Pan Roasted Lemon Chicken — Damn Delicious

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Pan Roasted Lemon Chicken

These chicken thighs are amazingly crisp and flavorful, and you won’t believe how easy this is to make!

As Jason and I are trying to stay away from red meat, we’ve been eating a lot of chicken, from this BBQ chicken salad to this easy lemon chicken. But as I still had a Costco-sized bag of lemons to use up, I decided to put them to good use in this pan roasted chicken. Now when I say “pan roasted“, I mean a 2-step process. But there’s no need to be alarmed – it’s unbelievably easy and foolproof !

A lemon rub is made first with a handful of pantry ingredients and of course, lots of lemon goodness. One that’s brushed onto the chicken, you’ll give it a nice sear in a hot pan to get that amazingly crisp skin. Then you’ll pop that right in the oven until it’s cooked through. Done and done.

I told you it was easy! And with that crusty skin and the juicy meat just oozing with lemon-herb goodness, this dish is sure to be a hit with the entire family.

Pan Roasted Lemon Chicken

Yield: 8 servings

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 35 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

These chicken thighs are amazingly crisp and flavorful, and you won’t believe how easy this is to make!


  • 1 1/4 cups chicken stock
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

For the lemon rub

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon whole grain mustard
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 8 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. To make the lemon rub, combine olive oil, mustard, lemon zest, oregano, thyme and salt in a small bowl. Using your fingers or a brush, work the lemon rub onto both sides of the chicken.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together chicken stock, lemon juice and lemon zest; set aside.
  4. Heat olive oil in a large oven-proof skillet over medium high heat. Add chicken, skin-side down, and sear both sides until golden brown, about 2-3 minutes per side. Add chicken stock mixture.
  5. Place into oven and roast until completely cooked through, reaching an internal temperature of 165 degrees F, about 25-30 minutes.
  6. Serve immediately.

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I love roasted chicken and that lemon rub sounds incredible. Can’t wait to try this!

A question Jo. Roughly for 6 people with 8 thighs!
My family would need almost double that. At the moment we are 12 with some very large appetites. My wonderful skinny granddaughter told me last week when I asked if she’ll eat jacket potatoes said she eats anything! As a child she got them all eating broccoli and cauliflower etc because she loves them. Have you forgotten what I sort of asked after all this rambling? 🙂

Judy, I’m a little confused if a question was asked in your comment. If you’re questioning the serving size, feel free to double or triple the recipe to suit your family needs. I can personally stomach about 1-2 chicken thighs but I guess it really depends on what you are serving this with.

Sorry. More rambling. I wanted to tell you I made a lovely roast chicken on Friday. I shmeered it with garlic butter and it was sooooo good. The chicken was falling off the bone.
I don’t know if we get something you don’t, but I doubt it. Packets of little potatoes that go into the microwave? We had those too with butter. Of course. My veggies weren’t very good. Next time I’ll use different veggies.

you’re clearly an idiot. see a therapist

I believe she might have been ‘in her cups’ as mom used to say. I’m sure she will be coherent the next time.

Yum, this looks so good. I have a bag of lemons that have been looking for inspiration too. This will be great to try!

This looks delicious. Lemon and chicken are always a great combination and I love the use of thighs. So much tastier!

Wow. This looks delicious. Delicious food and very nice fotos!

I’m just wondering if it would be possible to do this with skinless thighs, or chicken breasts?

You must certainly can, but you won’t obtain that crisp skin, which is really the beauty of this dish!

If we do use breast, how do you suggest we adjust the time/temperature on it? Lower and slower?

Unfortunately without further recipe testing, I cannot advise on the appropriate cooking temp and time. Please use your best judgment.

I tried without skin, kept it I oven for a tad bit longer, but it came out crisp and delicious. Thank you for the yummy idea. Also maybe a tad bit oil to compensate for no skin, but delicious and moist nevertheless.

That crispy skin is gorgeous, Chung-Ah! Chicken thighs are my favorite, so I can’t wait to try this lemony goodness the next time I buy a package.

I love the method you used, part braising/part roasting with the most amazingly crispy skin – looks totally delicious!

It doesn’t have a lid on it in the oven does it? It’s open liquid reducing to a sauce?

Technically that’s not braising.

Unless there is a lid on it for the steam to condense and return? Now I’m confused.

Looks delicious. Can’t wait to try it.

Your chicken looks so juicy and flavorful. Gorgeous!

Fantastic job, that looks absolutely delicious! Great job 🙂

Lemon chicken is a long time favorite of mine – it just is so easy and so delicious!! This looks like a rockstar recipe. That skin looks so perfectly crispy. Pinned!

This looks fabulously easy! Does it make much of a sauce? What do you serve it with?

It makes a little bit of a sauce. And you can serve it with any kind of side dish really – we served it with rice but some roasted vegetables would also work great with this.

I’ve made this dish three times over the last six months or so, and I’m making it again for a dinner party tonight. It’s super easy to throw together, is really cost-effective because chicken thighs are so darn cheap, and OMG it is so delicious!

I use the leftover thin sauce/pan drippings and thicken it up a bit with either flour or cornstarch. (take some of the hot liquid out first and mix it together before adding it to the main pan – will avoid lumps). It turns into this wonderfully light lemony sauce, just thick enough to add an extra oomph if you need it. I always make roasted red potatoes and fresh green beans with this dish, and the sauce pairs well with both of those as well.

