Our baked chicken quarters recipe is easy to make, economical, and sure to be a hit with your family. The chicken is juicy, tender, and practically falls off the bone. These chicken quarter legs get slathered in a honey mustard glaze that turns into a delicious sauce to spoon over the chicken.
The sweet and savory honey-mustard sauce was adapted from our turkey wings recipe. It gives the chicken a tangy, sticky glaze that doubles as a sauce. It’s perfect served over rice or mashed potatoes. Give this recipe a try for an easy weeknight dinner that your whole family will enjoy.
Here is Why This Recipe Works
- The recipe has optional variations which give you a different flavor profile each time you bake chicken quarters.
- Since chicken quarters have dark meat, they are more flavorful and forgiving to bake than chicken breasts, which can overcook easily.
- Cooking the chicken leg quarters until the internal temperature reaches 175°F lets the connective tissue break down and makes the chicken tender.
- Chicken leg quarters are the most economical cut of the chicken. Feed the family (or a crowd) without breaking the bank.
Here is a list of the ingredients you will need for this recipe. Scroll down to the printable recipe card for all the details.
For the Honey Mustard Sauce
- Olive oil
- Dijon mustard
- Garlic cloves, grated or finely minced
- Fresh rosemary
- Apple cider vinegar
- Chicken broth
- Worcestershire sauce
- Black pepper
For the Chicken Quarters
- Chicken quarters (leg and thigh)
- Smokey paprika
How to Make Baked Chicken Quarters
Here is a brief overview to get an idea of what to expect with the recipe. Scroll down to the printable recipe card for all the details.
- Combine the ingredients for the honey mustard sauce.
- Brush the sauce over the chicken leg quarters. Pour the chicken broth in the bottom of the
- Bake until the internal temperature reaches 175°F.
- Let the chicken quarters rest for 5-10 minutes before serving.
As the chicken quarters bake, they will release juices into the bottom of the pan and blend with the chicken broth and the honey mustard sauce. By the time they finish baking, you will have a delicious, tangy sauce to spoon over the chicken or a side of basil lime rice.
Mix the sauce in a small dish and set it aside while you prep the chicken quarters.
Pat the chicken dry with paper towels and use some kitchen scissors to trim the excess skin and fat.
Tip: If you line the baking pan with aluminum foil, cleanup will be a breeze.
Place the chicken quarters on a baking sheet and coat both sides with the sauce.
Pour chicken broth or wine into the pan but don’t pour it on top of the chicken or the sauce will get rinsed off.
Tip: Use a large enough pan to give the chicken space and spread the broth out in a shallow layer. If the chicken is crowded and the broth is deep, they won’t get a nice brown exterior.
Sprinkle smoked paprika over the chicken and bake.
Save the accumulated juices and use as a sauce to serve with the chicken.
Tip: Chicken quarters have a lot of connective tissue that needs to cook to between 170°F to 175°F in order to break down and make the meat tender. Use an instant-read thermometer for the best results.
Variations to the Recipe
There are endless possibilities when it comes to creating different flavors for this baked chicken quarters recipe. You can make an entirely new dish by simply changing the sauce or adding a unique seasoning.
We have a few suggestions to get you started, but don’t be afraid to experiment in your own kitchen.
- Glaze the chicken in our raspberry chipotle sauce.
- Drizzle a simple garlic butter sauce over the chicken quarters.
- Coat them in barbecue sauce as we did in our chicken legs recipe
- Marinate the chicken in our Japanese marinade before you bake them.
You can also change things up by keeping a variety of flavorful seasonings on hand. Spiceology’s blends are inventive, fun, and so flavorful. Here are a few highlights.
Maui Wowee Hawaiian Teriyaki Rub: Bring the tropics home for dinner. Made with real pineapple, soy, sesame, Asian spices, and chilies, this is rub will add a sweet and savory Hawaiian flavor to your chicken quarters recipe.
Korean BBQ Rub: This rub will add an Asian flair to the chicken. It is packed with delicious flavors like soy, sesame, and orange, and has a kick of chili flakes.
Beer Infused Rubs: With flavors like Jalapeño Lime Pilsner, Cherry Chipotle Ale, and Honey Mustard IPA, you will add new dimensions to your chicken.
Tips for Success
- Trim away any excess fat globs with scissors or a sharp knife.
- Sometimes chicken quarters still have a few pin feathers. You can pull them out with your fingers or tweezers.
- Dry the chicken quarters before you coat them in the sauce. This will ensure the sauce sticks to the chicken.
- Cover them with aluminum foil if the chicken quarters start to get too dark before they finish baking.
- Use the baking time as a flexible guide and bake the chicken quarters according to the target temperature. Since ovens vary, you may need to adjust the cooking time.
- Use a meat thermometer for best results. If you use a leave-in probe thermometer, you won’t have to open the oven door to check the temperature.
