These amazing oven baked chicken leg quarters with crispy skin and tender meat are so easy to make, and perfect for healthy weeknight dinners.
Whether you love to serve your chicken with a simple Honey BBQ Sauce, a side of crispy Parmentier Potatoes or a healthier Black Bean Corn Salad, this easy recipe is perfect for you!
Why you'll love it
- Really easy chicken entree
- Juicy and tender meat
- Perfect crispy chicken skin
- Easy to adjust the seasoning to suit your preferences
- Chicken quarters are really inexpensive
- A great way to meal prep chicken
Chicken quarters: Chicken quarters are an excellent cut of chicken containing both the drumstick and chicken thigh. These pieces have chicken bones and chicken skin still attached.
Olive oil: The olive oil prevents the chicken from becoming dry, and allows the seasoning to stick to the meat. You can also use other cooking oils, such as vegetable oil.
Seasoning: I use a combination of cayenne pepper or chili powder, salt, black pepper, garlic powder and paprika to season these chicken quarters. You can also find other seasoning options in the Variations section below.
Dry the chicken quarters with a paper towel to remove excess moisture. Then, add them to a bowl along with seasoning and olive oil, and mix until the chicken pieces are evenly coated.
Preheat your oven to 400 F / 200 C. Place the chicken leg quarters on a sheet pan fitted with a cooling rack. Baking the pieces on the rack will allow the grease to drip down into the pan, and prevents the bottom of the chicken from becoming soggy.
Bake the chicken quarters in the middle of the oven for about 45 minutes. Then, increase the temperature to 475 F / 225 C, and continue to bake for about 10 minutes. The increased temperature will ensure that the chicken skin is crispy.
Use a meat thermometer to check that the chicken has reached an internal temperature of 170 F / 77 C. Remove the chicken from the oven, leave it to cool down for a few minutes, then serve.
- Use a meat thermometer to make sure that the baked chicken leg quarters are done. Chicken is safe to eat when it reaches an internal temperature of 165 F / 74 C, but with chicken quarters I prefer to cook them until they are 170 F or 77 C.
- Wipe the chicken dry with a paper towel before you add the seasoning. This will help the meat absorb the flavor.
Chicken quarters are perfect to serve as a healthy entree for lunch or dinner. You can also roast the chicken pieces and carve the meat to use in other dishes like chicken salads, casseroles or sandwiches.
Here are some of my favorite side dishes to serve with chicken leg quarters, or some great chicken salads to use the meat in:
- Side salads: Asparagus Pasta Salad, French Potato Salad
- Rice: Instant Pot Mexican Rice, Instant Pot Cilantro Lime Rice
- Potatoes: Mexican Potatoes, Healthy Mashed Potatoes
- Sauces: Authentic Tzatziki Sauce, Cilantro Lime Aioli
- Chicken salads: Artichoke Chicken Salad, Hawaiian Chicken Salad
Mediterranean style: Replace the chili powder or cayenne pepper with a variety of dried herbs like parsley, oregano, basil and dill. Or simply use onion powder and Italian seasoning! You can also optionally sprinkle a little lemon juice on top.
BBQ chicken quarters: Use a BBQ dry rub or premade BBQ seasoning. You can also coat the chicken in BBQ sauce.
Premade seasoning: Use your favorite seasoning mix, like Cajun seasoning, Creole seasoning or even taco seasoning. Chicken tastes great with a variety of spice combinations.
You can store leftover chicken quarters in a refrigerator for up to 3 days. Use the cooked chicken cold in sandwiches or salads, or reheat and serve as an entree.
Leftover chicken quarters will not be as crispy as when they are freshly made. They still taste great, and are really versatile!
Frequently asked questions
Chicken quarters are done when they reach an internal temperature of 170 F or 77 C. This temperature gives them the perfect texture.
Chicken legs is a term mostly used to describe chicken drumsticks. Chicken quarters include both the drumsticks and the chicken thighs in one. Leg quarters are therefore larger, and contain more meat.
You might also like these recipes
- Air Fryer Buffalo Chicken Legs
- BBQ Baked Chicken Wings
- Roast Chicken with Lemon and Rosemary
- Bacon Wrapped Chicken Thighs
- Air Fryer Chicken Thighs
- Salt and Pepper Chicken
If you make this recipe, make sure to post a photo to Instagram with #hintofhealthy!
Baked Chicken Leg Quarters
- 2 pounds chicken leg quarters (4-5 pieces)
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper (or chili powder)
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- Preheat your oven to 400 F / 200 C.
- Dry the chicken quarters with a paper towel to remove excess moisture. Then, add them to a bowl along with seasoning and olive oil, and mix until the chicken pieces are evenly coated.
- Place the chicken leg quarters on a sheet pan fitted with a cooling rack.
- Bake the chicken quarters in the middle of the oven for about 45 minutes. Then, increase the temperature to 475 F / 225 C, and continue to bake for about 10 minutes.
- Use a meat thermometer to check that the chicken has reached an internal temperature of 170 F / 77 C. If the chicken isn't quite there yet, bake it for another few minutes and check again.
- Remove the chicken from the oven, leave it to cool down for a few minutes, then serve.
- Store leftovers in a refrigerator for up to 3 days. Use the cooked chicken cold in salads or sandwiches, or reheat it in an oven or microwave, and serve warm as an entree.
Loved this recipe, so easy & so good. I am going to try it on some bone-in chicken thighs soon. I assume I would just decrease the cooking time slightly, correct?
Thank you for the lovely feedback! Yes, I would also just slightly decrease the cooking time. If you use a meat thermometer, it's much easier to determine when it's done.
So good. Amazing flavor and the skin was so crispy!