LOOOOVE lemon chicken; it’s so bright and fresh and yet savory and all delicious. And the quicker it can get into my belly, the better. 🙂

Yummm! These look so juicy and flavorful.

Lemon chicken is one of my favorites! Your version looks so juicy and yet crisp on the outside! 🙂

I just looked at the original recipe and saw that you omitted the flour in yours. Would the sauce still thicken up without the flour?

Giselle, feel free to add in the flour as the original recipe recommends. I tried it out myself and didn’t really see much of a difference. It was more of hassle to transfer the chicken thighs elsewhere!

New cook here! Is that prepared mustard or dry?

You can find whole grain mustard at your local grocery store. It is neither prepared nor dry.

Whole grain mustard is a prepared mustard

Most folks would refer to prepared mustard as yellow mustard. I have never seen a wholegrain mustard being referred to as prepared mustard.

Oh my gosh, I LOVE that crispy outer crust on those thighs! Haha, that sounded weird. It’s so fantastic that it’s all prepared in one pan – I’m a huge fan of that!

How many lemons did you use to get a 1/4 cup lemon juice?

I use one lemon, not enough zest ( I has some already frozen from another use to add to this one). And just under 1/4 cup.

Use two lemons and freeze the extra.

Oh, love chicken thighs Chung-Ah the skin gets all crunchy and delicious! The marinade sounds awesome, especially with all that lemon! Pinned!

I can’t wait to try this – love the simplicity of the recipe, Chung-Ah! This would be a great dish to serve to guests!

Aghhh I’m drooling already! And I am loving this!

I am in love with the simplicity of this dish. I bet it tastes amazing, it looks perfect 🙂

Making these for dinner tonight…can’t wait!

This may sound dumb, but I put the lid on when I transferred the chicken to the oven. Don’t do what I did, or bid your crispy skin goodbye! It was still good, but I miss that beautiful crispness. 🙁 Chung-Ah, you may want to add that into your recipe for clueless people like me!

What a bummer! Yes, adding the lid will definitely get rid of the amazing crispy skin. And for my recipes – if a lid is required, I will add that to the instructions. I hope you get a chance to give this a second try!

Nope. Definitely not a braise.

Also, I wanted to inquire about the chicken stock mixture. I see that you could only fit 6 in your pan. How much of the stock mixture did you add? Your pan looks to have very little liquid going into the oven.

Heather, I added the entire stock mixture to the pan.

Question, Do I add all 8 thighs to the pan or cook them in batches?

Teon, that really depends on the size of your skillet.

Is there anyway of making the recipe smaller for printing. I don’t want to print all the pictures too. Thanks.

Mary, you can use the “PRINT” function in the recipe box to print the recipe only.

Looks delicious, will be trying this tomorrow. I will not use flour for thickening either, I wii just stir some butter into juices in bottom of pan and that should thicken it a bit.

Making this right now with Maryland pieces….the kitchen smells amazingly good & it was so easy too….trying this out in a cast iron grill pan as well…

I made this for dinner tonight and it turned out amazing! So easy and foolproof, it’s hard to make a mistake. I will definitely be making this again! I noticed the original recipe with the flour and butter after I made this, but the sauce still turned out great. So moist and flavourful, I can’t say enough about this great dish! 🙂

I’m so glad you were able to give it a try! As for the butter-flour mixture, I gave that a try myself and I honestly did not see that it made much of a difference. It was actually just another extra step, which is something we don’t need on those busy weeknights when we’re scrambling to get dinner on the table!

Chicken thighs are my favorite part of the chicken! This recipe looks easy and so delicious! I love how crispy your chicken looks. I was wondering though, would adding the chicken stock before putting it in the oven make the chicken less crispy? I’ve roasted chicken thighs in the oven over a grill pan without any liquid and it turned out nice and crispy yet juicy. Would adding the chicken stock in the pan make the chicken less crispy? Thanks in advance for your help and keep up the lovely work! Your site is wonderful!
I would love to see a section on your favorite recipes too. There are so many yummy recipes that I want to try. It would be great to see what your favorites and start with those.

Eunyoung, feel free to add the chicken stock before or after placing it in the oven. I prefer to add it before to really let the flavors meld and to give the chicken thighs more moisture. As for a favorites section, I honestly love ALL of my recipes. I only add the ones that I TRULY love and enjoy.

I love chicken thighs, but have family members who don’t. Have you tried the recipe with breasts or drumsticks? Looking forward to making this, looks delicious!

JJ, I recommend using skin-on breasts or drumsticks. That crisp skin is the star of this dish!

The chicken is in the oven! Can’t wait to taste it.

I made this tonight for my husband and five year old along with steamed asparagus and penne pasta (for my husband). I couldn’t find the required mustard so wound up using the basic yellow variety and I hoped there would be a nice punch of flavor but ultimately it was quite average. I don’t know if the mustard makes that much of a difference. I probably won’t make it again but I liked the crispy skin and may use that method for future recipes.

Kristy, my recipes call for certain ingredients because those ingredients work best. Substituting various ingredients will result in a mediocre outcome.

I made this last night using boneless, skinless thighs. I managed to achieve the same color and it was very good!

I don’t have any skillets or pans that can go into the oven, would it be fine to sear the chicken then transfer it to a baking dish and pour the chicken stock in then?

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