I always struggle with coming up with dinner ideas for my family, anyone else?? Luckily, I have found one chicken recipe that has become a repeat in my home! And I would love to share it with you:)

Oven Baked Chicken Drumsticks is anything but boring, and a perfect way to end the busy work week.  With a simple honey soy marinade made with pantry staples, then baked to perfection, this easy chicken recipe turns any old chicken legs into a delicious dinner masterpiece! And you don't even have to use chicken drumsticks either!

What Ingredients Do I Need?

If you enjoy making stir fry or if you grill meat regularly, you should already have most, if not all of these pantry staples. With only seven ingredients, this recipe can be put together within minutes! (I have a detailed recipe card linked at the bottom of this page:))

  • Garlic Cloves. You can never go wrong with garlic! If you don't have fresh garlic, you can also substitute it for garlic powder.
  • Ground Ginger. If you have whole fresh ginger, definitely use that! But since I don't typically have fresh ginger in stock, I always resolve to good ol' ground ginger.
  • Olive Oil. Please refrain from using canola oil or vegetable oil. Cold pressed olive oil actually has a high heat point and doesn't burn as fast as the cheaper oils. Plus, it's healthier too, and tastes amazing!
  • Soy Sauce. It's not a honey soy chicken drumstick recipe without the soy sauce! Add more or less depending on how much you like.
  • Honey. If you prefer not to add honey, you can use maple syrup, or any other liquid sweetener, or opt-out of it completely. But I wouldn't recommend it. The honey actually helps "lock" in the moisture, and caramelizes creating golden crispy baked chicken legs.
  • Ground Black Pepper. A very crucial ingredient:)
  • Chicken Drumsticks. And of course, we can't forget about the chicken drumsticks! You can also use chicken thighs, chicken tenders, chicken breasts, or chicken wings.

Preparing this recipe couldn't be easier! Just dice, press, crack your ingredients, mix with honey, soy sauce, and olive oil. Then coat your chicken with the marinade. Chill, Bake, Baste, and enjoy!

Equipment You'll Need

  • Large Bowl
  • Meat Thermometer
  • Baking Sheet
  • Parchment Paper
  • Cooking Spray
  • Zip Lock Bag
  • Measuring Cups and Spoons

Oven Baked Or Grilled?

I love the easiness and simplicity of this recipe. You can buy fresh drumsticks from the store, or defrost if you already have some in your freezer, bathe them in a simple homemade marinade, and bake them until perfectly golden brown.

The sweet honey caramelizes and blends in perfectly with the savory soy sauce, making nice, juicy, tender, and tasty chicken drumsticks! If you choose to leave the skin on, which I did, you'll get beautiful crispy edges as it does hold the flavors and marinade in.

You can also grill these beauties! My mouth is already watering just thinking about the golden juicy chicken. But don't take my word for it - give it a try!

Why Should You Make Baked Chicken Drumsticks?

Because this is a super easy recipe that only takes minutes to put together. The honey soy marinade penetrates the skin of the chicken, creating nice, juicy, and extremely tender chicken legs, or chicken thighs! Here are a few more reasons why you should make these drumsticks.

  • Budget. This recipe is super budget-friendly, whether or not you choose to go with bone-in chicken legs, bone-in chicken thighs, skinless, or skin-on, they are easy on your wallet. And chicken is typically an easier meat to buy! Definitely a recipe for my books!
  • Flavor. As I have already mentioned, these chicken legs, are fall-off-the-bone delicious! When baked, the sauce caramelizes and even creates more juice from the chicken that you can put on anything! Mashed potatoes, rice, veggies, etc.
  • Effortless. Less mess on your stove! Let the oven do the work. Baking chicken is simple and easy to prepare. Just one thing to remember is to not over-bake!
  • Crowd Pleaser. This is the kind of recipe that even the kiddos approve! And trust me, I know this from my toddler! This is a forks-are-optional kinda meal. And it's totally easy to make for your guests too!
  • Easy Ingredients. Most of the marinade ingredients you already have in your pantry, and if you don't, I highly recommend you do. Because I almost guarantee that this recipe will be a repeat in your home too!
  • Swap Ingredients. Yup! This is one of those recipes. You can make this with chicken legs, chicken thighs, chicken tenders, or even chicken breasts! Though depending on what part of the chicken you use will vary on the tenderness! You can also substitute the spices for some of your favorites, or use maple syrup instead of honey.

