December 8, 2022

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Best Baked Chicken Leg Quarters


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My baked chicken leg quarters recipe is one of the tastiest chicken recipes you’ll ever make. It’s also one of the easiest! Juicy, tender, and flavorful dark meat with that crispy skin we all love. My chicken quarter recipe is the perfect choice for an easy weeknight dinner your whole family will enjoy!

crispy seasoned chicken leg quarters on a white platter

Often overlooked the Chicken Leg Quarter is one of the most economical cuts of chicken and also one of the most flavorful.

4 baked chicken leg quarters on a white platter

There are no extra steps involved in making my Baked Chicken Leg Quarters recipe. No pan searing and no frying. Just rub the chicken quarters down with the seasoning mixture and place them in the preheated oven, it’s really that easy!

Made with simple pantry ingredients, it’s one of my favorite chicken recipes!

Ingredients to make Baked Chicken Quarters

ingredients to make baked chicken leg quarters

Let’s start by gathering the ingredients we need to make Baked Chicken Leg Quarters. In Chef Speak this is called the “Mise en Place” which translates to “Everything in its Place”.

Not only does setting your ingredients up ahead of time speed up the cooking process, it also helps ensure you have everything you need to make the dish.

The ingredient list is short:

  • Chicken Leg Quarters
  • Olive Oil
  • Brown Sugar
  • Garlic Powder
  • Onion Powder
  • Black Pepper
  • Salt
  • Paprika
  • Thyme

Can I leave out the brown sugar?

You sure can. And actually, the sugar is what causes a good deal of the caramelization of the chicken so that the end product will be lighter in color.

You can also use your favorite blend of seasonings with this recipe. Tailor the seasoning mix to your tastes and your families. It can be a different seasoning blend every time you make Chicken Leg Quarters.

Can I use a whole chicken with this recipe?

You sure can. You can cut the chicken up in quarters, creating two chicken leg quarters and two chicken breast quarters. You can also just roast the whole chicken using the seasoning paste, but I would reduce the heat to 350 after 25 minutes and continue cooking the whole chicken for an additional 60-90 minutes depending upon the size of the chicken.

You can also use this recipe with chicken breasts, chicken thighs, wings, legs or a mixture of chicken pieces. My baked chicken leg recipe is another favorite.

How to make Seasoning Paste for Chicken

three images showing how to make the seasoning paste.
  • Add the seasonings to a small bowl
  • Combine all of the spices using a fork, making sure to break up as many of the clumps of brown sugar as you can.
  • Add the olive oil to the seasoning mix to make a paste.

*The seasoning mix can be made up in larger batches or ahead of time. Just keep it in an airtight container until it is used.

How to make Baked Chicken Leg Quarters

three images showing how to prepare and bake chicken leg quarters
  • Rinse the chicken leg quarters in cold water. After rinsing pat the chicken dry with paper towels. Make sure to dry the skin as much as possible.
  • Trim off any excess fat or skin from the quarters without breaking the skin. This is usually on the bottom side of the chicken quarters.
  • Rub the chicken quarters on both sides with the seasoning paste, making sure to get the entire quarter covered with the seasonings.
  • Place the seasoned chicken quarters, skin side up in a single layer on an aluminum foil-lined baking sheet.
  • Bake the chicken leg quarters at 400°F for 40- 45 minutes (cooking time can vary), or until the internal temperature of the meat is 165°F. Use a meat thermometer (instant-read thermometer) to check the temp!
  • Remove the sheet pan from the oven and allow the baked chicken to rest for 5 minutes before serving.

*I like to let the chicken get closer to 180 degrees, the dark meat can take the extra heat and it makes it even more tender while remaining moist and juicy.

crispy seasoned chicken leg quarters on a white platter

Wouldn’t your family love to sit down to these OMG delicious Baked Chicken Leg Quarters? I know they would! Just make sure to make extra, they’re going to be coming back for seconds!

Recipe FAQ’s

How long does it take to cook chicken leg quarters?

At 400 degrees F. it takes between 35 -40 minutes to reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees. For a more tender chicken leg quarter, I like to cook the quarters for up 45 minutes. Because it’s dark meat the leg quarters can take extra time in the oven, which not only makes it more tender but crisps up the skin nicely.

Should I cover chicken with foil when baking?

I prefer cooking chicken without foil. It makes for crisper skin and adds color to the chicken. If the chicken begins getting too dark, it’s okay to cover it with foil at that point to prevent it from getting darker

Do I flip the chicken leg quarters when baking?

No, you don’t. In the oven, it’s not necessary to turn the chicken over, during the process.

More Chicken Recipes You’ll Love!

crispy seasoned chicken leg quarters on a white platter

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Easy Baked Chicken Leg Quarters

My chicken leg quarters recipe is one of the tastiest chicken recipes you’ll ever make. It’s also one of the easiest! Juicy, tender, and flavorful dark meat with that crispy skin we all love. My chicken quarter recipe is the perfect choice for an easy weeknight dinner your whole family will enjoy!

Prep Time10 mins

Cook Time40 mins

Total Time50 mins

Course: Entree

Cuisine: American

Servings: 4

Calories: 440kcal

Author: Chef Dennis Littley

Ingredients

  • 1 Tbsp sea salt
  • 1 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 Tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 Tbsp onion powder
  • 1 Tbsp paprika
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • 4 chicken leg quarters

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Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 425°F.

  • Rinse the chicken leg quarters in cold water and pat dry with paper towels. Make sure to dry the skin as much as possible.

  • Trim off any excess fat from the quarters without breaking the skin.

  • Combine all of the spices in a small bowl.

  • Add the oil to the seasonings making a paste.

  • Rub the chicken quarters with the paste, making sure to get the entire quarter covered with the seasonings.

  • Place the chicken on a foiled lined sheet pan.

  • Bake at 400°F for 45 minutes, or until the internal temperature of the chicken is 165°F.

Nutrition

Calories: 440kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 35g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 6g | Monounsaturated Fat: 18g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 142mg | Sodium: 1860mg | Potassium: 391mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 1001IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 32mg | Iron: 2mg