Garlic Ranch Baked Chicken Thighs
We love chicken thighs for their dark meat that’s tender and juicy. They are also very inexpensive and easy to make, just toss the chicken thighs with ranch seasoning and garlic, then bake! This recipe for Garlic Ranch Baked Chicken Thighs is our go-to recipe for busy weeknight dinners.
By massaging the garlic and ranch seasoning well into the meat, the chicken thighs come out so flavorful that people are often surprised that this amount of flavor can come out even though no marinating was involved.
Even though this recipe is simpler than simple, I do want to share some easy ways that you can ensure that these are going to be the best Garlic Ranch Baked Chicken Thighs you’ve ever had! Let’s answer some commonly asked questions surrounding baked chicken thighs…
Should I bake frozen chicken thighs?
While theoretically, you can, it doesn’t mean you should. Whenever you bake, cook, or roast meat you want the meat to be at room temperature before baking so that it cooks evenly and does not dry out.
What temperature to bake chicken thighs at?
I like to bake them at 500F degrees the first 15 minutes to lock in all the juices, then continue cooking at a lower temperature. If you would rather go the simple route, just bake at 400F degrees for 1 hour.
How long to bake chicken thighs?
The bake time will range between 1 hour and 1 hour 15 minutes, depending on the size of the chicken thighs and the temperature you choose to bake at. Many sources state that cooking time for baked chicken thighs is around 30 minutes. But, if you want something you can bite off the bone and not something you will need to use a knife for, bake the chicken thighs for around 1 hour.
How to make sure the chicken skin is crispy?
Moisture is the root of all
evil limpy skin. Before you season the chicken thighs use paper towels to pat dry all moisture off the chicken thighs.
How to cut calories of Garlic Ranch Baked Chicken Thighs recipe?
There are several ways you can cut the calorie amount in this recipe. First one – remove all skin, and trim all fat off chicken thighs before baking (like we did in this Paprika Baked Chicken). The second one – use buttermilk in place of oil or mayo to help the seasoning stick to the meat.
How to know when chicken is cooked?
A safe eating temperature for chicken is 165F degrees. To check the temperature, insert an instant-read thermometer into the thickest part of the thigh, without touching the bone. Also, when the chicken is pierced with a knife, the juices should run clear.
Can I use Chicken Breast instead?
Yes, you can use chicken breast with the same kind of seasoning. For chicken breast, bake at 420 degrees for 20 min, or until the internal temperature reaches 160 degrees.
Can I use Skinless, Boneless Chicken Thighs in this recipe?
Yes, that would work too. The baking time would decrease by about 10-15 minutes. So, bake at 400F degrees for about 40-50 minutes.
And there you have it! Now you know all you need to know to make the best Garlic Ranch Chicken Thighs, or any other baked chicken thighs, possible!
Make sure to scroll all the way to the bottom to see some good side dishes that pair well with this recipe!
Garlic Ranch Baked Chicken Thighs
Yield: 6-8 servings
Ingredients for Garlic Ranch Seasoning for Chicken Thighs
Ranch Seasoning, unsalted
black ground pepper
salt (omit salt, if using salted ranch)
oil, mayonnaise or buttermilk
chicken thighs, about 9 pieces
How to cook Easy Garlic Ranch Baked Chicken Thighs
- Preheat oven to 500F degrees with the baking rack in the middle. Line a 9″x13″ rimmed pan with parchment paper or foil for easier cleanup. Set aside.
- In a bowl whisk together all ingredients but the chicken thighs.
- Trim the chicken thighs from the extra fat and skin leaving only enough skin to cover the top of the thigh. Alternatively, you can remove the skin completely. Pat dry the chicken thighs with paper towels.
- Combine the chicken thighs and seasoning together in a large ziplock bag or a bowl and massage the seasoning into the meat.
- Arrange the chicken thighs on a baking sheet, tucking the ends of each thigh under itself and stretching the skin over the top. Now, place the pan into the preheated to 500F oven and bake at 500F degress the first 15 minutes and then 375F degrees for 45 minutes.
- About 30 minutes into the cooking loosely tent the top with foil to prevent the top from burning. Start to check if the chicken is done about 55 minutes from the start of baking. Depending on the size of the chicken thighs and your oven you might need more or less time than indicated. When the meat is easily torn off the chicken with a fork and the internal temperature registers at 165F the chicken thighs are done baking.
- Remove from the oven, then transfer the chicken thighs to a serving plate and allow to rest for about 10 minutes before eating. This will allow the juices to be redistributed, which will prevent the meat from being dry. Garnish with parsley or cilantro if you wish.
What are some good SIDE DISHES for Garlic Ranch Baked Chicken?
Check out our family favorites below!
- Perfect Rice – learn how to make sure that your rice comes out fluffy and not mushy.
- Creamy Parmesan Garlic Green Beans – this will be the only recipe for beans that you will ever use!
- Pan Seared Little Potatoes – want something cleaner? Use this recipe for little potatoes with garlic.
- Fluffy Mashed Potatoes in an Instant Pot – this is a total game changer! No babysitting the pot with potatoes anymore and they come out perfectly fluffy every time!
