Lemon, Potato and Olive Braised Chicken Thighs, Fuggedaboutit

The first recipe Molly and I are including in our series of The Dinner Dance is something so simple that you can just leave it in the oven and fuggedaboutit.

Braised chicken thighs are really hard to mess up. It takes about 30 minutes to cook thoroughly, but another 10 or 20 minutes makes the meat super fall-off-the-bone tender. And you can even leave it in a turned off oven without worrying about it overcooking. Fuggedaboutit!

Molly is a busy mom of three young children and runs her own business teaching expectant mothers techniques for having a natural birthing experience. Her site is chock full of information: Bluebonnet Babies.

She tried the recipe and found it simple enough to make on a weekday night. Read her story here.


Lemon, Potato and Olive Braised Chicken Thighs

  • Servings: 4-6
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Lemon, Potato and Olive Braised Chicken Thighs

Serves 4 – 6

Prep Time 15 minutes

Cooking Time 1 hour


6 bone in, skin on organic chicken thighs

2 small spanish onions, peeled and sliced ½ inch thick

10 cloves garlic, peeled

1 lemon, cut in half, seeds removed, sliced very thinly

1 lb. baby yellow waxy potatoes, cut in half

½ cup cerignola olives (or green olives of your choosing), pitted (or warn eaters of pits)

2-3 cups chicken stock

1 bunch parsley

kosher salt and black pepper

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (use convection roast if you have the option).

Season chicken thighs on both sides with salt and pepper. Season in either the butcher paper or styrofoam container you bought them in. It saves time from cleaning up a cutting board!


Place a large cast-iron pan, saute pan with high sides, or Dutch oven over medium-high heat and add 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil, or enough to evenly coat the bottom of the pan. When the oil starts to shimmer, add the seasoned chicken pieces skin side down. Cook for 6-8 minutes, or until the skin is a deep golden brown. If the pan starts to smoke while you’re cooking the thighs, adjust the heat to a lower temperature.


While the thighs are browning off, cut your onions and lemon and peel your garlic (unless you have peeled garlic on hand!). By the time you’re done slicing, the chicken should be golden. Remove the thighs from the pan and add the onions, garlic and lemon. Season with salt and pepper and let brown for about 5 minutes over medium heat. Once there is some color on the onions, add the potatoes. Season generously again. Potatoes absorb a lot of salt, so be more liberal than you would imagine. Add the chicken pieces back to the pan and nestle them amongst their potato and onion friends. Strew the olives around the chicken and then add enough chicken stock to come halfway up the chicken thighs (not covering the chicken skin). Bring the stock up to a boil and then put the pan carefully on the middle rack in the oven.

Cook for 40-50 minutes. The chicken can stay warm in a turned off oven if you’re waiting for guests, wrangling the children out of the bathtub, or need to get back to that last chapter in your book before dinner is served.

Once out of the oven, check seasoning and adjust if necessary. If you wanted to check with a thermometer, the chicken should be 160 degrees F. I like to reduce the sauce for a thicker sauce, so the pan can be placed back on the stove top and simmered for about 5 minutes until it’s thick. Chop fresh parsley and sprinkle over the top, for that Ina Garten appeal.


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