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Sautéed Garlic & Balsamic Chicken Legs


Skinless chicken legs are seasoned with herbs and cooked until brown and tender. To give intensity to this flavor in this recipe, the legs are covered with a sauce made from pan juices and balsamic vinegar. This recipe was adapted from Jacque Pepin's recipe in Simple and Healthy Cooking. Sautéed Garlic and Balsamic Chicken Legs are the most delicious centerpiece to any meal when served with creamy mashed potatoes, fluffy white rice, and assorted roasted vegetables.

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Rate this recipe 4.6/5 (7 Votes)


  • 6 to 8 chicken legs
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried marjoram
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, divided
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil, plus extra
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup pomegranate-flavored white balsamic vinegar
  • 1/8 cup dry sherry or dry red wine
  • 3 shallots, finely chopped
  • 10 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 1/3 cup water


Servings 4
Preparation time 30mins
Cooking time 65mins


Step 1

Using a cleaver or a sharp, heavy knife, cut off and discard the tips of the drumsticks. Grasp hold of the chicken skin and remove from the legs. Remove any fat also.

Combine thyme, marjoram, and 1/4 teaspoon each of salt and black pepper.

Bring a large skillet to temperature over medium heat, then add the olive oil. Add the chicken legs and sprinkle the seasoning mix over the legs. Cover and cook for 12 minutes. Turn the legs over and cook for another 12 minutes on the other side. The chicken should be well browned on all sides. Using tongs, remove the legs and set aside on a serving platter and put in a warm place or warming oven.

Add the shallots and garlic to the pan with a small amount of olive oil and saute until translucent. Add the balsamic and white balsamic vinegars and the wine to pan and deglaze. Bring to a boil, add water and remaining salt and black pepper. Boil until sauce is thickened and reduced to about 2/3 cup. The sauce should be just a bit sweet. If it's not sweet enough, you can add a small amount of sugar to taste. Return chicken to pan with juices on platter to coat. Serve with a generous portion of sauce.

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