Cooking during the weeknights requires a certain kind of finesse. Sheet pan chicken thighs and potatoes work with you. Using one pan, chicken thighs and potatoes roast with fennel and figs for a hearty dinner that serves four.
To start, you’ll crank up the oven to high heat—this will help the veggies roast and potatoes get that golden skin we all love. Toss the red potatoes and fennel with bacon, in oil and then transfer to the sheet pan, spreading them out evenly. While this begins roasting, you start the chicken.
Crispy + Juicy Chicken: Sheet Pan Chicken Thighs and Potatoes Juicy Chicken
The secret to crisp chicken skin is all in the details—dab the chicken with paper towels, patting dry. Then season them with salt and pepper. At this point, you’ll start cooking the chicken on the stovetop, browning it, skin-side down over high heat until the skin is deeply golden brown. At this point, the chicken will be transferred to the sheet pan to finish cooking in the oven. This yields juicy chicken with crackling skin.
The Most Succulent Sauce Comes from Figs
A final flourish for the dish is to use some of the chicken fat from the sheet pan to heat up shallots with California Figs and a splash of Madeira wine for a bit of acidity to bring balance to savory and sweet. The fig sauce complements the chicken and roasted veggies perfectly. For the fig sauce, we like the tangy, delicately sweet, and slight nuttiness of Golden Figs, though you could use Mission Figs for a jammy flavor.
Sheet Pan Chicken Thighs and Potatoes with Fennel and Figs
- 1 1/2 pounds small red potatoes , unpeeled + quartered
- 2 fennel bulbs , stalks discarded, bulbs halved, cored + cut into 1/2-inch-thick wedges
- 4 slices bacon , cut crosswise into 1/2-inch pieces
- 2 TBSP extra-virgin olive oil
- Salt + Pepper
- 8 (5- to 7-ounce) bone-in chicken thighs
- 1 shallot , minced
- 1/2 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary
- 1 cup (6 ounces) Orchard Choice or Sun-Maid California Figs , stemmed and halved
- 1/4 cup Madeira Wine
- Adjust oven rack to lowest position and heat oven to 475 F degrees. Combine potatoes, fennel, bacon, oil, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper in large bowl. Spread mixture in rimmed baking sheet and roast for 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, pat chicken dry with paper towels and season with salt and pepper. Place chicken, skin side down, in 12-inch nonstick skillet. Cook over high heat until skin is deep golden brown, about 10 minutes. Transfer chicken,skin side up, to sheet with vegetables and continue to roast until chicken registers at least 175 degrees and vegetables are browned on bottoms, about 15 minutes longer.
- Pour off all but 2 tablespoons fat from skillet and heat over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add shallot, rosemary, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and cook until shallot is softened, about 1 minute. Add figs and Madeira and cook until mixture is slightly thickened, about3 minutes. Serve chicken and vegetables with fig sauce.