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Holy Yum Chicken

Holy Yum Chicken from

If you have never made anything from my blog, drop everything and make this for dinner tonight. I’m telling you, YOU.WILL.NOT.REGRET.IT.

I’ve made this chicken 3 times already. 3 times in ONE WEEK. I’m completely, utterly, addicted to it.

It’s the EASIEST recipe, EVER and the tastiest. It will make your taste buds SING and you’ll be doing cartwheels all over your living room. Seriously. If you’re not much of a cook or if you don’t have a ton of time on your hands, this is the dish for you. Yes, yes, yes!

I wish there was some technology where you can just poke your finger at your screen to try the sauce. But, since there isn’t that yet, please please believe me. Why would I lie to you?

Ok, I sound like I’m on my hands and knees begging you to make this. I sort of am..and really, it’s only cause I want you to know how glorious this dish is because you probably will make this every week and share it with everyone you know so they can get a taste of this amazingness. :)


  1. If you don’t like mustard, you likely will not like this dish. 1/2 the recipe’s ingredient is mustard.
  2. It will taste mustardy with a nice hint of sweetness! So again, if you don’t like mustard, don’t make this.
  3. If you don’t follow directions and want to improvise, that is definitely ok! But please do not come back to yell at me for a failed dish. The instructions are laid out completely below because I have tested it myself and it works the way it’s written below.
  4. If you do not use the right equipment it will likely not turn out either. 8×8″ pan means 8×8″ pan. 2 layers of foil means 2 layers of foil. Why? 8×8″ pan will keep the sauce together and compact and won’t cause it to spread out over a large surface area. If you put it in a larger pan, it will spread, therefore, causing the sauce to get cooked off and you’ll end up with dry chicken and little to no sauce. Double layering the foil insulates the sauces and the chicken, it’ll keep the sauce from burning on the scalding hot pan.
  5. Yes, it really is cooked at 450 degrees. I’m not going to lie to you. Yes, it’s very high but it also works (proof: above pictures!) :)
  6. If you’re using chicken breasts, reduce cooking time to 25-30 minutes or you’ll end up with dry chicken.
  7. You may use bone-in chicken thighs. Cooking time is the same.
  8. Whole grain mustard is not the same as Dijon mustard.
  9. Rice wine vinegar and rice vinegar are the same thing. The names are interchangeable.
  10. If you can’t find unseasoned rice wine vinegar, you may use seasoned rice wine vinegar and vice versa.

These notes above were added 4/3/2013 after NUMEROUS feedback from below so I decided to summarize it for you all so it’s like a one-stop get your answers quickly, haha. Please read the disclaimer & read the comments section below before asking your question or yelling at me. Thank you!! :)

Holy Yum Chicken
Recipe type: Main Entree, Chicken
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2-4
  • 1½ - 2 pounds boneless, skinless, chicken thighs (most of the fat cut and discarded)
  • ½ cup Dijon mustard (must be Dijon mustard, no substitutes)
  • ¼ cup pure maple syrup (again, no substitutes. No fake Aunt Jemima stuff)
  • 1 tbsp. rice wine vinegar (seasoned or unseasoned)
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • ¼ tsp. ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp. cornstarch
  • 2 tsp. fresh rosemary for garnish
  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a 8x8" oven-proof pan with 2 layers of tin foil.
  2. In small bowl, whisk together Dijon mustard, maple syrup, rice wine vinegar, salt and pepper.
  3. Place the chicken thighs in the foil layered pan then pour the mixture on top of it. Turn the chicken around in the sauce to make sure it gets all coated.
  4. Bake, uncovered, for 40 minutes.
  5. Remove from oven and let chicken sit for 5 minutes then transfer to a plate. Do NOT discard the liquid.
  6. Immediately after plating chicken, whisk in the 1 tbsp. of cornstarch into the liquid in the pan. You'll create a nice, thick sauce to drizzle over your chicken. You need to do cornstarch mixing immediately because the liquid needs to be hot in order for it to thicken properly. If it's still not thickening after 1 tbsp., you can add a little more.
  7. Sprinkle rosemary on top before serving.
  8. Serve with rice or potatoes or vegetables.
If you like things more tangy, I would add 2 tbsp. of rice wine vinegar instead of 1 tbsp. I did this the second time I made this and it was a nice tangy kick with the sweetness that subdued it. If you like things on the sweeter side, keep it to 1 tbsp. of rice wine vinegar. Regardless, taste the sauce after mixing it together and adjust to taste. :)

Source: I Love Trader Joe's Cookbook


  1. Rene
    11/10/2014 at 12:48 pm

    I was going to make this but I do not have rice wine vinegar. Would a red wine vinegar work or would it dramatically change the flavor?

    • Julie
      11/10/2014 at 1:56 pm

      Red wine vinegar might change up the flavor a bit, you can try with regular vinegar if you have it.

