These Sweet and Spicy boneless Chicken thighs are incredibly delicious and made on the stovetop. The dry spice rub is sweet-spicy and is a blend of brown sugar and other spices. This easy 15-minute recipe qualifies as a perfect midweek dinner.
Coated with an incredible sweet and spicy dry rub, these boneless skinless chicken thighs taste delicious. The sweet-spicy dry rub for the chicken is really simple and quick to make.
To add to the convenience, the rub has regular pantry staples. For days when you don't have your dinner planned or you are short of time, recipes like these come to the rescue.
The chicken turns out crispy outside and has a juicy center. Seeing the golden crust, what would surprise you is that these are made on the stovetop in less than 15 minutes.
The stovetop version is as good as the oven-baked one but done in half the time. Quite simply, this is one of my top chicken thigh recipe.
Another best thing about this recipe is the sauce. It has plenty of sauce to drizzle, not to forget all the brown caramelized bits in it, and also the syrup keeps the thighs moist for a long time.
Crispy skin-on chicken thigh is BAE. But crisping the skin on the skillet and then finishing it in the oven takes time. So I prefer to use boneless skinless chicken thighs to fasten the cooking. And it is possible to get a golden crispy crust on the stovetop.
As far as stove-top recipes go, this one is one of the best.
- Chicken thighs - Recommended skinless boneless chicken thighs which are ideal for this recipe and cooks at the same time as that of the glazy sauce.
- Butter & Oil - Cooked in butter for more flavour and oil is used to increase the burning point of butter.
- Rosemary - Love the herb flavour from rosemary.
- Chicken stock - Gives a body to the sauces.
- Garlic - I have used cloves of garlic which when cooked along with the stock infuses it with its flavour.
Epic Sweet and Spicy Dry Rub
This spicy rub is everything in this recipe. A blend of Brown sugar, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, smoked paprika, salt, and pepper. All these ingredients are easily available.
Brown sugar doesn't make the seasoning very sweet. Rather it brings together all the flavors. Smoked paprika gives a smokiness that is so so delicious.
The best thing about this seasoning mix is you can make a big batch and keep it in an airtight container. It comes in handy.
It is a good thing that cooking with Chicken thigh is very forgiving. Unlike Chicken breast, thighs don't get rubbery and dry if cooked for a little longer.
To get the best out of skinless boneless chicken thighs, cook it right.
- A mix of butter and oil works always better. Butter gives the richness to the sauce and oil prevents the butter from burning.
- I love garlic and always go a little overboard with it. It adds flavour to the pan sauce.
- Chicken and rosemary is a fantastic combination. It gives a freshness to the dish. You can substitute it with thyme or parsley if you prefer.
This is a perfect side-dish. Serve these Chicken thighs along with some rice with all that incredible Juice drizzled on top or with a light salad like this Italian Chopped salad or Airfryer Roasted Broccoli on the side.
You may store the cooked chicken thighs as it is in either the refrigerator or freeze them. Always use an air-tight container or zip-lock to store them.
While taking it out from the refrigerator, just warm them in the microwave or on a pan for 5 minutes.
If you have frozen them, then let them thaw out until they come up to room temperature. Microwave or heat it on a pan.
We do not have to sear the chicken thighs again and the sauce just needs to be hot again and will warm the thighs too.
Other Chicken Thigh Recipes
Slow cooker Creamy Chicken Thighs
Baked Garlic Parmesan Chicken thighs
Frequently Asked Questions
For a crispy crust, sear seasoned chicken thighs in butter for about 2-3 minutes. Press with the back of the spatula, so that the boneless chicken thighs are almost flat on the skillet.
This ensures the chicken is seared evenly. Then lower the heat and cook slowly for another couple of minutes for the chicken to cook through.
Chicken breast is the widely preferred cut. It is leaner and comparatively inexpensive. Yes, we can use chicken breast instead.
Cut chicken breast lengthwise to get a thinner uniform fillet and also adjust the cooking time accordingly.
For fat cuts of chicken breast, you will have to pound them to form a softer and thinner slice.
Also reduce the amount of chicken stock as there is a chance the sauce might burn before the chicken cooks.
Note that bone-in chicken requires more time to cook and by that time there is a chance for the sauce to burn. So this recipe recommends boneless.
Yet if you have to do with bone-in chicken, the sauce might thicken and burn by the time the chicken gets cooked. So add more chicken stock when the sauce thickens to give more time for the chicken to cook while the sauce thickens up again and forms a glaze.
