I think chicken thighs are delicious. The problem is that my husband is not a great fan of having bones get in the way of his eating enjoyment so, unfortunately, that means that I don’t bake chicken on the bone very often. This day, however, I wanted to make a recipe that used precooked chicken so I decided to bake up a batch. Wow! I had forgotten just how delicious simply baked chicken is! This is so good that it gave me serious pause as to whether I should still make what I had planned or if we should all just sit down to a plate of this chicken and call it good. I’m not sure which way we’re going tonight, but if you’re searching for something to make for your family, these just might be it.
I use a pretty heavy hand with the seasoning. It should create a crust when it bakes onto the skin. And while I recommend using a meat thermometer to ensure your chicken is done, you know it’s ready when you can see lots of caramel-colored bits in the bottom of the dish (as a child we called these “flavoreens”) and the skin is so bubbly and crispy that the only thing on your mind is when it will be cool enough to taste. Sometimes you might have to go in so quickly that you burn your fingers a little bit. That may or may not have happened with this batch…
Baked Chicken Thighs
4-5 lbs. of chicken thighs
1 Tbsp. salt
2 tsp. garlic powder
2 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. paprika
1/2 tsp. dry mustard
1) Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Place chicken thighs skin-side down in a large glass baking dish.
2) In a small bowl, mix together all the spices except the pepper.
3) Liberally sprinkle the bottom of the thighs with the seasoning. Flip them all over and coat the skin-side heavily with the spice mixture. (I had about 4 1/4 lbs. of chicken thighs and I used all the spice.) Crack a good amount of fresh pepper over everything.
4) Place chicken in the oven and bake for 45-55 minutes. When the chicken smells intensely good, has crispy skin everywhere, and has created a lot of “flavoreens” in the bottom of the dish, remove it from the oven and let rest for about 10 minutes, just so you don’t burn your fingers.