Easy Greek Lemon Chicken

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Greek Lemon Chicken is a zest of sweetness with a hint of summer all in one pan! This chicken is made with a handful of ingredients and easy-peazy.

Greek food is fresh, bright and has tons of flavor! Try these authentic favorites like this Gyros, Salad and Pasta Salad.

Greek Lemon Chicken in a cast iron skillet.

Greek Lemon Chicken

Easy Greek Lemon Chicken is a quick and healthy meal you’re going to want to make all the time!  It takes just a few spices, some garlic, lemon and olive oil, that’s it!  Greek Chicken is the most delicious chicken, the roasted lemon wedges adds zing and freshness. The lemons also create the most delicious sauce!  The roasted lemons combines with the pan juices and olive for a deep complex intense flavor. You are going to love it!

The tender chicken is going to melt in your mouth. The spices and lemons create a flavor and sauce that is amazing spooned over rice, mashed potatoes or roasted vegetables. Your whole family is going to love the taste and you are going to love how easy it is. Perfect for a busy weekday or lazy weekend.  Plus, it looks almost as beautiful going into the oven as it does coming out!

Ingredients for Lemon Chicken

Simple, but packed with flavor, you are going to be blown away by how easy and delicious this is. So let’s get cooking.

  • Chicken Thighs: Bone in and skin on.
  • Olive Oil: Adds incredible flavor and helps the chicken cook.
  • Garlic: Freshly minced.
  • Salt and Pepper:This is to taste, I used Kosher salt.
  • Dried Oregano: A staple in greek cooking.
  • Crushed Red Pepper: Adds bit of heat.
  • Dried Thyme: Thyme works great with chicken.
  • Lemons: You will need 2 lemons, one for cutting up and one for zesting and juicing.

Let’s Make Easy Lemon Chicken!

The marinade itself couldn’t be any easier to make. The secret flavor you’ll crave comes from the lemon wedges that roast along side the chicken. Everything cooks in one pan for easiness and quick clean up.

  1. Preheat: Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Mix: Add the chicken thighs, olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper, organo, crushed red pepper, thyme, lemon juice and zest in a large bowl together and combine well.
  3. Pan: Place the chicken thighs in your cast iron skillet skin side up.
  4. Combine: Toss the lemon wedges in the leftover marinade and add to the skillet in between the chicken pieces.
  5. Cook: Roast for 35-40 minutes or until browned and crispy

Unclose picture of the spices on the Greek Lemon Chicken.

Tips and Variations for the Best Chicken

This greek lemon chicken is so easy and forgiving. It is hard to mess up. I love dishes like that. You can’t go wrong with this zesty, bright chicken dinner.

  • Chicken: Using chicken thighs with the bone and skin on will create the juiciest and most tender chicken. You can use chicken breasts too. I recommend cutting the breasts so they are even thickness. That way they will cook more evenly. Chicken legs would also work.
  • Marinate: You can marinate the chicken for up to 5 hours before cooking it if you would like. It will intensify the flavors that much more.
  • Garlic: If you can use fresh garlic you will not regret it. It will give a better flavor.
  • Serve it with: Make it a middle eastern night to remember and serve it with Homemade NaanHummus,  and this yummy Greek Spinach Pasta.
  • Store: Keep leftovers in an airtight container for up to 5 days. Reheat in the microwave.

What Makes Greek Food Greek?

Greek food and Mediterranean food share many of the same characteristics, but there is a difference. Even if it is subtle. The base of greek food consists of wheat, olives and wine.  It uses vegetables, olive oil, grains, fish, and meat, including pork, poultry, veal and beef, lamb, rabbit, and goat. Other important ingredients include pasta, cheeses, lemon juice, herbs, olives, and yogurt.

It should be noted here that American greek yogurt, is nothing like true greek yogurt. Bread is usually made of wheat and other grains,such as barley.  Common dessert ingredients include nuts, honey, fruits, and filo pastries. Greece’s climate is perfect growing for olive and lemon trees, producing two of the most important elements of Greek cooking.  Herbs and spices that are popular include garlic, basil, oregano, thyme and mint.

Greek Lemon chicken on a plate, and cut by a fork.

More Chicken Recipes to Love

Easy Greek Lemon Chicken

4.66 from 29 votes
Easy Greek Lemon Chicken is made with just a handful of ingredients in a cast iron skillet along with roasted lemon wedges that make an easy pan sauce.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Author Alyssa Rivers
Servings: 5 Chicken Thighs


  • 5 chicken thighs bone in and skin on
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 2 lemons one cut into wedges and one juiced and zested


  • Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.
  • Add the chicken thighs, olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper, oregano, crushed red pepper, thyme, lemon juice and zest in a large bowl together and combine well.
  • Place the chicken thighs in your cast iron skillet skin side up.
  • Toss the lemon wedges in the leftover marinade and add to the skillet in between the chicken pieces.
  • Roast for 35-40 minutes or until browned and crispy.



Updated on February 21, 2021
Originally Posted on April 12, 2017


Serves: 5

Calories359kcal (18%)Carbohydrates5g (2%)Protein19g (38%)Fat30g (46%)Saturated Fat7g (35%)Cholesterol111mg (37%)Sodium323mg (13%)Potassium298mg (9%)Fiber1g (4%)Sugar1g (1%)Vitamin A120IU (2%)Vitamin C23.4mg (28%)Calcium24mg (2%)Iron1.2mg (7%)

All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods and portion sizes per household.

Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine Greek
Keyword greek lemon chicken, lemon chicken
Tried this recipe?Mention @alyssa_therecipecritic or tag #therecipecritic

Alyssa Rivers

I am Alyssa and the blogger behind The Recipe Critic. I started my blog in June of 2012 as a place to share my passion for cooking. I love trying new things and testing them out with my family.

Read More Posts by Alyssa

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Leave a reply
  1. You say “leftover” marinade. Is there a step left out with regard to how long the chicken was suppose to be in the bowl?

    1. You are welcome to leaving the chicken in the marinade for a few hours to over night if you prefer to add that extra flavoring. If you are short on time the chicken can be coated with the marinade and cooked right after. Hope that helps explain things a little better! Thanks for following along with me! XOXO

  2. 5 stars
    Decided to try this recipe tonight and was super happy with how the chicken turned out! Totally love the jam packed flavors from the marinade. I used a casserole dish and doubled this recipe for a family dinner. Paired the chicken with Greek salad, pita bread and tzatziki sauce and it was a hit ! Thanks for sharing !

  3. This was fabulous. My local grocery sadly didn’t have bone in, skin on thighs so I used boneless and skinless.
    I threw everything into a cast iron skillet and put it straight on to a hot grill. About halfway through cooking I took the chicken out of the pan and seared it on the grill and put it back into the pan. Then I turned off the grill and let the chicken braise at a lower heat. It came out very tender and full of flavor. I loved that there was virtually no prep time.
    It was delicious and didn’t heat up my kitchen. I will be adding this to the weekly menu rotation this summer. Thank you!

  4. Can bone-in chicken breasts be used in this recipe instead of thighs? What sort of adjustments would be needed? Also, if the pieces are somewhat crowded in the pan, is that OK?
    The recipe looks amazing & I can’t wait to try it.

  5. 5 stars
    Super delicious! And… bonus… super easy! We visited Greece a couple of years ago, and this recipe helped us relive the wonderful meals we enjoyed there. Thanks Sabrina!

  6. 5 stars
    I always bone & trim theighs, (picky ?) I used limes because yellow lemons are rare here in Mazatlan, Mexico. A welcome change from the usual theigh, Mushroom soup, sour cream, over noodles. Thank you so very much for sharing this delicious receipe, – – a new standby !

  7. I would like to try your recipes but I can’t find the nutritional information. If you could include them with the recipes I think more people who are health conscious would use and share you recipes.

    1. I am in the process of adding nutritional facts to each of my recipes at this time. In the meantime you are welcome to use myfitnesspal.com for any questions you may have.

  8. 5 stars
    I made this last Spring as a alternative for folks at my Passover Seder table that did not want brisket. It was a HUGE success. I made Greek-Style Lemon Roasted Potatoes with it.

  9. 4 stars
    This was very tasty. I followed the receipe exactly and it was a hit. My only issue was it wasn’t crispy as stated in the receipe, but with the olive oil I figured it probably wouldn’t be. I thought of a few variations but they are not necessary. I want to try it with fresh herbs, a wee bit more crushed red pepper, maybe double and also sprinkle feta on it the last 10 mins of cooking. I will also try it without the skin, just to step up the healthy part of it, not that I want to. Thank you for sharing, it will be a regular on our table!

  10. I cannot make this enough times for my husband – he LOVES this dish! I baste the chicken while it’s cooking which helps crisp up the tops and then finish under the broiler so they get extra brown. Thanks for sharing this one, it’s in my weekly line up now :-).

  11. 5 stars
    Made this for lunch with friends today and what a hit!! Followed the recipe exactly except I had 8 thighs (2 for each of us), so I doubled everything else in the recipe. I don’t have a cast iron skillet, so used my large Emeril frying pan (ovenproof) and it worked great! This is a keeper!!

  12. 5 stars
    Made this for my neighbor (who doesn’t like anything) and she raved. She couldn’t stop talking about it. I never make chicken for dinner guests but this is fabulous and it can be prepared early in the day and then put together to bake. I bake potatoes and put the sauce over the potatoes when I serve it. YUM!

  13. 5 stars
    I really loved this recipe! Impressively lemony.

    When you say “Toss the lemon wedges in the leftover marinade and add to the skillet in between the chicken pieces,” do you mean to add just the lemons to the skillet? Or the lemons AND the leftover marinade to the skillet?


  14. 5 stars
    Wow, so delicious. I was truly impressed with the flavor and in love with how easy it was to make. I followed the recipe and then cooked it in my air fryer oven and will return to this recipe again and again. I left every thing to marinated the bowl for about a half an hour because my chicken thighs were still a little frozen. Soooooo much wonderful lemony flavor. Thank you for the recipe and the mister thinks you are a genius!

  15. 5 stars
    This was fantastic! We’ve added it to our regular rotation, so I’ve been making it about once a week for the last 2 months. The only thing I’ve changed is to add an extra juiced lemon just for our preference, but this is wonderful exactly as is and very easy.

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