Crispy oven baked chicken thighs are way easier than you think to make! Ultra crispy on the outside and perfectly cooked on the inside.
I love crispy chicken but I hate the mess that frying on the stovetop makes. I also hate how much oil it takes up. This is why I am totally in love with these crispy oven-baked chicken thighs. They are everything delicious about fried chicken thighs but so much easier, less messy, and all done in the oven.
- Boneless skinless chicken thighs
- All-purpose flour
- Seasoning salt
- Black pepper
- Garlic powder
- Onion powder
- Panko breadcrumbs
- Plain breadcrumbs
For the exact amounts needed, please see the recipe card below.
How to Make Crispy Baked Chicken Thighs
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F.
- In a shallow dish, like a pie plate, combine the flour, seasoning salt, salt, pepper, paprika, garlic powder, and onion powder.
- In another shallow dish combine your eggs with water and whisk well to combine.
- In the third shallow dish, combine the panko and plain flavored breadcrumbs.
- Pat your chicken thighs dry and then dip them into the flour mixture first and then dip them into the egg mixture, followed by the breadcrumb mixture. Make sure to spread out the chicken thighs are spread out as much as possible when doing so that they are well coated.
- Place the coated chicken thighs onto a parchment paper-lined baking sheet.
- Repeat the process with all of the chicken thighs.
- Divide 2 tablespoons of butter between all of the chicken thighs by placing a small amount on top of each thigh.
- Bake in the oven for 10 minutes.
- Remove the pan from the oven and then flip the chicken thighs over. Divide the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter over the chicken thighs.
- Bake for an additional 10 minutes or until the chicken’s internal temperature registers 165 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer.
Farmhouse Serving Tip for Oven-Fried Chicken Thighs
Serving these crispy chicken thighs with a squeeze of lemon juice is the perfect topping and all they need. They are definitely a lighter version of fried chicken and the lemon is perfect and not too heavy.
- If you are hesitant to cook with chicken thighs, give this recipe a shot before you sub in the classic boneless, skinless chicken breasts.
- I find that boneless, skinless chicken thighs are not only thinner, easier to cook, and juicier, but they are almost always so much cheaper! I find these on sale for less than chicken breasts all the time. My freezer is stocked with chicken thighs!
- If you do need to substitute in chicken breasts, you will want to pound them out to be about 1 inch thick, or just slice them in half lengthwise and then flatten them evenly. This just makes sure they cook evenly, stay juicy, and are done cooking in a reasonable amount of time.
- But trust me! You’ll want to try these crispy baked chicken thighs before substituting anything. They are perfect. And such a great alternative to fried chicken. So much easier!
Tips and Tricks for Crispy Chicken Thighs
- Make sure that you are opening up and flattening out the chicken thighs when breading them. They will already be sliced open from the bone being removed, just spread them out as much as they will go when breading.
- With each breading step, shake off any excess. This keeps the chicken thighs evenly coated.
- Make sure you use both the panko and traditional breadcrumbs. I tested different combinations of each and the half and half combination wins out for texture every single time.
- Don’t skip the butter! This is what crisps up the outside breading nicely and gives it the classic golden brown glow.
If you’re looking for another great oven-baked chicken recipe, check out this Keto Chicken Parmesan.
Your chicken thighs will be ready to eat when they have reached an internal temperature of 165 degrees F. It’s okay if they get a bit above 165 degrees F though because, unlike white meat that dried out quickly, dark meat tends to be much more forgiving. Different sized thicknesses of thighs will cook at different rates so try to make sure that they’re flattened to about the same size so that they can all cook at a similar pace.
These chicken thighs will go great with just about anything from a lighter dinner side dish to a simple BBQ salad. Serve them up with your favorite lighter side dishes like Lemon Cream Pasta, Avocado Corn Salad, or Grilled Corn on the Cob. But make sure to finish it off with a cold tall glass of Mint Lemonade too.
Reheat your chicken in the oven or in your air fryer at 400 degrees f for a few minutes until warmed through. This will help to re-crisp up the skin and get the meat nice and hot so that it almost tastes like it did when it was freshly made. Cooking it in the microwave is a faster option but it will give you a softer breading.
Yes, you can cook these two different cuts of chicken at the same time. This is perfect if you want to do a mixture of breasts and thighs as not everybody enjoys white or dark meats, so you can customize this meal to your family’s tastes. Just make sure to pound out the breasts to the same size thickness as the thighs or to slice them into smaller pieces so that they can all cook at the same pace and be finished together.
Crispy Baked Chicken Thighs
- Preheat oven at 400ºF.
- In a shallow dish (like a pie plate), combine flour, season salt, salt, pepper, paprika, garlic powder, and onion powder.
- In a separate shallow dish, combine eggs and water. Whisk well.
- In a separate shallow dish, combine panko and plain breadcrumbs.
- Pat chicken thighs dry. Dip each chicken thigh first in the flour mixture, then in the egg mixture, then in the breadcrumb mixture. Be sure the chicken thighs are spread out as flat as possible when doing this.
- Place coated chicken thighs on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
- Repeat with all remaining chicken thighs.
- Divide 2 tablespoons of the butter between all the chicken thighs, placing a small amount on top of each chicken thigh.
- Bake chicken thighs for 10 minutes.
- Remove from oven, flip each chicken thigh over, and divide remaining 2 tablespoons of butter over the chicken thighs.
- Bake an additional 10 minutes, or until the chicken thighs register 165ºF.