Sweet Chili-Glazed Chicken Thighs

published Mar 27, 2024
Sweet Chili-Glazed Chicken Thighs Recipe

Glaze juicy chicken thighs with sweet chili sauce, ginger, and fresh lime.


Prep5 minutes

Cook25 minutes to 35 minutes

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sweet chili chicken thighs in cast iron skillet with some lime wedges
Credit: Photo: Ryan Liebe; Food Styling: Brett Regot

Dinner inspiration can come from anywhere — a daily cooking newsletter, a gorgeous dinner image, or ingredients in the fridge. My family’s latest dinner obsession is all thanks to an opened bottle of sweet chili sauce that lingered in the refrigerator a week after serving bola-bola (Filipino meatballs). 

For this recipe, crisp up chicken thighs in a cast iron skillet, then pour a simple glaze made from sweet chili sauce, ginger, and fresh lime over the top, and bake until it bubbles and caramelizes. There’s plenty of sauce, so make sure to serve over fluffy rice or with vegetables that will soak up every sticky drop.

Why You’ll Love It

  • Make perfectly cooked chicken thighs every time by starting them in a cold skillet and finishing in the oven. The fat renders as the skin crisps with no uneven or over-cooking. 
  • There’s plenty of sweet chili glaze added once the chicken thighs go into the oven. The meat soaks up the flavors and the sauce caramelizes on top into a sticky glaze.
Credit: Photo: Ryan Liebe; Food Styling: Brett Regot

Key Ingredients in Sweet Chili-Glazed Chicken Thighs

  • Chicken thighs: Large, meaty, bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs are the most satisfying for this recipe.
  • Sweet chili sauce: While it’s often used for dipping party meatballs or spring rolls, sweet chili sauce plays the starring role in this recipe. It’s a sweet sauce studded with pickled red chilis and flavored with vinegar and garlic. 
  • Limes: The zest and juice of lime balances the sweetness of the glaze with its acidity. Make sure everyone gets a wedge or two of lime to squeeze over the chicken for serving. 
  • Ginger: Add a 1/2 teaspoon of fresh ginger to the sweet chili sauce glaze, or whisk in up to 1 teaspoon to add a spicy kick. Grate peeled fresh ginger on a Microplane or use a thawed cube of fresh crushed ginger from the freezer section

What to Serve with Sweet Chili-Glazed Chicken Thighs

Sweet Chili-Glazed Chicken Thighs Recipe

Glaze juicy chicken thighs with sweet chili sauce, ginger, and fresh lime.

Prep time 5 minutes

Cook time 25 minutes to 35 minutes

Serves 4

Nutritional Info


  • 4

    bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (2 to 2 1/4 pounds total)

  • 1 teaspoon

    kosher salt

  • 2

    medium limes, divided

  • 1

    (1-inch) piece fresh ginger

  • 3/4 cup

    sweet chili sauce


  1. Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat the oven to 400°F.

  2. Pat 4 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs dry with paper towels and season all over with 1 teaspoon kosher salt. Place skin-side down in an unheated large cast iron or oven-safe skillet. Place over medium heat and sear undisturbed until the skin is golden-brown and releases easily from the pan, 17 to 20 minutes.

  3. Meanwhile, finely grate the zest from 1 medium lime (about 1 tablespoon) into a small bowl. Juice the lime (about 2 tablespoons) into the same bowl. Cut the remaining lime into wedges and reserve for serving. Peel and finely grate 1 (1-inch) piece fresh ginger until you have 1/2 teaspoon, then add to the bowl of lime zest and juice. Add 3/4 cup sweet chili sauce to the bowl and whisk to combine.

  4. Transfer the chicken skin-side up to a plate. Pour off all but 1 tablespoon of the fat from the pan. Return the chicken to the skillet skin-side up. Pour the glaze evenly over the top. Transfer the skillet to the oven and roast, spooning some of the glaze in the skillet back over the chicken halfway through, until the internal temperature of the thickest part of the chicken not touching the bone registers at least 165°F on an instant-read thermometer, 10 to 12 minutes total.

  5. If you’d like a bit more color and crunch, turn the oven to broil and broil until the glaze bubbles and starts to brown in spots, 1 to 3 minutes. Serve with the reserved lime wedges.

Recipe Notes

Storage: Leftovers can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 4 days.