

Plate of Smoked Paprika Roasted Chicken with Green Beans, Surrounded by a Table Setting with Glasses, Table Napkins, and More Plates of Chicken

Simply Recipes / Michelle Becker

I first experienced smoked paprika on a trip to New Zealand several years ago in a sweet potato soup. My host laughed as my eyes lit up with "Wow, what's in this?!" At the time, smoked paprika could only be found in specialty stores or Penzeys.

Soon after though, McCormick started selling it and promoting it as a spice, so it's much easier to come by, and we are always looking for an excuse to cook with it.

What Is Smoked Paprika and Why Use It?

If you've never used it, smoked paprika is to regular paprika what chipotle powder is to red chile powder. I like to think of it as the flavor of my favorite barbecued potato chips.

The following recipe we've adapted from one in a free magazine by our local Raley's grocery store. The flavor of this chicken is terrific, well worth seeking out this spice if you don't already have some. Do you use smoked paprika in your cooking? If so, please let us know your favorite uses for it in the comments.

Chicken with Paprika on a Platter

Simply Recipes / Michelle Becker

What Is Spanish Paprika?

Spanish paprika, also known as smoked paprika (or pimentón in Spain), is essential to the Spanish pantry and a useful addition to your pantry, too. It's believed Christopher Columbus brought peppers from Mexico to Europe. Families in Extremadura, Spain cultivated the peppers and dried them in smokehouses, imparting a smoky flavor before grinding them into a powder.

There are three varieties of Spanish paprika: dulce, or sweet paprika; agridulce, or medium-hot paprika; and picante, or hot paprika. Find smoked Spanish paprika in the grocery store spice aisle or online at The Spice House or The Spanish Table.

Add smoked paprika to all sorts of foods like beef chili, taco meat seasoning, meatloaf, or BBQ sauce. Sprinkle a few dashes on popcorn, eggs, or hummus to add a little smoky flavor.

What to Serve With Roast Chicken

From the Editors Of Simply Recipes

Smoked Paprika Roast Chicken

Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 75 mins
Total Time 85 mins
Servings 4 servings

If using salted butter, use only one teaspoon of salt in the rub, not two.

It's not necessary at all to truss (tie) this chicken; but if you'd like to, read our how-to: How To Truss a Chicken.


  • 1 (4- to 5-pound) whole roasting chicken

  • 2 tablespoons smoked paprika

  • 2 tablespoons melted unsalted butter

  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper

  • 4 tablespoons honey

  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice


  1. Preheat the oven:

    Preheat the oven to 325°F.

  2. Dry the chicken:

    Pat the chicken dry thoroughly with paper towels.

  3. Mix the butter and seasonings and spread over chicken:

    Mix together the paprika, melted butter, garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Spread over the entire surface of the chicken and place the chicken in a shallow baking pan.

    Seasoned Smoked Paprika Chicken on a Baking Tray

    Simply Recipes / Michelle Becker

  4. Heat the honey and lemon juice:

    In a small pot, heat the honey and lemon juice until the honey fully dissolves. Remove from the heat and set aside.

    Pot of Honey and Lemon on Stove for Smoked Paprika Chicken Recipe

    Simply Recipes / Michelle Becker

  5. Bake:

    Bake for approximately 1 hour to 1 hour and 15 minutes. Baste with the lemon-honey mixture after 35 minutes, and then every 15 minutes after that. You may need to adjust total cooking time depending on how big your chicken is.

    The bird is done when the juices run clear (not pink) when a knife tip is inserted into both the chicken breast and thigh, about 165°F.

    Add more salt and pepper to taste.

    Did you love the recipe? Leave us stars below!

    Chicken with Smoked Paprika Basted with a Pastry Brush

    Simply Recipes / Michelle Becker

    Thermometer Poked in Paprika Chicken to Get Internal Temperature

    Simply Recipes / Michelle Becker

    How to Make Smoked Paprika Roasted Chicken

    Simply Recipes / Michelle Becker

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
1336 Calories
94g Fat
21g Carbs
98g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 1336
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 94g 120%
Saturated Fat 29g 143%
Cholesterol 503mg 168%
Sodium 1190mg 52%
Total Carbohydrate 21g 8%
Dietary Fiber 1g 5%
Total Sugars 18g
Protein 98g
Vitamin C 15mg 74%
Calcium 70mg 5%
Iron 9mg 48%
Potassium 1222mg 26%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.