Chicken dinners are a quick weeknight favorite in my house, but a juicy and tender baked chicken can sometimes be difficult to achieve. With this recipe, browning the chicken on the stove-top before baking it allows the outside of the chicken to get crisp, while the inside stays tender and juicy. The addition of the fresh squeezed lemon juice lends a tangy brightness to the dish that pairs well with the parsley and chicken. I like to serve this dish with either roasted potatoes, rice pilaf or orzo. Easy Baked Lemon Chicken makes a great weeknight dish that spends most of its cooking time unsupervised in the oven which allows me to tend to other matters like helping with homework or making the side dishes or my daughter’s favorite — dessert!
This dish can also easily be made into a one-skillet meal and begin on the stop top and finish it in the oven. This is my preferred method so ordinarily I would start this on the stove in my dutch oven and then just finish it off baked in the oven (uncovered) for the allotted time. Either way works fine but having less dishes to wash also getting out of the kitchen and back into life just that much sooner.
If you prefer the flavors of rosemary, thyme or tarragon, you may like to add or substitute those herbs to this recipe as well. They all pair nicely with the brightness of the lemon.
- 1 (4 to 4½ pound) Chicken, cut into 8 pieces, cleaned and patted dry
- Salt and ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 cup all-purpose Flour
- 3 Tbsp Oil for frying, olive oil, vegetable oil, canola oil or alike; divided
- 1 large onion, sliced
- 2 tsp minced garlic
- 1 lemon, juiced (about 4 tbsp) and zested
- 1 lemon, sliced
- 2 teaspoons fresh parsley, chopped
- 1 cup chicken broth
- Pre-heat the oven to 400°F
- In a large skillet over medium high heat, heat 1 tbsp of oil and add onion slices. Cook until the onions are tender. about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and saute another minute. Remove the onions from the pan and set aside.
- Meanwhile, season the chicken liberally with salt and pepper. Dredge the chicken in the flour, shaking off any excess. Repeat with all pieces of the chicken. Set aside on a dish while the onions finish cooking.
- Once the onions are finished, cooking, transfer them to a 9" x 13" ovenproof baking dish. Into the onions add the lemon, juice, zest, and slices. Sprinkle with parsley and then top with the chicken broth. If the lemons are overly bitter, add a pinch of sugar or sweetener, to taste.
- Now add the remaining oil to the skillet and heat before adding the chicken skin side down. Cook the chicken for 4 minutes per side and transfer to the baking dish. Cook the chicken in batches if needed.
- Place the baking dish into the preheated oven and bake for 30 - 45 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through and the juices run clear and the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 165°F.
- Garnish with extra lemons and parsley.
- Serving suggestions: pair with roasted or steamed seasonal vegetables, roasted potatoes, rice pilaf or orzo pasta.