How to Roast a Capon

Updated February 21, 2017

A capon, or a castrated adult rooster, is a larger bird meant specifically for baking or roasting. While not as common as a whole chicken, you can purchase a capon from most grocers. A capon's meat is juicier and more flavourful than that of a normal chicken due to the hormone changes accompanying castration. Roasting is a popular method of preparing capon; it requires about 10 minutes of preparation time.

Preheat an oven to 191 degrees Celsius.

Rinse the capon in cool water and discard fat from within the body cavity. Pat dry with a paper towel and place into a roasting pan.

Combine 6 tbsp butter, 2 tbsp lemon zest, 1 tsp dried thyme, 1 tsp salt and 1 tsp black pepper in a small bowl. Stir until the butter mixture is a smooth consistency.

Rub the butter mixture over the outside of the capon, coating it in an even layer.

Place 4 quartered lemons into the body cavity of the bird and tie the capon's legs together with butcher's twine.

Cover the bird with a sheet of aluminium foil to retain the moisture and bake for one and a half hours.

Remove the pan from the oven and discard the aluminium foil. Tilt the capon to pour juices out of the body cavity. Leave retained juices in the roasting pan.

Allow the capon to sit for 20 minutes to cool before basting with the juices from the roasting pan. Carve the capon and serve while hot.


Allow leftover capon to come to room temperature before refrigerating to prevent bacterial growth.

Things You'll Need

  • 8.16kg capon
  • Paper towel
  • Roasting pan
  • 6 tbsp softened butter
  • 2 tbsp lemon zest
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • Small bowl
  • 4 quartered lemons
  • Butcher's twine
  • Aluminium foil
  • Baster
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