I was looking for a simple and quick dinner for a week night. I had some chicken thighs in the fridge and I was craving lemon. Luckily, I found a recipe that called for ingredients I had in my pantry. The chicken came out moist, flavorful, lemony, and delicious. Searing it in a pan before baking it in the oven really locked in the juices and made the skin nice and crisp. I used bone-in, skin-on thighs, but you can certainly use boneless, skinless. (I just don’t think the chicken will be as moist). For a side dish, I just boiled some egg noodles and broccoli and then drizzled the remaining lemon sauce over the top.
I found that the original recipe called for too much fat, so I reduced it in the one given below. I also increased the amounts of garlic, lemon juice, and chicken broth so I had enough sauce for the noodles. Next time, I’ll use about a teaspoon of lemon zest in the marinade to increase the lemony flavor.
Check out my tips for getting moist and tender chicken every time. (opens in a new window)
Lemon Oregano Chicken
3 garlic cloves, minced
3 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, divided (bottled lemon juice will also work)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
4 chicken thighs, bone-in, skin-on (you can also use boneless, skinless or substitute with breasts but in that case, increase the oil to make up for lack of fat)
1/2 cup reduced-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
1 teaspoon dried oregano
- In a medium-sized bowl, combine garlic, 1 tablespoon oil, 2 tablespoons lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Pat chicken dry and add to bowl. Marinate for 15-30 minutes at room temperature.
- Preheat oven to 450°F with rack in middle.
- Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in a heavy pan on medium heat and brown chicken about 5 minutes on each side. Chicken will still be raw in the middle. Transfer to an oven-proof dish.
- Pour remaining fat off the pan (optional), then add broth and remaining 1 tablespoon of lemon juice. Allow to simmer and reduce, about 2 minutes. Add oregano and pour sauce over chicken.
- Bake chicken until cooked through, about 20 minutes. Salt and pepper to taste and serve.
- For a quick side dish, boil some egg noodles according to package directions. Coordinate timing so they finish cooking the same time as the chicken. Cut some broccoli into florets and throw it in the pot with the noodles in the last 3 minutes of cooking. Drain and put on serving dish. Pour extra sauce from chicken over the noodles and broccoli.