pan roasted chicken thighs over rice with a thyme garnish

‘Tis the season for comfort food like the Pan Roasted Chicken Thighs I’m sharing with you today! This budget-friendly recipe has been a go-to of ours over the past couple of weeks and I’m so excited for you to give it a try. It’s inexpensive, easy, made in just one skillet, and all three of us absolutely love it – Lincoln especially, who has never been a big fan of chicken breasts, but gobbles down chicken thighs like a champ.

Smart kid!

two pan roasted chicken thighs in a serving dish with rice

Chicken Thighs vs Chicken Breasts

If you haven’t ventured into the world of chicken thighs, it’s time. Not only do bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs cost a fraction of boneless, skinless chicken breasts – we’re talking ~50% less – they knock them out of the park in the taste and texture department. Juicy, full of flavor, and that crispy skin? There’s nothing better.

This particular dish calls for browning bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs on the stovetop until the skin is ultra crispy, then roasting them in the oven nestled in a pan sauce that’s delicately flavored with lemon, shallots, and garlic. I serve the chicken over cooked white rice to sop up the ridiculously delicious pan sauce.

Not only are these pan-roasted chicken thighs inexpensive and family-friendly, they’re a cinch to make. Follow the recipe once and it’ll be committed to memory for next time. Let’s do this!

crispy skin on a skin on bone in chicken thigh

How to Pan Roast Chicken Thighs

Start by trimming the excess skin and fat from 2lbs bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (about 6 thighs.) You can see how much more inexpensive these are than chicken breasts – $2.99/lb vs the usual $5-7!


Season both sides of the chicken thighs with homemade seasoned salt and pepper then add 1/3 cup gluten free flour (or AP flour if you don’t need to eat GF) to a shallow dish and season liberally with more seasoned salt and pepper.


Coat each chicken thigh in the seasoned salt, tapping any excess off.


Time to cook! Heat a large, oven-proof skillet (preferably cast iron) over medium-high heat then add 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil. When the oil is hot, add the chicken thighs skin side down then saute until the skin has browned, 3-4 minutes. Feel free to move the thighs around a bit if they start to scorch in places. Flip the thighs then saute until the second side has browned, then remove the thighs back to the plate.


DELICIOUS!!! FYI, the thighs don’t need to be cooked all the way through at this point.


Pour out all but ~2 Tablespoons fat from the skillet then turn the heat down to medium. Add 1 jumbo shallot or small onion that’s been chopped, season with seasoned salt and pepper, then saute until the shallots begin to soften, 2-3 minutes. Add 4 cloves minced garlic then saute for 30 more seconds.


Next add 1-1/2 cups chicken broth and the juice from 1/2 lemon then turn the heat up to bring the liquid to a boil. Turn the heat back down then simmer until the sauce has slightly thickened and would come about halfway up the chicken thighs once they’re placed back into the skillet.


Nestle the browned chicken thighs into the sauce then carefully cover the skillet with foil – you don’t need a tight crimp or anything, just pat down the sides.


Roast for 15 minutes at 375 degrees then scoop a spoonful of the sauce + shallots/onions on top of each chicken thigh. Turn the heat up to 425 degrees then place the skillet back into the oven without the foil to finish cooking and brown the onions on top, 12-15 more minutes. FYI, the oven does not need to have come all the up to 425 degrees before sticking the skillet back in.


When the thighs go back into the oven for the second time, cook a pot of rice to serve under the thighs and soak up all that delicious pan sauce. Scoop the rice into bowls then top with the sizzling chicken and a spoonful of sauce. You are going to LOVE these easy, pan roasted chicken thighs – enjoy!

two pan roasted chicken thighs on a bed of rice

Pan Roasted Chicken Thighs

5/5 (5 REVIEWS)


Pan-Roasted Chicken Thighs and Rice is a hearty, gluten-free dinner recipe that's made in just one skillet and calls for simple, everyday ingredients. This dish is total comfort food!


serves 4

  • 6 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (2lbs), excess skin and fat trimmed away
  • 1/3 cup gluten free flour
  • Homemade Seasoned Salt and pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 large shallot or small onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1-1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 1/2 lemon
  • cooked white rice, for serving


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Season both sides of chicken thighs with seasoned salt and pepper. Add flour to a shallow dish then season liberally with seasoned salt and pepper. Dunk each thicken thigh into the seasoned flour, tapping off any excess, then place onto a plate.
  2. Heat extra virgin olive oil in a large, oven-proof skillet (preferably cast iron) over medium-high heat. Add chicken thighs skin side down then saute until the skin has browned, rotating if necessary to keep skin from burning - a splatter screen is helpful as the fat will spit a bit. Flip then saute until the second side has browned then transfer thighs back to the plate (thighs do not need to be cooked through at this point.)
  3. Pour out all but 2 Tablespoons fat from the skillet (just eyeball it) then turn heat down to medium. Add shallots, season with seasoned salt and pepper, then saute until tender, 2-3 minutes. Add garlic then saute for 30 more seconds. Add chicken broth and lemon juice then turn heat up to bring to a boil. Turn heat back down and simmer until sauce has reduced and would come halfway up the chicken thighs, 4-5 minutes, then nestle chicken thighs into the sauce and carefully cover the skillet with foil.
  4. Bake covered for 15 minutes then remove foil and scoop a spoonful of the onions and sauce onto the tops of the chicken thighs. Turn heat up to 425 then return the skillet to the oven uncovered and continue to bake until chicken is cooked through and skin is crispy, 12-15 more minutes (oven does not need to have come all the way up to temperature before returning skillet to oven.)
  5. Meanwhile, cook the rice. When chicken is done, scoop rice onto plates then top with thighs, drizzle with pan sauce, and serve.


Adapted from The Pioneer Woman

This recipe is courtesy of Iowa Girl Eats,

photo collage of pan roasted chicken thighs