Crispy Chicken Thighs

Lowcountry Foodie Mama loves her some chicken thighs. They have so much more flavor and moisture than chicken breasts and are usually a lot cheaper. And when you cook them so that the skin gets all crispy, it’s like having bacon wrapped chicken. Yummy! I’ve tried making them many ways but by far, the best and easiest version is one I found on Epicurious. I love it because it uses four ingredients and is completely uncomplicated. I’ve only tried this in my enameled cast iron skillet. I suppose it would work in stainless steel and non-stick should be fine, just be sure that your skillet and its handle can take the heat of the oven.

This is the extent of ingredients and prep. Salt and pepper both sides of chicken. Measure your oil. Done.
This is the extent of ingredients and prep. Salt and pepper both sides of chicken. Measure your oil. Done.

If you have a spatter guard or screen, this is a good time to use it. I didn’t do it today because I needed to take photos. But know that the chicken renders a LOT of fat and it’s going to pop and spatter quite a bit. You’ll have a pretty greasy stove top if you don’t have a spatter guard. Not the worst clean up in the world, just something to be aware of. Obviously, you’ll take it off when you put it in the oven.

Heat oil in skillet until almost smoking. Add chicken pieces, skin side down. Rotate pan and chicken pieces periodically but do not flip.
Heat oil in skillet until almost smoking. Add chicken pieces, skin side down. Rotate pan and chicken pieces periodically but do not flip.

This is a great weeknight meal because you can get it started during homework time and, hopefully, by the time homework is done, so is dinner. Throw together a couple of side dishes and you are as golden as the oven roasted chicken thighs you are about to feast upon.

Continue cooking in 475 degree oven for 12 minutes. Then finally turn, skin side up now, and continue to cook for 5 minutes.
Continue cooking in 475 degree oven for 12 minutes. Then finally, turn to skin side up now, and continue to cook for 5 minutes.

Oven Roasted Chicken Thighs

  • 6 chicken thighs (with bones and skin), my package just happened to have 5 this time
  • coarse kosher salt and pepper
  • 1 T vegetable oil

Preheat oven to 475.

Season both sides of chicken with salt and pepper. Heat oil in large skillet over high heat until almost smoking. Arrange thighs around pan, skin side down. Reduce heat to medium and cook for about 12-15 minutes, rotating pan occasionally and rearranging chicken as it begins to stick. Do not turn it over yet. 

Transfer skillet to oven (chicken is still skin side down) and continue to cook for another 12 minutes. Turn chicken and continue to cook skin side up for another 5 minutes until skin is crisp and internal thermometer reads 180. Transfer to a serving plate and allow to rest for another 5 minutes before serving.

Remove from oven and allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving. You'll have beautifully crispy chicken.
Remove from oven and allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving. You’ll have beautifully crispy chicken.
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