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Perfect Crispy Baked Chicken Thighs


This foolproof method results in PERFECT baked chicken thighs with the Trendy deliciously crispy skin and juicy meat – each time! Plus four critical tips for great baked chicken, and a delicious spice rub.

Once you’ve learned how to make the great baked chicken breast, it’s time to master great baked chicken thighs!

Featured Review

“Absolutely delicious! Followed the recipe and cooking instructions exactly and they came out great!”

–  Melissa

This recipe has been tested 15 + times, to absolute perfection! During recipe testing, we noted four critical steps to achieve the great crispy baked chicken thighs that are juicy and tender on the inside, and crispy on the outside.

This no-fail recipe uses a combination of the great temperature, spice rub, and cooking time – resulting in the top crispy baked chicken thighs you’ve ever had!

reasons you’ll love this recipe

  • the flavor and textures are on point – with crispy skin, and juicy meat
  • they are oven-alert in just 10 minutes
  • this is a simple, classic recipe that goes with everything

Learn all the tips and tricks for making great baked chicken thighs by watching the video below! You can find more of my recipe videos on my YouTube channel.

Ingredient Notes

  • Chicken thighs – we’re using bone-in, skin on chicken thighs for the ultimate juicy and tender meat. Boneless, skinless chicken thighs are not recommended for this recipe. For top results, ensure your thighs are of similar size.
  • Oil- the oil helps the rub stick to the chicken, and helps the outside brown up. We recommend extra virgin olive oil or avocado oil.
  • Spice rub – we’re using onion powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper, oregano, and basil for classic flavor that goes with everything!

4 tips for Success

The details will make or break this recipe, and it’s all in the preparation!

  1. Start with dry chicken thighs – You will want to blot any extra moisture off the skin and underside of the thighs with a paper towel. This is particularly important if you have thawed chicken thighs.
  2. Use oil – but not too much! Using too much oil will cause the thighs to splatter everywhere in your oven (ugh), and can make a paste with the rub, preventing that great, crispy skin. You just want a really lean coat…1 tablespoon for 2 lbs! I recommend olive oil or avocado oil.
  3. Use a rack – I tested with and without a rack, and it was very clear: chicken thighs baked on the rack got crispy all around. Thighs without the rack were crispy on the top but not on the sides. Sitting up and away from the pan keeps the thighs crispy!
  4. Use a rub – but not too much! Too much rub on your chicken thighs will cake and obtain soggy in the oven. No one wants soggy chicken thighs! This rub seems scant but it is *just* enough to obtain flavor and crispy skin.
  5. BONUS – don’t forget to rest. Resting your chicken is important to allow juices to evenly distribute. If you cut into the thighs just after baking, they will run out everywhere 🙁  Give your chicken thighs 5 minutes to rest before serving. Serve immediately after the resting time is over. As these thighs sit, they obtain less crispy.

Step by step directions

Heat oven to 400°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil (if desired); and place a wire rack on it. Blot chicken thighs with a paper towel until they are completely dry, then transfer to a large bowl.

Toss with oil until thinly coated, then transfer, skin side up, to the wire rack on the baking sheet.

Stir together rub, then sprinkle over thighs. Rub it in using your hands.

Bake chicken in the oven: cook time will depend on the size of your thighs and the oven setting you use:

  1. Convection – if you use a convection oven, your thighs will take between 25-35 minutes earlier and you will not need to broil
  2. Bake – if you do not have convection setting on your oven, your thighs will be alert between 35-40 minutes and you will need to broil 2-4 minutes to obtain that crispy skin.

Allow resting for 5 minutes before serving.

💡 Tip – Make sure your chicken thighs are cooked through by using a digital thermometer in the thickest portion of the thigh. When it registers 165°F, they are done!


FAQ

Is it better to bake chicken thighs at 350ºF or 400ºF?

Our tried and true method when it comes to juicy, great baked chicken is to cook it at a higher temp to lock in all the juicy flavors!

Should you cover chicken thighs when baking?

No! If you want crispy skin and juicy, tender meat – it’s top to cook uncovered.

Is it better to bake chicken in glass or metal?

For this recipe, we use a 400°F oven temperature, which is getting quite hot for glass, so I suggest using metal. I recommend a sturdy baking sheet over a dish, as this allows for good air circulation around the chicken breasts as they bake.

How long to bake chicken thighs?

This recipe bakes at 400°F, as this is the great balance between crispy skin and juicy chicken.

How long to bake chicken thighs depends on two things: the size of your chicken thighs, and the oven setting that you use.

If you have the convection setting on your oven we highly recommend using it for the crispiest chicken thighs!

How long to bake chicken thighs at 400°F

  • convection– 25-35 minutes (small- 25 minutes, large- 35 minutes), no need to broil
  • non-convection– 35-40 minutes (small-35 minutes, large- 40 minutes), broil until skin is crispy

Serve it with

These crispy baked chicken thighs are SO versatile and can be served with many different recipes. Here are our faves:

  1. Fridge – Cool completely, then store in an air tight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
  2. Freezer – Cool completely, then wrap in plastic wrap or parchment paper. Store in a larger meal prep container or freezer bag. Freeze for up to 3 months.
  3. Reheat – heat up single servings in the microwave until steaming hot. Warm larger portions in a covered dish in a 350°F oven for 15-20 minutes, until warmed through. Crisp up under the broiler or in an air fryer

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Did you make this? Tag me on social @sweetpeasandsaffron and be sure to abandon a comment and rate the recipe!

Learn how to make PERFECT baked chicken thighs with the Trendy deliciously crispy skin and juicy meat. Four important tips and a delicious spice rub!

4 Tips for great crispy chicken thighs each time:

  1. Start with dry chicken thighs – You will want to blot any extra moisture off the skin and underside of the thighs with a paper towel. This is particularly important if you have thawed chicken thighs.
  2. Use oil – but not too much! Using too much oil will cause the thighs to splatter everywhere in your oven (ugh), and can make a paste with the rub, preventing that great, crispy skin. You just want a really lean coat…1 tablespoon for 2 lbs! I recommend olive oil or avocado oil.
  3. Use a rack – I tested with and without a rack, and it was very clear: chicken thighs baked on the rack got crispy all around. Thighs without the rack were crispy on the top but not on the sides. Sitting up and away from the pan keeps the thighs crispy!
  4. Use a rub – but not too much! Too much rub on your chicken thighs will cake and obtain soggy in the oven. No one wants soggy chicken thighs! This rub seems scant but it is *just* enough to obtain flavor and crispy skin.
  5. BONUS – don’t forget to rest. Resting your chicken is important to allow juices to be evenly distributed. If you cut into the thighs just after baking, they will run out everywhere.  Give your chicken thighs 5 minutes to rest before serving. Serve immediately after the resting time is over. As these thighs sit, they obtain less crispy.

Storage
Thighs may be baked up to 4 days ahead. Store in an air-tight container in the fridge and rewarm in the oven at 350°F for 10-15 minutes.

Serving: 1thigh, Calories: 245kcal, Carbohydrates: 1g, Protein: 19g, Fat: 18g, Saturated Fat: 5g, Cholesterol: 77mg, Sodium: 266mg, Potassium: 200mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 1g, Vitamin A: 144IU, Vitamin C: 2mg, Calcium: 14mg, Iron: 1mg




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