The Best Baked Chicken Legs

Delicious caramelized baked chicken legs are the best way to make make baked chicken legs in the oven, and requires only whole food ingredients!
How to bake chicken legs in the oven, sweet and salty chicken legs, chicken and soy sauce recipe

Guys, you will love this. We are chicken leg lovers and I make them often; this is one of the best recipes that I’ve made! Chicken legs are cheap and everything in this recipe is probably already in your kitchen, plus it is easy! We all need some easy meals this week while we are preparing to enjoy a holiday weekend.

Sweet and salty baked chicken legs with a hint of garlic and a sticky gooey outside: what’s not to love? Plan on making these as soon as you get the legs; you’ll thank me later.

Are you all traveling, hosting, or staying in town for Turkey Day? We go to my mother-in-law’s for a big extended family dinner and then a gigantic alumni basketball tournament at the high school that lasts all weekend. It’s a lot of fun and on top of all that, I’m excited to meet my newest nephew who was born this week. Holidays are the best!

Let me know if you try the recipe. I love feedback. Enjoy!

This recipe is a LONG time favorite in our house and it is highly adaptable to the slow cooker (hooray!!!). I change the portions a bit (use a 1/2 cup of ketchup, honey, and soy sauce), but it still tastes great. It’s a little less sticky like this, but it’s simple and flavorful. Here’s a fun video for you.

PS- I love chicken legs so much that I wrote a HUGE post on all things chicken legs. The post includes 8 different recipe (all 5 ingredients or less) plus 3 different ways to cook each recipe (slow cooker, oven baked, or slow oven baked). You need this post in your life, and I can’t wait for you to try all of the recipes. You can check out the other post here. Long live the chicken leg!

The Best Baked Chicken Legs

If you try these baked chicken legs, let me know what you think! Leave a comment, pin it, and don’t forget to tag a picture #blessthismesseat on Instagram. I love to see your kitchen skills in action!

The Best Baked Chicken Legs
  • 2½ pounds chicken legs
  • ¾ cup honey
  • ½ cup soy sauce
  • ¼ cup ketchup
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • salt and pepper
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lay the chicken legs out and give them a good sprinkling of salt and pepper on both sides. Put them in a foil-lined baking dish with high sides (the foil is to make clean up easier and is not essential). A high sided sheet pan is the best option because the sides keep everything in but it is big enough that the chicken isn't drowning in the sauce. It will caramelize best if half of the chicken is poking out of the sauce while cooking.
  2. In a glass measuring cup measure out the honey, soy sauce, and ketchup. Add the minced garlic and stir. If the mixture doesn't combine well microwave it on high for thirty seconds and stir again. Pour the honey mixture over the chicken legs.
  3. Put the chicken legs in the oven and bake for 45 minutes. Take the chicken out of the oven and rotate it so that the bottom that was in the sauce is now on the top out of the sauce. Put the legs back in the oven. Raise the heat to 425 degrees and bake until the sauce is bubbly and starts to caramelize on the chicken legs. This should take about 15 minutes. Remove the chicken from the oven and allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving.
  4. Notes: Don't forget the napkins because this is a finger lickin' kind of meal.
PS- I love chicken legs so much that I wrote a HUGE post on all things chicken legs. The post includes 8 different recipe (all 5 ingredients or less) plus 3 different ways to cook each recipe (slow cooker, oven baked, or slow oven baked). You need this post in your life and I can't wait for you to try all of the recipe. You can check out the other post here. Long live the chicken leg!
Serves 6

The best chicken leg recipe ever (baked or slow cooker!)



The best chicken leg recipe ever (baked or slow cooker!)

PS. If you loved this post, you’ll love this chicken leg post too! Enjoy all 8 recipes with three different cooking methods, from my kitchen to yours.

The Best Baked Chicken Legs

194 comments on “The Best Baked Chicken Legs

    1. I make it with whatever is seasonal. The other day I did these and served them with mashed butternut squash and a kale salad, the time before that I did some buttered noodles and roasted Brussles sprouts, and the time before that I did rice and steamed broccoli/cauliflower/carrots. They a pretty general meat dish that I feel pair up with just about any starch and vegetable that you like. I’ve done mashed potatoes and greens beans on the side too. This is really flexible. The rice is good because you can use some of the sauce you cooked the chicken in as a sauce for the rice which is delicious but definitely not the only serving suggestions. ENJOY!

  1. Made these the other night. I am a newbie when it comes to cooking and I followed the recipe exactly and they turned out fantastic!! My husband is not a fan of chicken and LOVED them. I am wondering can the same recipe be followed with a mix chicken legs and chicken thighs?

    1. I think you should could. If the thighs are a little meatier just make sure they are cooked all the way though before serving (obviously…), I’m not sure how the cook time would be different, but I bet it will be really close to what the chicken leg recipe calls for. I’m so glad you liked it! Congrats on getting a hubby approved meal :)

    1. It works well! Just be sure to go by the internal temperature of the chicken for doneness and not necessarily the time I recommend. A boneless piece of chicken will cook faster than a bone-in piece and no one like dry chicken! You’ll love it. Enjoy!

  2. So I am currently making these (they’re in the oven, at least). The sauce itself was really nice, but I added some onion powder (and I’m sure that minced onion would have been nice, too, along with the garlic).
    Have you tried adding any chili powder or red pepper flakes? I feel like some heat might be a nice touch as well.

  3. I made this last night and the sauce never thickened. Sort of bummed about that, although the flavor of the chicken is still good! Will try again.

  4. So yummy!! The whole pan was gone within a few minutes! Making it again tonight. Also, instead of soy sauce, I used coco aminos (for Paleo) and the result was very yummy! Thank you!

  5. I got some chicken drumsticks seriously on sale and wasn’t really feeling like grilling them. I was looking for a simple oven baked recipe that used ingredients I had on hand and wasn’t ‘same old, same old’.
    I made this tonight and oh my GOD it came out so well! I added a touch of chipotle powder, some smoky season sale and a bit of liquid smoke just to put a little extra ‘kick’ to it. FANTASTIC!!!
    You weren’t kidding about it being finger licking good. We did lay in the extra napkins. Thank you so much for a recipe that will DEFINITELY go into the regular rotation!