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Crispy Honey-Lemon Chicken Thighs Are a Budget-Friendly Weeknight Recipe

Sure, chicken breasts are healthy and versatile, but let’s be real: The thighs are the real winner. They’re cheaper, juicier, and more flavorful, yet they’re often overlooked. Why not give them the love they deserve? Enter crispy chicken thighs with honey-lemon pan sauce. Quick, easy, and involving a single skillet and everyday ingredients, they’re perfect for those who haven’t yet learned their way around a thigh. The best part? They’re super versatile. If you want a tangier flavor, add more lemon; if you prefer a more savory dish, ease up on the honey. Serve with your favorite veggies, and you’ve got four meals’ worth of crispy, finger-lickin’ deliciousness in less than 45 minutes. Say hello to your new weeknight favorite.

(Photo via Sara Cagle / Brit + Co)

Thighs need lovin’ too.


  • 4 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 5-6 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • juice of half of a lemon
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons honey
  • 1-2 tablespoons fresh parsley, stems removed and chopped


Pre-heat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Pat chicken thighs dry, and season with salt and pepper on both sides. Drizzle olive oil over the skin sides.

Set a cast-iron skillet or oven-safe pan over medium heat. Cook the chicken thighs, skin-side down, until very browned and crispy, about 15 minutes. Readjust them about 5 minutes through so the fat touches the skillet and coats it with liquid.

Remove the skillet from heat, and scatter garlic beside the chicken. Place the skillet in the oven until the chicken is cooked through, about 15 minutes.

When the chicken is cooked through, set it on a separate plate, leaving the garlic and juices in the skillet. Add butter, lemon juice, and honey to the skillet, and stir, scraping off the browned bits, over low heat. When combined, replace the chicken, and spoon the sauce over the thighs. Garnish with parsley.

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