Oven-baked chicken drumsticks (or as my kids said when they were young, chicken legs :)) are a simple, easy, and delicious weekday dinner! These are baked drumsticks, and then broiled in the oven on a baking sheet to achieve that crispy skin. Flavorful, juicy, and oh so tender drummies are a family favorite! I serve these baked chicken legs alongside my brown sugar-glazed carrots and my family goes nuts!
School is in full swing in our home, fall is in the air, and schedules have turned from the lazy days of summer to the busy days of another school year. Truthfully, I like schedules and knowing what is happening from day to day. But I don't like how busy it can be and how difficult evenings are on getting a decent meal on the table.
Eating a decent meal together as a family at least a couple of times a week is important to me, but gosh darn...it can be hard! Everyone seems to be off in their own directions, these days. These chicken drumsticks in the oven is an easy meal idea that is perfect for those busy weeknights. Serve it with mashed cauliflower and a quick salad and you have a delicious and healthy meal. Score! High-five. Go you!
- Chicken drumsticks, legs, or thighs (again, being mindful that you need to increase your cooking time). Although I prefer organic, clean chicken because I believe the flavor is better, use your favorite brand of chicken.
- Olive oil. Olive oil is essential for getting the desired crispy skin and helping the spices stick to the chicken.
- Spices. If you love spice, double the mixture and get even more yummy flavor. Or swap out some of your own favorite spices. Try subbing out sage for rosemary, or chili powder for paprika.
- Salt. Truly, you can't make a good chicken without salt. Use it liberally!
What kind of chicken legs should you use?
I am totally on board with organic, locally sourced chicken without antibiotics. That will always be my personal preference. But frankly, anything that gets something other than take-out or pizza on your family's table is okay in my book. That is a win for many busy families.
So, start with some good ol' chicken legs (or thighs- just be sure to increase the cooking time!). Be sure to pat them dry. And, if you are a geek...pretend to take after your kids with them. Something about chicken legs gets kids screaming in joy :).
- Rub the spice mixture on to the cleaned, dried chicken.
- Place the chicken legs on to a baking sheet.
- Drizzle the oil mixture and coat the chicken legs.
- Cook the chicken by baking it in the oven.
- When fully cooked broil, broil the chicken to create the desired crispy skin. <--- don't skip this step!
I know! There is nothing like a good rub on meat, is there. It's so dang pretty. This one is simple, easy, and fast. Many of us are not meat "rubbers". We feel like simply cooking the meat properly is a win, never mind the business of getting down and dirty with the meat. But trust me on this, once you rub you will never stop. It's like therapy :).Okay, I'm being ridiculous. But trust me... you feel a little like a Master Chef when you rub herbs and spices all over that chicken.
The secret for crispy chicken skin on oven-baked chicken drumsticks:
Let me tell you a little secret technique for creating the best drumsticks...the broiler! So true! After you bake them for the desired time you stick them to broil for a few minutes to get that skin all crispy and browned. It's so genius!
How long to bake chicken drumsticks in the oven?
You want them to hit an internal temp of 180 degrees. About 30 minutes at 400 degrees. And then hit it with that little bit in the broiler. That is usually about perfect.
- Aluminum foil. If you don't have a pan dedicated to roasting try using a baking sheet with foil to enhance the browning from the oven.
- Cover your drumsticks with foil if you find that your chicken tends to be more dry than you would like. Just be sure to uncover them when you broil!
- Brush your drumsticks with additional oil or drippings right before you broil them for extra crispiness.
- Your chicken is cooked through if the juices run clear and it isn't at all pink in the center. If you use a meat thermometer you need it at 165 degrees.
Soooo pretty! And don't you DARE tell anyone they need to use a fork and knife and eat it properly. My kids used to call these the "handle" parts because they grabbed the meat by the handle and went to town on that drummie. That, my friends, is how to properly eat a chicken drumstick. And probably why kids love them. They taste delicious and are fun to eat!
Oven Baked Chicken drumsticks
- 6 chicken drumsticks with skin on
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- ¾ teaspoon fresh cracked pepper
- ¾ teaspoon garlic powder
- pinch turmeric optional
- ¼ teaspoon salt or to taste
- 2 tablespoons olive oil extra virgin
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon chopped thyme
- 1 teaspoon chopped rosemary
- Preheat oven to 400F. Grease a cookie sheet or baking tray with oil and set aside.
- Pat dry the chicken pieces with a paper towel and rub the spice mix onto the chicken pieces. Arrange the chicken on the prepped tray.
- Drizzle the oil mix on the spice coated chicken (on both the sides).
- Bake at 400F for 30-35 minutes or until cooked through and there is no pink inside (180 degrees). Turn once halfway (after about 15 minutes).
- Broil for couple of minutes on each side until the skin browns and crisps up.
- Serve. Refrigerate leftovers.