- The amount of sauce you end up with will vary depending on how much juice gets released from the chicken quarters.
Frequently Asked Questions
No. The chicken skin will help ‘lock’ in the juices. If you don’t want to eat the skin, remove it after baking the chicken quarters.
You can bake chicken both ways. We keep the chicken quarters uncovered to get a flavorful caramelization on them. If they start to get too dark, you can cover them, so the skin does not burn.
Our recipe cooks the chicken leg quarters at 400°F, but you can adjust the oven temperature if you want. If you reduce the oven temperature to 375°F or 350°F, you will need to bake the chicken a little longer. Just make sure you cook them to an internal temperature of 175°F.
Chicken quarters are a cut of chicken that includes the thigh, drumstick, and part of the back of the chicken. It’s called a chicken quarter because it accounts for roughly a quarter of the whole bird.
What to Serve with This Chicken Dinner
This is such an easy and fast meal. For an easy side dish, you can cook a baked potato at the same time that you bake the chicken quarters.
Some other options for side dishes include:
- Roasted baby potatoes
- Instant Pot mashed potatoes
- Instant Pot wild blend rice
- Asparagus with curry sauce
- Steamed broccoli
- Roasted Brussels and carrots
More Recipes to Drool Over:
The stuffing for our Roast Chicken has all the flavors of bread stuffing but we substituted cracked freekeh which adds a smokey flavor.
Lemongrass Chicken Satay skewers are a fun, healthy way to enjoy dinner. The chicken is marinated in a lemongrass, ginger and garlic sauce, then grilled until charred and juicy. Serve with a peanut dipping sauce for a delicious and healthy appetizer or main course.
These Lemon Chicken Piccata cutlets are tender, juicy, and delicious! The piccata sauce is light and refreshing, with a bright lemon flavor that pairs perfectly with the chicken. This easy weeknight meal is sure to become a family favorite!
Our baked salmon with mustard sauce is quick and easy yet it packs a ton of flavor. Whole grain mustard adds a tangy flavor and a touch of heat to the salmon.
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For the Honey Mustard Sauce
- 4 tablespoons honey
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 to 4 garlic cloves, grated or finely minced
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/3 cup chicken broth or white wine
For the Chicken Quarters
- 4 chicken quarters (leg and thigh)
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- Preheat the oven to 425°F and spray a 13 x 18-inch baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray.
- In a small dish, whisk together the honey, Dijon mustard, olive oil, garlic, rosemary, vinegar, Worcestershire, salt, and pepper. Set the dish aside while you prep the chicken quarters.
- Pat the chicken quarters dry with a paper towel. Trim away the excess fat and remove any pin feathers if present. Place the chicken on the baking sheet.
- Brush half of the honey-mustard mix on the underside of the chicken quarters. Flip them over and brush the remaining mix on the skin side, lifting the skin as much as possible to get the sauce underneath the skin. Dust lightly with paprika.
- Pour the chicken broth (or white wine) directly into the sheet pan, without pouring it on top of the chicken.
- Transfer the baking sheet to the oven and bake for 45 minutes. When the chicken has roasted for 20 minutes, rotate the pan and tent with foil to prevent over-browning. Remove the tent for the last 5 minutes to crisp the chicken skin.
- Cook the chicken quarters until the internal temperature reaches 175°F. Chicken is safe to eat at 165°F but since the chicken quarters have dark meat, they contain more connective tissue and need extra time to get juicy, and tender. If they haven't reached 175°F after 45 minutes, continue cooking them and check the internal temperature about every 5 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and allow to rest 5-10 minutes before serving.
- Use a half sheet pan (13 x 18 inches) in order to give plenty of room in the pan so the chicken doesn't get crowded. If you use a smaller pan, the chicken will get submerged in the liquid and boil instead of roast.
- Chicken is done when the internal temperature reaches 165° but chicken quarters taste better if they cook to an internal temperature of 175°F. It takes longer to break down the connective tissue in dark meat.
- Don't cook the chicken too far beyond 175°F or it will start to dry out.
- If you don't have an instant-read thermometer, cook the chicken until the juices run clear. You will, however, get more consistent and reliable results if you use an instant-read thermometer.
- Use a store-bought or homemade marinade to marinate the chicken for 60 minutes before baking it.
- Coat in BBQ sauce or raspberry chipotle sauce instead of the honey Dijon sauce.
- Try a dry rub like Maui Wowee Hawaiian Teriyaki Rub or a Beer infused rub like Honey mustard IPA rub or add extra umami with Umami seasoning.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 194Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 53mgSodium: 353mgCarbohydrates: 13gFiber: 0gSugar: 12gProtein: 14g
Nutrition information is a guideline only, is calculated automatically by third-party software, and absolute accuracy is not guaranteed.
This recipe was first published on June 30, 2016. We updated the post with fresh photos and added some helpful tips for perfectly baked chicken quarters. We left one of the original photos below.
View the Web Story here.