This lemon garlic butter chicken thighs dish is going to become one of your favorite meals! It's easy to make, hearty, flavorful, and cooked in one pan! It's a total winner winner chicken dinner!
Have I got a super simple and delicious one-pan meal that you're going to love!
This dish is deliciously suitable for low-carb diets and is all cooked up in one-pan simply and easily! It's a tasty chicken dish you're going to definitely want to add to your weekly menu!
Let's get on with it!
The Chicken Thighs
A major key to this dish cooking up quickly is the thighs being boneless, so be sure to either buy the boneless chicken thighs or grab yourself a couple kitchen shears and debone them yourself.
By using skin-on chicken thighs, no extra oil is needed and the chicken cooks in its own rendered fat from the skin. If you use skinless chicken thighs, you will have to add oil to the pan.
Can I use chicken breasts?
I have not tried cooking this dish with chicken breasts since I find chicken thighs are more juicy and flavorful. They are also more forgiving to cooking and do not dry out as easily as chicken breasts.
Cooking the Chicken Thighs
You want to start with a cold pan...can't get any easier than that!
Starting the chicken thighs skin down in a cold pan helps to render the fat out of the chicken skin, requiring no additional oil. The skin also turns golden and crisp as it is searing in the pan. This is a common way to cook duck breast and chicken thighs benefit from the same method.
Use a skillet that is large enough to hold the chicken thighs without crowding. Once you lay the chicken in the cold skillet, turn the heat up to medium high and let the chicken cook for about 10 minutes without moving them.
Flip the chicken over and you are going to see that the chicken skin is beautifully golden!
As the chicken continues cooking, it's time to add the rest of the flavorings...garlic, chicken broth, lemon juice, and fresh ground black pepper.
The finishing touches comes at the end when you add green onions to the pan and pat of butter which will give the sauce a rich and silky texture.
What if I am dairy-free?
Simply omit the butter to keep the dish dairy-free...and the dish becomes suitable for paleo diets!
If you still want to give the sauce some creamy body without the dairy, try adding some coconut cream to the pan.
If you want a bit of heat in the dish, add some chopped red chili peppers to the pan. They add a nice kick to each bite.
And that's it! Switch off the heat and transfer the pan from stove directly to table! Dinner is ready!
What is the best way to serve this chicken?
To keep the meal low-carb or carb-free, serve the chicken with a salad, roasted vegetables, or a side of boiled leafy greens.
If carbs aren't an issue, some rice or bread to help soak up the delicious sauce is a great option. You can't waste any of that sauce!
The flavors from my Savory Ginger Garlic Coconut Rice would be a tasty partner to the lemon garlic chicken thighs.
Looking for more one-pan recipes?
We can never have too many one-pan meal recipes for those nights when we just want something quick to throw on the table without sacrificing flavor! Take a look at Garlic Shrimp & Spinach One-Pan Pasta or One-Pan Saucy Beef Pasta, both delicious and hearty.
One-Pan Roast Chicken and Kale and Curry Chicken Rice Bake are baked in the oven, but they still use just one roasting pan, so I'd say they qualify as one-pan recipes! One-pan, whether it's a skillet or roasting dish still means an easy meal and easy clean-up!
These lemon garlic chicken thighs are a big hit in my house and I'm sure they're going to become a favorite in your house, too! Tender chicken in a delicious sauce and cooked up in no time with easy clean-up...it's a total winner of a chicken dinner any night of the week!
Skillet Lemon Garlic Chicken Thighs
- 4 boneless skin-on chicken thighs
- ½ teaspoon salt, divided
- Season skin-side of the chicken thighs with salt and place them skin-side down in a cold skillet.
- Turn heat to medium-high.
- Cook chicken for 10 minutes without moving, until skin is golden.
- Flip chicken thighs over.
- Add sliced garlic, chicken broth, black pepper, and lemon juice to the pan. Reduce heat to medium and cook another 7-8 minutes or until chicken pieces are cooked through.
- Add scallions and butter to the pan, switching the heat off after 30 seconds. If desired, add Thai red chili slices or dried chili flakes to pan. Let butter melt completely into the sauce and gently stir.
- Top with chopped parsley, if desired, and serve with lemon wedges on the side. Serve immediately.
- Make sure the pan is cold when you lay the chicken pieces in it. Make sure you lay them skin side down.
- If you use chicken without skin, you have to add oil to the pan.
- This recipe is best suited for chicken thighs. I have not tried it with chicken breasts.
- To keep the dish dairy-free, you can omit the butter. Try adding coconut cream to add dairy-free richness to the sauce.
- For some spice, add a chopped red chili pepper to the pan at the same time as the green onions and butter.
- Serve with a salad, rice, rolls, or roasted vegetables.