Chicken leg quarters are the perfect change of pace to your dinnertime lineup. When baked correctly, they’re juicy, flavorful, and tender, but let us not forget the best part — the beautiful crunch of that golden, crispy skin.
This recipe for baked chicken leg quarters is a must-try, and your chicken is guaranteed to be perfectly cooked and exploding with flavor the moment it comes out of the oven. But, the best part? The prep work is extremely minimal and this is one easy dinner to slam out. In addition to a simple method for baking up a batch of perfect leg quarters, we’ll also cover why rosemary and lemon will take your chicken to the next level, as well as the simple time and temperature combo for baking up golden-brown crispy leg quarters without fail.
THERE’S A NEW DINNERTIME PROTEIN IN TOWN
Chicken leg quarters may look intimidating to those who haven’t worked with them before, but just like a whole-roasted chicken, all you need is a little know-how and a whole lot of flavor, and you’ve got one more scrumptious staple to add to your dinnertime lineup.
If you’ve ever had a perfectly baked chicken leg quarter, you know getting this recipe under your belt will be worth the learning curve. The good news for the novice? There’s really no curve at all. Baking leg quarters is just as easy as baking chicken breasts…only a lit-tle bit tastier.
CHICKEN LEG QUARTER RECIPE WITH ROSEMARY AND LEMON
These crispy, baked chicken leg quarters begin with fresh ingredients, and it’s part of what makes them so impossibly delicious. Lemon zest and freshly minced rosemary are perfect additions to just about any poultry recipe, but they leave an especially lovely mark on this particular chicken dish.
The rosemary adds a little complexity to the chicken, and the lemon zest contributes a well-received brightness.
The rosemary and lemon are optional, of course, as is my TAK House Seasoning, but I’ll modestly note here that this is a spice blend that has gotten stellar feedback, high-mark ratings, and is super easy to whip up. However, if you have a favorite poultry seasoning you’d rather use, you are welcome to sub that in as well.
HOW TO MAKE CRISPY, BAKED CHICKEN LEG QUARTERS
When it comes to chicken leg quarters with a crispy skin, it’s all about oil, temperature, and time. Without a coating of oil (olive oil in this case) your chicken wouldn’t develop that beautiful, golden brown exterior. Butter also helps the chicken along when it comes to browning, and gives it a great deal of flavor.
Baking the chicken at 400° for 30-35 minutes is the perfect combination to create a crispy, baked leg quarter you just can’t help but sink your teeth into.
HOW TO CUSTOMIZE YOUR OWN LEG QUARTER RECIPE
You can easily take this recipe and make it your own. As we discussed earlier, the addition of fresh rosemary and lemon zest are optional, as is the seasoning. You can use just about any combination of herbs you like, as well as your own favorite poultry blend.
To customize your own chicken leg quarter recipe, simply omit the herbs and spices from this recipe, and use your favorites in their place. However, for best results, be sure to keep all other aspects of the recipe and process the same.
Everyone loves a good chicken leg quarter recipe, the sheer size of them alone is impressive. But, when you can make a crispy, baked chicken leg quarter this good, the flavor is what’s really impressive. That and the fact that they’re perfectly crispy on the outside, yet succulent and juicy on the inside.
It’s a family dinner your crew will adore having added to the lineup, but also a very economical choice for a dinner party! They present beautifully and save you a pretty penny all at the same time. Please, enjoy.
5 MORE EASY CHICKEN DINNERS TO TRY:
- Baked Barbecue Chicken features perfectly cooked dark meat chicken (both legs and thighs) coated in a sticky, sweet BBQ sauce and baked to perfection.
- Perfect Pan Seared Chicken is simple, easy, and cooks up quick! It’s perfect for a healthy dinnertime entree and great for topping salads.
- Parmesan Crusted Chicken Tenders features budget-friendly chicken strips coated in a crunchy Parmesan-Panko crust and baked. Serve them with marinara for dipping as an extra special touch!
- Smothered Chicken with Bacon, Cheese, and Honey Mustard is the perfect way to dress up chicken breasts. It’s great for weeknight family dinners, loaded with flavor and the perfect balance of savory sweet!
- Baked Chicken with Ranchero Sauce is healthy, easy to make, and super flavorful! Chicken Breasts are topped with Monterrey Jack Cheese and baked in sauce. Serve with sliced avocados and corn tortillas.
A baked chicken leg quarter recipe for perfectly cooked, flavorful leg quarters coated in butter and olive oil, and seasoned with fresh rosemary and lemon zest.
- 4 pounds bone-in, skin-on chicken leg quarters (4-6 leg quarters)
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 1/2 teaspoons freshly minced rosemary
- 2 1/4 teaspoons Kosher salt, separated
- 1 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
- Zest of 1 lemon
Preheat the oven to 400°. Pat the leg quarters dry with a paper towel and transfer them to a rimmed baking sheet fitted with a rack on top (an oven-safe cooling rack works fine).
In a small mixing bowl, combine the butter, oil, rosemary, 2 teaspoons Kosher salt, black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and lemon zest. Whisk until well combined.
Spread the mixture generously all over the leg quarters, then sprinkle a 1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt evenly across the top of the leg quarters.
Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the internal temperature reaches 175°-180°. Allow to rest 10 minutes, serve and enjoy.
MORE CHICKEN LEG QUARTER RECIPES TO CHOOSE FROM
Roasted Cast Iron Chicken from Dude That Cookz is looking about as crispy as they come. It features pan-seared and baked chicken leg quarters accompanied by a bed of wilted spinach and mushroom. A savory combo made in heaven.
I’m also obsessing a little bit over Beyond The Chicken Coop’s Beer Basted BBQ Chicken. It features chicken leg quarters basted butter, beer, rosemary (see? everyone loves rosemary and chicken), and garlic and grilled to perfection. A perfect leg quarter recipe for summertime eats!
Eat Little Bird’s take on leg quarters has a Thai spin with notes of lemongrass, coriander, ginger, and chilies. Yes, please.