This Honey Garlic Chicken is a popular favorite with my long-time readers. Whole chicken legs are marinated, then roasted, then slathered with a delectable aromatic sauce. The result is a tender, amazing, and flavorful entree. Golden, crispy-skinned chicken with a sweet-and-savory honey sauce – what could be better? This recipe is easy enough for a weeknight, yet special enough for a holiday.
This Honey Garlic Chicken recipe developed as I was imagining economical entrees for a Passover Seder meal. This chicken recipe has become a mainstay main dish in my home for a multitude of special occasions – Rosh Hashanah, Hanukkah, Shabbat, or any family gathering.
Whole chicken legs are the least expensive chicken pieces to purchase. In addition, they also happen to be the most flavorful. Slow roasted dark meat chicken cooks up tender and juicy thanks to a flavorful marinade. A thick, garlicky honey sauce provides a mouthwatering flavor combination.
If you’re not a fan of dark meat chicken, bone-in breasts will work great too. Breasts take less time to cook through, so use a meat thermometer and check for doneness periodically. Don’t use boneless skinless here, the bone-in meat cooks up much more flavorful.
I like to put the chicken pieces on a platter in the center of the table, along with a gravy boat of sauce. Garnish with fresh parsley or greens for a pretty presentation.
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- 4 lbs chicken pieces, bone in, skin on
- 1/3 cup honey, divided
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tbsp brown sugar
- Heaping tbsp crushed garlic
- 1 tbsp fresh Meyer lemon juice (you may substitute lime juice or regular lemon juice)
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1/4 cup white wine or chicken broth
- 2 tsp potato starch
- Salt and pepper
- In a small bowl, stir together the olive oil, 1/4 cup honey, brown sugar, garlic, lemon or lime juice, and cayenne to form a marinade.
- Spray the bottom of a glass or ceramic baking dish with nonstick cooking oil, or brush lightly with olive oil. Place the chicken pieces into the dish, skin side up. Season the chicken pieces with salt and pepper (if using kosher chicken, salt lightly).
- Pour the marinade evenly over the top of the chicken pieces, brushing them to coat. Cover the dish with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator. Let the chicken marinate for 2 hours up to overnight.When ready to cook, preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Remove the plastic wrap from the baking dish. Spoon marinade over the top of the chicken, then cover the baking dish with foil. Pierce the edges of the foil a few times to vent.
- Roast the chicken for 1 hour, covered in foil, basting the chicken with marinade and drippings 2 or 3 times while it cooks. Remove foil and continue to roast for 20-30 more minutes until the skin becomes dark brown and crispy. It may blacken a bit in places due to the sugar content of the marinade.Transfer cooked chicken pieces to a platter. Carefully tip the baking dish so that the pan drippings and juices gather in one corner. Use a spoon to skim off the clear liquid fat from the top, separating it from the solid drippings. Discard the fat.
- Strain the remaining drippings through a mesh strainer into a small saucepan. Heat the sauce slowly over medium.
- While sauce is heating, in a small bowl stir together 2 tsp potato starch and ¼ cup cold water until dissolved. Add the starch mixture to the pan drippings, along with 1 tbsp honey and ¼ cup white wine or chicken broth. Stir the sauce over medium heat until it thickens and bubbles around the edges. If sauce is too thick, add more water or chicken broth. If the sauce is too thin, let it simmer till it thickens to desired consistency. Season sauce with salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve the chicken pieces drizzled with warm honey sauce.
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