5 from 10 votes
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Honey Mustard Chicken Thighs (Easy Baked Recipe)

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Serve up these juicy and flavorful honey mustard chicken thighs. Bone-in and skin-on chicken thighs are pan-seared and flavored with mustard, honey, garlic, and more. This is a super easy and quick chicken dinner idea that you will want to make over and over again.

Chicken and rice on a black plate.

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I can never find enough chicken thigh recipes. If you are right there with me, this great recipe will win you over. I love the honey’s sweetness and the spice kick of the whole-grain mustard.

Want more delicious honey recipes to try out? If you still have some honey to use, why not try making these simple peach lemonade popsicles, which use honey to sweeten them? Or, for the adults, make some boozy Jack Daniels Honey Whiskey cupcakes.

Looking for more chicken thigh recipes? You could also try making rosemary lemon thighs or even grab the slow cooker and make some peach chicken thighs with cayenne for added kick.

Why This Recipe Works

  • Quick and Easy: This honey mustard chicken thigh recipe requires minimal prep and uses everyday ingredients, making it perfect for a hassle-free, busy weeknight dinner.
  • Flavorful: The combination of sweet honey and tangy mustard, along with garlic and spices, creates an irresistible glaze.
  • Versatile: These chicken thighs can be served with a variety of sides, from roasted vegetables to creamy mashed potatoes, making meal planning a breeze.
  • Family Friendly: Even picky eaters will love the juicy chicken with its deliciously sticky, sweet, and slightly spicy coating, ensuring a meal everyone can enjoy.

What’s in This Honey Mustard Chicken Thighs Recipe?

Ingredients for honey mustard chicken thighs sitting on a white countertop.
  • Chicken Thighs: The star of this dish, juicy chicken thighs offer a rich flavor and tender texture. Choose bone-in chicken thighs for a juicier result or swap with boneless chicken breasts for a leaner option.
  • Seasoning: A simple mix of salt and cayenne pepper lays the foundation for flavor, allowing the chicken to be seasoned just right to complement the other ingredients. You’re encouraged to tweak this according to your taste preferences.
  • Honey: This natural sweetener brings a delightful sweetness to the dish, creating a perfect balance with the mustard. If honey isn’t your preference, feel free to substitute it with maple syrup or agave for a different twist on sweetness.
  • Butter: Adding a bit of richness and depth, butter helps to carry the flavors throughout the chicken and contributes to the sauce’s glossy finish.
  • Oil: Essential for pan-searing the chicken, oil helps to crisp the skin perfectly while preventing the meat from sticking to the pan.
  • Honey Mustard: The key ingredient that unites the sweetness of honey with the tanginess of mustard, creating a harmonious glaze that’s both sweet and slightly spicy.
  • Garlic: Fresh garlic adds a punch of aroma and depth, enhancing the overall flavor profile of the dish. Adjust the garlic to suit your taste, whether you prefer a subtle hint or a bold presence.

Substitutions and Variations

  • Mustard Variety: If whole grain mustard isn’t available or if you prefer a different taste, you can use Dijon mustard or even yellow mustard for a milder flavor.
  • Sweetener Alternatives: Maple syrup or agave nectar are excellent vegan-friendly options in place of honey that still lend the necessary sweetness to balance the mustard.
  • Adding Heat: For those who enjoy a little extra spice, consider adding a dash of hot sauce or chili flakes to the glaze for an additional kick.
  • Herb Infusions: Incorporating fresh herbs like thyme or rosemary can add a new layer of flavor to the dish. Simply mix in with the mustard-honey glaze before applying to the chicken.
  • Citrus Twist: Adding a bit of lemon zest or a squeeze of lemon juice to the glaze can introduce a vibrant, citrusy element that complements the other flavors beautifully.