Sweet & Spicy Boneless Chicken Thighs
- 6-7 Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs
- 1 tablespoon Butter
- 1 tablespoon Oil
- 2 Garlic Cloves
- ¼ cup Chicken Stock
- 2-3 sprigs Fresh Rosemary
For Spice Rub
- 2 tablespoon Light Brown Sugar
- 1 teaspoon Garlic Powder
- ½ teaspoon Onion Powder
- ½ teaspoon Smoked Paprika
- ½ teaspoon Chili Powder (ref note 3)
- ¼ teaspoon Black Pepper
- ½ teaspoon Salt
- In a bowl mix all dry ingredients mentioned under spice rub.
- Pat dry Chicken thighs with a kitchen towel.
- Sprinkle the dry seasoning mix generously on both sides.
- Heat a heavy cast iron skillet. Add butter and oil.
- Stir in garlic cloves and fry for 30 seconds. Garlic should look light golden in color and it loses the raw smell.
- Place chicken thighs flat side facing down. Cook on medium-high heat for about 5 minutes, until it is crispy and golden.
- Flip and cook the other side now for another 2 minutes on medium-high heat
- Slowly pour ¼ cup stock to the side of the pan. Add rosemary sprig. Scrap the bottom of the pan to release any brown caramelized bits.
- Cover the pan with a lid and cook on high heat for another 2 minutes.
- Uncover and simmer it for another minute or so for a thick sauce to form.
- Serve along with rice, beans, or veggies with the sauce drizzled on top.
- Watch how to make this with step by step instruction video after the recipe.
- You might not need all the spice mixture here. Save any leftover in an airtight container to use later.
- Don't overcrowd the pan, else the chicken will not crisp up and will start to steam instead. If the pan is small, sear it in 2 batches. Then add all the chicken back to the pan and add stock and rosemary.
- Substitute Chili powder with paprika or adjust the quantity of chili powder as per taste.
Doreen A Dziokonski says
Crazy easy, moist & delicious.
Gina C says
Hello, can I used chicken broth or powdered bouillon instead of stock? I’m all out
Yes, you can. You might have to adjust the salt accordingly.
Delicious!! I made this for dinner 2 days in a row! And the leftovers for lunch at work...just as yummy! I ate it with jasmine rice.
These tasted great but cooking them on high heat almost set my house on fire. I literally had the exhaust on, window open and my smoke detector going off the entire time. That said they were slightly blackened like they came off a grill.
Hi...just finished making this. Thank you! Very easy,& quick..Lv it!!
Happy you loved it, Esa.
Vivian Mason says
This recipe was really tasty! I cut the sugar a bit and added more heat. The gravy was nice but I would have preferred the chicken crispier so next time I’ll use high heat in the first steps. I paired it with mashed potatoes and smothered cabbage in the gravy and it was fantastic!!
Linda Davies says
Awesome recipe. My husband defrosted a large pack of chicken thighs. I trawled the Web for recipes and bingo!
The flavours in this are amazing and it's so simple to make.
This is definitely going to be one of my favourites
Hi there, do you have the baked version of this recipe that you mentioned? Thanks!
No, I don't have a baked version. But after adding the stock, you can bake for 15-20 minutes @350 F. Because the thighs are already seared, it will take less time in the oven.
I wonder if a griddle would work in place of a cast iron pan until it’s time to add the stock?
Delicious! I used boneless breast and dried thyme and it was fabulous and easy!
Julie Downes says
Without a doubt this is one I will make again and again. It was easy and the flavors were surprisingly wonderfully incorporated. Delicious!
Frances Forbes D.O.B says
delicious 😋 and easy to make will add to my favorites thank you
Diane Marie says
Very good, quick, and inexpensive, but tastes delicious. Followed recipe exactly except added minced garlic about a minute before chicken finished browning. Be sure to slowly pour liquid as instructed so you don’t rinse the spice off the chicken. Also, when browning, carefully turn pieces with tongs; I used a spatula on my first piece and scraped all the spice off the bottom. I would suggest doubling the sauce if you want extra for rice or noodles.
Thank You Diane
This is outstanding! A wonderful bend of spices and flavors makes this easy dish one of the best chicken recipes ever! I want to make this for guests. Do you think I can cook before they arrive and keep in the oven on warm without it drying out?
Hi Katrina, you may keep it covered with an aluminum foil on warm. An hour should be safe.
