Oven Fried Chicken Thighs taste just like fried chicken without the oil and hassle! This breaded chicken thighs recipe yields juicy, ultra crisp, and flavorful chicken thighs every time.
Oven Fried Chicken Thighs
Ditch the fryer, excessive oil, and kitchen mess with this oven baked chicken recipe! With only 15 minutes of hands-on time, this healthier alternative to fried chicken has become my go-to for busy weeknights.
One bite of these crispy chicken thighs and you’ll never go back to fried chicken again!
Why You’ll Love this Breaded Chicken Thighs Recipe:
- EASY: Simple ingredients, simple prep, and simple cleanup.
- BAKED: Fried chicken has nothing on these crispy chicken thighs. This oven baked chicken recipe is a much healthier and lighter alternative to fried chicken that the whole family will love.
- VERSATILE: These baked chicken thighs go with everything!
These baked chicken thighs have that perfect crispy “fried” chicken coating yet remain juicy and tender inside.
How to Make Crispy Baked Chicken Thighs in the Oven
You can jump to the recipe card for full ingredients & instructions!
- Prepare the dredging stations.
- Coat the chicken.
- Place the chicken thighs on a prepared baking sheet.
- Drizzle with olive oil.
Absolutely! Instead of chicken thighs, use 2-2 ½ pounds of boneless, skinless chicken breasts. Adjust the bake time as needed – typically chicken breasts don’t take as long to cook as thighs.
Yes, but make sure the frozen thighs are fully thawed before using in the recipe. Let them defrost in the refrigerator overnight.
Bake these chicken thighs for 20-25 minutes at 400°F.
Chicken thighs are cooked through when a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of a thigh reads at least 165°F.
Oven baked fried chicken is delicious on sandwiches, sliced on salads, or served with classic sides like:
These baked chicken thighs are always a hit whenever I serve them!
- Instead of eggs, coat both sides of the chicken thighs in mayo before dipping in the bread crumb mixture.
- Use a meat thermometer to guarantee the thighs are cooked through. Insert the thermometer into the thickest part of the chicken – when it reads 165°F, the chicken is done.
- Serve these thighs with your favorite dipping sauce.
With that same satisfying crunch as fried chicken, these crispy baked chicken thighs are a healthier alternative to your favorite fried chicken.
How can I cook these chicken thighs in an air fryer?
Prepare the thighs as directed and cook them in the air fryer for 12 minutes at 380°F. Make sure to flip them half way through cooking!
Can I use any kind of bread crumbs?
For best results, use Panko bread crumbs for the crispiest breaded chicken. Other bread crumbs will work, the coating just won’t be as crispy.
How can I add spice to these thighs?
For a little kick, add ½-1 teaspoon of cayenne pepper to the bread crumb mixture in step 2.
More Oven Baked Dinner Recipes We Love
- Pepperoni Pizza Gnocchi Bake
- Parmesan Crusted Tilapia Recipe (Baked Lemon Pepper Tilapia)
- Chicken Salad Pie (Baked)
- Cheeseburger Sliders Recipe (Baked Burger Slides)
Quick and mess free, this healthier crispy chicken thighs recipe has become a favorite in my family!
More Easy Chicken Recipes to Try:
- Oven-Fried Chicken Breast
- Grilled Chicken Thighs
- Baked Chicken Tacos Recipe
- Creamy Chicken Spaghetti
- Creamy White Chicken Caprese Lasagna
- Baked Chicken Wings
- Pepper Jelly Chicken Wings
If you make this recipe be sure to upload a photo in the comment section below or leave a rating. Enjoy! You can also jump to recipe.
How would you adjust cooking time and/or temp for bone-in, skin on thighs?
Bone-in thighs will need 10-15 minutes longer to cook through!
Divine! This is a keeper, for sure!
I’m so happy to hear you loved it, Margaret!
Really flavorful and moist. Super easy. Thanks!
I’m so happy to hear you enjoyed them, Christie!
This recipe was soooooooooooooo good! Instead of eggs and water I went the Mayo route – (Hellman’s Olive Oil variety is the best!!!) as well as Seasoned Panko crumbs (vs plain) and Peanut oil for the drizzle. Didn’t use any of the recommended spices or salt as I figured the mayo and seasoned crumbs would be sufficient and they were :) Baked for 22 minutes and they came out of the oven, perfectly browned, crisp and juicy. Recipe is definitely a keeper!!!
I’m so happy to hear you enjoyed this recipe, Patricia!
This was advertised as “no oil” and then the recipe asked for oil. I would say maybe try the suggestions listed in the comments. I tried this recipe anyway and found it bland. I have a much better recipe for pistachio bread crumbs, but didn’t happen to have the pistachios on hand. However, good for you to start cooking and sharing your recipes!
Hi, I’m sorry for the confusion! These wings are no-hassle, meaning you don’t need to use tons of messy frying oil! You will still need a bit of oil to help them brown in the oven, though!
I absolutely hate mayo so skipped that step, lol. I used Parmesan garlic bread crumbs & this came out awesome! Perfect cooking time. I flipped the chicken after 20 mins to get the other side crispy.
Thanks so much for sharing what modifications worked for you, Heather!
I used Greek yougurt and a little Dijon mustard instead of the mayo that was noted in the notes.
I also air fried them…. They were delicious.
100% would recommend
Thanks so much for sharing, Christina!
It’s a standard dredging formula that I have used for years (also for pork chops) with variations for the seasonings. But using the Air Roast function turned it into a glorious, juicy dish (and thighs are very forgiving). Yum++
Thanks for sharing, Jim!
Most homemade fried chicken recipes that I’ve personally tried before did not turn out very well (and I’m a good cook)! Lol! But this one is fabulous. And I used regular breadcrumbs because I didn’t have any Panko on hand. The chicken was so moist, flavorful and crispy. I will certainly add this recipe to my box. Next time, I think I’ll try thighs with the skin on them.
Thanks so much for sharing, Cici!
This recipe was delicious! I used light mayonnaise w/ the water in place of the eggs and found it gave the chicken even better flavor.
What a great tip, Tina!
How do you know that it’s better if you’ve never tried her original recipe ??