Roast Chukar

5 from 6 votes
Jump to Recipe

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

This is a lovely, simple chukar recipe for roast chukar, brined overnight to keep it juicy. This same recipe works with partridge, quail, small grouse and Cornish game hens.

The finished chukar recipe: two roasted chukars in a cast iron pan.
Photo courtesy of Shutterstock

Let me stress that while I designed this as a chukar recipe, a chukar is just another partridge, which is just another small cousin of the chicken. So your experience with chicken will come in handy.

Like chicken, chukars can get dry in a hurry. That’s why I advise brining the birds overnight before roasting. It will give you wiggle room in the roasting process without making the bird a desiccated mess.

You will, ideally, serve one chukar or similar bird per person, or two quail or woodcock, or maybe just one pheasant for two people. But a chukar is a great single serving game bird.

Obviously this is for a plucked chukar. If you skin your chukars, I don’t advise this recipe. Try using chukars in recipes like my pheasant and dumplings, or pound the breasts out into cutlets for wiener schnitzel, or make chukar stock, and then use the meat shredded off the carcasses to make a batch of chukar taquitos.

Back to this chukar recipe. You don’t have to brine, and I don’t anymore because I’ve roasted a lot of small game birds. The tradeoff is crispy skin; it’s harder to get that perfectly crisp skin with a brined bird, but an unbrined bird can dry out more easily.

Under no circumstances do you want the breast meat of a chukar or similar bird to get above 155F. This is fully cooked, but with a blush of pink. I prefer 150F. This is perfectly safe with wild birds; no one gets salmonella from wild chukars.

To be perfectly honest, my preferred method of cooking partridges, quail and chukars is to pan roast them. Here is my method for pan roasted chukar.

As for a sauce for this chukar recipe, it’s up to you. I really like this apple-based sauce with apple brandy and cider vinegar. But a traditional Cumberland sauce would be nice here, too.

The finished chukar recipe: two roasted chukars in a cast iron pan.
5 from 6 votes

Roast Chukar or Partridge

The sauce I chose to go with this recipe is an apple-based one; I like the combination of “chickeny” birds and apples. You make the sauce at the end, while the chukars are resting, so have everything ready to go before you get to that point. Serve this with polenta or mashed potatoes.
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 2 people
Author: Hank Shaw
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 35 minutes


  • 2 chukars or Hungarian partridges
  • Kosher salt
  • Celery stalks


  • 1/4 cup kosher salt
  • 4 cups water


  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons demi-glace, or 1 cup stock, boiled down by half
  • 3 tablespoons Calvados or other apple brandy
  • 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • Pinch of salt


  • Get your tap water as hot as it'll go and pour 4 cups of it over the salt. Stir to dissolve. Let cool to room temperature. Submerge the birds in the brine, cover and refrigerate for up to 8 hours.
  • Remove the partridges and pat them dry. Let them sit out at room temperature for 20 minutes, while you preheat the oven to 450°F. Because I often brine overnight, I sit the birds out uncovered in the fridge all day to dry. This helps a lot with crispy skin.
  • Stick a quarter of a lemon into each bird. Lightly salt the birds; they'll already be a little salty from the brine, so don't go overboard.
  • Get a cast-iron pan or other oven-proof pan and lay down the celery stalks — these are to keep the partridges up off the bottom of the pan. Roast in the oven for 20 to 25 minutes. Check for doneness with a thermometer. You want the thick part of the breast to be about 150 to 155°F.
  • Remove the birds to a cutting board to rest, then put the pan on the stove. Turn the heat on to medium and remove the celery. Remember it's hot, so use a mitt!
  • Melt the butter in the pan and sauté the shallots until the begin to brown. Add the remaining ingredients and stir well to combine. Cook down by half and turn off the heat.
  • Serve the sauce over mashed potatoes or polenta and under the chukars. I prefer a big white wine with this, like a Chardonnay or a white Cotes du Rhone.


Calories: 1113kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 162g | Fat: 43g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 30mg | Sodium: 386mg | Potassium: 1897mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 351IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 25mg | Iron: 35mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Tried this recipe? Tag me today!Mention @huntgathercook or tag #hankshaw!

You May Also Like

French Garlic Chicken

Classic French 40 clove garlic chicken, made with pheasant. This recipe features thighs, and works with chicken, pheasant, rabbit or partridge.

Wild Rice Salad

A fresh and bright wild rice salad recipe that mimics Crisp and Green’s “wild child” salad. I use grouse, wild rice and dried wild berries.

Spanish Quail with Paprika and Onions

A Spanish recipe for quail stewed with paprika and onions. You then strain off the liquid and serve that with pasta. it’s a great date night dish.

Green Chile Chicken Soup

A recipe for Southwestern style green chile chicken soup, with roasted green Hatch chiles, white beans, greens and a rich broth.

About Hank Shaw

Hey there. Welcome to Hunter Angler Gardener Cook, the internet’s largest source of recipes and know-how for wild foods. I am a chef, author, and yes, hunter, angler, gardener, forager and cook. Follow me on Instagram and on Facebook.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating


  1. Thank you very much for sharing the recipe. My son in-law and grandson went to a farm that sells all types of livestock goats, chickens, cows, rabbits, etc . for slaughtering to purchase. I bought a chukar (bird) which I was told is very healthy digestible and delicious. I found a delicious recipe on this site and will prepare and cook today. Unfortunately I only bought enough for myself not for my family

  2. This is great Recipe for birds. I wanted to ask you Hank do you have any Recipe for like cooking Chuckar with rice