      • Liz
        12/23/2014 at 6:28 pm

        i have red wine vinegar or white vinegar? Would one of those work?

      • Julie
        12/24/2014 at 7:28 am

        Hi Liz! I’ve addressed this in numerous other comments before yours and the answer is yes :)

  2. KIM
    11/10/2014 at 5:19 pm


  3. Beth Shelton
    11/10/2014 at 9:44 pm

    OMG, this was the best chicken recipe EVER! I was quite apprehensive about spending the $$ on the Pure Maple Syrup but was willing to adhere to your advice of no substitutions. And, I am so glad you were very adamant about the NO SUBS! I honestly thought my boyfriend would eat around or scrape off the sauce, but he was finished with his 1st helping before I even sat down to eat, and was already asking for 2nd’s! I ate some leftovers tonight (because I thankfully doubled the recipe), and it was just as good if not better. Oh, and I did not add any cornstarch to the sauce after cooking, it was just right without it. Thanks again for a great recipe! I have subscribed to your blog (my first ever, by the way) because of this awesome recipe.

    • Julie
      11/12/2014 at 8:26 am

      Yay! So happy to hear!

  4. Beth
    11/11/2014 at 10:40 am

    Can this be made ahead and reheated? And if so, will it work to make the cornstarch sauce early and then reheat?

    • Julie
      11/12/2014 at 8:27 am

      Yup, it can be made ahead of time and reheated. I wouldn’t add the cornstarch to the sauce until the end.

  5. JoAnne Hunt
    11/11/2014 at 12:47 pm

    Going to try this tonight…I think why some people are having problems with the temp and time is because they have a convection oven. My oven can be used either way so I’m going to go with the original recipe to start with to make sure family likes the dish, then will adjust time for convection oven. Will post again after dinner.

  6. Kate
    11/11/2014 at 10:06 pm

    Great recipe! Making it for the second time tonight. I used the large chicken thighs (with leg attached) to make a big meaty portion for my hungry husband. I chopped the rosemary and baked it right in with the sauce both times and love it! To make sure the drippings transformed into a gravy smoothly I whisked the TBS of cornstarch with a TBS of water for a quick little slurry. Very delicious! This will probably make itself into the dinner rotation.

  7. Deb Floyd
    11/12/2014 at 6:41 pm

    Thank you so much for this recipe! It is delicious! And I love the disclaimers. Good for you!

  8. Chris Bruno
    11/14/2014 at 11:07 am

    love your disclaimer section answered all my questions!

    • Julie
      11/14/2014 at 5:35 pm

      I’m glad!

  9. shelley
    11/14/2014 at 10:26 pm

    wondering how this would turn out in the crock pot??

    • Julie
      11/16/2014 at 8:52 am

      Not sure. There have been some people in the previous comments that said they’ve done it in the crockpot with success, though! I just haven’t tried it myself.

    • Ellen
      11/16/2014 at 7:02 pm

      Oh, yes m’am! In fact, we’re having Crockpot Holy Yum chicken for dinner tonight!

    • Jennifer Karahalis
      01/09/2015 at 1:39 pm

      I only make this in the crockpot and it is truly one of my favorite dishes (and my families). I am so happy to have come across this recipe! The sauce is fantastic :-)

      • Linda
        01/13/2015 at 11:47 am

        Jennifer, do you make any adjustments when using your slow cooker or do you follow the recipe as is?

  10. Lauren
    11/25/2014 at 6:56 pm

    Julie, thank you for this fabulous recipe! My hubby is a huge fan and I am currently making it for the second time after stumbling on your blog :) so yummy and easy. Love!

    • Julie
      11/26/2014 at 3:31 pm

      I’m so glad you’re enjoying it!

  11. Els
    11/28/2014 at 9:41 am

    Love your recipes. Thanks!

  12. 12/02/2014 at 1:46 am

    haha! I love your disclaimer!
    I don’t like mustard, but my family does so I will be putting this on the list, but I am glad to know that it will be very mustardy in taste, so I can prepare myself

  13. Karen
    12/02/2014 at 4:37 pm

    Made this recipe tonight for the first time and we all loved it! Incredibly easy and flavorful. Thank you!!!

    • Julie
      12/03/2014 at 9:22 am

      Yay! :)

  14. Sue
    12/07/2014 at 9:34 pm

    I followed every detail until I realized I used all the Rice Wine Vinegar…. I DID substitute Balsamic (2 Tbsp)….. (I love balsamic vinegar). And the dish was A.MAZ.ING!!!!! I served with a simple rice pilaf and broccoli rabe (IMO a perfect compliment to a “sweet dish”…..

    Thank you!!! Will become a “go to” recipe!!!

