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+ servings

Lemon Pepper Chicken

One-pan dish with golden crispy pan-fried chicken smothered in a lip-smacking garlic lemon pepper sauce. An easy chicken dinner that is perfect anytime.
Course Main
Cuisine African
Diet Gluten Free
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Marinate Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 50 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 586kcal
Author Imma


  • 3-4 pounds (1.5-2kg) chicken thighs, skin on
  • Salt to taste
  • 1½-2 teaspoons (4-6g) Creole seasoning, adjust to taste
  • 2-3 tablespoons (30-45ml) canola oil
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 teaspoons (6g) chicken bouillon powder (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons (30g) mustard
  • 1-2 lemons, juiced
  • 2 cups (473ml) chicken broth (or water)
  • 1 tablespoon (9g) pepper flakes, or more to taste (optional)


  • Trim chicken of excess fat and pat dry with a cloth or paper napkin and salt.
  • Preheat oven to 400℉/205℃.
  • Generously rub both sides of the chicken thighs with Creole seasoning. (Or you can use your favorite spice mix.) Do this an hour before if you want to let it marinate.
  • Add about a tablespoon oil to a Dutch oven or oven-safe pan, and heat on medium.  
  • Brown chicken about 3 minutes each side. Be very careful not to let the chicken burn. Remove from the pan and set aside. Clean pan if there are any burns.
  • If not, add the onions, garlic, bay leaf, chicken bouillon powder, mustard, and paprika. Saute for 2-3 minutes.
  • Then add about 2 cups of broth or water with the desired amount of lemon juice. Simmer until the flavors come together (about 3 minutes). Adjust seasonings, adding salt and Creole seasoning as needed.
  • Place the chicken, together with chicken drippings back in the pan.
  • Bake 400℉/205℃ for 18- 20 minutes, or until chicken is done. Add about a tablespoon of pepper flakes (or more to taste).
  • Arrange the chicken on a plate, top with sauce, garnish with the remaining lemon half, and serve.


  • Be extra careful not to burn the chicken when searing it. The toasty bits on the bottom of the pan will add the amazing flavor we’re looking for to the lemon sauce, but if you’ve gone a little too far and there are burnt crisps on there after searing, clean the pan before sautéing the onions and making your sauce. Otherwise, the lemony broth will have a distinctive burnt taste that's no good.
  • Use a meat thermometer to make sure your chicken is cooked through but not overdone. For chicken thighs or breasts, you want to reach 165℉/75℃.
  • For extra flavor, feel free to marinate the cuts of chicken rubbed in their seasonings and with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice for an hour in the fridge before you sear them.
  • Please remember that the nutritional information is a rough estimate and can vary significantly based on the products used in the recipe.


Serving: 240g | Calories: 586kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 40g | Fat: 44g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 10g | Monounsaturated Fat: 19g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 222mg | Sodium: 687mg | Potassium: 676mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 1429IU | Vitamin C: 12mg | Calcium: 49mg | Iron: 2mg