These Baked Sticky Chicken Drumsticks are coated in a finger-licking marinade that’s unbelievably easy to prepare. The sweet and savory flavors and sticky glaze take a simple chicken dinner to a whole new level of deliciousness.
- Baked Chicken Drumsticks
- Why You’ll Love Marinated Chicken Drumsticks
- Recipe Ingredients
- Ingredient Notes
- How to Make Marinated Sticky Chicken: Step-By-Step
- Recipe Substitutions and Additions
- Recipe Tips
- How to Tell if Chicken is Cooked?
- Storage Instructions
- What to Serve with Sticky Chicken Drumsticks
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Nutrition Tips: Health Benefits of Chicken
- More Chicken Dinner Ideas
- Printable Recipe Card
- Pin Recipe for Later
Baked Chicken Drumsticks
Picture this: tender drumsticks slathered in a super-tasty marinade that combines the tang of ketchup, the umami goodness of coconut aminos, and a drizzle of runny honey for sweet perfection. As these beauties bake away in the oven, the flavors meld together, resulting in a sticky glaze that tastes incredible!
These delicious chicken drumsticks have earned a permanent spot in my dinner circulation. And for good reason! It’s like they have this magnetic power to bring the whole family together. They never fail to steal the show. Plus, they’re a breeze to make, perfect for busy home cooks who crave deliciousness without spending hours in the kitchen.
Why You’ll Love Marinated Chicken Drumsticks
- They’re tender and juicy. The flavorful marinade helps to infuse the chicken drumsticks with incredible flavor while keeping them moist and tender.
- It’s a family-friendly meal. Kids and adults alike will enjoy the finger-licking goodness of these sticky chicken drumsticks.
- Easy preparation. Marinating the drumsticks requires minimal effort, and the baking process is straightforward, making it a convenient option for an easy weeknight dinner!
Here are the simple ingredients you’ll need to make this delicious and nutritious Baked Sticky Chicken Drumstick recipe:
- Chicken Drumsticks: These succulent pieces of chicken are the star of the dish, providing juicy and flavorful meat that pairs perfectly with the finger-licking marinade.
Marinade for Chicken Drumsticks
- Runny Honey: Essential for a moreish sticky glaze.
- Natural Tomato Ketchup: Adds tangy sweetness.
- Coconut Aminos: For its delicate umami taste.
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil: Helps the chicken retain moisture.
- Apple Cider Vinegar: Helps tenderize the chicken.
- Garlic Granules: To infuse the drumsticks with a savory, garlicky kick.
- Ground Ginger: Adds warmth to the marinade.
- Chili Powder: For a touch of heat.
- Sea Salt Flakes: So all the flavors pop!
How to Make Marinated Sticky Chicken: Step-By-Step
Here’s how to make a batch of Baked Sticky Chicken Drumsticks with a super-simple marinade in illustrated steps:
- Easy Chicken Drumstick Marinade
Put the sticky marinade ingredients into a small glass jar with a lid. Shake to combine. Put the chicken drumsticks into a large Ziploc bag and pour in the marinade. Lock the bag and shuffle everything around to coat the chicken. Then, place the chicken in the fridge to marinate for a least 30 minutes (but preferably 2 hours).
- Bake the Chicken Drumsticks
Place the marinated chicken drumsticks on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake in a hot oven for 35-40 minutes until golden brown. Turn once halfway through cooking. Once the chicken is thoroughly cooked, serve and enjoy!
Find the recipe card with exact ingredients and full recipe instructions at the bottom of this page. ⇩
Recipe Substitutions and Additions
Tailor Baked Sticky Chicken Drumsticks to your taste preferences and dietary needs. Here are a few ideas to experiment with:
- Chicken: Cuts of chicken that provide the best flavor for this recipe include chicken legs and chicken wings. The combination of white and dark meat is truly delicious. If you prefer chicken breast, I recommend cutting slits so the marinade can penetrate the flesh. Remember to adjust the cooking times to suit the type and size of chicken you’re using.
- Chicken Skin: I’ve used chicken drumsticks with their skin on. If you prefer, you can absolutely use skinless chicken. The differences? Skin-on drumsticks add a flavor layer and help the chicken retain moisture during cooking. Baked skinless chicken drumsticks are a lower-fat alternative. They still taste amazing. So do what works for you.
