Roasted Whole Duck

Roasted Whole Duck


  • 1 Maple Leaf Farms Whole Duck (5-6 lbs.), defrosted
  • Boiling Water
  • 1 Tbsp. Kosher Salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp. Freshly Ground Black Pepper
  • 1 tsp. Paprika
  • 1 Orange, cut in quarters
  • 1 head Garlic, paper removed and top trimmed
  • 2 Celery Stalks, cut into 2″ pieces


Prepare the Duck

Make sure duck is thoroughly defrosted, if frozen. (Defrost in refrigerator for 2-3 days.) Start a large pot of water (deep enough to submerge a whole duck) on the stove, bringing to a rolling boil. Preheat oven to 425F.

Remove duck from bag. Remove orange sauce packet (if included), giblets from interior. Save giblets for making stock. Remove excess fat from body cavity and neck. Pat duck dry. With a large sharp fork, prick the skin all over (approach at an angle) being careful not to pierce the meat (if meat is pierced, it will dry out). Carefully put the duck in the pot of boiling water; boil for 10 minutes. This will help render out some of the fat. Remove duck and let cool. Pat duck dry.

Marinate the Duck

Mix the salt, pepper and paprika. Rub the duck inside and out with the spice mixture. Place the duck on a rack in a roasting pan breast-side up. Stuff the orange quarters, whole head of garlic (top trimmed) and cut celery pieces into the cavity of the duck. Fold the neck skin under, covering the cavity. Secure with a skewer.

Cooking the Duck

Place the roasting pan in the oven. After 15 minutes, lower the oven temperature to 350F. After 45 minutes, remove duck from oven. Remove any fat that may have collected in the bottom of the roasting pan.

Carefully turn duck over, place back on rack in roasting pan, and return to oven for 35 minutes.

At the end of the 35 minutes, remove duck from oven, remove any fat that may have accumulated, and carefully turn duck back over so breast side faces up. Return to oven.

If you have a 2.5kg duck, cook for another 15 minutes (total cooking time should add up to about 22 minutes per pound).

Be careful not to overcook. The internal temperature should be 180F at the thickest part of the leg and thigh joint. Remove duck from oven.

Transfer duck to a cutting board and let stand 15 minutes. Remove oranges and celery from cavity and throw away. Remove head of garlic; roasted head of garlic can be used as a great spread for bread.

Carve duck and serve.

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