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Skillet Chicken Thighs Recipe: Easy & Delicious Meals

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Skillet chicken thighs are a fantastic way to make a quick yet delicious meal. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced cook, this simple method results in tender, flavorful chicken every time.

You only need a few basic ingredients like chicken thighs, garlic, shallots, and some seasonings to get started. The best part is, you can customize the recipe with different herbs or spices to fit your taste. Serve with your favorite side dishes like roasted potatoes or a fresh salad for a complete meal.

Cooking chicken thighs in a skillet ensures crispy skin and juicy meat, making it a favorite for weeknight dinners. The rich, savory sauce that you can create right in the pan is the perfect finishing touch.

Exact Ingredients (+ Possible Substitutes)

Here’s what you’ll need to make flavorful skillet chicken thighs. Simple ingredients can make a big difference.

Main Ingredients:

  • Chicken Thighs: Use bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs for best flavor.

    • Substitute: Boneless chicken thighs or chicken breasts, but adjust cooking times.
  • Olive Oil: Adds a nice flavor and helps cook the chicken evenly.

    • Substitute: Canola oil or vegetable oil.
  • Salt and Pepper: Basic seasonings to taste.

    • Substitute: Garlic salt or seasoning salt for a twist.

For the Sauce:

  • Chicken Broth: Creates a savory base for the sauce.

    • Substitute: Vegetable broth or water with a bouillon cube.
  • Lemon Juice: Adds a tangy citrus flavor.

    • Substitute: Lime juice or white wine vinegar.
  • Shallots and Garlic: These enhance the overall flavor.

    • Substitute: Onions instead of shallots, or garlic powder if fresh garlic isn’t available.
  • Butter: Helps to thicken the sauce and add richness.

    • Substitute: Margarine or a splash of cream.
  • Flour: This thickens the sauce.

    • Substitute: Cornstarch mixed with a bit of cold water.

Optional Ingredients:

  • Red Pepper Flakes: Adds a bit of heat.

    • Substitute: Ground cayenne pepper, but use sparingly.
  • Fresh Dill or Thyme: Herbs add a nice freshness.

    • Substitute: Dried herbs, but use about half the amount.

Feel free to mix and match based on what you have at home. Happy cooking!

Instructions

Ingredients

  • 4 chicken thighs
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • Salt and pepper

Directions


  1. Prepare the Chicken
    Pat the chicken thighs dry with paper towels. Season both sides with salt and pepper.



  2. Heat the Skillet
    Heat a skillet over medium-high heat for 2 minutes. Add butter and let it melt.



  3. Cook the Chicken
    Place chicken thighs in the skillet, skin side down. Cook for 5 minutes until the skin is golden brown. Flip the chicken and cook for another 5-7 minutes. Transfer to a plate.



  4. Make the Sauce
    Add minced shallot and garlic to the skillet. Cook for 1 minute until fragrant. Stir in chicken broth, lemon juice, thyme, and red pepper flakes.



  5. Simmer the Sauce
    Reduce the heat to low and pour in the heavy cream. Let it simmer for about 5 minutes until the sauce thickens. Stir occasionally.



  6. Combine
    Add the chicken back to the skillet. Spoon some sauce over the top. Let it cook for another 5 minutes until the chicken is fully cooked.


Your skillet chicken thighs are now ready to serve! Enjoy the meal with your favorite side dish.

Tips, Tricks & Storing

Use a Meat Thermometer: Check the internal temperature to make sure your chicken is fully cooked. It should reach 165°F (74°C).

Spice It Up: Season your chicken with rubs or marinades. Herbs like rosemary or thyme add great flavor.

Don’t Overcrowd the Pan: Cook in batches if needed. This helps each piece cook evenly and get crispy.

Rest Before Serving: Let the chicken rest for 5 minutes. This keeps it juicy.

Storing Leftovers: Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.

Reheating Tips: Reheat in a skillet over low heat for best results. You can also use a microwave, but it might not stay as crispy.

Freezing: Freeze cooked chicken in freezer bags for up to 3 months. Thaw in the fridge overnight before reheating.

Layering: When storing, layer your chicken with parchment paper between pieces. This prevents sticking.

Add Moisture: If reheating in the microwave, add a splash of water or broth to keep it moist.

Benjamin Happy Muncher

Hi, I'm Benjamin. I love cooking, long walks, and my girlfriend! Here you’ll find simple and delicious recipes that you can make in 30 minutes or less.