With these pan-roasted chicken thighs, you get really really crispy skin, lots of flavor, and juicy and tender meat from bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs.
Ah, chicken thighs. Overlooked, underrated and crazy delicious if you ask me. And pan-roasted chicken thighs are just about as good as it gets. You need this recipe in your back pocket.
I used to think I was the only one who preferred chicken thighs to chicken breasts. But then, I posted this how to post on roasting chicken thighs and it was actually one of my first viral posts on the blog! I couldn’t believe it.
But what I realized is that most of us prefer chicken thighs, we just don’t know how to cook them, especially bone-in, skin-on. They got a bad wrap in the 90’s when everything with a little bit of fat was deemed evil. But, now that we’re coming out of that hole, chicken thighs are well on their way to making a comeback.
INGREDIENTS & KITCHEN TOOLS
Let’s dive into the simple yet delicious ingredients you’ll need to make my chicken thigh recipe! It is key for this recipe to get skin-on, bone-in chicken thighs (trust me on this one) and a handful of spices such as garlic powder, onion powder, smoked paprika, sage, and salt & pepper for the perfect seasoning blend.
You’ll want to preheat your oven to a high heat, we will be using the oven to finish off cooking the chicken. You’ll also want an oven-safe pan or cast-iron skillet, and a meat thermometer.
Now that we have everything prepared, let’s move on to the next step in this delectable journey of flavor!
STEP BY STEP | PREPARING & ASSEMBLING THE PERFECT CHICKEN RECIPE
Let’s dive into it! This recipe is super simple and comes together quickly with just a few ingredients, but the flavor and juiciness of the chicken will blow your mind!
Step 1: Remove your chicken from the fridge and allow it to sit at room temperature for about 20 minutes. In the meantime, preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Pat your chicken totally dry with a paper towel.
Step 2: Mix all of your spices together in a bowl.
Step 3: Drizzle your chicken with some olive oil and then sprinkle with the seasoning mix. Rub the spices into the chicken well.
Step 4: Once your chicken is evenly coated and your pan is preheated, place your chicken into the pan, skin side down, in a single layer. Sear them for 5-7 minutes until they are nice and golden brown.
Step 5: Once the chicken is seared and the skin side is facing up, turn the stovetop burner off and slide the skillet into the oven (I recommend the middle rack).
Step 6: Bake for about 30 minutes, or until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165F. Rest for 10 minutes before serving! Enjoy!
TIPS & TRICKS
There are a few tips and tricks that I use for making sure my chicken thighs are super juicy and also crispy. Here we go:
- Bring the meat to room temperature – set your chicken out on the counter to come to room temperature about 20 minutes before you’re ready to cook. This is safe to do and helps with even cooking. You won’t end up with dry spots in some places and undercooked spots in others.
- Pat meat dry – take a paper towel and dab the chicken to make sure no moisture remains. Excess water can make your skin soggy and the chicken can stick to the pan.
- Pan sear your chicken thighs – by pan searing before roasting, you’re creating a layer of crust and texture.
- Don’t flip until the meat is ready to release – That being said, when pan searing, don’t flip the meat until it’s ready. If you go to flip it and it doesn’t give right away, let it sear a bit longer. Once a nice crust is formed it will flip easily.
HOW TO SERVE | PERFECTLY SEASONED AND BAKED CHICKEN THIGHS
These chicken thighs are the perfect protein to whip up for a quick and easy weeknight dinner and it can be served in a variety of ways. We love serving them with a side of rice or potatoes and some roasted vegetables, they are also delicious topped on a salad. I also have some side dishes that I recommend serving alongside these chicken thighs such as my Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad. You also can never go wrong with some Crispy Scored Potatoes or on top of my Italian-style avocado and tomato salad.
