These easy oven-baked Honey Soy Chicken Thighs are ready in just 45 minutes or less and are super easy to make! Juicy chicken thighs are marinated in a fragrant sauce made with honey, soy sauce, ginger, and garlic and baked until the skin is crispy and utterly irresistible. The whole family will love this delicious, weeknight dinner!
Easy Honey Soy Baked Chicken Thighs
There are a handful of flavor combinations that will never go out of style. Honey bbq, honey ginger, honey garlic, and of course, honey soy. I love this recipe so much. It’s easy, delicious, and made with super simple ingredients that I always have stashed away in my pantry and refrigerator.
Plus, my child devours it every single time I make it, resulting in one less dinner-time struggle, and one very happy family.
Serve your honey soy chicken thighs with a side of rice and your favorite steamed or roasted veggies for a perfect weeknight meal.
Ingredients in Honey Soy Chicken Thighs
- Rice wine vinegar
- Soy sauce
- Salt and Pepper
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I use chicken breasts? Yes. You can absolutely use chicken breasts or boneless chicken thighs or skinless thighs, or some combination of them all. Use whatever your family loves most. Remember that chicken breasts, as well as boneless chicken thighs, will cook faster (approximately 25 minutes, or 10 minutes less than chicken thighs that are bone-in). Total time will vary though, so please use a digital meat thermometer to determine when your chicken has finished cooking (internal temperature of 160 degrees F).
Do I have to add rice wine vinegar? No, but I like to add vinegar for a little extra tanginess. If you don’t have rice wine vinegar, white vinegar or apple cider vinegar will also work.
Can I use low sodium soy sauce? Yes. However, I recommend using regular soy sauce if you have it. I haven’t recommended adding extra salt to your marinade, so for the best possible flavor, you’ll want it in there.
Can I substitute fresh garlic with garlic powder? Of course. I like fresh garlic in this recipe, but if you’d rather add garlic powder start with approximately 1 teaspoon.
How to Make Honey Soy Chicken Thighs
1. If you’re going to skip the marinating part (or only marinate for 15-30 minutes) then go ahead and preheat your oven to 400° F and line a large rimmed baking sheet with foil.
- Using foil will make cleanup a million times easier. Highly recommended.
- A rimmed baking sheet, like a jelly roll pan, will prevent the pan juices from dripping all over the place.
2. Prepare the honey soy marinade/sauce (more on the sauce below, check it out). All you have to do is whisk together the olive oil, rice wine vinegar, soy sauce, honey, minced garlic, ground ginger (or fresh ginger), and pepper in a small bowl.
3. Add the chicken thighs to a large bowl and add the honey soy mixture to the chicken. Gently toss to coat. If you plan to marinate the chicken for more than 15-30 minutes, cover with plastic wrap and transfer to the refrigerator.
4. When ready to bake, transfer the chicken thighs to your lined baking sheet, skin-side-up.
5. Bake for 35-45 minutes, or until the internal temperature registers 160°F as measured with a digital meat thermometer. Remember, the total cooking time will vary based on oven, altitude, and size of chicken thighs.
6. Remove the cooked chicken from the oven and allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving. Garnish with sesame seeds, chopped scallions, parsley, or red pepper flakes, if desired.
How to Make Honey Soy Sauce
If you know you want additional sauce to drizzle over your chicken after it comes out of the oven, reserve any remaining marinade, transfer it to a small saucepan, and bring it to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and allow it to cook for at least 2-3 minutes, stirring as needed. For food safety reasons, the leftover marinade must come to a boil before serving.
If you want to take your sauce to the next level (you do, don’t you?) then wait for your chicken to finish cooking and add the pan drippings to the saucepot. The pan drippings are the cooking juices released from the marinade and the chicken as it cooks. So much flavor. Carefully transfer the pan drippings to the sauce, and simmer with the leftover marinade for 3-4 minutes.
To thicken, combine one teaspoon of cornstarch with one tablespoon of water. Transfer the cornstarch slurry to the simmering sauce and remove from heat.
How to Serve
My mom would make a recipe similar to this when I was younger and always served it with boxed wild rice or boxed rice pilaf and buttered peas. So, no need to get fancy here. Keep it simple, and stress-free, and you’re guaranteed to have an awesome easy dinner.
Have you tried making this Honey Soy Chicken Thighs Recipe?
Tell me about it in the comments below! I always love to hear your thoughts. And tag me #theforkedspoon on Instagram if you’ve made any of my recipes, I always love to see what you’re cooking in the kitchen.
Honey Soy Chicken Thighs
- 2 tablespoon olive oil - (or vegetable oil)
- 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
- 4 tablespoon soy sauce - (regular or low sodium soy sauce)
- 6 tablespoon honey
- 5 cloves garlic - minced
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger - (or 1 tsp fresh ginger, minced)
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 6 chicken thighs - (bone-in, skin-on)
- salt and pepper - to taste
- Preheat oven to 400° F and line a large rimmed baking sheet with foil.
- In a medium bowl whisk together the olive oil, rice wine vinegar, soy sauce, honey, minced garlic, ground ginger (or fresh), and pepper.
- Transfer the chicken thighs to a large bowl and pat dry with paper towels. Add the honey soy mixture to the chicken and gently turn to coat. Allow chicken to marinate for at least 30 minutes (time permitting), or cover with plastic wrap and transfer to the refrigerator. Refrigerate up to overnight.
- When ready to bake, transfer each chicken thigh to your prepared baking sheet lined with aluminum foil, skin-side-up (see notes).
- Transfer chicken to the oven and bake for 35-45 minutes, or until internal temperature registers 160°F as measured with a digital meat thermometer.
- Remove from the oven and allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving. Serve your honey soy chicken thighs with a side of white rice, rice noodles, and your favorite veggies. Garnish with sesame seeds, chopped parsley, or green onions, if desired.
- This recipe is also delicious with boneless skinless chicken thighs or chicken breasts. Adjust the total cooking as needed.
- What about the leftover marinade? After your chicken thighs marinate, you’re going to have quite a bit of marinade leftover. First and foremost, never consume used chicken marinade unless it’s been brought to a full, and rolling boil. So, if you have a little extra time and you want a little extra sauce, simply add the leftover marinade to a small saucepot and bring it to a rolling boil. Reduce to a simmer and let it cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring as needed. Use it for dipping, drizzling, etc. You could even add the pan drippings to the sauce after the chicken has been fully cooked. I do recommend allowing the pan drippings and the sauce to cook together for at least a minute or so before serving. To thicken, simply mix a teaspoon of cornstarch with a tablespoon of water and combine it with your simmering sauce.
- For extra crispy skin, set your oven to broil in the last 2 minutes of cooking time and broil just until crispy.
- There is no need to move or turn your chicken at any time during baking. Simply, set them on your baking sheet skin-side-up and let them cook skin-side-up the whole time.
- As the chicken bakes, it will release some of its natural juices. I recommend baking your chicken on a rimmed baking sheet or jelly roll pan lined with parchment paper. This will prevent chicken juice from spilling all over your oven (or kitchen floor) and makes for easy clean-up.
- To make this recipe gluten-free use tamari in place of the soy sauce.
- Keep leftovers stored in an air-tight container and in the refrigerator for up to 4-5 days.
(Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and specific brands of ingredients used.)