- Coconut Aminos: Substitute coconut aminos with regular soy sauce (not gluten-free) or tamari sauce (gluten-free) for similar umami flavors. Alternatively, if you have Worcestershire sauce in the pantry, that would also work.
- BBQ Chicken Drumsticks: Replace the ketchup in this recipe with a refined sugar-free barbecue sauce for BBQ sticky drumsticks. Yum!
- Spicy Chicken Drumsticks: Increase the amount of chili powder or add cayenne pepper for an extra kick.
- Citrus Twist: Squeeze fresh lemon juice or lime juice over the drumsticks before baking for a zesty twist.
- Fresh Herbs: Sprinkle chopped chives, cilantro, or parsley on top of the cooked drumsticks for added freshness.
- Sesame Seeds: Garnish the drumsticks with toasted sesame seeds to add a nutty crunch.
- Pat the chicken dry: Drying before marinating helps to achieve a crispy skin.
- Marinating time: For maximum flavor, marinate the drumsticks for at least 2 hours or overnight in the refrigerator.
- Basting: Halfway through baking, baste the drumsticks with the marinade to prevent them from drying out.
- Broiling option: For a crispier skin, broil (grill) the drumsticks for a few minutes at the end of the baking time.
How to Tell if Chicken is Cooked?
Knowing when chicken is cooked is essential to ensure it is safe to eat. Here are a few indicators to help you determine if your chicken is cooked thoroughly, remains juicy, and is safe to enjoy.
- Internal temperature: The most reliable method is using a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature of the thickest part of the chicken. Avoid touching the bone, as it can give a false reading. The chicken should reach an internal temperature of 165°F (75°C) to be considered fully cooked and safe to eat.
- Visual cues: Look for visible signs of doneness. The chicken should have a golden brown color on the outside, and the juices should run clear when pierced with a fork. If the juices run pink or cloudy, the chicken needs more time to cook.
- Texture: Cooked chicken should have a firm texture, and the meat should feel springy to the touch. If it feels rubbery or squishy, it likely needs more cooking time.
- Refrigeration: Store leftover cooked drumsticks in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.
- Freezing: Cooked drumsticks freeze well. Place them in a freezer-safe container or bag, removing as much air as possible, and freeze for up to 1 month.
What to Serve with Sticky Chicken Drumsticks
Here are some of my favorite ways to enjoy a Sticky Chicken Drumstick… or two!
- Serve the drumsticks over fluffy steamed rice, cauliflower rice, or nutty quinoa.
- Pair the drumsticks with a colorful assortment of roasted vegetables like squash, broccoli, or zucchini for a balanced meal.
- A crisp salad with a tangy vinaigrette can provide a refreshing contrast to the rich flavors of the chicken.
- Enjoy the chicken drumsticks alongside Creamy Purple Cabbage Slaw for a satisfying combination of textures and flavors.
- One of my favorite sides to serve alongside sticky drumsticks is a creamy mash like Colcannon (Irish Mashed Potatoes) or Creamy Cauliflower Mash with Thyme. It’s just so comforting!
- Simply dunk them in a gorgeous dip, like this Creamy Whipped Feta and Honey Dip.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes! Boneless chicken thighs or chicken breasts can be used, but adjust the cooking time to prevent overcooking.
Absolutely! Grilling the drumsticks will add a smoky flavor and charred texture. Cook them over medium heat, turning occasionally, until cooked through.
It’s best to thaw the drumsticks completely before marinating and baking to ensure even cooking and optimal flavor absorption.
Nutrition Tips: Health Benefits of Chicken
- Protein source: Chicken is a fantastic protein source, essential for building and repairing muscle tissue.
- Rich in vitamins and minerals: Chicken contains various vitamins and minerals like niacin, vitamins B6 and B12, selenium, phosphorus, and plenty more. All of which support our overall health and vitality.
- Supports weight loss and satiety: The high protein content in chicken can help promote satiety, keeping you feeling full for longer periods and reducing cravings.
It’s important to note that while protein offers potential health benefits, it should be eaten as part of a balanced diet and lifestyle. It’s always a good idea to consult with a healthcare professional or a registered dietitian for personalized advice based on your individual health needs, especially if you want to lose weight.
