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Whole Chicken Delivery or Pickup

The Instacart guide to whole chicken

About whole chicken

A whole chicken makes an excellent meal for a family, but variations exist when discussing whole chickens for sale in your local grocery store. You'll find whole chickens commonly labeled as broilers, fryers, and roasters. Less common varieties include stewing chickens, capons, and roosters. Telling the difference isn't as simple as the names may suggest, particularly when considering many recipes and chefs use the terms broiler, fryer, and roaster interchangeably. The reason comes down to size more often than the best use. Sometimes a recipe calls for a fryer chicken, but the directions say to roast it because it wants you to choose a particular size of chicken.

Broilers are chickens between six to eight weeks old and weigh up to 2.5 pounds. Fryers are also six to eight weeks old but larger, weighing in at 2.5 to 3.5 pounds. Roasters are chickens that are under eight months old and weigh between 3.5 and 5 pounds. The less common stewing chickens are over 10 months old, usually hens, and weigh between 5 and 7 pounds. Capons are even less common, but they are castrated males that weigh between 6 and 8 pounds. Roosters are more common than capons. These are un-castrated males that weigh between 6 and 8 pounds.

Many consumers don't purchase a whole chicken except to cook it whole as a meal. A whole chicken will usually come with the gizzards, organs, and neck neatly packaged and stuffed inside the chicken's hollowed-out chest cavity. New chefs have made the mistake of unwittingly leaving these inside the bird when cooking, only to realize their mistake afterwards. Most people today don't bother eating these extra pieces, yet they can make an excellent addition to your stuffing or gravy.

Whole Chicken Near Me

Buy your favorite whole chicken online with Instacart. Order whole chicken from local and national retailers near you and enjoy on-demand, contactless delivery or pickup within 2 hours.

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FAQs About Whole Chicken

You need to know how much chicken you need, either by following a recipe or the number of people you intend to feed. Estimate a half-pound per person of edible meat. A whole 6-pound chicken will have around 3 to 4 pounds of meat. Therefore, you should buy a whole chicken that weighs about the same as the number of people you intend to feed. Purchasing a slightly larger chicken is better than getting one too small.

The whole chicken typically comes packaged from the purveyor, not the grocer. These Cryovac packages have a longer shelf life than chicken portioned and packaged by your grocer. In the Cryovac package, the whole chicken can last up to two to three weeks. Once opened, the chicken should be cooked within one to three days. If your whole chicken has any gray or off-color tint, you should avoid using it as this can indicate age and possible spoilage.

Old prevailing wisdom had you wash your chicken, but modern science has proven that you don't need to before cooking. As long as you bring the internal temperature of a cooked whole chicken to 165 degrees Fahrenheit or higher, you have no risk of foodborne illness. Today, experts agree that washing your whole chicken before cooking can increase the risk of certain types of bacteria being spread, transferred through splashing and contact with your hands.
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