This recipe for Grilled Bone-In Chicken Thighs with an Asian Marinade will give you juicy, perfectly flavored meat every time. There are also instructions for broiling and oven baking if you want to cook this easy sweet and fragrant Thai-inspired chicken indoors.
This marinade isthe perfect balance of salty, sweet and sour flavors commonly found in Thai cooking. It's made with fish sauce, honey and lime juice and results in deliciously sticky Thai-inspired chicken.
The marinade takes just minutes to mix. Then it's a case of setting everything aside in the fridge, ideally overnight, to allow the marinade to really get into the chicken.
Next day all you have to do is grill the chicken and prep any sides.
- Why You Should Make Grilled Bone-in Chicken Thighs
- Grilled Chicken Thighs Ingredients
- How to Make Grilled Bone-in Chicken Thighs
- Variations of Asian BBQ Chicken Thighs
- Tips For Making Grilled Bone-in Chicken Thighs
- Pin This Grilled Bone-In Chicken Thighs with Asian Marinade Recipe For Later
- What Do You Think?!
- More Easy Dinner Recipe Ideas
- Printable Recipe
- Grilled Bone-In Chicken Thighs with Asian Marinade
- Reader Comments & Ratings
Why You Should Make Grilled Bone-in Chicken Thighs
- Chicken thighs are moist and tender and can be ready in under 15 minutes. Which makes them the perfect midweek meal.
- This tasty marinade not only flavors the chicken, it also tenderizes and makes it really juicy.
- If you don’t eat all the chicken it’s great for leftovers in salads, tacos or sandwiches.
- Why not try some of my other great tasting recipes using chicken thighs? Try my Creamy Garlic Chicken Thighs, my Honey Lime Grilled Chicken Thighs, Chicken Tikka Masala or my Grilled Rainbow Chicken Kabobs.
Grilled Chicken Thighs Ingredients
Find the full list and quantities in the recipe below.
Bone-In Chicken Thighs - when it comes to grilling or barbecuing chicken, I use chicken thighs as they are are juicier cut and are less likely to dry out. Also bone-in thighs have a real depth of flavor as the chicken is cooked on the bone.
You can use chicken breast if you prefer. You may have to adjust the cooking times depending on the thickness. I used skin on chicken thighs to protect the meat - but skinless would be fine too.
Fish Sauce - Thai fish sauce, or nam pla, is a fantastic seasoning and it adds saltiness to the marinade. You should be able to buy good quality fish sauce from most stores, or from your Asian food store.
Honey - Honey not only sweetens the marinade but also helps to break down the enzymes in the meat and further tenderizes the chicken. Runny honey works best in a marinade.
Lime Juice - Lime juice adds the sour element to the marinade and also helps to tenderize the chicken. You could also use lemon juice or tamarind paste.
Sesame Oil - You only need a small amount of this oil but it packs a real punch in terms of flavor and fragrance.
How to Make Grilled Bone-in Chicken Thighs
Find the full printable recipe below.
Make the simple marinade by mixing together soy sauce, honey, fish sauce, lime juice and sesame oil.
Pour the marinade over the chicken thighs in a large bowl or casserole dish. Mix the marinade and chicken to make sure everything is well coated.
Allow to marinate in the fridge for between 4 and 24 hours. The longer the chicken sits the more developed the flavor will be.
When ready to cook, preheat the grill then cook the thighs over a medium heat until cooked through.
Allow the chicken to rest off the heat before serving with a garnish of sliced scallion.
Can I make Grilled Chicken with Boneless Chicken Thighs?
I have used bone-in chicken thighs as the bone really does add extra flavor during cooking. But you can use boneless chicken thighs too as a good substitute.
Why Are Chicken Thighs Better than Chicken Breast for grilling?
The dark thigh meat has a richer flavor than breast meat. Also chicken thighs are more forgiving when cooked and are a juicier, more tender cut. You can use chicken breast, but breast meat does tend to dry out more.
How Do I Tell When the Chicken Is Cooked?
The best way to tell if chicken is cooked is to insert a thermometer into the thickest part of the thigh. The juices should run clear and the instant read thermometer should register 165ºF/75ºC. If you don't have a thermometer you can check the juices are clear by inserting a sharp knife instead.
