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Macedonian Spiced Chicken

A close-up of a tray of Macedonian spiced chicken with pieces of chicken and onion slices.
Macedonian spiced chicken livens up your everyday chicken by marinating it in a blend of paprika, cinnamon, cayenne, and garlic before roasting it all on a bed of sliced onions. Smoky, a little spicy, and outstandingly juicy, this chicken dish will become a cool-weather favorite.
Katerina Nitsou

Prep 15 mins
Cook 35 mins
Total 1 hr 50 mins
4 servings
530 kcal


  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon paprika*
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 (3 to 4 pound) whole chicken cut into serving-size pieces
  • 2 medium (1 lb) yellow onions cut into wedges
  • 4 to 6 whole garlic cloves peeled


  • In a large bowl, whisk together oil, salt, paprika, cinnamon, and cayenne to make a marinade.
  • To a large bowl, add chicken, onions, and garlic. Pour marinade into a bowl and toss by hand, making sure all of the pieces are evenly coated. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  • Preheat oven to 400°F (200°C).
  • In a 9- by 13-inch (23- by 33-cm) baking dish or clay baker, arrange onions and garlic in a single layer. Place chicken pieces, skin side up, on top of onions. Roast, uncovered, until chicken is fully cooked and registers 165°F (74°C) on an instant-read thermometer, 30 to 35 minutes.
  • Switch oven to broil and cook, watching carefully, until the chicken skin is crisped, 3 to 4 minutes. Serve immediately.


*What kinds of paprika are there?

At its most basic, paprika is made from dried, sweet red peppers.  The taste will depend on the flavor of the peppers used--fruity, mild, bitter, or hot. If a recipe doesn't specify what kind to use, either use one that's just labeled paprika or one that's labeled sweet paprika. 
The 2 other types, smoked and hot, are just that and should be used specifically for those attributes. Smoked paprika comes from red peppers that have been smoked over wood fires for days before being ground into a powder. It generally comes from Spain and can be called Spanish pimenton. Hot comes from Hungary and adds a hot, peppery kick to food. You can sub sweet paprika with a touch of cayenne or Aleppo pepper, but subbing in smoked paprika isn't recommended.