If you’re looking for a chicken recipe thats quick, easy and BIG on flavor you’ve come to the right place! These crispy, slightly charred chicken thighs are marinated then cooked in a hot cast iron pan (or over a grill) and topped with a zippy citrus-cilantro salsa verde with lots of garlic and fresh Jalapeño!
When I was testing this recipe I debated writing up the sauce as it’s own stand alone post, it’s seriously that good! Citrus-Cilantro Salsa Verde is similar flavor-wise to a Cuban Mojo Sauce or even an Argentinian Chimichurri Sauce. It’s made with fresh cilantro, jalapeño, lime and orange juice, lots of garlic and a hint of smokey cumin. It pairs perfectly with chicken but would also work really well with steak, fish, pork or grilled vegetables.
Looking for the perfect pairing? Serve Chicken Thighs with Citrus-Cilantro Salsa Verde alongside: Warm Grilled Vegetable Salad, Toasted Coconut Lime Rice or Roasted Fingerling Potatoes.
Ingredients You’ll Need
All you need to make this recipe is a few simple ingredients: boneless, skinless chicken thighs, fresh cilantro, jalapeño, garlic, limes, oranges, cumin and olive oil.
Check the bottom of the recipe card for appropriate ingredient substitutions!
Recipe Step by Step
Step 1. Make the Salsa Verde
The salsa verde couldn’t be easier! Simply blend all of the ingredients together until mostly smooth.
Step 2. Marinate the Chicken Thighs
Set aside a little bit of the salsa verde, about 1/4c, to use as a marinade for the chicken. Toss the chicken to coat and marinate for at least 30 minutes or up to 12 hours.
Step 3. Cook the Chicken and Serve
Cook the marinated chicken thighs in a hot cast iron pan or over a grill. Once they’re cooked through, transfer them to a platter and top with the reserve salsa verde. Serve right away! Click here to add my Everyday Cast Iron Pan to your Amazon cart!
FAQs and Expert Tips
Absolutely! This sauce is seriously great on everything! You could use chicken breast, legs or bone-in thighs. Or even pork, beef, fish, tofu or veggies.
Yes, you can use almost any leafy green herb. Try a combination of parsley and fresh oregano.
It’s got a little kick but I wouldn’t say it’s “spicy”. It really depends on how spicy your jalapeños are. If you’re worried about the spice level, or your making this for children, make sure you remove all of the seeds and white membrane from the flesh of the pepper. You can also start with 1/2 a pepper and add more as needed.
Check Out More Easy and Flavorful Dinner Recipes
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Chicken Thighs with Citrus-Cilantro Salsa Verde
- 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
- salt and pepper
Citrus-Cilantro Salsa Verde
- 1/4 c olive oil
- 1/4 c lime juice +zest from one lime
- 1/4 c orange juice +zest from one orange
- 1 bunch cilantro stems and leaves
- 1 jalapeño stems and seeds discarded
- 5 cloves garlic
- 1 tbsp toasted cumin seeds or 2 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- Blend the salsa verde ingredients together until mostly smooth.
- Place the chicken thighs in a large bowl, season lightly with salt and pepper. Pour 1/4c of the salsa verde over the chicken and toss to coat. Reserve the rest of the salsa verde for serving. Cover and chill the chicken for at least 30 minutes or up to 12 hours.
- Heat a cast-iron or pan, or grill, over medium high-heat. Remove the chicken from the marinade, shaking off any excess. Cook for 5-7 minutes, until the chicken starts to charred in spots. Flip and continue to cook for 6 to 7 more minutes, or until cooked through.
- Transfer the chicken to a large plate or platter. Pour the reserved salsa verde over top and serve immediately.
- Chicken Thighs: Pretty much any cut of chicken would be just fine. Be sure to adjust the cooking time as needed.
- Cilantro: If you’re a cilantro tastes like soap kind of person you can use a combination of parsley and fresh oregano instead.
- Jalapeño: Serrano chilis would be great. If you’re worried about spice levels make sure you remove all of the seeds and white membrane from the flesh of the pepper.
- This recipe makes great leftovers and even meal prep! Store leftover chicken covered, in the refrigerator for up to five days. Reheat in the microwave or in a preheated 350F oven for 5-10 minutes.