Garlic Ranch Baked Chicken Thighs
We love chicken thighs for their dark meat that's tender and juicy. They are also very inexpensive and easy to make, just toss the chicken thighs with ranch seasoning and garlic, then bake! This recipe for Garlic Ranch Baked Chicken Thighs is our go-to recipe for busy weeknight dinners.
Ingredients for Garlic Ranch Seasoning for Baked Chicken Thighs
- 3 Tbsp Ranch Seasoning unsalted
- 1 Tbsp smoked paprika
- 1 tsp black ground pepper
- 1.5 Tbsp garlic powder
- 1.5 tsp salt omit salt, if using salted ranch
- 4 Tbsp oil, or mayonnaise or buttermilk
- 4 lb chicken thighs about 9 pcs
How to make Garlic Ranch Baked Chicken
Prep: Preheat oven to 500°F with the baking rack in the middle. Line a 9"x13" rimmed pan with parchment paper or foil for easier cleanup. Set aside.
Make the seasoning: In a bowl whisk together until combined 3 Tbsp ranch seasoning, 1 Tbsp smoked Paprika, 1 tsp black ground pepper, 1.5 Tbsp garlic powder, 1.5 tsp salt and 4 Tbsp of oil, mayonnaise or buttermilk.
Trim the chicken thighs from the extra fat and skin leaving only enough skin to cover the top of the thigh. Alternatively, you can remove the skin completely. Pat dry the chicken thighs with paper towels.
Combine the chicken thighs and seasoning together in a large ziplock bag or a bowl and massage the seasoning into the meat.
How to bake chicken
Arrange the chicken thighs on a baking sheet, tucking the ends of each thigh under itself and stretching the skin over the top. Now, place the pan into the preheated to 500°F oven and bake at 500°F the first 15 minutes and then 375°F for 30 - 45 minutes.
Check for doneness: About 30 minutes into the cooking loosely tent the top with foil to prevent the top from burning.
Depending on the size of the chicken thighs and your oven you might need more or less bake time than indicated. When the meat is easily torn off the chicken with a fork, juices run clear and the internal temperature registers at 165°F the chicken thighs are done baking.
Remove from the oven and allow to rest for about 10 minutes before eating. This will allow the juices to be redistributed, which will prevent the meat from being dry. Garnish with parsley or cilantro if you wish and serve.
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I’ve made it with other recipes but this turned out like cookie dough. Clumpy and used brand new hidden valley dry and smoked paprika. Only thing I used was extra virgin olive oil, which should not have made it separate and clump. Ugh what a waste of chicken and spices
Different brands of spice will absorb different amount of liquid. If yours was too thick, you just need to add enough oil or Mayo to thin it out and then rub the chicken with it.
Hope this helps if you try it again!
This is in the oven right now and it smells so good! I mixed up all the ingredients during my lunch hour. I used oil because that’s what was in the picture and then I let it marinate for about four hours before cooking. I’m looking forward to eating it.
Made the rub and tried to massage it into the dried chicken but it just stayed in clumps in the bag, how are you getting it to stay on the chicken? Smells awesome but really upset at the waste of ingredients. Is there a way to get it to stick. I’ve reread the directions and did everything that was on there.
Add a little more oil or Mayo to make it easier to rub it in. Also taking more air out of the bag helps to have better contact for you to be able to rub it in.
Had no dry mix so I used bottled ranch dressing and skipped the mayo. It was great, which means following the recipe will be awesome. Easy and juicy boneless thighs for a fast dinner.
I just got done putting the rub on the chicken and put it in the fridge for awhile. My son loves chicken bacon ranch anyway you make it. So whata think if I throw some bacon on top?
Bacon sounds wonderful!
No protein, ever, should be cooked it 500F.
That’s just criminal.
Hi TL Poe,
Many proteins are started over high heat to crisp up the skin or sear the outside (steaks included), just like in this recipe. The heat is reduced to 375F after the initial “crisping up”period.
My thighs are marinating right now. I used mayonnaise but added a bit of oil to thin it out. I also deboned the thighs since my husband is an electrician and often gets home late, so I like to be able to get dinner on the table for him quickly. Can’t wait to try them!
Great ideas here. Last night, we needed a change, so we made your Ranch chicken and ate with plain Basmati rice. Tasty! Another go-to is born… I usual midweeker using thighs? In a Dutch oven, stove top, gently fry 1 sliced large onion and 3 chopped garlic cloves. Add 300g well-rinsed red lentils. Season, add 2 tsp dried tarragon (or to taste), mix well. Arrange 8 trimmed skin-on, bone-in thighs on top (skin up). Lightly season on top. Add chicken stock to halfway up the thighs. Bring to the boil. Into the oven, uncovered, 180 °C = 360 ° F for 60-70 mins. So easy—the lentil ‘mush’ is gorgeous basted by the descending chicken juices, while the thigh tops brown and crisp.
Where did you get salt free ranch dressing?
This recipe is delish!
You can click on the word “ranch seasoning” in the ingredient list and you can see the one I use. I buy mine at Costco.
