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How to Cook Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs

Cooked Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs in a cast iron skillet


Learn how to cook boneless skinless chicken thighs on the stove the easy way! The chicken is perfectly seared in the pan in just 20 minutes.   It’s a perfect weeknight dinner that a whole family will appreciate. Easy step-by-step photos and instructions show how to make the juiciest chicken ever!

Cooked Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs in a cast iron skillet

20-minute one-pan recipe

There are many boneless skinless chicken thighs recipes out there. This particular recipe takes you back to the basics – how to cook a simple seared chicken that comes out moist and juicy every time!

  • Flavorful recipe. Here, the chicken is seasoned with Italian seasoning, a pinch of chili powder (or paprika), fresh thyme, salt, and pepper. Then, the chicken thighs are seared the right way on the stovetop to seal the juices and create a tasty and flavorful chicken dinner.
  • Versatile recipe.  Serve cooked chicken thighs as is, or with add-ins, such as creamy sauce or veggies.  Don’t miss these delicious recipes with boneless skinless chicken thighs: flavorful and refreshing Cilantro-Lime Chicken and Corn and low-carb and keto-friendly Smoked Paprika Chicken with Creamed Spinach.
  • Because this recipe takes only 20 minutes – it is perfect to make on a busy weeknight. You can also dress it up with additional ingredients and serve it on special occasions to your family and friends. Cooking chicken thighs is easy, and this recipe will show you how.

Cooked Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs in a cast iron skillet

Cooked chicken thighs – quick and easy dinner

There are so many things to love about this recipe.

  • Nutrition-wise, seared chicken thighs are low-carb, keto-friendly, gluten-free, and high in protein.
  • It’s made with basic ingredients, and the whole recipe takes just 20 minutes. There are only 5 ingredients – chicken thighs, olive oil, and seasonings (Italian seasoning, chili powder, and fresh thyme).  And salt and pepper to taste. Can anything be more simple than that?
  • Because everything is cooked in one pan, the cleanup is minimal. What’s not to like?  This chicken makes a fantastic and quick weeknight dinner. It also looks beautiful and presentable – a great dish to serve a company.

Cooking chicken thighs is simple

Here is some good news for you. Cooking boneless skinless chicken thighs is one of the easiest things you’ll ever make. Why? Because the dark meat of chicken thighs is quite forgiving to cook and even if you overcook it – it will still keep moist and flavorful. It also keeps really well refrigerated.

Cooked Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs on a plate

The directions – How to cook boneless skinless chicken thighs on the stove

Cooking chicken thighs on the stovetop is super easy.  Follow along with these easy directions and step-by-step photos.

1) First, prepare the chicken thighs by patting them dry with paper towels to remove extra moisture. This step is important so that you get proper searing.

raw chicken thighs on a plate

2) Next, you will season the chicken thighs with salt and pepper, Italian seasoning, and chili powder on both sides.
seasoned raw chicken thighs on a plate

3) It’s best to use a large cast-iron skillet to sear the chicken. Heat an empty cast-iron skillet over medium heat for 2 minutes. This allows the cast-iron skillet to heat through.

4) Then, you will add 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Then add chicken thighs. Do not overcrowd the chicken – otherwise, work in batches. Cook the chicken on medium heat for 5 minutes on one side, without moving it. This allows the chicken to sear and prevents it from sticking to the pan.

5) Flip the chicken thighs over, reduce heat to low-medium, and cook for about 5 more minutes or longer on the other side, undisturbed, until it’s cooked through. Remove from heat.

6) Finally, top the chicken with fresh thyme.

Cooked Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs in a cast iron skillet

When is the chicken done?

Use a meat thermometer. The chicken is done when the juices run clear, and the meat thermometer should register 165°F (74°C) in the thickest part of the chicken.

Storage and reheating tips

Because this recipe does not use any cream or cheese, it’s very easy to store and reheat. You can also easily make it ahead.