Is This A Healthy Recipe?

In a pinch, yes. If prepared the right way. Chicken legs are an excellent source of protein and very nutritious. Baking the chicken, or grilling the chicken, is much better than frying. And if you're on a low fat/low carb diet, make sure to remove the chicken skin before eating. I prefer to keep mine on in the oven because it acts as a blanket and doesn't dry out the marinade from the chicken.

Buying organic, pasture-raised chicken, without any added hormones, is always best! Or, if you have your own chicken farm!

What Kind Of Seasonings Can I Use?

Pretty much anything you have in your pantry or cabinets. Here are some of my other favorite seasonings I love to add to this recipe.

  • Onion Powder
  • Garlic Powder
  • Cayenne Pepper
  • Smoked Paprika
  • Ground Cumin
  • Red Chili Flakes

How To Serve Chicken Drumsticks?

Because this is such a versatile chicken recipe, there are literally endless ways you can serve them.

  • Mashed Potatoes
  • White Rice
  • Brown Rice
  • No Knead Bread
  • Caesar Salad
  • Pasta

How Long Does It Take To Bake?

I bake my chicken drumsticks for about 45-50 minutes at 375F. They always turn out tender, juicy, and incredibly golden brown! And did I mention, they fall off the bone too? Just make sure not to overbake.

Remember that even when you take the chicken out of the oven, they still continue to cook for another 5-10 minutes on the stove.

Use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature. It should be between 165F to 175F. Take it out of the oven around the 165F mark, because the chicken will continue to cook even after you take it out.

Do I Need To Cover My Chicken Before Baking?

No you don't need to foil cover your chicken.

Otherwise, you will be preventing the chicken from browning to that nice golden color we all love. And the marinade sauce caramelizes better that way too, creating beautifully crispy edges.

What Temperature Is Better To Bake Chicken Drumsticks At?

You do want the oven to be nice and hot to get a nice color of the chicken legs. The internal temperature of the chicken should be no lower than 165F.

I found that baking at 375F. is the sweet spot between 350F. and 400F.

Can I Make This Recipe Ahead?

Oh yes, you can! This is what I live for!! Don't you? Super easy to meal prep and think ahead on what you'd like to feed your family without scrambling around the kitchen.

  • Prepare the Soy Sauce Marinade. It can be made up to 3 days in advance! Keep it in a tight ziplock bag or airtight container in the fridge.
  • Overnight Marinade. You can marinate your chicken overnight, and remove them 20-30 minutes before baking. Highly recommend.
  • Leftovers. The chicken you haven't finished can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4-5 days.

Other Chicken Recipes You'll Enjoy


Prep time:
8 minutes
Cook time:
45 minutes
Chill time:
30 minutes
Total time:
1 hour 23 minutes
Yield:
8-10 Servings
Cuisine:

Ingredients

  • 8 Garlic Cloves, pressed
  • 1/2 tsp Ground Ginger
  • 4 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 6 tbsp Soy Sauce
  • 8 tbsp Honey
  • 1/2 tsp Ground Black Pepper
  • 4 lbs Chicken Drumsticks, about 12-16 drumsticks

Directions

  1. Split the ingredients in half, and between two large ziplock bags, combine 4 garlic cloves, 1/4 tsp ground ginger, 2 tbsp olive oil, 3 tbsp soy sauce 4 tbsp honey, and 1/4 tsp ground black pepper. Massage the bottom of the bag(s) to make sure the honey blends well with the rest of the ingredients.
  2. Place the chicken drumsticks into the zip lock bags, close, and shake the bag to make sure all the chicken pieces get coated with the marinade. I like to massage the chicken a bit just to make sure the marinade penetrates every piece of chicken. Marinate for 30 minutes or overnight.
  3. Preheat the oven to 375 F.
  4. Place the chicken in a single layer on a baking pan or rimmed baking sheet. Pour the "extra" marinade leftovers left in the bags over the chicken.
  5. Bake uncovered for 45-50 minutes, or until cooked through.

Recipe notes

Did You Make This Recipe?

Snap a photo of it and tag me on Instagram @emily_kovalev or use the hashtag #emily_kovalev so I can see it and feature it!

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