How to Make Baked Chicken Thighs With Honey Mustard Step by Step

Collage of creating honey mustard chicken thighs.
  1. Preheat the oven to the required temperature.
  2. Season the chicken thighs on both sides with salt and cayenne pepper. (Photo 1)
  3. Heat butter and oil in an oven-proof frying pan until the butter is melted and the oil is hot. Sear the chicken in the skillet on each side for approximately 4 minutes per side. (Photo 2)
  4. In a small bowl, combine the ingredients for the homemade honey mustard sauce. Evenly pour the honey mustard mixture over the seared chicken in the skillet. (Photos 3 & 4)
Collage of honey mustard chicken thighs on a black skillet and on a black plate.
  1. Transfer the pan to the preheated oven and bake until the chicken is thoroughly cooked.
  2. Serve the baked honey mustard chicken thighs with your choice of sides. (Photos 5 & 6)
A black plate with honey mustard chicken sitting on a bed of rice.

How To Know When Chicken Is Done?

Chicken is done when the internal temperature reads 165 degrees F, measured by a meat thermometer. The other way to tell that chicken is fully cooked is when the juices run clear, and there is no pink left on the meat. I highly recommend using a meat thermometer to ensure you don’t serve undercooked chicken.

Recipe Tips

  • Pre-searing Perfection: Before baking, searing the chicken thighs in a hot skillet creates a beautifully crisp exterior that not only looks appetizing but also locks in the flavors.
  • Room-Temperature Chicken: For more evenly cooked chicken, remove the thighs from the refrigerator at least 30 minutes before cooking to bring them to room temperature.
  • Glaze Evenly: For the best results, evenly coat each chicken thigh with the honey mustard mixture to ensure every bite is flavorful.
  • Don’t Overcrowd the Pan: When searing your chicken, give each piece enough space in the pan. Overcrowding can lead to steam, which might prevent the skin from getting crispy.
  • Oven Temperature: Use an oven thermometer to monitor your oven’s actual temperature and ensure accuracy for the best cooking results.
  • Rest Before Serving: After removing the baked chicken thighs from the oven, allow them to rest for a few minutes. This helps the juices redistribute, making the chicken even more tender.
  • Garnish Wisely: A simple garnish of fresh parsley or thyme adds a pop of color and a fresh flavor contrast to the rich, savory tones of the honey mustard chicken.

Alternative Cooking Methods

For those interested in using alternative cooking methods for this Honey Mustard Chicken Thighs recipe, both the Instant Pot and Slow Cooker offer convenient solutions:

  • Instant Pot: An Instant Pot can significantly reduce cooking time while ensuring the chicken thighs remain juicy and flavorful. To adapt this easy dinner recipe, use the sauté function to sear the chicken thighs as instructed, then add the honey mustard mixture and cook under high pressure for about 10 minutes. Quick release the pressure, and if desired, use the sauté function again to thicken the sauce.
  • Slow Cooker: For a more hands-off approach, the slow cooker method infuses the chicken with flavor by cooking it gradually. Place the seared chicken thighs in the slow cooker, cover them with the honey mustard mixture, and cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 3-4 hours. If you prefer a thicker sauce, you might want to reduce it on the stove after cooking.

Both methods provide tasty alternatives to baking and can be adjusted based on your schedule or preference for convenience.

Storing Tips 

If you don’t eat all of the chicken thighs, just place them in an airtight container and refrigerate for 2-3 days. This chicken reheats well. I recommend warming it up in the microwave, as the oven can burn the glaze on the outside of the chicken.

If you want to warm it in the oven, place it in a covered dish so it doesn’t burn.

Honey mustard chicken in a bed of rice and a black skillet with chicken thighs in the background.

Serving Suggestions

To complement your baked honey mustard chicken thighs, consider pairing them with a variety of sides. For a hearty, flavorful option, Rice or Cilantro Lime Rice serves as a refreshing accompaniment. Alternatively, a Dill Pasta Salad offers a creamy, herby contrast to the savory chicken. 

For those who prefer greens, green beans,  a simple Green Salad or a vibrant Tomato Salad enriched with balsamic and feta can add a splash of color and freshness to your meal. 

Lastly, a Copycat Chik-Fil-A Coleslaw provides a tangy crunch, making it a perfect complement to the dish. Explore all of our delicious side dishes to find the perfect pairings for your honey mustard chicken!

Recipe FAQs

Why chicken thighs are cheaper?

