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Chicken thighs recipe roasted with red onions

a dish of chicken thighs with roasted vegetables

Chicken thighs with roasted vegetables

Roast chicken thighs were never something I looked forward to, or could ever countenance as I prefer white chicken meat and always avoid brown. That was a fact until we tried this amazing recipe that was posted on the forum by Shereen, who lives near Belfast. She credits her sister in law, JennyB.
Well congratulations to you both because you have converted this chicken thigh hater to a chicken thigh enthusiast.

This is really is a wonderful and economical recipe that punches way above its weight. The thighs magically convert to white meat rather than brown and I enjoyed having it twice in the past week. We forgot to take a photograph the first time, which was the perfect excuse to try it again last night. In fact this photo doesn’t do the dish justice.
“Danny, are you planning to visit Waitrose this week? The photo makes them look a bit charred”
“Yes, if it’s for chicken thighs,” he shouted from the upstairs Velux window in the Rat Room.

Shereen says that she has tried it successfully with thighs, drumsticks and chicken breasts. It seems that Tesco only sell mixed packs of drumsticks plus thighs, so we bought the pack of four thighs in Waitrose for £2.75 which represents real value for the generous meat content of this succulent dish.

Danny cooked it both times and, like every foodie, likes to tweak things.  Such as adding Balsamic vinegar to provide some added depth to the juices while the acidity evaporates during cooking. You can read Shereen’s original recipe here.

Absolutely delicious. Thank you Shereen.

Check out a summer vegetables variation of this recipe.


Chicken thighs recipe roasted with red onions
Recipe Type: Main
Author: Fiona Nevile
Prep time: 15 mins
Cook time: 50 mins
Total time: 1 hour 5 mins
Serves: 4
Smear the contents of the baked garlic cloves on the roasted thighs and pour over lashings of the lemony garlicky juices. Serve with the baked onion and roast potatoes + veg (Shereen had asparagus in season and corn. We had chips (fries) and asparagus – as this is in season in May).
  • 4 chicken thighs (approx 0.750 kg or 1.65 pounds)
  • 2 red onions, peeled and quartered (white onions do not work half as well)
  • Juice of 1 small lemon and zest from half of it, pips removed
  • 5 or 6 unpeeled cloves of garlic (or more if you love roast garlic)
  • 1 clove of garlic peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons Balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme (stripped from approx 12 sprigs) or 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt (such as Malden)
  1. Preheat oven to 190c/375f (175c/350f fan)
  2. In a roasting tin (the smaller the better, we used a circular ovenproof dish) pour in the olive oil and Balsamic vinegar.
  3. On the fleshy underside of each thigh, sprinkle the thyme and chopped garlic and fold over the flaps of skin to form a parcel..
  4. Place the thighs flap side down in the roasting tray and stuff the quartered red onions in between.
  5. Pour over the lemon juice and zest
  6. Sprinkle over the salt and black pepper
  7. Scatter the unpeeled cloves of garlic over the thighs
  8. Cook for 50 minutes and make sure that the juice from the thighs is clear when pierced with a fork.


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  1. brightsprite

    Try the same recipe, but also squeezing in some Charlotte potatoes, cut in half, between all the chicken – they turn out like mini-roast potatoes, and without any extra effort. Fab.

  2. Hi- cooked this a couple of nigths ago and it’s brilliant. My husband was particularly impressed! Very easy and enjoyable to cook too.

  3. Shereen

    @JollyGreenGiant I roast the thighs skin on because the skin on the top goes deliciously crispy in the oven. It’s a real treat for me. And the thighs I get usually have the main bone left in them. I think it holds the meat together and helps flavour the pan juices as the dish cooks.

  4. Shereen

    I’m delighted JennyB’s recipe was such a hit with you both. And I’m glad you’ve given it a chance to be tried and loved by loads more people.

    It’s only fair after all the recipes I’ve gained from this blog.

  5. I think the thigh is the best part of a chicken, followed by the drumstick – breast meat is so dull in comparison. But as that’s the part my husband likes best between us there’s nothing wasted!

  6. Danny

    Hi JGG – skins on – not totally boneless but the thigh joint had been removed. I think that is the Waitrose standard butchering style for thighs.

  7. jollygreengiant

    Sounds good, but can you tell me if the thighs are skinless, boneless or what?

  8. Toffeeapple

    Chicken thighs are readily available in my local Tesco, perhaps your branch had just sold out? I do agree that they are tastier than breast meat.

  9. Mmm sounds lovely, reckon it would work well with pheasant too. I think I still have a couple in the freezer that I can try it out on.


  10. Tulip-Fairy

    I love chicken thighs, cheap very versatile and oh so tasty, love the sound of this recipe and seen as I have a new bottle of balsamic in the cupboard I might make it using Danny’s tweak! I’ll let you know what my fussy lot thought, I’m sure me and Mr Tulip are going to love it!

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