Blackened Chicken Thighs with Garlic Butter Sauce
Sep 25, 2017, Updated Oct 29, 2023
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Blackened Chicken Thighs with Garlic Butter Sauce are easy, decadent, and so delicious – in one pot under 20 minutes!
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Easy Blackened Chicken Thighs with Garlic Butter Sauce
Chicken thighs are one of the easiest, quickest, and most delicious chicken dinner options – and they are so budget-friendly, they are in often rotation in our house.
I love delicious butter-fried chicken thighs (I’ve been sticking to a super low carb diet, and they are so versatile and delicious, it is easy to stay on the diet with gorgeously rich food like this blackened chicken with garlic recipe) – and I LOVE anything with blackening spices.
The smoky, spicy, and salty blackening spices really pull out the rich and buttery flavor of chicken thighs for a decadent but incredibly easy one pot chicken dinner that is awesome alongside your favorite roasted vegetable, chopped up over salads, in sandwiches, or even in a spicy pasta (there’s plenty of blackened butter sauce in this recipe to dump over noodles!)
How to Make Blackened Chicken Thighs in Garlic Butter Sauce
First assemble the following ingredients:
- Butter (4 tbsp) – Butter adds a rich, creamy taste with a smooth texture, providing a luxurious mouthfeel and a slightly sweet, nutty undertone.
- Boneless, Skinless Chicken Thighs (4-6) – Chicken thighs offer a juicy, tender bite, boasting a more robust and slightly richer flavor compared to chicken breasts.
- Garlic (8) – Garlic imparts a pungent, spicy flavor when raw, which transforms into a sweet, caramelized taste when cooked, adding depth and aroma to this recipe.
- Blackening seasoning (1 1/2 tbsp) – Blackening seasoning brings a bold, spicy kick, usually consisting of a blend of paprika, cayenne pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and other spices, creating a savory and slightly smoky flavor profile
- Cilantro (1/2 cup) – Cilantro adds a fresh, citrusy, and slightly peppery note to dishes, although some individuals may perceive its taste as soapy due to a specific genetic trait.
- Low sodium chicken stock (1/2 cup) – Low sodium chicken stock provides a mild, savory foundation to dishes, allowing for greater control over the salt content while still contributing a rich, meaty flavor
Use This Method
Brown. Heat heavy skillet or pan on medium high heat. Add 1/2 butter, let melt (but NOT brown) Add chicken thighs, let brown to a deep golden brown on each side, flipping after about 3 minutes. Remove chicken thighs from pan when browned on each side (not fully cooked through), set aside.
Make Sauce. Add other 1/2 butter and garlic to pan. Let garlic brown, about 3 minutes. Add cilantro, blackening seasonings, stir and heat 1 minute. Add stock, let boil and reduce slightly – about 2 minutes.
Add Chicken and Serve. Add chicken back to pan and let cook rest of the way to 165 internal temp while sauce reduces, about 6-8 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent burning. Enjoy over noodles, roasted vegetables, or rice.
Tips and Tricks to Perfect Chicken in Garlic Butter Sauce
- Use fresh, high-quality spices for your blackening seasoning to ensure the most potent and vibrant flavors.
- Ensure that the chicken thighs are evenly coated with the blackening seasoning. This helps in creating a uniform crust during cooking.
Room Temperature Chicken:
- Bring the chicken thighs to room temperature before cooking. This helps in even cooking and achieving a perfect sear.
Preheat Your Skillet:
- Make sure your skillet, preferably cast-iron for an even heat distribution, is very hot before adding the chicken. This is crucial for getting that signature blackened crust.
- Cook the chicken in batches if necessary to avoid overcrowding the skillet. Overcrowding can lead to steaming rather than searing.
- Blackening seasoning can produce a lot of smoke when cooked at high temperatures. Ensure your kitchen is well-ventilated or use an exhaust fan.
Don’t Skip the Rest:
- Allow the cooked chicken to rest for a few minutes before slicing. This helps in retaining the juices inside the meat.
Low and Slow for Garlic:
- Cook the garlic for the sauce over low heat to avoid burning. Burnt garlic can turn bitter and ruin the sauce.
Deglaze the Pan:
- After cooking the chicken, deglaze the skillet with a bit of chicken broth or water to lift the flavorful bits stuck to the pan, adding extra depth to your sauce.
Fresh Herbs for Garnish:
- Use fresh herbs like parsley for garnishing. This not only adds a pop of color but also a fresh flavor that complements the rich and spicy chicken.
Adjust the Sauce Consistency:
- If your garlic butter sauce is too thick, thin it out with a bit more chicken broth. If it’s too thin, simmer for a longer time to reduce.
Taste and Adjust:
- Don’t forget to taste your sauce and adjust the seasonings if necessary. Balance is key to a delicious sauce.
- Serve the chicken with a side that can mellow down the spice, such as mashed potatoes, rice, or a fresh salad.
