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Whole Roasted Chicken Takeout (NOT Portuguese!) in Toronto

Hi Guys,

Long time chowhounder here, but never posted a question.

I know where to get my Churrasco fix already, so I won't ask about that.

I'm looking for other tasty, whole roasted chicken for takeout, as the title says. It could be rotisserie, could be charcoal grill, could be flattened, deboned, boned.... it just has to taste good and be available for takeout.

Any suggestions?

In Brossard, a suburb of Montreal, there's a FANTASTIC grilled whole chicken for takeout from Papa's, an Afghani butcher shop that has a food counter as well. The chicken is as good as good Churrasco, but has an entirely different flavour, obviously.

I'm looking for something like that here in Toronto. Doesn't have to be Middle Eastern, it could be from any region in the world so long as it's tasty.

Any suggestions? I don't want to eat Churrasco so often that I get bored of the taste.



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  1. I love the chinese soy chicken at Gold Stone with onion ginger

    Hadley's makes amazing smoked chicken

    In my suit of armour now, I always loved the half bbq'd chicken at the Atrium on Bay location of Pickle Barrel - yea I know - but that location only - rocked some perfect bbq chicken. Been about a year for me but its probably still good.

    1 Reply
    1. re: justsayn

      Gold Stone's chicken was moist and tasty! Not strongly seasoned, but tasty nonetheless - not bland. And I'm of West Indian background, so I like my seasonings....

    2. I guess there is also Chickery or something like that - never been

      1. If you're craving a whole Afghani grilled chicken - there's an Afghani butcher shop on the Northwest corner of Albion and Islington. I can't remember the name - but they have a takeout counter inside as well.

        Haven't been in a couple years, but it was decent from what I remember. Worth checking out if you happen to be nearby.

        1. While it's not whole, tandoori chicken might be another relatively healthy alternative.

          Not sure if any Peruvian chicken places are operating in TO.

          1. Raby's on Overlea makes delish charcoal grilled chicken.

            Fresh & Wild at King/Spadina makes awesome whole chili garlic chicken. But you have to pop it in the oven yourself at home (so easy though and cooks quick as it's butterflied).

            9 Replies
            1. re: magic

              While I haven't tried the Fresh & Wild raw chicken you describe, I have enjoyed their meatballs you can pop in the oven. Reason for the post though, is to add a big BEWARE of their cooked rotisserie chickens as in my multiple experiences there are few worse - absolutely devoid of flavour. I think I once posted that I think they wash the chickens after they are cooked to make sure no flavour remains!

              1. re: justsayn

                The cook at home bird I had twice was pretty rad. Never had their cooked rotisserie chicken...

              2. re: magic

                I haven't been to Raby's since they stopped serving Indian and Pakistani food. That pissed me off.

                If you say it's good, I may have to check them out. We were going there once a week last year.

                1. re: pakmode

                  Seriously! Beau and I had a couple of terrific, even if they were delivery, meals from Raby's and now they don't do that?!?!? What's their slogan? "We do one thing well, but you can't have that."

                  1. re: pakmode

                    Yeah, Raby's' menu looks like something exploded, it can get quite confusing. All I know is I had a pretty sweet grilled chicken there. "Peri-Peri" they call it. Shawarma was damn good too.

                    And they sure did still have Indian/Pakistani menu items. They just also have 100 or so other totally random items as well.

                    But the quality still seemed pretty good last week.... :)

                      1. re: magic

                        We tried Raby's just before Christmas and got a half Peri-Peri chicken. It was inedibly dry and skin was beyond burnt! That was the only thing we tried for takeout and it was a serious disappointment. I find most supermarket chickens dried out, but this was even worse.

                        We were at Chick-Felay's in Brampton for an event and enjoyed their version of Peri-Peri much better.

                        It's been a while, but I also liked the smoked chicken at Stockyards.

                        1. re: mobirose

                          Hmm, well that sucks. The opposite of my experience.

