Chili Honey Chicken Thighs

Heather says:

This easy recipe for baked chicken is extremely versatile, not only is it great for chicken thighs, it can be used on a cut-up whole chicken, and boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs. This chili rub and honey brushing sauce would also be fantastic for grilled chicken.

The recipe is written for 4 – 5 lbs of chicken pieces or 3 lbs boneless, but it can easily be halved.  The instructions are written for bone-in chicken with the modification for boneless below. The recipe could also be altered for use in a slow cooker, but the chicken should be lightly browned before placing it in the crock, or it may end up quite pale and scary.

For those wondering if it’s kid friendly, my kids attacked it, with one asking for thirds.

Chili Honey Chicken Thighs Recipe

Chili Honey Chicken Thighs Ingredients:

Spice Rub

  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp paprika

Honey Sauce

  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 2 TBSP cider vinegar
  • 1 pinch ~ or 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes

Baked bone-in chicken pieces:

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl.  Rub the chicken pieces generously with the spice mix and place in a shallow baking dish. (For 4.5lbs of chicken thighs I needed a 9×13 and a 9×9 square)

Combine the honey, 2 TBSP cider vinegar, and crushed red pepper flakes. drizzle over the chicken pieces.

Bake at 350° for 30 – 40 minutes. Once while cooking turn the thighs to baste in the pan juices. (The start skin side up, and are turned to coat in the juices and placed back skin side up) Use a meat thermometer to ensure the chicken has reached165°F.

Boneless variation:

Use a broiler pan lightly coated with cooking spray. Place the spice coated chicken pieces on the broiling pan and broil for five minutes on each side. Then brush with the honey sauce and broil for one minute. Turn the chicken pieces over and brush with the honey sauce and broil for another minute or until the chicken is done.


Suggested sides:


  1. Miriam on October 12, 2012 at 3:32 pm

    Curious if malt vinegar or regular would work? I dont have any cider. Thanks!

    • Heather Solos on October 12, 2012 at 3:36 pm

      You can use the malt vinegar, but I think it’d be better with a red wine, balsamic, or even a rice wine vinegar.

      • Miriam on October 13, 2012 at 12:39 am

        thanks.. Luckily I found some cider vinegar in my pantry.. this was SO YUMMY!!!! Even my 19 mth old who doesnt like chicken- gobbled it up!!

        • Heather Solos on October 13, 2012 at 10:23 am

          I am so glad you and your family enjoyed it. Please pass it along to your friends. 🙂

  2. Bill on March 22, 2011 at 10:12 pm

    .I loved it! I didnt measure everything out, I went a little heavier on the garlic (next time ill use some fresh as well) and used more crushed red pepper, and rubbed the chicken down with EVO. But end result……the dish rocked.

    I would like to try it with just the rub for most the cook time (try and crisp skin up) and then add the glaze for the last 15 min or so

  3. […] January 18, 2011 · Filed under Recipes &#183 Tagged chicken recipe, chicken thighs, favorite recipes, honey, quick dinners, really good chicken recipe, weeknight meals I’m not sure if I’ve mentioned it before but my husband loves chicken. He would happily eat it every single night without complaint. Since I’m not as big of a fan, I need to do a lot of different things with it so I don’t become sick and tired of it. I came across this recipe on Home Ec 101 and I’m SO glad that I did. It was so unbelievably tasty. To see the original recipe, click here. […]

  4. amikim on August 7, 2010 at 7:22 pm

    I made this! It was easy and fast to make (we did the boneless version), everyone gobbled it down. The chicken had a slightly sweet taste with a wonderful tangy, smoky finish. We paired it with some warm potato salad with cilantro/cumin and some steamed asparagus. Yum! Keep the quick and easy recipes coming, please!

    • Frank Mercer on March 14, 2011 at 12:50 am

      Okay I made this and I have to say I was somewhat
      Disappointed. I knew from the minute traces of some
      of the ingredients that I would have to adjust the recipe
      to give it a kick, but even after tripling the dry rub ingredients
      There still was not much kick. I know it was quick to make but
      Quick and flavorless is still flavorless .

  5. carnellm on August 7, 2010 at 5:34 pm

    I am trying this tonight, we will see how it goes! The chicken is about to go into the pan. Gonna make some macaroni and cheese and some green beans to go with it.

  6. Walt Starr on August 5, 2010 at 3:48 pm

    this is cool

  7. Steven Berry on August 5, 2010 at 2:38 pm

    This sounds excellent! i don't have cider vinagar or cumen! so i have to skip it.

    I'm actually planning on doing a chicken "breaded" which my kid absolutely loves. i would have done this recipe if i had the ingrediants!

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