How Long to Cook Chicken Thighs on the Stove?

How Long to Cook Chicken Thighs on the Stove?

Are you looking for a flavorful, juicy way to prepare chicken thighs? The stove-top could be the perfect option for you! Cooking on your stove top is one of the quickest and most reliable ways to get meal ready in no time. In this article we’ll discuss how long to cook chicken thighs on the stove so that they stay moist and delicious. We’ll also give some tips on different cooking techniques so that you can create amazing meals with minimal effort. Whether it’s an all-time classic or something new and creative, read on to find out How Long to Cook Chicken Thighs on the Stove?

What is chicken thighs? 

Chicken thighs are a popular poultry flesh cut that originates from the lower leg of the chicken. They are well-known for their robust flavor, softness, and adaptability in the kitchen. Chicken thighs are offered bone-in and skin-on or boneless and skinless, catering to a variety of culinary tastes.

What kind of meat is chicken thighs?

Chicken thighs are made of dark flesh, which has a deeper flavor and somewhat more fat than chicken breast. This makes chicken thighs more delicious and forgiving during cooking because they are less likely to dry out.

What is chicken thigh for?

Nutritionally thighs are a great protein source and the fat in the skin is unsaturated. Due to their flavor and moisture content, chicken thighs are excellent for dishes where tenderness and juiciness are desired, such as curries, stews, tacos, stir-fries, and barbecue recipes. Boneless, skinless chicken thighs are also convenient for quick-cooking methods like pan-searing or sautéing.

Why do people eat chicken thighs?

  • Flavor: Chicken thighs are noted for their rich and savory flavor, making them a popular choice for individuals who like a more powerful flavor than chicken breast.
  • Tenderness: Because they are naturally soft, they are less likely to become dry when cooking, resulting in a juicy and delightful eating experience.
  • Chicken thighs are versatile since they can be used in a variety of recipes and cooking ways, making them suited for a wide range of cuisines.
  • Affordability: Chicken thighs are frequently less expensive than other cuts of chicken, making them an affordable option for many consumers.
  • Texture: A appealing texture contrast in foods is provided by the mix of meat and, if present, crispy skin.

How long does it take to fully cook chicken thighs?

Before knowing How Long to Cook Chicken Thighs on the Stove? you have to know How long does it take to fully cook chicken thighs? The USDA recommends roasting 4-to-8-ounce chicken thighs at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 40 to 50 minutes. It takes about 25 to 30 minutes to bake our basic meal prep boneless chicken thighs at 425 degrees F.

To ensure that your chicken thighs are fully cooked, use a meat thermometer to check their internal temperature. The ideal temperature is 165°F. Whether you’re grilling, roasting, or sautéing your chicken thighs, always remember that a little patience in the kitchen will go a long way towards achieving a perfectly cooked meal.

How Long to Cook Chicken Thighs on the Stove?

How long does it take to fully cook chicken thighs? Cooking chicken on the stove can be a convenient and delicious way to enjoy this classic protein. The cooking time for chicken can vary depending on the type of cut and thickness of the meat. Boneless, skinless chicken thighs cook quickly, in 15 to 20 minutes, depending on the size. Bone-in thighs, however, take a bit more time, between 25 and 30 minutes. Use a thermometer to measure the internal temperature of the thighs. It’s important to always use a meat thermometer to ensure that your chicken has reached a safe internal temperature of 165°F. With a little patience and attention to detail, you can easily master the art of cooking chicken on the stove.

Is it better to cook chicken thighs in the oven or on the stove?


  • Even Cooking: Oven cooking allows for even heating, which makes achieving consistent outcomes easier.
  • Hands-Off: This way is less hands-on, allowing you to set it and forget it to some level.
  • Crispy Skin: When cooked at higher temperatures, oven roasting can produce crispy skin.


  • Cooking on the stovetop, such as pan-searing or sautéing, is faster and more convenient for weekday dinners.
  • Control: You have greater control over the cooking process, which is beneficial for searing and browning.

Regarding your second question, the cooking time for chicken thighs is determined by several factors, including the cooking method, temperature, and flesh thickness. A normal cooking time for oven-roasted chicken thighs at 375°F (190°C) is 25 to 35 minutes.

Is 40 minutes long enough to cook chicken thighs?