                    1. I agree with most of the suggestions for Chinese joints - juicier (read: greasier, not always a sin my book), smokier, and usually they are less damage to the wallet.

                      Pusateri's. I have picked up roasted chicken from them twice now for last min dinners. Very moist and fairly priced.

                      Liberty Village Rotisserie. Unfortunately they are not very consistent. Some time in the summer last year, their chickens suddenly tasted very good. Love the herb rubs, the crispy skin, and leftover was great on sandwiches the next day. Haven't been back for months now. Other 'hounders please chime in.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: happycamper

                        The soy chicken at Gold Stone is steamed so there is no added oil/grease at all and it is super juicy and tender.

                      2. Sanagans Meat Locker in Kensington has an amazing rotisserie chicken!

                        4 Replies
                          1. re: childofthestorm

                            Sheesh!! Wish I'd read this yesterday. I was there and just picked up deli meats. : (

                            Next time...

                            1. re: Breadcrumbs

                              How's the salt level? Especially when compared to say, a roast chicken from Costco.

                              1. re: ascendance

                                I never had Costco chicken, but this chicken is not particularly salty or spicy (I mean all spices, not just pepper, when I say spicy). It is mildly spiced but tasty, certainly not particularly salty.

                        1. Surprised no one mentioned costco! Unfortunately you need a membership but its quite moist and flavourful to me

                          20 Replies
                          1. re: edfs72

                            Agreed. I was gonna mention it. It's the largest of the grocery store birds and cheapest too.

                            Two of those carcasses in my crock pot and I have great stock.


                              1. re: Helen

                                Some people seem to. I will admit they're on the salty side but it doesn't bother me at all.


                                1. re: Davwud

                                  Are the Costco chickens saltier than Swiss Chalet chickens?
                                  My last chicken from Loblaws (not a Beretta Farms chicken, just the ordinary $10.49 Loblaws BBQ chicken) was really salty and dried out.

                                  Have had ok chickens from Pusateri's in the past, but they were also on the salty side for a grocery store chicken. Has anyone bought a chicken from Bruno's lately?

                                  1. re: prima

                                    Swiss Chalet uses roughly half the salt of Costco. Of course that's without the dip. With an entire dip, Swiss Chalet's salt content is twice that of Costco. You may now select your level of hell.

                                    1. re: Googs

                                      Thanks Googs. I find SC salty, even without the sauce, so I'll skip the Costco chicken.

                                      1. re: prima

                                        That about ends it for me and Chalet Dipping Sauce Shooters.

                                        1. re: Googs

                                          He heh...I can relate. Do the exact same thing. It's the best part, for me.

                                    2. re: prima

                                      I have had a chicken from Bruno's lately (Saturday night) and I found it pretty tasty. Nothing to write home about but it was good. No complaints. It was 7.99 because I got it at the end of the day, so the price alone was great.

                                      The chicken was tiny. I like to think it's because it's not hopped up on roids, but it is more likely because the drugs it is hopped up on have stunted its growth and it's physically a perpetual teenager.

                                      Anyway, it wasn't salty. The skin was, but the chicken was fine. The brown meat was decidedly tastier than the white meat, as is expected, but it was fine.

                                      Funny enough the soy chicken from Gold Stone in Chinatown has tastier white meat than brown. That's a first.

                                      I'd get chicken at Bruno's again.

                                      1. re: mudrubble

                                        Love GS soy chicken so much! The onion ginger is the perfect condiment. Their bbq wings are great too but in limited supply I find.

                                      2. re: prima


                                        I tried to respond to you but it ended up down below, as a response to Helen's question. Basically, Bruno's was fine.

                                        1. re: mudrubble

                                          Thanks, mudrubble. That'll be my next grocery store chicken.

                                      3. re: Davwud

                                        I finally tried a Costco rotisserie chicken. I agree, it is on the saltier side, but I've found chickens at Swiss Chalet and Loblaws taste almost as salty as the Costco chicken. The Costco chicken I bought had less crispy skin than most rotisserie chickens I've purchased.

