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Whole roast duck arranged with cranberries and pomegranates on a serving platter.

Roast Duck with Maple Glaze

Roast Duck with Maple Glaze has crispy skin and juicy meat. The sweet flavors from maple syrup and fruit juice complement the taste of rich duck meat. A whole roast duck is an easy yet impressive main dish for your next special occasion or holiday dinner.

Course Dinner, Main Dish
Cuisine American
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours 30 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 40 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 1510 kcal
Author Tara Leung


  • 1 (5 pound) white pekin duck (aka Long Island duck)
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup pomegranate or cranberry juice (or juice blend)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place some type of roasting rack in a large roasting pan. You just need something to keep the duck off the bottom of the roasting pan where the fat drippings will collect. (I used the steamer insert from my Instant Pot. Leave the sides out to easily lift the duck out of the pan later.)

  2. Remove any giblets from duck cavity and save for another use or discard. Pat duck dry with paper towels inside and outside. Rub salt, pepper, and paprika all over the outside of the duck. Run a knife diagonally over the skin over the breast to score it in a crisscross pattern, being careful not to cut all the way through the skin. This will help the fat render (meaning change from solid form to liquid form) as it cooks. Score the skin over the thighs and anywhere else there are thick areas of fat. (See photos for illustration.) Tie the legs together with cooking twine. Place the duck over your improvised or real roasting rack, breast side up.

  3. Roast duck for 1 hour. Remove from oven. Carefully remove rendered fat from roasting pan. You may want to transfer the duck to a plate first and then pour out the fat.

  4. Turn the duck over breast side down and roast for an additional 45 minutes. Remove fat from roasting pan again.

  5. Turn the duck breast side up again. Mix maple syrup and juice together in a small bowl. Brush half of the mixture over the duck. Roast for 15 minutes.

  6. Remove from oven. Brush remaining glaze over the duck. Roast for 15 minutes.

  7. Check if duck is cooked through. Duck should reach in internal temperature of 165 degrees, between the thigh and the breast. If your duck needs more time, check again in 10-15 minutes. Let rest 10 minutes before carving.

Recipe Notes

Most grocery stores sell whole duck like this frozen. It takes at least 48 hours to fully defrost a frozen duck in the fridge, but I would leave 3 days if possible to be on the safe side.