  • Fridge. Store cooked chicken thighs in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
  • Freezer. Freeze it in an airtight container or freezer bag for up to 2 months.
  • Reheat in the microwave oven. Reheat the refrigerated chicken in a microwave oven for about 1 minute. Taste and reheat for 30 seconds more, if needed.
  • Reheat on the stovetop. Reheat this dish in a large skillet on the stovetop on low-medium heat for 2 or 3 minutes. Add a small amount of olive oil when reheating to prevent the chicken from sticking to the bottom of the pan.

How to serve seared chicken thighs

  • Veggies. Chicken thighs go really well with roasted, grilled, or baked vegetables. Serve this with asparagus, green beans, bell peppers, mushrooms, broccoli, or cauliflower.
  • Sauce. Dress up the cooked chicken with a creamy sauce such as this Creamy Mushroom Sauce with Bacon and Thyme. Or serve it with basil pesto.
  • Pasta. Serve it with simple pasta tossed with olive oil and garlic, basil pesto, or your other favorite pasta sauce. I highly recommend Creamy Four Cheese Garlic Spaghetti Sauce. You can use fettuccine, bow tie pasta, penne, orzo, or any other kind you like.
  • Ravioli or tortellini will pair well with cooked boneless skinless chicken thighs.
  • Rice. Cooked chicken thighs pair well with all kinds of rice. Use flavored rice, wild rice, jasmine rice, basmati rice, or even quinoa.
  • Cauliflower. Cauliflower rice is a lower-carb alternative to some other sides. Mashed cauliflower will work as a lower-carb substitute for mashed potatoes.
  • Potatoes. Serve the chicken with mashed potatoes, roasted potatoes, or sweet potatoes.

Other recipes with cooked chicken thighs that you will love

Cooked Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs on a plate

How to Cook Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs

Learn how to cook boneless skinless chicken thighs on the stove the easy way! The chicken is perfectly seared in the pan in just 20 minutes to make a perfect weeknight dinner that a whole family will appreciate. Easy step-by-step photos and instructions show how to make the juiciest chicken ever!

Prep Time 5 mins

Cook Time 15 mins

Total Time 20 mins

Course Main Course

Cuisine American

Servings 4 people

Calories per serving 436 kcal

Author: Julia

Ingredients

  • 1.5 lb chicken thighs skinless, boneless
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • salt and black pepper freshly ground, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • fresh thyme for garnish

Instructions 

  • Generously season the chicken thighs with Italian seasoning, chili powder, salt, freshly ground black pepper.

  • Heat an empty cast-iron skillet over medium heat for 2 minutes. This allows the cast-iron skillet to heat through.

  • Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add chicken thighs. Cook the chicken on medium heat for 5 minutes on one side, without moving it. This allows the chicken to sear.

  • Flip the chicken thighs over, reduce heat to low-medium, and cook for about 5 more minutes or longer on the other side, undisturbed, until it’s cooked through. The meat thermometer should register 165°F (74°C) in the thickest part of the chicken. Remove from heat.

  • Top the chicken with fresh thyme.

Notes

  • If using thawed chicken, ensure it’s completely defrosted and is not sitting in a tub of moisture.
  • Pat dry chicken thighs with paper towels before cooking to get rid of excess moisture.  This will ensure the best searing results.
  • For seasoning, use chili powder, paprika, or smoked paprika
  • Use a large cast-iron pan.  A cast-iron skillet works the best for searing the chicken thighs.  Make sure the pan is large enough to accommodate all of the chicken.  Otherwise, cook the chicken in batches.
  • Do not overcrowd the pan.  Make sure the chicken thighs have enough space and don’t overcrowd your pan. 
  • Don’t move the chicken.  When searing chicken for about 5 minutes per side, allow the chicken to cook undisturbed.  This allows the nice sear to form and prevents the chicken from sticking to the pan.
  • Fresh herbs.  Top cooked chicken thighs with fresh thyme, chopped fresh basil, chopped chives, or fresh oregano.

Nutrition

Nutrition Information

How to Cook Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs

Amount per Serving

% Daily Value*

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

The nutritional information on this website is only an estimate and is provided for convenience and as a courtesy only. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed. It should not be used as a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

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Cooked Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs on a plate



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