Juicy chicken legs that are awesome!
Have you ever made chicken that was dry as heck? I know I have. After playing with different ideas to remedy this, I found some awesome ideas that work! The one i'm sharing today is SUPER simple!
My kids love chicken legs so today that's what's on the menu!
I picked up a pack of organic free range legs from Trader Joes. Grab a carton of organic chicken broth **Low Sodium, Garlic, your favorite seasonings (don't worry, i'll share mine herein), and some Aioli Garlic Mustard Sauce.
Prep: This is such a fast throw together recipe. Prep was 5 minutes for the chicken at best. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees.
Put the chicken legs in the dish (I use a Corningware dish), put a light coating of the aioli garlic mustard sauce on the legs, then sprinkle the seasonings over the legs as well as the empty portion of the dish. After that I add some chicken broth so that the legs are 1/3-1/2 in the broth. I either chop some garlic cloves and sprinkle throughout or use the Dorot frozen crushed garlic cubes (i use 3 or 4 depending on how many legs i'm baking-these go in the bottom of the dish, not on top of the chicken). Cover/tent with foil, put in the oven for 45 minutes (bake until the internal temp of the thick part of the meat is 165 degrees).
I've seen many recipes call for 25-30 min bake times at this temp, but that didn't seem to get us to the finish line. Obviously ovens vary and altitude plays a role too. It's like a haircut, you can take it off, but not put it back on. You can simply check the internal temp at 25-30 minutes to see if your chicken legs are done or need more time. Under cooked chicken is not safe and tastes horrible anyway.
You need something green to go with! This pares well with many veggies. Either a simple salad, some broccoli, or green beans, or asparagus depending on the time of year. Re a salad: You'd think any salad is healthy, but most restaurants try to wow you with quantity and too many flavors at once. If you're eating clean, then go with a balsamic dressing on your salad that has no added sugar. 2 tablespoons is all you need per person. I like a romaine & spring mix and add a little sunflower seeds, maybe some chopped fresh tomatoes, and some avocado if on hand.
If you're tight on time or not so adept or equipped in the kitchen, you can get broccoli in a bag at Trader Joes that can be microwaved in that bag. I prefer to steam it, but in a pinch this will due! You can add a dash of salt and a little butter if you don't like your broccoli au natural. Steaming only takes about 10 minutes, so take care of this about 15 minutes prior to the chicken coming out of the oven. If you keep your butter at room temperature, that makes it easy to spread sparingly on your broccoli. It doesn't need much to make it pop with flavor!
I like to make baked red potatoes with this. Wash & chop 2-3 red potatoes per person. I make my pieces end up about an inch in size anyway you slice it. Put those in a bowl, toss with a little olive oil, season with salt, pepper, 21 seasoning salute, a little garlic powder. Then put on a baking sheet at the same temp as the chicken. These take 25-30 minutes depending on your preference as well as your oven & how many potatoes you used. Sweet potatoes go well too. I bake those for 45-60 minutes depending on size. All I do is clean them, put them on the rack in the oven sitting on foil (these can leak a bit so the foil saves you clean up later). Once done, I split down the middle, score lines across the potato in a couple directions, add a tablespoon of maple syrup and a light sprinkle of cinnamon (not too much, these are strong flavors).
**It helps to turn the chicken legs half way through baking. Also the potatoes. You can get away without doing this if need be. If I have a good playlist on, a nice glass of wine, or my kids doing homework at the kitchen table, my meal tends to turn out spectacular as i'm able to check on things, get the timing right, and turn things as need be. If i'm in a hurry or multitasking, that's fine too.
Organic/free range chicken legs
Organic chicken broth **Low Sodium
Aioli garlic mustard sauce
Salt & pepper
Herbes de Provence (Trader Joes)
21 Seasoning Salute (Trader Joes)
Luigi's Seasoning (online or in many stores in Cal.)
Green veggies of choice (salad or broccoli etc)
Potatoes of choice (red or sweet) (I do baked potatoes with steaks and golden in roasted veggie dishes)
If you meal prep, this is a very easy recipe to make in a larger quantity. These chicken legs can keep nicely in the fridge and added to meals across the week if you like.
Variations on the theme:
-You can easily go with Bragg's Liquid Aminos (similar to soy sauce except healthier) instead of the Aioli Garlic Mustard Sauce. This will taste more like a teriyaki chicken. Bragg's can go well with broccoli instead of butter.
-Another favorite is to use BBQ sauce. I don't add the BBQ sauce until the last 10 minutes of baking and this would be in lieu of the aioli mustard.