Lemon Garlic Pepper Chicken – a one-pan chicken fried to golden crispy perfection in a lip-smacking lemon garlic sauce sprinkled with pepper flakes for an extra kick. Easy lemon chicken that is just perfect for dinner or even on special occasions!
I wanted to make yassa chicken (garlicky, lemony chicken) which involves using the grill. But I forgot to check the weather forecast. You see, we are seriously spoiled here in Los Angeles; you can pretty much bbq any time of the year. However, today is not one of those days. It is raining, heavily and the oven looks like a better alternative instead.
This Lemon Garlic Pepper Chicken, with a French accent is a hallmark of Senegalese tables and it has spread its wings to other neighboring African countries. It is a fairly easy chicken to make and is a good introduction to Senegalese cuisine.
The garlic, onions, mustard will lure you in each time. Here, the chicken is seared on the stove for a crisp exterior, then finished off in the oven on a bed of onions and mustard sauce until succulent and aromatic while leaving the thighs crispy.
As much as I have trained my taste buds to like lemon in savory dishes, it is just not happening for now. 1-2 lemons work just fine for me. You may add one or two more or just leave out the lemon. If you are after tradition then use Hot pepper (Scotch bonnet or habanero pepper). I completely left it out here so it wouldn’t make the chicken fiercely hot for my little one, and can appeal to anyone.
Heat seekers check out his Yassa Chicken here
Serve this with some rice or couscous and side of vegetables.
Tips and Notes:
- You can use chicken breast using this recipe. Adjust baking time to 10-15 minutes, depending on the thickness of the meat OR until the chicken meat reaches internal temperature of 170 F
- When using chicken breast, pound the meat after cutting it in half to even thickness.
Lemon Garlic Pepper Chicken
- 3-4 pounds of chicken thighs ,skin- on
- 1 1/2 - 2 teaspoons Creole seasoning ,adjust to taste
- 2-3 tablespoons canola oil
- 1 onion sliced
- 3 garlic cloves minced
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 teaspoons Chicken bouillon powder (optional)
- 2 tablespoon mustard
- 1-2 lemon juice
- 2 cups broth or water
- 1 tablespoon or more pepper flakes ,optional
- Trim chicken of excess fat and pat dry with a cloth or paper napkin and salt.
- Pre- heat oven to 400 Degrees
- Generously rub both sides with creole spice blend(salt free) Or your favorite spice mix. If desired this can be done hour before to let it marinate . If using creole salt, season to taste
- Add about 1 tablespoon oil to Dutch oven or oven safe pot/pan , bring to medium heat .
- Brown chicken about 3 minutes each side . Be very careful with the chicken, it shouldn’t burn. Remove from the pan and set aside.Clean pan if there are any burns,.
- If not proceed with onions , garlic , bay leaf, chicken bouillon powder , mustard and paprika . Saute for about 2-3 minutes
- Then about 2 cups of broth/water , with desired about of lemon juice cook until the flavors come together 3 minutes. Adjust for seasonings; adding salt and creole seasoning as needed.
- Place the chicken , together with chicken drippings back in the cast iron
- Bake 400 F degrees for about 18- 20 minutes until chicken is done.Add about 1 Tablespoon pepper flakes or more.
- Arrange the chicken on a plate, top with sauce over it. Garnish with the remaining lemon half and serve.
This recipe was originally posted in December 2013 , has been updated with new pictures.
Trim chicken of excess fat and pat dry with a cloth or paper napkin and salt. Season chicken with salt and creole seasoning(salt free). If using creole, salt season to taste. When ready to make, pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.
Place about 1 tablespoon of oil or more in a cast iron or oven safe pan . Add chicken to the pan and sear for about 3- 5 minutes on each side or until browned. Set aside. Clean pan if there are any burns.
Proceed with onions, garlic , bay leaf, chicken bouillon powder, mustard and paprika.
Saute for about 2-3 minutes.
Then about 2 cups of broth/water cove, with desired amount of lemon juice and cook until the flavors come together, 4-5 minutes. Adjust for seasonings; adding salt and creole seasoning as needed.
Place the chicken back in the cast iron on top of the onion sauce. Bake for about 18- 20 minutes until chicken is done. And about 1 tablespoons pepper flakes or more. Arrange the chicken on a plate, top with the lemon and mustard sauce over it. Garnish with the remaining lemon half and serve.