Store Leftovers Properly:
- If you have leftovers, store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator and consume within 3-4 days.
The term “blackened” refers to the cooking technique used, where the chicken thighs are coated in a blend of spices and cooked in a very hot skillet, creating a charred and crispy exterior.
Yes, you can use chicken breasts instead of thighs, but be mindful of the cooking time as breasts can dry out faster. Make sure to pound them to an even thickness for uniform cooking.
The garlic butter sauce is rich and flavorful, but not necessarily spicy. The spiciness in this dish mainly comes from the blackened seasoning on the chicken.
Yes, you can make this dish dairy-free by substituting the butter in the garlic butter sauce with a dairy-free alternative like olive oil or coconut oil.
A cast-iron skillet is preferred for achieving a good char on the chicken, but you can use any heavy-bottomed skillet.
You can adjust the spiciness by increasing or decreasing the amount of cayenne pepper or other spicy ingredients in the blackening seasoning.
Reheat leftovers gently in a skillet over medium heat, adding a splash of chicken broth or water to keep the chicken moist.
What to Enjoy with Your Blackened Chicken
Blackened chicken thighs with garlic butter sauce are rich in flavor and have a spicy kick, making them the star of the meal. To balance out the dish, consider serving it with sides that are light, mildly flavored, or have a cooling effect. Here are some ideas:
Steamed or Grilled Vegetables:
- Opt for vegetables like asparagus, green beans, or broccoli. The light and crunchy texture of these veggies will complement the richness of the chicken.
Rice or Cauliflower Rice:
- Serve the chicken over a bed of white rice or, for a low-carb option, cauliflower rice which will absorb the delicious garlic butter sauce.
Garlic Mashed Potatoes:
- If you’re not watching your carbs, garlic mashed potatoes can be a heavenly match with the chicken, as they’ll pair wonderfully with the garlic butter sauce.
- A fresh green salad with a light vinaigrette can add a crisp and refreshing element to your meal, balancing out the spiciness of the chicken.
Corn on the Cob:
- The sweetness of corn can provide a nice contrast to the spicy and savory chicken.
- A tangy coleslaw can add a crunchy and refreshing side option, which can be particularly welcome if your blackened chicken is on the spicier side.
- For those not watching their carb intake, a piece of garlic bread can be great for soaking up the remaining garlic butter sauce on your plate.
- Quinoa is a protein-rich grain that can serve as a light base for the chicken, complementing the dish without overpowering it.
Sweet Potato Fries:
- The sweetness of the fries will contrast nicely with the spicy blackened seasoning on the chicken.
Lemon or Cucumber Water:
- A refreshing beverage like lemon water or cucumber water can cleanse your palate and enhance the flavors of your meal.
If you love simple, easy one pot dinners, I have so many I’d love to share with you!
Blackened Chicken Thighs with Garlic Butter Sauce Recipe
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- 4 tbsp butter, divided
- 4-6 Boneless, Skinless Chicken Thighs
- 8 cloves garlic, diced
- 1 1/2 tbsp blackening seasoning
- 1/2 cup cilantro, diced
- 1/2 cup low sodium chicken stock
- Heat heavy skillet or pan on medium high heat.
- Add 1/2 butter, let melt (but NOT brown)
- Add chicken thighs, let brown to a deep golden brown on each side, flipping after about 3 minutes.
- Remove chicken thighs from pan when browned on each side (not fully cooked through), set aside.
- Add other 1/2 butter and garlic to pan.
- Let garlic brown, about 3 minutes.
- Add cilantro, blackening seasonings, stir and heat 1 minute.
- Add stock, let boil and reduce slightly - about 2 minutes.
- Add chicken back to pan and let cook rest of the way to 165 internal temp while sauce reduces, about 6-8 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent burning.
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Spiceology - Black Magic - Cajun Blackening Spice Blend - Spicy Creole Dry Rub and Seasoning - Use On: Beef, Chicken, Mac N' Cheese, Turkey, Butter, Seafood or Nuts - 4.4 oz
Food Grade Stainless Steel Kitchen Tongs for Cooking,BBQ - 7 ，9 and 12 Inch,Set of 3 Heavy Duty Locking Metal Food Tongs Non-Slip Grip
HexClad Hybrid Nonstick Frying Pan, 12-Inch, Stay-Cool Handle, Dishwasher and Oven Safe, Induction Ready, Compatible with All Cooktops
Nutrition InformationYield 6 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 261Total Fat 16gSaturated Fat 8gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 8gCholesterol 157mgSodium 1446mgCarbohydrates 2gNet Carbohydrates 0gFiber 0gSugar 0gSugar Alcohols 0gProtein 28g
Nutrition is automatically calculated by Nutritionix - please verify all nutrition information independently and consult with a doctor or nutritionist for any and all medical and diet advice.