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Easy Honey Roasted Chicken Thighs

Easy Honey Roasted Chicken Thighs

Easy Honey Roasted Chicken Thighs are baked in an oven or air fryer, and as a bonus includes the best recipe for a whole, oven baked, crispy honey chicken.
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword best chicken, chicken thighs, easy chicken, honey, roasted
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 8 servings
Calories 490kcal


Chicken Thighs

  • 8 pieces chicken thighs, bone-in, skin-on 6-8 ounces each, cleaned, trimmed
  • salt to taste
  • pepper to taste
  • cooking spray or oil

Honey Glaze


Prep the Chicken Thighs

  • Gather the ingredients for the recipe.
    Overhead photo of all the ingredients needed to make Honey Chicken Thighs.
  • Using the tip of a sharp knife or a metal skewer, poke 10 to 15 holes into the skin side of each chicken thigh 10 to 15 times.
  • At your workstation, or using a cutting board, liberally sprinkle both sides of each chicken thigh with salt and pepper. Rub seasoning right into each thigh as you go and place in pile on your cutting board.
    Chicken thighs seasoned with salt and pepper on a white platter.

Oven Roast Honey Chicken Thighs

  • Adjust your oven racks to the middle and lowest positions. Preheat your oven to 450 degrees with a rimmed baking sheet covered in tinfoil.
  • When hot, remove your preheated baking sheet from your oven and place beside your workstation or cutting board.
  • Spray the skin side of the chicken with a light coating of cooking spray and immediately place, skin side down, on top of the hot baking sheet. Repeat until all chicken thighs have been sprayed and placed on baking sheet. Return hot pan to oven on the bottom rack.
    Cooking spray from a spray can applied to seasoned chicken thighs on a white platter.
  • You can start preparing the honey glaze while the chicken cooks.
  • After cooking the chicken for ten minutes rotate your pan as quickly as possible for even baking.
  • Bake until skin is beginning to brown and meat registers 160 degrees, about 20 to 25 minutes.
    Baked chicken thighs on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil
  • When ready, remove chicken thighs from the oven and turn the broiler on.
  • Flip each of the chicken thighs over and return your baking sheet to the middle rack inside your oven as it preheats.
  • Broil chicken thighs, skin side up, until skin is golden brown and crispy, another 5 minutes or so.
    Baked chicken thighs on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil. The skin on the thighs is very crispy.
  • Reduce the oven's temperature to 450 degrees.
  • Use a brush to coat each piece of chicken evenly with a thick layer of honey glaze. 
    Applying honey glaze to crispy baked chicken thighs using a brush.
  • Return to the oven and bake until glaze is a beautiful golden brown, around 5 more minutes. Rotate pan if needed.
  • Make sure your chicken thighs are over 170 degrees before removing them from the oven to rest.
  • Transfer chicken to a cutting board or serving platter. Brush with remaining glaze, and allow to rest a few more minutes before serving.
    Closeup overhead photo of crispy honey roasted chicken thighs resting on a wooden cutting board.

Honey Glaze

  • Combine cornstarch and water in a bowl until dissolved. Set aside.
    Combining cornstarch and water in a small bowl using a whisk.
  • In a small saucepan, over medium high heat, bring honey and only 4 tablespoons of the vinegar to a boil.
    Honey with vinegar in a metal pot.
  • Once boiling, reduce temperature to medium-low and continue to simmer, stirring periodically, until mixture is reduced to about ½ cup. Usually aobut 4 or 5 minutes.
  • Add cornstarch mixture to the honey.
    Cornstarch mixture added to the pot with the honey and vinegar.
  • Whisk until blended and continue to simmer for 2 to 3 more minutes. The mixture will thicken. Keep warm over low heat until needed.

Air Fryer Honey Chicken Thighs       

  • After prepping the chicken, arrange the chicken thighs in the air fryer basket, spaced evenly apart with the skin side up. Lightly spray the top of the chicken with cooking spray or brush with oil.
  • Place the basket in air fryer and set temperature to 400 degrees.
  • Cook until chicken thighs are well browned and crisp and register 195 degrees, 20 to 30 minutes, rotating chicken halfway through cooking but DO NOT flip the chicken.
  • The problem with exact timing is that chicken thighs range in size. If you have smaller thighs, check at 20 minutes and larger thighs check at 26 minutes or more.
  • Cover each chicken thigh with honey glaze.
  • Return to the air fyrer and cook for another 3 - 5 minutes.
  • Remove from oven and coat with more glaze.
  • Transfer chicken to large plate and let rest for a few minutes.
    Honey roasted chicken thighs piled up on parchment on a cutting board.
  • Serve and enjoy every bite.
    Honey glazed chicken thigh on a plate with rice.


Expert Tips:
Add the glaze at the end of cooking. It may seem a bit counterintuitive but really you get the best flavor when it's added at the end. When added too early the glaze is more apt to burn and lose its flavor.
Choose chicken thighs that are similar in size. This way all the pieces of chicken will cook evenly in the same amount of time.
Rotate the pan. Many ovens have hot spots, rotating the pan allows for more even cooking.
Use a pastry brush. This overlooked kitchen utensil is the easiest way to cover the chicken with the honey glaze.
Air fryers cook with circulating air: So be sure to leave space between the pieces of meat.
Cook chicken skin side down: When cooking in the oven, cooking it skin side down helps to make for a crispier skin.


Calories: 490kcal | Carbohydrates: 18g | Protein: 31g | Fat: 32g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 7g | Monounsaturated Fat: 13g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 189mg | Sodium: 150mg | Potassium: 413mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 17g | Vitamin A: 150IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 17mg | Iron: 1mg