    • Julie
      12/09/2014 at 11:18 am

      I’m glad it still worked out for you!! :)

  15. Rachel
    12/11/2014 at 5:24 pm

    I just made this for dinner and it was superb! I even went against one of your disclaimers and subbed the fake maple syrup

    • Julie
      12/12/2014 at 8:01 am

      I’m glad it worked out!

  16. Cori
    12/14/2014 at 10:41 pm

    I’m trying this recipe tonight just because your comments are so darn funny! Thanks for sharing.

    • Julie
      12/15/2014 at 7:53 am

      Thank you :) enjoy!

  17. Claire
    12/18/2014 at 10:44 am

    I would like to serve this for six people. Can I double this recipe.

    • Julie
      12/22/2014 at 7:52 am

      Yes, you can!

  18. Steph
    12/18/2014 at 12:09 pm

    I made this last night. OH MY GOSH! I wanted to lick my plate. Was delish even with my accidental 2tbs of rice vinegar instead of one. Will make this over and over and over

    • Julie
      12/22/2014 at 7:52 am

      Haha, we licked our plates too :) glad you enjoyed!

  19. Lauren
    12/29/2014 at 2:05 pm

    Hi, this looks amazing and I’m excited to make this tonight! Do you think it would be ok to substitute honey for the pure maple syrup? I don’t have any maple syrup in my pantry but I just bought a 5 pound vat of honey from Costco and would like to use some of it up lol. What do you think? Thanks in advance!

    • Julie
      12/29/2014 at 4:11 pm

      I don’t think it’d be the flavor that the dish is supposed to be but I can’t see why it wouldn’t work out so I think it’s worth it to give it a shot!

      • Lauren
        12/29/2014 at 5:41 pm

        Right, definitely different flavor profiles. Kissing from the fanfare this recipe got I’m sure I’ll be making it more than once so I’ll have to try it both ways and follow up with the results. Thanks for your reply!

  20. Lauren
    12/29/2014 at 5:42 pm

    ***Judging, not kissing! Darn auto-correct :)

    • Julie
      12/29/2014 at 6:58 pm

      Haha, sure thing! I hope you enjoy both ways! :)

  21. Wes
    12/30/2014 at 7:28 am

    Your recipe is delicious! I used boneless chicken breasts and shortened the cooking time. Thank-you for posting this recipe!

  22. Ramone Smith
    01/01/2015 at 5:13 pm

    Great recipe! Love it and will cook it over and over! Thanks Julie!

  23. Joan
    01/01/2015 at 10:38 pm

    I’ve made this chicken twice and decided that I just HAD to leave a post to tell you how remarkable it is! Words cannot even describe but I will try. The flavors pack a punch and it just melts in your mouth in the most wondrous way. It’s very sweet yet tangy. The few flavors carry a lot of weight. And you can balance them out any way you want! I like mine with extra rice vinegar for the zing and black pepper for the spice. Thank you, thank you for this recipe!! :)

  24. Melissa
    01/04/2015 at 5:25 pm

    This is the second time this week I’ve made this! Hubs says”Put this on the yum list!” He and my boys want this every week they say! I agree. Delicious! No changes, no substitutions! Yum!

  25. Caroline
    01/06/2015 at 6:54 pm

    Thanks! it is so good…especialy with our very own maple sirup :). I had a great succes tonight…and my 13 years son did the final step, the sauce! He think he’s a chef now!

    • Julie
      01/08/2015 at 8:37 am

      Haha, aw so cute!

  26. linda gazzard
    01/07/2015 at 9:59 am

    Is corn starch the same as cornflour?

    • Julie
      01/08/2015 at 8:38 am

      Yes, it’s the same.

  27. Cortney
    01/07/2015 at 7:39 pm

    This was great! I made it with honey instead of maple syrup and it was amazing. Can’t wait to try it’s original recipe. Thanks for posting!!!!

  28. 01/10/2015 at 2:57 am

    The flavor of this was wonderful overall…

    When I was mixing the sauce, I was a little concerned that the heat of the Dijon would be too much for me, but that wasn’t the case after it baked, I’m happy to say.

    BUT! Both my husband and I agreed – it was WAY too sweet, and seemed to become more so as we ate. “A nice hint of sweetness” is a major understatement.

    Yes, I sprang for the absolutely real pure maple syrup (thank you for introducing me to that…I’d never had anything but the fake stuff). I also used Grey Poupon for my Dijon mustard.

    I followed all the other directions to a T, except that I used two boneless, skinless chicken breasts halved (long ways) to make 4 pieces, and put them into a (double foil lined as directed) 2.5 quart Pyrex baking dish. (The chicken filled the pan perfectly, just barely touching edges, so I figured I’d be good.) Worked out great!

    I was a little worried that I was going to dry out the chicken breast, so I cooked it at 10 minute intervals at 450 degrees, and chicken was cooked perfectly at 21 minutes.

