Honey + Sriracha Chicken Thighs

healthy-delicious_honey-sriracha-chicken-2

It took me a few tries to get this recipe for honey and sriracha chicken just right. I’ll be honest – the first time I tried it, it was downright bad. We each took about two bites of the chicken before tossing it and ordering take-out.   I loved the flavor of the sauce though, and I was determined to make it work. In the end, I’m glad that I persevered because this chicken is delicious and easy enough for even the most hectic weeknight.

This recipe is sort of like roast chicken meets buffalo wings… with an Asian twist. The sticky-sweet sauce has a good kick to it, the skin is nice and crisp (and beautifully charred in some places), and the meat itself is moist and flavorful.

The entire feel of the dish can be changed by simply swapping out the sides: wild rice pilaf and sauteed green beans give it a homey elegance; baked waffle fries make it a more casual, fun meal.

healthy-delicious_honey-sriracha-chicken

Throughout my attempts to perfect this recipe, I discovered a few things that really make a big difference.

First, whatever you do, don’t attempt to get a head start on your week by letting the chicken marinate overnight. Because the sauce is so acidic, it will do crazy things to the texture of the chicken, leaving the meat sort of gelatinous and preventing the skin from crisping up the way it should. If that seems too crazy to be true, just think about the effect that acid has on fish when you make ceviche. Believe me, it’s not worth the extra few minutes that you’ll save at dinnertime.

My multiple attempts at perfecting this recipe also reinforced my belief that it’s definitely worth spending a few extra dollars on natural or organic chicken whenever you’re working with skin and bone. Natural and organic chicken tends to be leaner, and since it doesn’t take as long for all of the fat to render out, the skin will crisp up faster. As an added bonus, the meat itself seems to be darker and more flavorful – when I made these with conventional thighs, the meat was almost pure white and they tasted like flabby fat. (Conventional is fine when you’re using something like boneless, skinless chicken breasts, but if you’re making legs, thighs, or a whole chicken I really do think organic tastes the best.)

healthy-delicious_honey-sriracha-chicken-3

Honey + Sriracha Chicken Thighs

Honey + Sriracha Chicken Thighs

Yield: 4
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes

These sweet and spicy chicken thighs are like a cross between roast chicken and hot wings. For the best results, use organic or all-natural chicken.

Ingredients

  • 4 bone-in Chicken Thighs (about 2 pounds)
  • 1/4 cup Sriracha
  • 1/4 cup Honey
  • 1 teaspoon Low Sodium Soy Sauce
  • 1/2 Lime, juiced (about 2 Tablespoons)
  • 1/4 teaspoon Ground Ginger

Instructions

  1. Heat oven to 425*F. Arrange the chicken thighs skin-side up on a baking sheet. Bake 15 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, mix together the remaining ingredients in a small pan set over medium-high heat. Cook for 3-5 minutes, or until reduced to a thin glaze – a spoon dragged through the sauce should leave a trail in its wake.
  3. Spoon the reduced sauce onto the chicken thighs, covering the skin generously. Return to the oven and cook an additional 15-20 minutes or until the skin is crisp and begins to char and the juices run clear when the thighs are cut into with a knife.
  4. Remove from the oven and tent with foil; let rest 5 minutes before serving.

Love this Recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest


 

By on February 11th, 2013

About Lauren

Hi, I'm Lauren! I'm a certified plant-based cook and enthusiastic omnivore who loves looking for creative ways to make weeknight meals more nutritious. I'm the author of Heathy Eating One Pot Cookbook and Healthy Meal Prep Slow Cooker Cookbook.

More posts by this author.

30 thoughts on “Honey + Sriracha Chicken Thighs”

  1. Take skin OFF after first bake. Put a few small slits in the meat. Use salt/pepper, fresh ginger, do not precook sauce. Be sure to tent as suggested and let stand. Served with lightly buttered egg noodles. Chicken so very moist and I will make this again, soon~!!

    Reply
    • I haven’t tried it that way, but it might work. I’d double or triple the sauce and use boneless skinless thighs or breasts. The chicken will probably end up shredding, but it would make a great sandwich or you could do it over polenta or something similar.

      Reply
  2. loved it—no changes. tonight will be my 3rd time making this! some don’t realize the importance of blk pepper and salt, in addition to ingredients that also contain them; these 2 gems enhance like others cannot.
    thx for sharing!

    Reply
  3. We tried this a week ago, and LOVED it. Having it again and again. I did not cook the sauce, just whisked and poured it on! OH yeah!

    Reply
  4. im thinking of doing these but im skeptical over not seasoning the thighs with salt or pepper??

    Reply
  5. This recipe worked well with boneless, skinless thighs too! Made it with skinny fried rice! So good!

    Reply
  6. do you have nutritional information for this recipe? I found it by searching “healthy chicken thigh recipes,” so I was hoping to have some calorie, fat, sodium detail.

    thanks – it looks delicious!

    Reply
    • I don’t have information for this recipe offhand (it was written before I started adding that info to each recipe) but I use this site to calculate it. You can just copy/paste so it’s pretty easy. http://caloriecount.about.com/cc/recipe_analysis.php?process=resubmit&count=29

      (you can reduce the fat content pretty dramatically by using skinless thighs – or even breasts – but I love the crispy skin so I’m always willing to “splurge” a little on it.)

      Reply
  7. The Author works for a website dedicated to helping consumers get credit and establish better credit
    habits, whether from our selection of credit cards or bad credit home and personal loan programs.
    A human being with a credit score of less than 600 normally faces challenges in acquiring a mortgage.
    Banking institutions and lending firms try to obtain buyers with an excellent rating.

    Reply

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.