                                        I was pleasantly surprised by a Sobey's rotisserie chicken a few weeks ago, which I thought was a bit better than the other grocery store rotisserie chickens I've bought over the last year.

                                      4. re: Helen

                                        We do too Helen but I do a lot of home cooking and don't use a lot of salt so we've always suspected it was "us not them" that was the problem!

                                        1. re: Helen

                                          I suspect most people eating them get about 60% of their daily sodium intake from just the chicken. I can feel my mouth burning from here.

                                      5. re: edfs72

                                        The Beretta Farms roast chicken that they have at some Loblaws is quite good too.

                                        1. re: mariecollins

                                          And the one on Queens Quay uses the old-school real flame ovens as opposed to the Combi ovens. That + Rowe chicken = pretty damn good.

                                          1. re: mariecollins

                                            Have to say, I tried the Beretta at Queen/Portland and it was too dried out to eat. I will try again...thanks!

                                            1. re: justsayn

                                              I've only got it at Bayview / Moore and it's always been fine.

                                            2. re: mariecollins

                                              I tried the Beretta Farms roast chicken ($11.99) from Loblaws tonight. While the seasoning on the skin was quite salty, I found the Beretta chicken less salty and more moist than my last Loblaws BBQ chicken.

                                              I'm wondering if whether the chicken is dried out depends mostly on how long the chicken has been waiting to be purchased.

                                          2. Fiesta Farms makes rotisserie Rowe Farms chickens for $12.99 or $13.99 or something like that. Easy and delicious mid-week dinner. Not cheap, but where else can you get a quality roasted bird at a supermarket? I wish they used Rowe Farms birds at Churrasco on St. Clair.

                                            12 Replies
                                            1. re: acd123

                                              The Meat Department at Broadview and Danforth does a fantastic rotisserie chicken also. I believe it's $15. Great seasonsings and always juicy. We love it.

                                              You need to call first because its not always available, or sold out.

                                              1. re: acd123

                                                I had a Rowe Farms chicken bought from Rowe Farms for $30!!! (!!!) uncooked, butterflied. I cooked it at home and while it is impossible to say ANY chicken is worth $30, I am not at all disappointed at having tried it once.

                                                I've had better seasoned chicken, no question, but I have never had chicken with better tasting flesh, skin and fat. Yes, even the fat was tasty. The actual quality of the chicken flesh is unparalleled.

                                                Better seasoned, I'd think it would be unbeatable. I still have some left for lunch. I will call Fiesta Farms to see if they do indeed have Rowe Farm birds cooking and if they do, I suspect I shall devour such aforementioned birds.

                                                I will say that I don't know who can afford to pay $30 per bird, but if Fiesta Farms sells the same type of bird for $14-15..... I'm all in like Errol Flynn.

                                                1. re: mudrubble

                                                  That's crazy. Most of the organic chickens (not butterflied) I've bought over the last year have run $12-$16 for a small roaster.
                                                  I've noticed the roasted organic chickens tend to taste much better than the roasted conventional chickens, so I'm willing to pay more for an organic chicken, but not double. I don't think I'd spend $30 on an organic chicken, when I can get a Brome Lake duck for $20.

                                                  1. re: prima

                                                    Is this Brome Lake duck seasoned and/or cooked? And where might one find it available for purchase?

                                                    The Rowe Farm bird was actually $28 seasoned and butterflied. I just had it for lunch again, and again, I'm shocked at the quality of the bird's flesh.

                                                    I also called Fiesta Farms and they do use Rowe Farm birds, so I'm again in like Errol Flynn.....

                                                    1. re: mudrubble

                                                      I bought my Brome Lake duck at the London Masonville Loblaws. It wasn't seasoned or cooked. I've never seen any uncooked, seasoned whole ducks for sale. You could call your local Loblaws to see if they have any Brome Lake ducks in stock.

                                                      Glad you liked the Rowe Farm bird. How much did the $28 bird weigh?