Cooking times will vary depending on the size of the thighs and also the power of your grill as every grill is different.
Variations of Asian BBQ Chicken Thighs
I love grilling and this method really does add a smoky intensity to the finished sticky Asian chicken thighs. However, if you need to cook indoors under the broiler that is absolutely fine too. Just keep an eye on the chicken as everyone's broiler is different.
You could also bake these Thai inspired chicken thighs in the oven. Just lay them out on a tray and place them in a really hot oven at 450ºF/225ºC for around 20 minutes - until cooked through and just starting to catch around the edges.
Tips For Making Grilled Bone-in Chicken Thighs
- When grilling any meat, stay close to the grill and check your food often. This is the best way to avoid burning or overcooking the meat.
- The longer you can marinate the chicken thighs, the better the taste. I suggest a minimum of 4 hours, but if you can marinate the chicken for 24 hours you will really intensify the flavor.
- Leftover chicken can be used in salads or flavor packed sandwiches the following day.
How To Serve Thai Inspired Chicken Thighs
I love to pile the chicken on a platter and garnish it with extra lime slices and cilantro/coriander.
My Gochujang Mayonnaise is ideal for those of us who enjoy a bit of extra spice with our grilled chicken.
This dish goes well with my Coconut Rice with Lime or zucchini/courgette noodles if you’re trying to keep things lower carb.
You can also keep it really simple by serving a green salad and crusty bread, to mop up those juices. Yum.
How To Reheat Grilled Chicken Thighs?
These Thai style grilled chicken thighs are definitely best eaten fresh off the grill, when the chicken is still soft and just a little charred.
Any leftovers can be stored in the fridge and heated up under the broiler the next day. Just take care to heat through until hot but no longer, otherwise the chicken could overcook and become dry.
Pin This Grilled Bone-In Chicken Thighs with Asian Marinade Recipe For Later
What Do You Think?!
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More Easy Dinner Recipe Ideas
Grilled Bone-In Chicken Thighs with Asian Marinade
- 2 lbs Chicken Thighs - bone in, skin on
For the Marinade
- 2 tbsp Soy Sauce
- 2 tbsp Honey
- 2 tbsp Fish Sauce (Nam Pla)
- 1 Lime - juice only
- 1 tbsp Sesame Oil
- ½ tsp Sea Salt
- 1 Scallions (Spring Onions) - sliced on an angle
- 2 tbsp Soy Sauce | 2 tbsp Honey | 2 tbsp Fish Sauce (Nam Pla) | 1 Lime | 1 tbsp Sesame OilWhisk together the soy sauce, honey, fish sauce, lime juice and sesame oil in a small bowl with a fork.
- 2 lbs Chicken ThighsPlace the chicken thighs in a wide flat bowl or lasagne pan and pour the marinade over. Mix it around until evenly coated.
- Cover and marinade in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours but ideally overnight so the marinade really gets into the chicken. Stir and turn the meat occasionally.
- Pre-heat the grill to medium heat.
- ½ tsp Sea SaltSeason the chicken with sea salt then grill the chicken over a medium heat for around 10-12 minutes on each side or until they are cooked through.The juices should run clear and/or or an instant read thermometer registers 165ºF/75ºC when inserted into the thickest part of the thigh. The cooking time will vary depending on the size of the thighs and power of your grill.
- Let chicken rest, covered in foil, for around 10 minutes.
- 1 Scallions (Spring Onions)Serve scattered with the sliced scallions.
This recipe was shared with the #cookblogshare community, which this week was kindly hosted by The Foodle Club.
I absolutely adore Thai flavours in cooking. These chicken thighs sound delicious, and so easy to make too. With the warmer weather (finally) starting to make an appearance in the UK these are definitely on the menu for my first BBQ of the year!
Jo Keohane says
Hope you love them! Thanks for commenting.
I love how simple this recipe is with only a few ingredients. So delicious!
Jo Keohane says
If it's not simple it doesn't get made in our house 😉 Thanks so much for your comment Janice.
Cat | Curly's Cooking says
This looks so good! I love simple recipes like this in the summer when you can serve it with salad and it is the perfect meal.
Jo Keohane says
Thanks so much for your comment Cat - roll on summer!