Sweet & Sticky Baked Chicken

I’m not one to use a lot of bone-in chicken when I cook.  For some reason, bone-in chicken freaks me out.  I’m always worried that I’m going to undercook it and poison my family.

But one day I ended up with double coupons for chicken legs.  Since I can’t pass up a good deal, I decided to set my misgivings aside and make some delicious marinated chicken legs.

I loved these chicken legs because the sticky marinade is so reminiscent of chicken wings.  It’s like morphing an appetizer into an entrĂ©e without embarrassing yourself at the buffet table – not that that’s ever happened or anything.

Recipe Notes:
*If you forget to marinate the chicken overnight, just let it set in the marinade at room temperature for 30 minutes or so.  The flavor won’t get into the chicken as deeply, but all those wonderful flavors will still be on the outer parts of the chicken.
*Experiment using this marinade on different parts of the chicken or on boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs.
*Also try these as chicken wings and they become instant man food (think Super Bowl parties!)

Sweet & Sticky Baked Chicken
Adapted from The Novice Chef Blog

6 chicken legs (about 1 ½ lbs)
¼ cup balsamic vinegar
¼ cup honey
¼ cup packed brown sugar
2 tbsp low sodium soy sauce
1 ½ tsp minced garlic (3 cloves)
½ tsp ground ginger
½ tsp black pepper
1 tbsp sesame seeds

In a small bowl, whisk together the balsamic vinegar, honey, brown sugar, soy sauce, garlic, ginger, and pepper.  Pour the marinade into a large zipper bag along with the chicken legs.  Seal and shake to coat.  Place the bag in the refrigerator for 8 hours or overnight, turning several times.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.  Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and place a cooling rack on top.

Place the marinated chicken onto the prepared pans (on top of the cooling rack) and bake in the preheated oven for 25 minutes. 

Pour the remaining marinade from the zipper bag into a small saucepan over medium heat.  Bring the marinade to a boil, then reduce heat to maintain a low simmer.  Cook, stirring occasionally, until the sauce has thickened; about 15 minutes.

Once the chicken has baked for 25 minutes, use a silicone pastry brush to give the chicken a generous coating of the reduced  marinade.  Cook for an additional 15 minutes, coating the chicken 2 more times, until the chicken is completely cooked.

Remove the chicken from the oven.  Coat it once more with the marinade and sprinkle with sesame seeds.

Serves 2 hungry adults and 2 picky preschoolers


  1. I love the look of this chicken - it looks amazing! And I actually prefer meals that I can start ahead the day before (like marinades, etc) - it makes me feel like I'm cheating a little ;) Love it and thanks so much for sharing with Made with Love Mondays!

    1. Love this post so much I'm featuring it in this week's Food Fetish Friday series (with a link-back and attribution). I hope you have no objections...

    2. Not at all! SO glad you enjoyed it!

    3. like the sesame seed idea! subtle but I think it will make a difference.

  2. How yummy!!! Great seeing you at Must Try Monday!

  3. This looks absolutely finger licking good. Love the sauce and how juicy this looks.

  4. This looks and sounds wonderful! We DO eat a lot of bone in chicken here simply because it's cheaper so I love find new ways to cook it. This will definitely be put on the list to try!

  5. Delicious! I only dislike bone-in chicken because I look like a fool trying to get the meat off the bone. I like, whittle away at it so I don't get my hands dirty haha.

  6. This looks so simple and flavorful! The flavors sound wonderful, I am definitely going to be making this! Thanks for sharing!

  7. Thank you for sharing....love yiur blog, it is now on my favorite list.

    ~ Lisa ~

  8. Another one that looks so great!! I just pinned probably 10 of your recipes - yum! :)


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