These Crispy Skillet Chicken Thighs are a super simple recipe with just six ingredients. The skin gets super crispy with tender juicy meat and comes together in 30 minutes for a quick and easy weeknight meal without all the guilt.
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These crispy chicken thighs are usually on a weekly rotation in our home along side my French Onion Rice Bake. They're just so quick and easy like my Cube Steak and go with just about any side dish. Perfect for a Sunday supper like my Crispy Fried Chicken Legs, yet quick enough for a weeknight dinner like my Salisbury Steak.
- Chicken thighs: Skin on bone-in thighs. If you're not a fan of chicken thighs drumsticks will also work.
- Coconut oil: You want an oil with a high smoke point even canola oil or avocado oil.
- Paprika: I used regular paprika but smoked paprika is also delicious.
- Granulated garlic: Garlic powder will also work.
How to make crispy cast iron chicken thighs
- Step 1: In a small bowl mix the spice mixture until combined.
- Step 2: Pat the chicken thighs with a paper towel.
- Step 3: Add the seasoning mix to the skin side of the chicken thighs.
- Step 4: Heat a large 12-inch oven-safe skillet (I use cast iron) on medium-high heat. Place chicken thighs skin side down.
- Step 5: Flip the bone-in chicken thighs and season the other side of the chicken thighs.
- Step 6: Flip the chicken thighs and place them in a preheated oven and cook chicken thighs until a meat thermometer has an internal temperature of 164 degrees.
How to store and reheat these cast iron chicken thighs
Store this cast iron chicken recipe in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. They will lose their crispy skin but you can heat up some oil and when hot add the chicken skin side down for 1-3 minutes until the skin is crispy again. Or heat in the microwave until heated through.
Tips for crispy skillet chicken thighs
- Getting the skillet as hot as you can ensures that the skin crisps nicely.
- Make sure you pat the chicken thighs dry before seasoning them.
- You need to place the chicken skin side down in a hot skillet.
- The use of coconut oil gives it such an amazing flavor. But you can substitute for canola oil or avocado oil.
Bringing the chicken thighs to room temperature. Making sure the skin is really dry and well seasoned before placing it into the hot cast iron skillet to sear will ensure the chicken has extra crispy skin.
I prefer bone-in for this recipe, boneless chicken thighs are usually skinless and this chicken won't get crispy unless the skin is on.
Chicken thighs and legs are considered dark meat, they contain more myoglobin making them redder in pigment which causes them to turn brown after being cooked.
The chicken breast is considered white meat and doesn't get used that often and has a much milder flavor. The chicken thighs get used a lot more and have a richer darker color and flavor and are delicious in this Chicken and Gravy Recipe.
Crispy Skillet Chicken Thighs
- 5-6 bone in skin on chicken thighs
- 2-3 tablespoons coconut oil
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 2 teaspoons granulated garlic
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees
- In a small bowl mix together salt, pepper, paprika, and granulated garlic.
- With paper towels, pat the chicken dry, and sprinkle seasoning on both sides of the chicken thighs.
- Heat a large cast iron or oven-safe skillet to medium-high heat, add coconut oil, and let melt.
- Once the oil is hot, place chicken thighs skin side down in the hot skillet and add cook, until skin is crispy about 8-10 minutes, flip chicken thighs and place skillet in the oven and cook another 15-18 minutes or until internal temp is 165 degrees.
- Remove chicken and let the chicken rest for 5 minutes before serving.