If you’re short on time and want to create a quick chicken dinner, bake boneless, skinless chicken thighs in a 400F (200C) oven for 20 minutes. For bone-in and skin-on chicken, the cooking time should be around 40 minutes.

Cooking time for stove-top methods such as pan-searing will be shorter, often 6-10 minutes each side, depending on the thickness of the thighs and the level of browning desired.

The secret to perfectly cooked chicken thighs is to keep an eye on the internal temperature and modify the cooking time accordingly to ensure they are cooked through but not overcooked, which can result in dry chicken.

How to cook chicken on the stove?

Cooking chicken on the stove is a versatile and convenient method that produces delicious and tender chicken in a short amount of time. The stove-top approach can be your go-to cooking technique, whether you’re creating a quick evening dinner or experimenting with new flavors. We’ll show you how to cook chicken on the stove to perfection in this step-by-step instruction.


Chicken pieces (bone-in or boneless, as per your preference)

Cooking oil (such as vegetable oil or olive oil)

Salt and pepper (or your favorite seasonings)

Additional herbs and spices (optional, for added flavor)


Step 1: Cook the Chicken

Begin by prepping the chicken. You can leave the skin on bone-in chicken for extra moisture and flavor, or remove it for a healthier choice. To ensure equal cooking and browning, pat the chicken dry with paper towels.

Step 2: Season the Chicken

Season the chicken with salt and pepper, as well as your favorite herbs and spices. This step improves the flavor of the chicken by enabling the seasonings to permeate the meat as it cooks.

Step 3: Preheat the Pan

Place a large skillet or frying pan on the stove over medium-high heat. Allow the pan to preheat for a few minutes until it becomes hot. You can test the heat by sprinkling a few drops of water on the pan – if the water sizzles and evaporates quickly, the pan is ready.

Step 4: Pour in the cooking oil

Add a couple teaspoons of cooking oil to the pan once it’s hot. Swirl the oil around to evenly coat the bottom of the pan. The oil keeps the chicken from sticking to the pan and contributes to a golden-brown crust.

Step 5: Add the chicken to the pan.

Place the seasoned chicken pieces in the heated pan with care. Arrange them in a single layer, with some space between each. Overcrowding the pan can cause uneven cooking, so cook the chicken in batches if required.

Step 6: Cook the Chicken

Allow the chicken to cook undisturbed for a few minutes until the bottom side develops a golden-brown crust. The cooking time will depend on the size and thickness of the chicken pieces. For bone-in chicken, it may take around 6-8 minutes per side, while boneless chicken will cook faster, usually within 4-6 minutes per side.

Step 7: Flip the Chicken

Once the bottom side is nicely browned, use tongs or a spatula to flip the chicken pieces. Cook the other side for the same amount of time until it develops a golden-brown crust and the chicken is cooked through.

Step 8: Check for Doneness

To ensure that the chicken is fully cooked, use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature. The safe internal temperature for chicken is 165°F (74°C). Alternatively, you can make a small cut in the thickest part of the chicken to check for any signs of pinkness.

Step 9: Rest the Chicken

Once the chicken is cooked through, remove it from the pan and let it rest for a few minutes before serving. Resting allows the juices to redistribute, resulting in juicier and more flavorful chicken.

Step 10: Serve and Enjoy

Serve the perfectly cooked chicken on a plate, and garnish with fresh herbs or a squeeze of lemon juice if desired. Enjoy your delicious stove-top cooked chicken alongside your favorite side dishes or as part of a tasty recipe.


Feel free to experiment with different seasonings and marinades to add variety and flavor to your stove-top cooked chicken. You can also try different cooking techniques, such as pan-searing or sautéing with vegetables, to create exciting and mouthwatering dishes.

With these simple steps and a bit of creativity, cooking chicken on the stove can become an enjoyable culinary adventure that will impress your family and friends with delectable results.