More Chicken Dinner Ideas
If you enjoyed these Baked Sticky Chicken Drumsticks, check out more delicious and nutritious chicken recipes
- Oven-Baked Chicken Dippers with a Creamy Chive Dip
- Chicken Fajita Nourish Bowls
- Easy Chicken Tikka with Mint Sauce
- One-Pot Chicken and Chorizo Savoury Rice
- BBQ Chicken Enchiladas
- Club Sandwich
Thinking of making this recipe? Please drop me a note in the comment section and provide a star rating! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ I ALWAYS LOVE hearing from you.
Printable Recipe Card
Baked Sticky Chicken Drumsticks (Easy Marinade)
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- Large Ziploc Bag, or large bowl
- Small Glass Jar with Lid, or small bowl and a fork
- Rimmed Baking Sheet
- 12 chicken drumsticks
- 6 tablespoons tomato ketchup, refined sugar-free
- 3 tablespoons coconut aminos, or sub with tamari sauce (also gluten-free) or soy sauce (not gluten-free)
- 2 tablespoons runny honey
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- ½ tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon sea salt flakes
- ½ teaspoon chili powder (chilli powder)
- ¼ teaspoon garlic granules, or garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
- Prepare: Gather your equipment and prep your ingredients.
- Chicken: Pat your chicken dry with a paper towel (for crispier skin). Place drumsticks into a Ziploc bag. Tip: You can also use a large mixing bowl if you don't have a Ziploc bag.
- Marinade: Put all the marinade ingredients (tomato ketchup, coconut aminos, honey, olive oil, apple cider vinegar, salt, chili powder, garlic, and ginger) into a small glass jar with a lid. Shake to combine. Tip: You can just use a small bowl for the marinade and mix it with a fork.
- Marinate Chicken: Pour the marinade over the chicken, close the Ziploc bag, and give everything a shuffle around to coat the chicken. Place the chicken in the fridge to marinate for at least 30 minutes, preferably 2 hours if you have time. Note: If you've used a bowl for your chicken, cover it will plastic wrap (cling film) before placing it into the fridge to marinate.
- Meanwhile: Preheat the oven to 375ºF (190ºC, Gas Mark 5) and line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil and then a sheet of baking parchment.
- Bake: When the oven is hot, place the marinated chicken drumsticks onto the lined baking sheet in a single layer. Pour any leftover marinade over the chicken, and bake the drumsticks in the hot oven for 35-40 minutes, until the chicken is crispy, charred in areas, and fully cooked through. Cooking times may vary due to the size of the drumsticks.Tip: The chicken should reach an internal temperature of 165°F (75°C), or the juices should run clear when pierced with a fork. Alternatively, slice into the chicken and check it is not pink.
- Serve: Let your chicken drumsticks cool slightly, then enjoy!
- Cooked Chicken Drumsticks – Cool to room temperature, transfer to an airtight container, and refrigerate for 3-4 days.
- Raw Chicken Drumsticks in Marinade – Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 2 days.
- Cooked Chicken Drumsticks – Cool to room temperature, transfer to an airtight freezer-safe container or bag, and freeze for up to 1 month.
- Raw Chicken Drumsticks in Marinade – Freeze in an airtight, freezer-safe container or bag for up to 3 months.
- Oven method – Preheat your oven to 350°F (180°C, Gas Mark 4). Place the chicken drumsticks on a baking tray lined with parchment paper or foil to prevent sticking. Reheat the drumsticks in the oven for about 15-20 minutes or until they reach an internal temperature of 165°F (75°C). This method helps maintain the crispiness of the skin.
- Microwave method – If you’re short on time, you can use a microwave to reheat the chicken drumsticks. Place the drumsticks on a microwave-safe plate and cover them with a microwave-safe lid to retain moisture. Heat them in the microwave on medium power in short intervals, checking the temperature after each interval. Be careful not to overheat, as it can result in dry meat.
Nutrition Information (Per Serving)
Nutrition Disclaimer: Nutritional information is estimated using an online nutrition calculator. For accuracy, we recommend you calculate using the exact ingredients and brands you used.