Stuck on what to cook with chicken thighs? These chicken thigh recipes will have you covered! Over 40 EASY and DELICIOUS ways to cook chicken thighs, and all ready in under 20 minutes.
While chicken breasts may be the most common part of the chicken to eat, the tastiest part is the chicken thighs.
I love cooking with chicken thighs over chicken breasts. I never have to worry about overcooking it or fearing that it will be rubbery or dry. It’s a more affordable protein option and portions can be frozen for up to a year in advance.
It’s delicious enough to eat on its own but also super versatile to use in a plethora of dishes.
How do you prepare chicken thighs?
Chicken thighs can be cooked in a plethora of ways, including frying, baking, steaming, and roasting.
My favorite way of preparing chicken thighs is to bake them. Baked chicken thighs require minimal prep and clean up, and using a simple marinade ensures they crisp up on the outside, yet remain extra juicy on moist in the inside.
- Chicken thighs– I prefer using boneless and skinless chicken thighs, but if you prefer an extra crispy skin, you can keep the skins on them.
- Olive oil– The best oil to use for any chicken thigh marinade.
- Soy sauce– If you can’t tolerate soy, coconut aminos or Tamari can be used.
- Dijon mustard– Adds a slightly creamy element and a lovely umami flavor.
- Maple syrup– Works with the brown sugar to give the chicken the sticky, crispy exterior. For a low carb option, use keto maple syrup.
- Brown sugar– Standard or a brown sugar substitute.
- Garlic– Freshly minced.
- Salt and pepper– to taste.
Trim the fat from the chicken thighs and set aside. In a small bowl, whisk the olive oil, soy sauce, mustard, maple syrup, brown sugar, and garlic. Season the chicken thighs with salt and pepper and place them in a ziplock bag. Add the chicken and shake to combine. Refrigerate for 10 minutes.
Now, remove the chicken and place it on a baking tray lined with tinfoil. Bake for 20 minutes, before turning the heat to a broil setting. Bake for a further three minutes, until the sauce thickens. Remove from the oven and serve immediately.
Storing, freezing, and reheating instructions
- To store: Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator, covered, for up to 5 days.
- To freeze: Place the cooled baked chicken thighs in an airtight container and store it in the freezer for up to two months.
- Reheating: Either microwave the chicken for 30-40 seconds or in a preheated oven until hot.
How long can you marinate chicken thighs?
Chicken thighs need at least 30 minutes marination time for them to fully absorb the flavors. However, if you are short on time, even 10 minutes can add an extra layer of flavor than no marinating at all.
For the best flavor though, it’s best to let the chicken marinate overnight, or for at least 6 hours. This works out well if you want to prepare the chicken before work then leave it in the fridge to marinate and it will be ready by the time you cook dinner!
What temperature should chicken thighs be?
The optimum internal temperature for any cut of cooked chicken, including chicken thighs, is 165F/74C. The only exception to this rule are whole chickens, which require an internal temperature of 180F/82C.
Chicken thigh calories
Chicken thighs come three ways- skinless, boneless AND skinless, and skin on. Each has similar calories, with the fat difference being the main differentiating factor.
- Skinless chicken thighs– 220 calories, 32 grams of protein, and 10 grams of fat.
- Boneless skinless chicken thighs– 206 calories, 32 grams of protein,
- Skin on and bone in chicken thighs– 239 calories, 32 grams of protein, and 12 grams of fat.
What can be made from chicken thighs?
These are the BEST chicken thigh recipes and ideas that will ensure come dinnertime, you’ll have something different to enjoy. You’ll find recipes that involve baking, stir frying, frying, and stuffing, made in one pot, slow cooked, and more. Having plenty of options helps keep things exciting, and we have over 40 delicious and EASY chicken thigh recipes for you to try. Cooking chicken thighs can sometimes be a little tricky, but these recipes prove otherwise- they are all family favorites and all have 5-star reviews!
Chicken Thigh Recipes
The perfect use of skinless and boneless chicken thigh fillets. For more surface area, you can use a meat mallet to flatten them further.
FACT– Fried chicken thighs are the best tasting cut when it comes to frying!
Switch out the usual chicken breast for skinless chicken thighs.
Baked boneless chicken thigh fillets taste even better than their chicken breast counterpart!
Frequently Asked Questions
Chicken thighs are not bad for you. Although higher in fat than a standard chicken breast, they still add plenty of protein to any dish. Chicken thighs add more flavor than chicken breasts do.
Eating chicken thighs every day is perfectly acceptable. Just be wary that they are higher in fat than chicken breasts, so if weight loss is a priority, choose skinless chicken thigh fillets.
Chicken thighs are a fantastic food to eat on a diet, especially those who follow a keto diet or higher protein diet. The extra fat they contain helps keep you satisfied for longer. If you follow a low calorie diet, opt for boneless and skinless chicken thighs, as opposed to bone in or skin on ones.
Chicken Thigh Recipes (5 Star Rated!)
- Preheat the oven to 425F/210C. Season your chicken thigh fillets with salt and pepper and set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the olive oil, soy sauce, Dijon mustard, maple syrup, brown sugar and garlic. Transfer the mixture into a large ziplock bag, then add the chicken thighs to them and toss until combined.
- Let the chicken marinate for at least 10 minutes.
- Remove the chicken from the marinade and place them on a large baking sheet lined with tinfoil.
- Bake for 20 minutes, before switching the oven to the broil setting so the sauce on top slightly thickens.
- Remove the baked chicken thighs from the oven and serve immediately.