How To Cook Boneless Chicken Thighs in a Pan

Now you know How long does it take to fully cook chicken thighs? Next, Cooking boneless chicken thighs in a pan is a quick and flavorful way to enjoy this juicy cut of meat. Here’s a simple recipe to follow:


  • Boneless chicken thighs
  • Cooking oil (e.g., vegetable oil or olive oil)
  • Salt and pepper (or your preferred seasonings)


  1. Prep the Chicken: Pat the boneless chicken thighs dry with paper towels. This step helps achieve better browning during cooking.
  2. Season the Chicken: Sprinkle salt and pepper (or your favorite seasonings) over both sides of the chicken thighs. You can also add herbs or spices for extra flavor.
  3. Preheat the Pan: Place a pan on the stove over medium-high heat. Allow it to preheat for a couple of minutes until hot.
  4. Add Cooking Oil: Add a tablespoon of cooking oil to the hot pan and swirl it around to coat the bottom evenly.
  5. Cook the Chicken: Carefully place the seasoned chicken thighs in the pan. Cook for approximately 5-6 minutes per side or until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C).
  6. Check for Doneness: To ensure the chicken is fully cooked, use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature. The center should no longer be pink.
  7. Rest and Serve: Once cooked, remove the chicken from the pan and let it rest for a couple of minutes. This allows the juices to redistribute, resulting in a tender and juicy texture. Serve and enjoy!

With this easy method, you can have delicious and succulent boneless chicken thighs ready to be enjoyed in no time. Feel free to pair them with your favorite side dishes for a satisfying meal.

How do you know when chicken thighs are done on the stove?

Chicken thighs can be a versatile and delicious dish when cooked correctly. However, figuring out when they are fully cooked can be a bit tricky.

One of the easiest ways to tell if chicken thighs are done cooking is by checking their internal temperature with a meat thermometer. The safe internal temperature for cooked chicken is 165°F.

Another way to check if they are cooked is by looking at the juices that run out of the meat when pierced. If the juices are clear, then the chicken is fully cooked. However, if they are still pink or red, then it needs to cook for a bit longer.

Regardless of which method you choose, it is essential to make sure the chicken is fully cooked before serving. Your taste buds and guests’ appetites will thank you!

How do you not overcook chicken thighs?

To avoid overcooking chicken thighs, follow these tips:

Using a meat thermometer to gauge your progress is the best way to make sure your meat is cooked to a safe 165 degrees F without worrying about overcooking. 

Avoid cooking at excessively high temperatures, which can cause the meat to cook unevenly and become dry.

Choose the right cooking method and adjust the cooking time based on the method you’re using. For example, if roasting in the oven, cook at the appropriate temperature and check the thighs for doneness.

Consider using bone-in, skin-on thighs, as they are less likely to dry out compared to boneless, skinless ones.

Keep an eye on the thighs and remove them from heat as soon as they reach the desired temperature to prevent overcooking.

Why do chicken thighs take so long to cook?

This is due to their physical characteristics. Chicken thighs, particularly bone-in and skin-on varieties, can take longer to cook than other types of chicken, such as breasts, for various reasons:

  • Dark Meat: Chicken thighs have more dark meat, which has a distinct texture and takes longer to cook to tenderness.
  • Thighs have more connective tissue than breasts, which takes longer to break down while cooking to obtain tenderness.
  • Fat level: Thighs have a higher fat level, which provides taste and moisture while also contributing to lengthier cooking times.
  • When cooking bone-in, skin-on thighs, the bone and skin might function as insulators, slowing the cooking process.

Side Dishes to go with Chicken Thighs

After knowing How long does it take to fully cook chicken thighs?, last thing is know Side Dishes to go with Chicken Thighs

Pairing chicken thighs with delicious and complimentary side dishes may take your meal to a whole new level. Here are some delectable side dishes to pair with chicken thighs:

Roasted veggies: Roasting a colorful mix of veggies such as carrots, broccoli, bell peppers, and zucchini brings out their natural sweetness and adds a wonderful crunch to your dinner.

Creamy and savory mashed potatoes seasoned with roasted garlic form a classic and comforting side dish that combines wonderfully with chicken thighs.

Quinoa Salad: A light and healthful quinoa salad with cucumber, cherry tomatoes, feta cheese, and a lemon vinaigrette complements the richness of the chicken.

Green Beans Almondine: Blanched green beans sautéed with butter and topped with toasted almonds provide a delectable crunch and nutty flavor to balance the savory chicken.

Cauliflower Rice: For a low-carb option, cauliflower rice cooked with garlic and herbs creates a flavorful and satisfying side dish that complements the chicken thighs perfectly.

Sweet Potato Fries: Baked sweet potato fries seasoned with paprika and a hint of cinnamon add a touch of sweetness and a delightful contrast to the savory chicken.