OTHER FAVORITE CHICKEN THIGH RECIPES | SHEET PAN OVEN BAKED CHICKEN THIGHS
If you’re looking for an all-in-one meal, you have to try my Sheet Pan Chicken Thigh Dinner with Veggies and a Herby Garlic Sauce or my Lemon Sheet Pan Potato and Chicken Bake. These recipes are perfectly roasted on a single baking sheet and come together in no time.
COMMONLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Bone-in, skin-on thighs vs. boneless skinless chicken thighs:
I prefer buying bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs for the following reasons:
- They’re juicer – cooking meat on the bone yields a juicier piece of meat because the meat is intact. There are fewer places for juices to run out, and you’re getting added tenderness from the bones as they seep collagen and marrow (this is good for you, too!). Leaving the skin on also encourages juices to stay inside of the meat during cooking.
- They’re crispier – if you cook skin right, it makes a really lovely, crispy layer on top of the meat. Say goodbye to boring chicken.
- You can save the bones and skin for homemade bone broth and stock – here’s the recipe I use!
What is pan roasting?
Ah so you may still be wondering what pan roasting is. Pan roasting is the technique used when you sear meat in a pan (make sure it’s oven safe – I like cast iron) and then finish cooking it in the oven. Sometimes, it’s called pan seared, too.
It’s really commonly used in restaurant cooking because you form a nice crust on the meat, start and speed up the cooking process, and then finish it (hands free) in the oven while you prepare the remainder of the meal.
Pan roasted chicken thighs aren’t the only kind of meat you can pan sear, you can really do this with any type of meat!
Why is pan roasting chicken thighs the best way to get crispy chicken thighs quickly?
As I mentioned above, pan roasting chicken thighs ensures that you’ll have crispy skin on chicken thighs. Because you start the cooking process in a very hot pan, you jump start it, and it takes less time in the oven than just straight roasting does. There’s a little more active time, but it’s well worth it!
STORING AND REHEATING
This recipe makes the perfect meal prep and while it is delicious when enjoyed immediately, it can also easily be made in advance and stored in an airtight container once completely cooled and saved for later.
Love chicken thighs? Check out my hot honey grilled chicken thighs. They’re always a hit!Print
Pan-Roasted Chicken Thighs (Bone-In)
By pan roasting chicken thighs you get really really crispy skin and juicy and tender meat from bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs.
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Cook Time: 35 minutes
- Total Time: 40 minutes
- Yield: 4 servings 1x
- Category: Dinner
- Method: Pan Sear
- Cuisine: American
- Diet: Gluten Free
- about 2.5lbs. bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (about 4–5 big thighs)
- about 2 Tbsp. olive oil (1 tsp. per thigh), divided
- 2 tsp. paprika
- 1 tsp. garlic powder
- 1 tsp. onion powder
- 1/2 tsp. ground sage
- 1 and 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. black pepper
- Start by preheating the oven to 400F and set your chicken out on the counter to come to room temperature about 20 minutes before you’re ready to cook. This is safe to do and helps with even cooking. Then, Pat the chicken totally dry with a paper towel.
- Mix together all of the spices and seasonings.
- Drizzle each chicken thigh with 1 teaspoon of olive oil and sprinkle an equal amount of the spice mixture onto each thigh. Rub the oil and spices all over the chicken.
- Heat an oven-safe or cast iron skillet over medium-high heat on the stove. Pick a skillet that’s big enough to hold all of the chicken in an even layer with a bit of room between each piece. Once the skillet is hot, add the oil.
- Then, lay the chicken thighs, skin side down in the skillet. Sear them for 5-7 minutes until they are nice and golden brown on top, and then flip them. When you go to flip them, they should give right away. If the chicken is sticking to the pan, it isn’t done searing yet.
- Once the chicken is seared and the skin side is facing up, turn the stovetop burner off and slide the skillet into the oven.
- Bake for about 30 minutes, or until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165F. Rest for 10 minutes before serving!
Keywords: chicken, chicken thigh, pan sear
This recipe was originally published April 2020 and was updated November 2023.