Chicken breasts can serve a lot of purposes — they’re inexpensive, low in fat, and cook pretty quickly. They can also be kind of boring if you eat them a lot out of convenience. So for the New Year, I’m urging everyone to eat more chicken thighs. They’re usually cheaper, and have a richer flavor. They’re also pretty easy to cook, and take well to a lot of different flavors, although their richness is usually accompanied by heavier sauces and ingredients than this one. I urge you to try it anyway.

Bright orange paired with a sweet and spicy seasoning blend that is delicious on these chicken thighs. It’s the kind of sweet heat that reminds you of beaches and exotic vacations while you’re in your cold winter hometown eating chicken thighs instead. Sometimes you need that in your life, people. Best of all, it’s not complicated, and can have dinner on the table in about an hour, so it’s perfect for a busy weeknight.

While this is a pretty easy meal, one thing not to skip is searing the chicken until the skin is a deep golden brown. You’ll think it’s done and go to flip them, and they won’t lift — don’t force it. Let them continue cooking until they lift nice and easy from the pan. It will take longer than you think. If you lift them and they are a little bit browned? Let them cook longer. Golden. Brown.

Serve these with a green vegetable and rice or mashed potatoes for a complete meal. I’m partial to braised greens myself, but roasted broccoli or cauliflower would be good here too.


Serves 2
Prep time: 60 minutes



1 pound boneless, skin on chicken thighs

2 teaspoons AJK Costa Verde Mango Chipotle Spice Blend

3 tablespoons Ava Jane’s Kitchen Avocado Oil

1 onion, sliced

2 cloves garlic, smashed

1 cup chicken broth

1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

1 orange, thinly sliced



Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Season the chicken thighs liberally with the Costa Verde seasoning. Heat a deep, oven-proof skillet over medium high heat and add the oil. When shimmering, add the chicken skin side down.

Cook the chicken until the skin is good and brown — this will take about 10 minutes.

When browned, flip. Add the onions and smashed garlic to the pan. Cook for about 5 minutes and add the vinegar and broth.

Top each of the thighs with an orange slice and transfer the pan to the oven. Cook until the internal temperature of the chicken is 165 degrees, about 20-25 minutes.

Let rest for about 5 minutes before serving.

Easy to Download PDF:Mango Chipotle Orange Chicken Thighs