Ended up removing the skin on the thighs, then massaged mayonaisse over then added to bag with spices. Meat perfectly cooked and came right off the bone. My husband asked me to mark them as his favorite.
Is 3 Tbl of ranch equal to 1 packet of the dry ranch seasoning?
Hi JenJen, I’m not sure what ranch packet you’re using, so I’d say to just measure the contents before using.
Is this gluten-free?
If your ranch is gluten free, then yes.
How much less time should I cook boneless, skinless thighs?
Delicious recipe! One issue I did have is that I mixed the rub in a bowl and then tried massaging it onto the chicken in a bag. I used mayo at first but could not get the spices to stop just sticking to itself. I tried switching to a little oil and it didn’t make much difference. Do you have any suggestions?
I getting ready to make this and plan to mix up early with chicken for a few hours to infuse flavor, but I am confused on when you put the mayo on. At same time with mayo and seasoning? If yes, is it really ok to have mayo sit on chicken in refrigerator for hours?
Yes, the mayo is used to help the seasoning stick to the meat. You can use oil in place of mayo.
Yep, it is ok for the mayo to sit with chicken, as long as they’re refrigerated.
This has become my go to weeknight dinner! I’m on a keto diet so chicken thighs is something I eat a lot and this is by far my FAVORITE way to cook them! I crave this recipe! Thank you so much!
Wow, what a great review! Thank you so much for your comment and the star rating!
I am on keto too.
Can I make the marinade the day before and let them sit all day in it?
Sure thing! It will only benefit from that.
I ended up marinating my boneless skinless thighs for 2 days & they were great. If kept cold I would only worry about the age of your chicken & not the marinate affect.
Can’t wait to try these in the crockpot next.
I’ve read the recipe 100 times and can’t seem to find where they mayo comes into play? What am I doing with that?
The mayo is to help the spices stick to the chicken. So you add the mayo and spices to the chicken and then rub the spices and the mayo into the chicken.
Ok, I attempted this, however not sure how it will taste as the instructions did not clearly say to add the mayo on the chicken and then the spices. It just said to combine all but the chicken. Seems like a step or something is missing.
Sounds like you missed where the list of ingredients said “oil, mayo or buttermilk”, which means you you use one of those, not all.
So, if you used oil, it should all be good 🙂
When the instructions say to mix all but the chicken it means to combine the spices and the oil or mayonnaise, then the chicken is added and everything is mixed to coat the chicken in the seasoning. Hope this makes sense.
Mayo is not added in addition to the oil, it is to be used in place of oil if you prefer to use mayo instead of oil.
I’m making this, this weekend. In fact it is making me hungry right now in the morning at work. I love chicken thighs and legs and this looks so good.
I made these tonight, and I was so impressed. I’m pretty sure I’ve only had chicken thighs a couple times in my life, and that was the breaded and deep fried variety. But I’m eating low carb and was looking for new recipe ideas.
This one will be a dish I make again and again. Low carb or not, it was delicious!
Wow! Your comment makes me so happy 😀
Yummy, my family loved it.
Had this for dinner today, it was soooo good! My family had seconds, including my oldest who is extremely picky. Will definitely be making this often.
Thank you Sue!
Loved this (and my husband did too). It’s so fast and easy, but full of flavor!
Is the nutrient information PER PIECE of bone-in, skin on chicken thigh? Just need it for My Fitness Pal and keto meal counts.
It’s a per piece of bone-in, skin on, chicken thigh.
Can you make this with boneless thighs
Yes you can 🙂
Please be specific on the oil…are you talking about Extra Virgin Olive Oil, or Canola Oil? Which kind of oil?
Any mild-flavored oil will work here. I use light olive oil (not extra virgin) because it doesn’t have a strong taste or smell.
I did not include a specific oil because I did not want you to go out buying the one I use if there’s a different one you typically use.
This was a delicious recipe! I used mayo instead of oil and it came out so moist, juicy, and full of flavor. The fam bam loved it!Will definitely make again! Mahalo for sharing!
can i use chicken drumstick?
Yes, you can use any kind of chicken meat, especially if it’s dark 🙂
i am confused on the 4Tbsp oil then it says next tot it mayonnaise or buttermilk do those need to be added in and how much
You can use any one of those liquids. Either/or, not all of them.
Can this be grilled?
Sure thing! Probably better if you use boneless chicken thighs though – it will be faster this way.
Hi can I use drumsticks instead ? How long should I bake them?
Yes you can.
Bake for about the same amount of time.
So I made the drumsticks today and I used a little less of ranch seasoning and less garlic (everything else per recipe) and they turned out so so so yummy!!! Thank you for sharing your recipe!
That’s great to hear! The “spice blend” can really work with any kind of meat, even for chicken wings or even breast.
Thank you taking the time to comment, I appreciate it!
I’m a DUDE that has RESISTED Using RECIPES Every SINCE I Started COOKING YRS AGO.Im Surprised at the Fulfilling & EASY RECIPES That I’m Finding.Will have 2/Let U know how Some Creations TURN Out…!!!