Karen DeVenaro says
This wonderful recipe that has everything I love for a weeknight meal: It's quick, easy and absolutely delicious. Thank you, Subha! I already make your Baked Creamy Chicken Thighs recipes often...it is one of my husband and son's favorites. I tried this sweet and spicy boneless chicken thigh recipe because I happened to have boneless thighs on hand. Wow! Was it good! The only thing I changed was a slight tweak to the seasoning to accommodate what I had on hand and the fact that I unfortunately cannot tolerate spicy foods. So I replaced the chili powder with a milder ancho powder and cut the amount in half. I don't have a cast iron skillet so used a very large, heavy nonstick skillet, and was still able to get a beautiful crust on the chicken. Folks, it's really important to follow Subha's instructions to pour the chicken broth in on the side of the pan so that you don't "wash off" that lovely crust. Wonderful!
Thank you very much Karen for trying the recipe and taking the effort to write such a lovely comment.
Lori Gemeinhardt says
Hi there! This may be a silly question, but do you leave the garlic cloves whole, or chop them up? I feel they should be chopped or minced …
Thank you! Very excited to make this!!
You can chop the garlic, not mince I would suggest.
C Stewart says
I use smashed garlic for this type of recipe. Place the broad side of a knife on top of the garlic clove and smash down. The peel will fall right off and the clove will split open and you just drop it in the pan. At the end you can easily pull the pieces out.
What if you dont have a cast iron skillet?
You can use a regular skillet. Cast iron gives a better caramelization and a crispy exterior sooner.
Thank you 🙂
I'm putting together a food truck and looking for quick and easy stuff to add to the menu this looks great over rice.
A Connecticut Cook says
Lovely, easy recipe with a great flavor payoff! I added chopped garlic a little later, once I flipped the chicken, as garlic can be bitter if overcooked. Removed the chicken at the end and boiled the sauce a bit to reduce it, and not overcook the chicken. One pan, fast, flavorful, looks very pretty on a platter with the sauce drizzled over the pieces. A very good mid-week dinner recipe.
Can this be made in the oven? If so, what would the temperature and cook time be?
A coworker steered me to this recipe and I’m now forever grateful! Definitely a keeper. Easy and delicious.
Just enjoyed this flavorful dish. Will definitely make again!
I used skin on, bone in, thighs. Tucked the spices under the skin, finished in the oven. Be sure to taste the spice mixture, then adjust to your liking. Most paprika, smoked out not, is not spicy. Same for chili powder. But hey, it's cooking. It's an art, not a science. Have fun with it.
We made this tonight and it was delicious and quick! Thanks!!
Love this recipe! Fast and delicious! Thank you for sharing, always looking for good chicken recipes, this is definitely a keeper!
This recipe was a winner with the kids. It was delicious. I'll definitely make it again. Thank you for this recipe
Yay! Thanks for letting me know Sagrario. Recipes shared here are always ones that my family enjoys including my six-year-old daughter.
Absolutely delicious chicken dish, thank you for sharing it.
This was a very easy recipe. Whole family loved it. Prep time was more than two min though, cutting fat of thighs, cutting garlic....And I would all a little more time to getting the source thick. Also, I didn’t have smoked paprika, just used paprika so not very spicy. Delicious though!
Yay!! So happy to know your feedback on this.
Christapher Myers says
Used chicken breast and were bigger so ended up having to throw in the oven and bake smells good though will be eating soon thanks for the great recipe
Ana Vidal says
Hi, can i put the chicken in the oven cover up, whit foil whit the rosemary? Thanks
Yes!! You can finish it off in the oven.
Can I use bone in chicken thighs?
Sure, Meredith. Adjust the cooking time to 10 more minutes as bone-in pieces need a little more time to cook and bring out their flavours.
This is delicious! Perfect balance of sweet and spicy!
When I made this and added the stock it seemed to wash off the lovely coating on the chicken
You can slowly pour the stock on the sides. When the stock reduces and thickens it beautifully coats the chicken, so don't worry 🙂
Frances C says
Same here...I wish I had not added the broth. I removed the thighs and let the sauce caramelize and pored Over the chicken.
My boyfriend and I (oh and our dog) absolutely loved this recipe! Very easy and super-duper flavorful. Will def be making again, and again, and again!
It is feedback like this that makes all this effort worthwhile. Chuffed to know all of you loved this. Thanks, Amanda.
^ to Amanda: if you use garlic in the recipe, please don't let your dog eat this! Garlic is poisonous to dogs.
Depends on what you feed your dog
I feed mine raw food and give her 3 garlic supplements daily! Recommend dad by my breeder . Springtime has the caplets . Check it out
My husband and I loved this recipe! Will definitely make again soon!
Delighted to know both of you loved it. Thanks, Cydney.