                                                      1. re: prima

                                                        Hmm.... I don't remember. It was around 3 lbs, I remember that much. It wasn't a small bird, but it wasn't large either. It did have a good amount of meat on the bones though. It was priced by weight, so some were over $30. I have to say that the taste is still in my mouth. It was really a treat.

                                                        But Fiesta Farms on Christie just above Bloor rotisseries the same birds and sells them for 12.99 (I just called them - never tasted yet)! So why buy it from Rowe Farms at $28??

                                                        I asked the meat guy at Fiesta if there was a marked difference between their rotisserie prime birds ($8.99) their rotisserie Rowe birds ($12.99) and he said for his money, he would eat the Rowe Farms. I asked if there was anything tastier, and he said nothing already cooked but that the raw "Fenwood" birds might be even a cut above Rowe Farms! I will have to taste this to believe it, mind you.

                                                        That Rowe bird was a high point in chicken flesh in my life. The idea of making beer can chicken with a Rowe bird almost made me call in sick today and play Ferris Bueller.

                                                        1. re: mudrubble

                                                          Guess I'll have to splurge on a Rowe Farm bird, to see how it compares to the other [edit- Rowe Farms might just be conscientiously-farmed chickens] organic birds I've been buying.

                                                          1. re: prima

                                                            Last I looked, Rowe Farms critters are "conscientiously farmed", but are not certified organic. Please feel free to correct me if they've made any such claim in writing.

                                                            1. re: Googs

                                                              You know more about Rowe Farms than me, Googs. I haven't read anything apart from what's been written in this thread.

                                                              1. re: prima

                                                                The lady at the store made that distinction although she claimed that it was a higher standard than organic and included giving them toys to play with and strict measures on how many birds per cage and a bunch of other things. She was quite passionate. She claimed "free range" only meant that they are let out of cramped cages for a certain amount of time per day but spend most of their time in cages more cramped than "conscientiously farmed" birds, etc.

                                                                She was quite passionate about the subject.

                                                                Although this might just come down to apples and oranges, or even granny smith vs green delicious....

                                                                1. re: mudrubble

                                                                  Or unverifiable versus empirical.

                                                    2. re: prima

                                                      Right. Try The Butcher Shop at Kingston Road and Markham Road. They have amazing organic chickens at really fair prices as well as so much more delicious food.

                                                2. Wow! You guys are awesome! I have enough suggestions to last me quite a while! I don't know most of the places but you guys have been great in giving intersections and parts of town.

                                                  This is more feedback than I'd dared hope for! You have changed my life again and again, chowhound.

                                                  Happy new year!

                                                  1. Can I throw in the question about the origin and quality of the bird? Many of the places mentioned may be using birds raised in disgusting pens, where they are plugged with drugs and growth boosters. This would be the chicken you would be consuming in any restaurant that does not explicitly have a policy of sourcing otherwise. Don't mean to be depressing, but if we could find a place that does wonderful takeout chicken without the guilt - THAT would be great!

                                                    3 Replies
                                                      1. re: KitchenVoodoo

                                                        Happy chickens are tasty chickens! You should reread some of the suggestions. There seem to be a few well-sourced birds rotating around our city.

                                                        1. re: KitchenVoodoo

                                                          Yeah, check all that is said about Rowe Farms tasty fleshed birds above.....

                                                        2. Not served whole...but jerk chicken served out of the steel bbq drums on eglinton west is the best thing ever. Go to raps, and go late.

                                                          1 Reply
                                                          1. Definitely try the chicken at Stockyards at St. Clair and Christie. I believe it''s smoked and only available on Tuesdays, Fridays and Sundays for dinner. It's fantastic.

