Oktoberfest Roast Chicken (Wiesn Hendl)

Wiesn Hendl, or Oktoberfest Roast Chicken, is one of the most popular dishes at the Oktoberfest in Munich. It is a whole chicken that is roasted over an open flame until the skin is crispy and the meat is cooked through. The chicken is then served with a side of bread and potato salad.

The history of the Wiesn Hendl dates back to the 19th century. The story goes that in 1885, a chicken salesman named Joseph Ammer was granted the first license to sell roast chicken at Oktoberfest. Ammer’s style of chicken was a hit with the festival-goers, and soon other vendors began selling them as well. Today, Wiesn Hendl is a staple of Oktoberfest with over 800,000 chickens sold (and devoured) each year. The chickens are typically sourced from local farms, and they are roasted over wood fire to give them their distinctive flavor.

German Wiesn Hendl -Oktoberfest Roast Chicken

Wiesn Hendl -Oktoberfest Roast Chicken

This whole chicken is traditionally roasted over an open flame until the skin is crispy and the meat is cooked through. This recipe allows cooks to recreate Wiesn Hendl's juicy meat and crispy skin in your own kitchen. Recreate the Oktoberfest experience by eating a half chicken with your hands and dipping it into Bavarian Susser Senf (mustard). Serve with a side of rye bread, German potato salad and, if it's your thing, lots of German beer.
5 from 2 votes
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Course: Lunch, Main Course, Street Food
Cuisine: Bavaria, German
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 25 minutes
Servings: 2
Author: My Hungry Traveler


  • Roasting pan
  • Rack
  • Small bowl


  • 3 lb Chicken, whole free range
  • 1 bunch Parsley
  • 2 tbsp Butter
  • 1 tbsp Vegetable oil
  • ¼ cup Dark beer
  • 2 tsp Kosher salt
  • 1 tsp Coarse black pepper
  • 1 tsp Paprika
  • ½ tsp Celery salt
  • ½ tsp Ground rosemary


  • Preheat oven to 350℉ (175℃). Rinse chicken inside and out. Pat dry.
  • Add butter, oil, and beer to a small bowl. Microwave until the butter is soft. Add spices and stir to combine. Rub chicken with mixture inside and out.
  • Place chicken on a rack set inside a roasting pan. Stuff parsley into the chicken. Roast uncovered, basting with remaining butter mixture and juices every 20 minutes. Chicken is done when it turns golden brown and reaches an internal temperature of 180℉ (85℃), about 1 hour and 15 minutes.
  • Remove chicken from oven and cut into 2 halves. Serve 1 half per person with potato salad, a slice of rye bread or a pretzel, and sweet Bavarian mustard for dipping.


Calories: 1274kcal | Carbohydrates: 15g | Protein: 172g | Fat: 53g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 14g | Monounsaturated Fat: 19g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 510mg | Sodium: 3542mg | Potassium: 1737mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 2758IU | Vitamin C: 41mg | Calcium: 156mg | Iron: 10mg

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