Man-Pleasing Chicken

Man-Pleasing Chicken

I have never gotten so many compliments before, let alone for a piece of chicken. David suggested calling this chicken, “So Good it Can’t Be Described, Explosion on Your Taste Buds Chicken.” Exactly. I have never encountered a dish that is so basic and simple to put together yet creates such a big pay off. This chicken, quite simply, is one of the most savory things I’ve ever eaten. If you are the busiest person on the planet and don’t have much cooking experience, but you have to prepare a meal to woo the love of your life, cook this chicken!

Man-Pleasing Chicken

To make this chicken, which you should absolutely do immediately, preheat your oven to 450º F. Then, mix together 1/2 cup of dijon mustard, 1/4 cup of maple syrup, and 1 tablespoon of rice/rice wine vinegar. 

Man-Pleasing Chicken

Put 1.5 pounds of boneless, skinless chicken thighs into a foil-lined or disposable oven-proof, 8×8 inch baking dish. Six thighs came in my package, which made enough to serve 3 people. Then, salt and pepper the thighs. Pour your maple mustard mixture over them, turning the thighs in the mixture so they are fully coated. 

Man-Pleasing Chicken

Put the chicken thighs into the oven, and let them bake for 40 minutes or until a meat thermometer reads 165ºF. Baste the tops of the chicken with the sauce half way through. I find that a meat thermometer is essential in cooking because it allows me to check for doneness without cutting into the meat and losing its precious juices. Let the chicken rest for 5 minutes before serving. Plate the chicken, whisk the sauce that remains in the baking dish, and then spoon the extra sauce over the top. Sprinkle over some fresh rosemary. If there is ever a time to use fresh herbs, THIS IS IT! The flavors are just so good together. Enjoy the savory goodness of this meal!

I adapted this recipe from “The I <3 Trader Joe’s Cookbook” by Cherie Mercer Twohy. Thanks, Jenna!

Shopping list:

  • Chicken thighs- 1 package
  • Dijon mustard- 1/2 cup
  • Maple syrup- 1/4 cup
  • Rice/rice wine vinegar- 1 tablespoon
  • Fresh rosemary
  • Salt and pepper
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Man-Pleasing Chicken — 2,337 Comments

  1. I love this! Made it last week—I added about three cloves of garlic, minced… everything’s better with garlic! Lol. It was AMAZING! GIve it a try 🙂

    • I have made a version of this for years. Yes, you can make it with breasts but it is just not as good (unless you use skin on boneless), and we don’t usually eat dark meat. It MUST be skin on and there is no reason to sear first–the skin should be above the liquid and it gets dark and crusty at 425* for one hour cooking with no basting. I add a tbs of curry powder.
      The thighs should fit very tightly in whatever pan you use. Put them in and pour sauce over the top and sort of move chicken around to get into the meat.

  2. Oh man! Tried this for hubs today and it was amazing!!!!! I kept the skin on but pan seared the chicken before putting them into the oven to crisp them up!!! So yummilicous and definitely a keeper! Thank you so much for sharing!!!!!!!!

  3. I’ve made this several times now. My husband and I both love it. Make sure to line your pan with foil or your pan will burn.

  4. Made this last night — very good flavor, but sauce was way too thin. I thought it would be thicker and maybe a bit sticky? I used thighs with the bone and skin on, as any chicken has more flavor when cooked with the bone. Removed skin when eating, mainly because it was soft and soggy. Any suggestions on thickening up the sauce?

    • If you pan sear the chicken before baking it,
      that will crisp the skin and and you won’t have
      Soggy skin. As for thickening sauce, maybe try
      adding a little cornstarch to it? I have no idea if
      that will work, but it’s worth a shot.

      • cornstarch will do a fantastic job, however you should add it towards the end: follow the recipe as above, then place chicken pieces on a plate and keep warm. Pour the sauce in a saucepan. Place a teaspoon of cornstarch in a cup and add a enough water to form a runny paste. pour paste in sauce and cook till bubbling gently while stirring continuously with a wooden spoon. Add more cornflour/starch according to the thickness you desire.

    • Your chicken probably released more water than boneless skinless thighs. Remove the chicken from the pan, and return the pan of sauce to the oven for a few minutes to reduce/thicken.

  5. I did use frozen boneless/skinless chicken breast bc thats what I had on hand and my picky beef eater hubby still loved it. I kept all the other ingredients the same!

  6. I come back to this recipe again and again, and my men love it! Since I don’t keep maple syrup in my pantry, I use honey. Dijon and chicken are always wonderful together. The rice wine and honey really make it special!

  7. Sadly my family didn’t like this recipe. For me it was ok. The mustard was quite strong. Maybe we just have different taste buds because the reviews is what made me cook this dish.

    • You have to really love all types of mustard to love this dish. Try substituting honey for the maple syrup. 🙂

    • I serve this dish with rice pilaf and green beans, or with a broccoli rice casserole, or with a medley of roasted potatoes, carrots and onions. And there’s always warm homemade bread on the table! (Hope these suggestions help!) 🙂

  8. How can I incorporate bacon into this recipe? That would add to the “man pleasing” element for my husband.


  9. This is now one of my go-to recipes! I use sugar-free pancake syrup instead of the sugary version with no loss of taste IMO. Thanks so much for posting it!

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  11. Thank you …. No idea what to prepare for dinner in Oz…. Loved this dish …an nice Aussie Sav Blanc to go with it…..

  12. Super yummy recipe!! so simple and yet packed with flavor. I kept my oven down to 400 degree’s but then it tends to run higher. Perfect dish =)

  13. I like this one and I will add that with a little sprinkle of chopped bacon gives it a fuller kick. I don’t do it all the time, but it’s yummy.

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