One Skillet Greek Chicken Thighs with Lemon Rice is a tasty and simple meal. With just a few ingredients like olive oil, lemon, garlic, and oregano, you can turn chicken thighs into a flavorful dish. The thighs are juicy and soak up the Greek flavors really well. You can serve it with a salad or bread. It's easy to make, perfect for any day of the week and brings a taste of the Mediterranean to your table.
This Greek Chicken Thighs Recipe is a one-pot wonder. You can marinate the chicken for as little as 20 minutes or as much as overnight.
WHY YOU'LL LOVE THIS DISH
The beauty of this dish lies not just in its taste, but also in its simplicity.
- You don't need a plethora of ingredients or be a master chef to bring this recipe to life. If you love Greek food, you only need one ovenproof skillet to make a juicy flavor-packed piece of chicken over amazing rice.
- It's easy, straightforward, and perfect for those weekday dinners or weekend indulgences when you want something that's not just delicious, but also comforting and wholesome.
- If you're a fan of Greek flavors and tender chicken, then Greek Chicken Thighs are a must-try. You'll be amazed at how something so simple can taste so good!
- If you meal prep this dish is perfect.
- Serve with a Greek salad with Kalamata olives, or black olives, red onions, feta cheese, and a Greek yogurt dressing for an easy weeknight dinner idea. The whole family will love it!
(See the recipe card for quantities.)
- Lemons - Use what you have. I prefer Meyer lemons for this recipe.
- Dried oregano - if you have fresh oregano definitely use it in place of the parsley garnish. For cooking the dish, use dried oregano.
- Chicken thighs - The chicken thighs are used because they are a particularly juicy and flavorful part of the chicken. They stand up well to marinades and grilling, making them perfect for this dish. When cooked properly, they become tender and melt-in-your-mouth delicious. I prefer bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs for this recipe. If you can find air-chilled chicken it is the best!
- Long grain rice - Use long grain if you have it, but any rice will work.
- Chicken stock - Homemade stock is great but store-bought is just fine
For the marinade:
Zest the lemon and squeeze the juice. Mix the lemon juice, zest, oregano, garlic, and salt in a small bowl. Pour into a medium zipper bag or shallow pan.
Add the chicken thighs and securely close the bag. If using a shallow pan, cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 15-20 minutes or overnight.
For the chicken:
Heat 2 teaspoons of oil in a medium, heavy-bottomed, oven-safe skillet. Place the chicken skin-side down in the hot skillet. Set the marinade aside in the refrigerator, to use later in the recipe.
Allow chicken to brown nicely on the skin side, then flip and brown the other side. Remove the chicken from the pan and wipe the pan with a paper towel to remove any burned bits.
For the rice:
Add 1 ½ teaspoons of oil to the same skillet. Add the diced onions and cook until the onions are translucent.
Add the rice, chicken stock, water, salt, pepper, and the saved marinade to the skillet.
Simmer together for one minute then remove from heat.
Place the chicken thighs and any pan juices from the resting chicken on top.
Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Add a few sliced lemons if you like and bake an additional ten minutes.
When the rice is cooked, remove the pot and let the rice and chicken rest for ten minutes before serving.
Oven-safe skillet like cast iron. If you do not have an ovenproof skillet you can sear the chicken in a regular skillet and then use an oven-proof baking dish to finish.
Chicken thighs work best in my One Skillet Greek Chicken Thighs with Lemon Rice, but you could substitute boneless skinless chicken thighs or drumsticks. Chicken breasts would work, but they might overcook and become dry. Try starting the rice in the oven for ten minutes, then add the chicken breasts. White meat dries out more than dark meat.
Italian seasoning is a good substitution if you don't have oregano. Speaking of dried oregano, Mexican dried oregano is best!
You can substitute brown rice easily in this dish. Although I haven't tried it, I think couscous would also be great, and I plan to use it next time. If you try it before I do, drop a comment below and let us know how it went.
We eat with our eyes first, and chicken thighs are not the prettiest protein. I like to trim the excess fat and overhanging skin off of the thighs with sharp kitchen shears. I love Wüsthof kitchen shears! Inexpensive and indispensable.
After trimming, press the skin down firmly on the top of the thigh meat. The crispy skin browns beautifully. Handle the thighs gently while marinating, and use rubber-tipped tongs for adding them to the skillet.
One Skillet Greek Chicken Thighs with Lemon Rice
- Oven-safe skillet
- Zipper top bag
For the marinade:
- 1 lemon lemon zest and juice
- 1 ½ teaspoons dried oregano
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- ¼ teaspoon salt
For the chicken:
- 2 chicken thighs skin-on, bone-in
- 2 teaspoons canola oil set aside until chicken has finished marinating
For the rice:
- 1 ½ teaspoons canola oil
- ½ small onion finely diced
- ½ cup long grain rice
- ¾ cups chicken stock
- ½ cup water
- ½ teaspoon salt
- Black pepper to taste
- Lemon slices optional
- Finely chopped parsley for garnish
For the marinade
- Zest 1 lemon and squeeze the juice. Mix the lemon juice, zest, oregano, garlic, and salt in a small bowl. Pour into a medium zipper bag.
- Add the chicken thighs and securely close the bag.
- Refrigerate at least 15-20 minutes or up to overnight.
For the chicken:
- Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a medium, heavy-bottomed, oven-safe skillet over medium-high heat.
- When oil is hot, remove the chicken pieces from the marinade bag and place skin-side down in the hot skillet. Set the marinade aside to use later in recipe.
- Allow chicken to brown nicely on the skin side, then flip and brown the other side.
- Remove the chicken from the pan and wipe the pan with a paper towel to remove any burned bits.
For the rice:
- Add the second tablespoon of oil to the same skillet. Add the diced onions and cook until the onions are translucent.
- Add the rice, chicken stock, water, salt, pepper, and the saved marinade to the skillet.
- Simmer together for one minute then place the chicken thighs on top. Try to keep the top of the chicken skin side up and above the liquid to assure crispy skin.
- Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Remove the lid, add a few sliced lemons if you like, and bake an additional ten minutes.
- Taste the rice for doneness. If still too firm, return the skillet to the oven for an additional 5-10 minutes. If needed, add an extra splash of chicken stock at this point.
- When the rice is cooked to your liking, remove the pot and let rest for ten minutes before serving. Sprinkle with fresh chopped parsley if desired.
Approximate nutrition information is provided as a convenience and courtesy only. You are encouraged to do your own calculations if precise data is required.
We take every effort to ensure that the estimated meal cost per serving is accurate. We use a meal cost analysis application that estimates the cost of a recipe based on groceries purchased at a Walmart store in my geographical area, northern California.
Always cook the chicken to an internal temperature of 165 degrees F (Fahrenheit) with a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the meat. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator and consume the next day or no more than 2 days.