Learn how to make PERFECT baked chicken thighs with the most deliciously crispy skin and juicy meat. Four important tips and a delicious spice rub!
After sharing my recipe for the perfect baked chicken breast, it is definitely time to share my favorite perfect baked chicken thighs…you just can’t beat the crispy skin and juicy meat in this recipe!
This post was originally published in 09/2018, but has been completely overhauled with a new and improved recipe, new photos and video.
I have tested and retested this recipe more than 15 times now, and made a lot of mistakes along the way.
I’m sharing all the tips so you can get perfect, juicy chicken thighs with crispy skin! Because if there isn’t crispy skin involved, just count me out. It’s the best part of this baked chicken thighs recipe!
Why you’ll ♡ these baked chicken thighs
- crispy skin, juicy insides
- they are oven-ready in just 10 minutes
- this is a simple, classic recipe that goes with everything
Don’t forget to pin this post to save it for later!
4 tips for the perfect baked chicken thighs recipe
The details will make or break this recipe, and it’s all in the preparation!
- 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.
- 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 perfect, crispy skin. You just want a really thin coat…1 tablespoon for 2 lbs! I recommend olive oil or avocado oil.
- 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!
- Use a rub– but not too much! Too much rub on your chicken thighs will cake and get soggy in the oven. No one wants soggy chicken thighs! This rub seems scant but it is *just* enough to get flavor and crispy skin.
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.
Bonus tip- serve immediately after the resting time is over. As these thighs sit, they get less crispy.
How long to bake chicken thighs?
This recipe bakes at 400°F, as this is the perfect 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 I 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
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!
What to serve with oven baked chicken thighs?
These oven baked chicken thighs are SO versatile and can be served with many different recipes. Here are our faves:
- side salad- we love a good kale salad in our house. Our go-to’s are this Staple Kale Salad or this Kale Caesar Salad (with or without the chickpeas). Or just do a ‘clean out the fridge’ salad with one of these 7 Basic Vinaigrette Recipes!
- mashed cauliflower- this lower carb alternative might just be even more delicious than mashed potatoes! Find the Fluffy Parmesan Mashed Cauliflower recipe here!
- rice- want to take your rice up a level? Check out these 7 Rice Recipes. Low carb? Check out these 7 Cauliflower Rice Recipes.
Tips & Equipment for crispy chicken thighs
- I used my favorite sheet pans with an old wire rack
- For easy clean-up, line the pan with foil
- Looking for more chicken thigh recipes? Try these Caprese Instant Pot Chicken Thighs, this Sticky Slow Cooker Honey Garlic Chicken Thighs, these Slow Cooker Lemon Garlic Chicken Thighs, or this Baked Chicken Parmesan
Crispy Baked Chicken Thighs
- 2 lbs bone-in, skin on chicken thighs (roughly 6 thighs)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil (or avocado oil)
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon basil
- 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 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:* if you use convection, your thighs will take between 25-35 minutes earlier and you will not need to broil*if you do not have convection setting on your oven, your thighs will be ready between 35-40 minutes and you will need to broil 2-4 minutes to get that crispy skin.
- Check that your chicken is cooked through to reach an internal temperature of 165°F by measuring with a digital thermometer.
- Allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving.
- 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.