A close up of food on a cutting board
November 16, 2023
A close up of food on a cutting board

Brain Healthy Ingredients: Chicken, Nuts

Serves: 4-6

Many people are surprised to hear that chicken has brain health benefits. But chicken is a great dietary source of vitamins B6 and B12, as well as choline—all of which play an important role in brain health and neuroprotection.

In general, when you roast or stew meat in the oven, aim to cook it at a low temperature for longer. Result? Succulent meat!


  • ¼ cup butter, divided
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 tsp ground allspice
  • 1/3 cup basmati rice
  • 1/3 cup pecans, chopped
  • 2 Tbsps pine nuts
  • ½ cup sultanas (golden raisins)
  • ½ cup + 2/3 cup chicken stock, divided
  • 1 whole 5 lb chicken
  • ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • ½ tsp salt


  1. Put 2 tablespoons butter into a large frying pan and melt it over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for 5 minutes until the onion is translucent and soft. Stir in the allspice.
  2. Add the rice and nuts to the pan, and then cook for 2-3 minutes over medium-high heat. Add the sultanas, ½ cup of the chicken stock and ¼ cup of water. Bring to boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 8-10 minutes, until the water is absorbed. Set aside to cool.
  3. Preheat the oven to 285 degrees F. Rinse the cavity of the chicken with cold water and pat dry inside and out with paper towels.
  4. Spoon cooled stuffing into the cavity. Truss the chicken with string, then place in a deep baking dish. Rub salt and pepper into the skin with your fingertips.
  5. Melt remaining 2 tablespoons of butter and pour over the chicken, then add remaining 2/3 cup stock to the pan. Roast for 2 hours and 30 minutes, basting every 30 minutes with juices from the pan.
  6. Increase the oven’s temperature to 350 degrees F, and cook for 30 minutes more to brown the chicken thoroughly.