This Crispy Baked Lemon Chicken Thighs with Lemon & Garlic recipe requires only a few ingredients for perfectly baked chicken thighs. Serve them with roasted asparagus, a green salad, or your favorite vegetable for an easy gluten-free and low-carb weeknight meal!
Hi Friends! I’m Sarah, and I’m excited to be sharing another recipe at Joy Filled Eats! I’m a mama of four-year-old twins and a one-year-old. When I’m not chasing them around, I write about food, faith, creativity, and motherhood at sarahjhauser.com. I love sharing wholesome recipes for everyday life that fit a variety of lifestyles. In addition to my blog, you can also find me on Instagram (@sarah.j.hauser) and Facebook (/sarahjhauser).
This recipe for Baked Lemon Chicken Thighs makes an easy weeknight meal and only requires a few ingredients—many of which you may have on hand. But don’t relegate this dish to the weekends only. It’s definitely flavorful enough for weekend entertaining! I love serving it with a simple side salad, roasted asparagus, keto risotto, keto zucchini fritters, or whatever other veggies I have on hand.
Benefits of Bone-In Chicken
If you’ve baked boneless, skinless chicken breasts, you know that it can be minutes before the chicken goes from perfect to dry as the desert. While I still enjoy that cut of chicken, bone-in chicken is definitely more forgiving. The darker meat has incredible flavor and cooking bone-in, skin-on cuts keeps the meat from drying out.
How Long to Bake Chicken Thighs at 400?
I bake my bone-in chicken thighs at 400 degrees which takes 35-40 minutes. Sometimes I'll pop the chicken thighs until the broiler for an additional couple minutes to crisp the skin further.
Ingredients for Baked Lemon Chicken Thighs
- Bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
- Olive oil
- Lemon zest
- Fresh thyme
- Salt and pepper
- Baking powder (optional)
Why Baking Powder?
This is a trick I learned from Cook’s Illustrated to make skin-on chicken extra crispy! Ideally, you pat the chicken dry and let a mix of baking powder and salt sit on the chicken overnight for extra crisp skin. But with three little kiddos running around my house, I never think that far in advance!
However, I tested the baking powder trick without letting it sit overnight. I simply added it to the mix of garlic, lemon zest, thyme, and salt. I made a second batch without the baking powder to see if I saw a difference, and even though I didn’t leave the baking powder on overnight like Cook’s Illustrated recommended, I definitely noticed a difference! Both batches of Baked Lemon Chicken Thighs were delicious, but the one with baking powder did have better crispier skin.
That being said, most store-bought baking powder includes ingredients like cornstarch. If you’re avoiding grains entirely, you can either make your own grain-free baking powder or skip it altogether. Just finish the chicken under the broiler for the last couple minutes for extra crispness.
What to Serve with Baked Lemon Chicken Thighs
- 2 pounds bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
- 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 2 teaspoons freshly grated lemon zest
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ½ teaspoon aluminum-free baking powder (optional)
- Lemon wedges or halves for serving
- Take the chicken out of the refrigerator about a half hour before cooking to allow it to come to room temperature.
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
- Trim any excess skin off the meat, being sure to leave enough skin to cover the top of each piece.
- Thoroughly pat the chicken dry with paper towels. Drizzle the olive oil evenly over the chicken thighs.
- Mix together the garlic, lemon zest, thyme, salt, pepper, and baking powder (if using).
- Rub the mixture evenly on each of the chicken thighs, making sure to get some of it underneath the skin.
- Place the chicken on a wire rack set over a rimmed baking sheet. Bake for about 35-40 minutes, or until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees. If you want the skin to crisp up a bit more, turn the oven to broil and cook an additional 2-4 minutes.
- Serve with lemon wedges. You can also broil or grill lemon halves for a couple of minutes just until they get a little bit charred.
- Squeeze the juice over the baked chicken for the perfect finishing touch of flavor. Enjoy!