Chicken thighs are dark meat, and you will find that all dark meat chicken is lower priced. The other factor is bones. Bone-in chicken means less effort when prepping, so the price is budget-friendly. Boneless chicken takes more work, and in that, it costs more.

How do you prepare chicken thighs?

Since you are cooking the chicken thighs with the skins on you need hot oil in the pan. Place the chicken skin side down and let it sear to create a nice sear on the fatty skin. This helps to break down the fat and will give it a good texture and flavor.

How long does it take for thighs to cook?

Depending on how large or small your thighs are will depend on how fast you will need to cook your chicken. Since the chicken is pan-seared first, it will cook in around 20 minutes in the oven. You want an internal temperature of 165 degrees.

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Honey Mustard Chicken on a bed of rice.
5 from 10 votes

Honey Mustard Chicken Thighs (Easy Baked Recipe)


Author: Kim Schob
Course: Main Dishes
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Yields 5 Servings
Serve up these honey mustard chicken thighs for dinner tonight. A pan seared chicken thighs that are sweet and savory in each juicy bite.

Ingredients 

  • 5 Chicken Thighs bone-in and skin-on preferred
  • Salt to taste
  • ½ teaspoon Cayenne Pepper or more to taste
  • 2 Tablespoon Olive Oil
  • 1 Tablespoons Butter
  • 1 Tablespoon Whole Grain Mustard
  • 1 Tablespoon Honey Mustard
  • 1 Tablespoon Honey or more to taste
  • 2 Tablespoons Minced Garlic

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 375℉
  • Season the chicken thighs on both sides with salt and cayenne pepper.
  • Heat butter and oil in an oven-proof frying pan until the butter is melted and the oil is hot. Sear the chicken in the skillet on each side for approximately 4 minutes per side.
  • In a small bowl, combine the ingredients for the homemade honey mustard sauce. Evenly pour the honey mustard mixture over the seared chicken in the skillet.
  • Transfer the pan to the preheated oven and bake until the chicken is thoroughly cooked.
  • Serve the baked honey mustard chicken thighs with your choice of sides.

Notes

  • Pre-searing Perfection: Before baking, searing the chicken thighs in a hot skillet creates a beautifully crisp exterior that not only looks appetizing but also locks in the flavors.
  • Room-Temperature Chicken: For more evenly cooked chicken, remove the thighs from the refrigerator at least 30 minutes before cooking to bring them to room temperature.
  • Glaze Evenly: For the best results, evenly coat each chicken thigh with the honey mustard mixture to ensure every bite is flavorful.
  • Don’t Overcrowd the Pan: When searing your chicken, give each piece enough space in the pan. Overcrowding can lead to steam, which might prevent the skin from getting crispy.
  • Oven Temperature: Use an oven thermometer to monitor your oven’s actual temperature and ensure accuracy for the best cooking results.
  • Rest Before Serving: After removing the baked chicken thighs from the oven, allow them to rest for a few minutes. This helps the juices redistribute, making the chicken even more tender.
  • Garnish Wisely: A simple garnish of fresh parsley or thyme adds a pop of color and a fresh flavor contrast to the rich, savory tones of the honey mustard chicken.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 343kcal (17%) Carbohydrates: 6g (2%) Protein: 19g (38%) Fat: 27g (42%) Saturated Fat: 7g (44%) Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g Monounsaturated Fat: 13g Trans Fat: 1g Cholesterol: 117mg (39%) Sodium: 154mg (7%) Potassium: 256mg (7%) Fiber: 1g (4%) Sugar: 4g (4%) Vitamin A: 244IU (5%) Vitamin C: 1mg (1%) Calcium: 18mg (2%) Iron: 1mg (6%)

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5 from 10 votes (1 rating without comment)

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9 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    This recipe is a family favorite! These thighs are so easy to make and the flavors are absolutely delicious!

  2. 5 stars
    These are so good! The richness of the chicken thighs is perfect with that sweet, tangy honey mustard flavor. I love it.

  3. 5 stars
    I made these chicken thighs for dinner last night and they were delicious! I loved the simple ingredients!

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