    I plated the chicken onto a pre-warmed platter and immediately covered it in foil to keep warm while I finished the sauce.

    The sauce came out beautifully with 1 tbsp. cornstarch & a quick whisk.

    I also chose to use the 2 tablespoons of rice vinegar in the sauce to get that extra “tang” as suggested…it was good, but didn’t really help cut the sweet.

    If you like sweet, then you will love this, because the flavor itself really is awesome. I think I might try cutting the maple syrup addition in half, and doubling up on the fresh rosemary.

    Husband declared it good, but not “top ten” material, and I agree.

  29. AJ
    01/10/2015 at 5:26 am

    Okay, the green things in the sauce in the photos….they look like french style green beans….if that’s the rosemary, how would you measure TBSps of those long, leafy things? They wouldn’t fit on a measuring spoon.

    • Julie
      01/11/2015 at 9:30 am

      Hi AJ, you just estimate it – just pull a bunch of sprigs off, chop them, and sprinkle on top.

  30. Madds
    01/12/2015 at 9:50 pm

    I am oh, so jealous of everyone!! I made this tonight & had high hopes for it to become a weekly favorite (I love Dijon mustard). I whisk the conrstrach right away (as directed) but it wasn’t thickening, so I added a little more but it still did not work. When I tried it, it tasted like cornstarch.

    I also read your disclaimer, but you didn’t mentioned i could sub tights with boneless breats.=(

  31. Gwen
    01/15/2015 at 10:38 am

    I made this last night (completely as directed except I doubled the recipe) and the chicken was raw in the middle. I was mortified since we had company for dinner….if you double a recipe – do you have to cook it longer?

    • Julie
      01/15/2015 at 8:04 pm

      Hi Gwen, yes, you do need to cook it longer. If you also pile chicken on top of each other, you’d have to make sure to switch them from bottom to top or use a larger pan so they aren’t crowded.

  32. Jeanette F
    01/15/2015 at 11:36 am

    I have made this chicken many times already. My kids and my husband absolutely LOVE it. My kitchen smells fabulous when it is in the oven. Thank you!

  33. Kara
    01/15/2015 at 7:55 pm

    I made this today with a few adjustments… I used skinless frozen chicken breasts and put it in the crock pot with the sauce! Pour sauce over chicken, and cook on low for 3-4 hours. So delicious and the house smells great!

  34. Lauren
    01/16/2015 at 9:09 pm

    Just following up on a previous comment I left asking if honey could be substituted for the pure maple syrup because it’s what I had on hand. Made this recipe twice so far with the following results:

    First time: Got the pure maple syrup and followed the recipe to a tee — came out great.

    Second time: Used honey instead of maple syrup and halved the dijon mustard — came out even better! Honey + mustard = honey mustard :)

    Thanks again for the recipe

    • Julie
      01/17/2015 at 8:19 am

      Awesome!! Thanks for letting everyone know! :)

  35. 01/17/2015 at 10:53 am

    I haven’t tried the recipe but I had to tell you that I love your disclaimer. That is a great idea and it made me giggle. You are very thorough on your directions. I have been cooking for 45 years and I don’t see many recipes that are that clear cut. Good job. I will be trying it soon.

  36. Roni
    01/18/2015 at 2:41 pm

    I made this last night and it was delicious! Since it was just my husband and I we had a few pieces of chicken left over. So for lunch today we used the leftovers in wraps and used the sauce in them as well. Very good. I will make this recipe again!

  37. Betty819
    01/19/2015 at 9:56 am

    I’d like to try this with chicken tenderloins. I would think I’d have to reduce the cooking time and temperature for them? Also has anybody tried this recipe using either Light syrup or Sugar Free Syrup? DH is a diabetic and we use SF syrup around here. I’d like to try it sometimes, looks yummy in the photo.

    • Julie
      01/19/2015 at 7:22 pm

      Yes, I’d reduce the cooking time a bit to maybe 25 minutes, check up on it. Temperature can stay the same.

  38. Laura
    01/19/2015 at 2:40 pm

    Will make this! Only I need the directions? Just have the ingredients. Could you email direction? Thanks!

    • Julie
      01/19/2015 at 7:19 pm

      Hi Laura, not sure what you’re talking about? The directions are on the recipe post above…

  39. mary
    01/19/2015 at 4:40 pm

    the sauce was totally burned on the bottom of my pan after 30 min. What did I do wrong?

    • Julie
      01/19/2015 at 7:20 pm

      Hi Mary, lots of things could’ve gone wrong. Could you please elaborate what you did? Like, what size pan did you use, did you use foil, did you place the pan on the middle rack in the oven, etc..would love to troubleshoot with you but it’s really hard when you give me nothing to base what you did wrong off of.

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