                                                            1. Anyone try the whole rotisserie chickens at Sanagan's Meat Locker? Any reports?

                                                              1 Reply
                                                              1. re: ascendance

                                                                Yep, further upstream in this thread:


                                                                Apparently, it's good. :)

                                                              2. I'd also suggest "The Chicken Place" on Willowdale Ave. just northeast of Yonge & Sheppard.
                                                                Excellent fire-roasted chicken, wings & fresh chicken-club sandwiches - all they do is chicken, so they do it right.
                                                                Baked potatoes & veggies are solid, fries are frozen, Wings are more T.O. style than Buffalo, but quite good.
                                                                Monday night is wing nite, with 4lbs for around $20 and Tuesday night is "family night" with a whole chicken, sides, sauce, and rolls for around $17. The dipping sauce is unusual tomato-herb-salty, people either love it or hate it, but chicken is amazing.
                                                                Take out & local delivery only, except for two tiny tables designed more for waiting for pick-up, than for dining.

                                                                1. Just a quick heads up - I tried both the Sanagan's Locker chicken and the Gold Stone chicken, both of which were tasty. Sanagan's is more traditional bbq and Gold Stone more traditional Chinese steamed chicken.

                                                                  To be honest, I would never have tried steamed chicken if not for this thread, so I'm glad I asked the question and I thank you guys for the responses!

                                                                  Gold Stone's chicken was not FULL of flavour but it had a solid flavour base of garlic and soy and it ranged from fine to absolutely tasty (depending on how close to the skin I was eating). The dipping oil/sauce they give with it made even the "fine" parts delicious. I will get again.

                                                                  Sanagan's was more traditional bbq, but thankfully tastes nothing like Churrasco (I love Churrasco but have had too much of it lately). It was moist, even in the breast, while simultaneously fully cooked all the way through. The flavour is great and even the breast wasn't bland.

                                                                  Neither of these was nearly as flavourful as Churrasco, but they both made some fine meals, let me tell you. I will have to try a bunch of the other recommendations, but I started with these two as they were both in the same area and central downtown so easy for me to reach.

                                                                  Thanks for all the suggestions. I'm glad so many people have the same question as me, and so many others have the answers.

                                                                  Bon Appetit!

                                                                  1. Whole Foods does a good roasted chicken - they usually have two kinds, BBQ and lemon and herb.

                                                                    1. Nortown once had good chicken. It has been many, many years for me. Anyone? For that matter so did Reginas, although quite expensive!

                                                                      What about Marche?

                                                                      1. When I need my rotisserie chicken fix, I go to a place called "The Q" on the queensway (near the 427). It's far to go, but I can't find better rotisserie in the city. The chicken is always fresh and plump, and perfectly cooked 9 times out of 10. It was the last bastion of St. Hubert in Ontario, and the owners didn't want to shut down when St. Hubert left Ontario - so they remained, and are serving much of the same menu as before. It's relatively cheap, quick, and delicious. Fries are never seasoned though, for some odd reason.

                                                                        Also, coincidentally, I had some chicken at Sanagans' (Kensington market) today. It was tasty and seasoned quite well, if not a little dry (and no gravy is on offer). Fries were outstanding (fresh cut, double cooked), and it was really inexpensive. Very friendly service too.

                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                        1. re: justxpete

                                                                          Good to know. I miss the St. Hubert that used to be located at Avenue Rd and Lawrence.

                                                                          1. re: prima

                                                                            It was a long time ago that they were in Ontario, but I feel like the supplier for the birds at The Q is better than what they were using for St Hubert.

                                                                        2. This is probably mentioned somewhere in the replies, but Barque on Roncesvalles offers a whole chicken for takeout..great place

                                                                          1. this may not last long:

                                                                            tho not whole nor roast, my fav grilled half chicken in the city is bamiyan kabob. nice spicing, and (usually) very moist breast meat. lately it hasnt been as good as previous visits but id still take it over all others.

                                                                            - khao san road

                                                                            1. The Meat Dept. on Danforth near Broadview roasts whole chickens (and sometimes just parts) several times a week, and they are delicious.


                                                                              You should call ahead because when they have them, they tend to go quickly!

                                                                              1. Taste of Beirut on Lawrence avenue east. He grills whole BBQ chicken on charcoal with fries. Best anywhere! Try the awesome garlic sauce