Cornbread: Fluffy and slightly sweet cornbread is an excellent choice to serve alongside chicken thighs, adding a comforting and soulful element to the meal.

Caprese Salad: A classic Caprese salad with ripe tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, basil leaves, and balsamic glaze provides a burst of freshness that pairs wonderfully with the chicken.

Greek Salad: A zesty Greek salad featuring cucumbers, tomatoes, red onions, olives, and feta cheese tossed in a tangy dressing offers a light and vibrant side dish.

Rice Pilaf: Fragrant rice pilaf cooked with onions, garlic, and a splash of chicken broth enhances the meal and complements the flavors of the chicken.

Brussels Sprouts with Bacon: Pan-roasted Brussels sprouts cooked with crispy bacon bits offer a delightful combination of flavors that go wonderfully with chicken thighs.

Herbed Couscous: Fluffy couscous seasoned with herbs like parsley and mint makes for a light and flavorful side dish that pairs well with the chicken.

Choose one or a few of these delectable side dishes to serve alongside your chicken thighs, and you’ll have a well-rounded and satisfying meal that will leave everyone at the table impressed and satisfied. Enjoy!


If you’re wondering how to store cooked chicken thighs, there are a few things to keep in mind to ensure they stay fresh for future meals.

  1. First, it’s important to let the chicken cool to room temperature before storing it.
  2. Then, place the chicken in an airtight container or tightly seal it in a freezer-safe bag.
  3. Consider dividing the chicken into smaller portions for easier reheating.
  4. For best results, store the chicken in the fridge for up to four days or in the freezer for up to three months. With these tips, you can store your cooked chicken thighs safely and guarantee yourself a tasty meal down the road.

Tips for Cooking Chicken on the Stovetop

Cooked chicken thighs must be stored properly to ensure freshness and avoid the formation of hazardous microorganisms. To safely store your cooked chicken thighs, follow these steps:

Allow the chicken thighs to cool quickly at room temperature after cooking them for about 1 to 2 hours. Allowing cooked chicken to sit at room temperature for an extended period of time can encourage bacterial growth.

If you have a huge batch of cooked chicken thighs, consider separating them into smaller servings. This allows you to save and reheat only what you need.

Refrigerate As Soon As Possible: Once the chicken thighs have cooled, place them in airtight containers or resealable plastic bags. Refrigerate the cooked chicken within two hours of removing it from the oven.

Properly Seal Containers: Ensure that the containers or bags are tightly sealed to prevent any air from entering, which can cause the chicken to dry out or absorb unwanted odors from the fridge.

Label and Date: To keep track of the freshness, label the containers with the contents and the date of storage. Cooked chicken thighs can typically be safely stored in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days.

Avoid Stacking: If using containers, avoid stacking them on top of each other in the refrigerator. Placing them in a single layer allows for better air circulation and even cooling.

Store Away from Raw Meat: Keep the cooked chicken thighs away from raw meat, especially on different shelves or in separate drawers, to prevent cross-contamination.

Reheating: When ready to eat, reheat the cooked chicken thighs to an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C) to ensure they are thoroughly heated and safe to consume.

Freezing (Optional): If you have more cooked chicken than you can consume within a few days, consider freezing the extra portions. Place the chicken in airtight freezer-safe containers or bags, and label them with the date. Cooked chicken can be frozen for up to 2-3 months for best quality.

More Chicken Recipes

If you enjoy chicken and are seeking for more great and different chicken dishes to try, here are a few to add to your repertoire:

Chicken Stir-Fry: Make a lively and healthful chicken stir-fry with an assortment of colorful veggies sautéed in a savory sauce, such as bell peppers, broccoli, snap peas, and carrots. For a filling supper, serve over steaming rice or noodles.

Chicken Parmesan: Enjoy the traditional Italian dish of chicken Parmesan. Breaded and pan-fried chicken cutlets are topped with marinara sauce and melted mozzarella cheese before being served with pasta for a hearty and savory meal.

Honey Mustard Baked Chicken: To make a sweet and tangy glaze for baked chicken, combine honey, Dijon mustard, and a dash of garlic. This quick and delicious recipe is ideal for midweek evenings.

Chicken Enchiladas: Before baking, roll shredded chicken in corn tortillas, pour in a rich enchilada sauce, and top with cheese. These delicious and saucy enchiladas are sure to wow the entire family.

Lemon Herb Roast Chicken: Roast a whole chicken seasoned with herbs and fresh lemon slices for a delectable and aromatic dish ideal for special occasions or Sunday dinners.

Buffalo Chicken Wraps: Toss shredded chicken in buffalo sauce and wrap it in a tortilla with lettuce, tomatoes, and ranch dressing for a spicy and filling lunch or dinner.

Teriyaki Chicken Skewers: Marinate chicken chunks in teriyaki sauce before threading them onto skewers and grilling or broiling until browned and delicious. Serve with steamed rice and vegetables on the side.

Crisp romaine lettuce is topped with grilled chicken, croutons, Parmesan cheese, and Caesar dressing for a robust and refreshing salad that makes a delicious main meal.

Chicken and Vegetable Curry: Combine a variety of spices, coconut milk, and colorful veggies to make a warm and delicious chicken curry. For a complete supper, serve with fragrant jasmine rice.

Chicken Alfredo Pasta: Cook fettuccine pasta and toss it in a creamy Alfredo sauce with tender pieces of grilled or sautéed chicken. This rich and indulgent pasta dish is perfect for a special dinner.

Chicken and Rice Casserole: Combine cooked chicken, rice, vegetables, and a creamy sauce in a baking dish, then bake until bubbly and golden for a comforting and satisfying casserole.

Grilled Chicken Tacos: Grill marinated chicken breast and slice it into tender strips. Fill soft tortillas with the grilled chicken, salsa, avocado, and shredded lettuce for a delicious taco night.

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Conclusion: How Long to Cook Chicken Thighs on the Stove?

After reading this blog post, you now have the tools to cook chicken thighs perfectly on a stove top. Not only do we now understand how long it takes to cook the presence, but also the various methods used to cook them. Sauces and accompaniments can make or break your meal, so make sure to look into some of the ideas provided before you start cooking. Keep in mind that restaurant chefs will often steam or fry their chicken so as not to lose moisture in the meat – they’re trying to produce juicy Goldilocks-style perfection – so take note from this lesson when recreating your kitchen masterpieces at home. In conclusion, there is no one right way for cooking chicken thighs on the stove – each method has its own benefits based on how moist or crispy you want your dish to be. Be bold and try out some of these ideas today; combine different ingredients and flavors, and above all have fun with experimentation!

FAQs: How Long to Cook Chicken Thighs on the Stove?

Can I cook frozen chicken thighs on the stove? 

It’s not recommended to cook frozen chicken thighs directly on the stove, as this may result in uneven cooking. It’s best to thaw the chicken thighs completely in the refrigerator before cooking them on the stove.

Should I cover the pan while cooking chicken thighs on the stove? 

In most cases, it’s not necessary to cover the pan while cooking chicken thighs on the stove. Cooking them uncovered allows for better browning and caramelization. However, if the chicken thighs are very thick, you can cover the pan for a few minutes to ensure even cooking.

Can I marinate the chicken thighs before cooking on the stove? 

Yes, marinating the chicken thighs before cooking can add extra flavor and moisture. For best results, marinate the chicken in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes or up to 24 hours before cooking.

What type of oil should I use for cooking chicken thighs on the stove?

 Use cooking oil with a high smoke point, such as vegetable oil or canola oil. These oils can withstand high temperatures without burning and impart a neutral flavor to the chicken.

Should I use bone-in or boneless chicken thighs for stovetop cooking? 

Both bone-in and boneless chicken thighs work well for stovetop cooking. Bone-in thighs tend to be juicier and richer in flavor, while boneless thighs cook slightly faster.

Can I add seasonings or herbs to the chicken while cooking on the stove?

Absolutely! Seasoning the chicken thighs with salt, pepper, and your favorite herbs or spices can enhance the flavor. Consider using garlic powder, paprika, thyme, or rosemary for a tasty twist.

What if the chicken thighs are too thick and taking longer to cook on the stove? 

If the chicken thighs are thick, you can butterfly or pound them to create a more even thickness, allowing for quicker and more uniform cooking.

Can I use a grill pan to cook chicken thighs on the stove? 

Yes, a grill pan can be a great option for cooking chicken thighs on the stove. The raised ridges create grill marks and enhance the appearance of the chicken, giving it a delightful grilled flavor.



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