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Honey Soy Chicken

So you know my chicken dish, Holy Yum Chicken? Well, this is holy yum chicken’s Asian sister.

Equally easy to make and equally delicious.

Again, FOLLOW THE INSTRUCTIONS. I won’t mislead you. I won’t lie to you about something. My results are the pictures above! So clearly, it worked with the recipe below!

It’s as every bit delicious as holy yum chicken, just obviously different flavor profiles. Jason prefers this Asian version but I prefer the mustardy version that the holy yum chicken offers. Definitely all taste preference but honestly, I could never say no to garlic, honey, ginger, soy sauce, and sesame oil. Your house will smell ridiculously good.

Sorry I’m not writing a whole lot today..just got a TON of things going on at the moment. You would think things would calm down after the wedding, huh? Nope. Especially since I’ll be out of town again next week…got a lot of loose ends to tie up! *sigh* it never ends here!

Enjoy the recipe :) I bet you already have all ingredients in your pantry!


  1. 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 above because I have tested it myself and it works the way it’s written above.
  2. 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.
  3. Yes, it really is cooked at 425 degrees. I’m not going to lie to you. Yes, it’s high but it also works (proof: above pictures!)
  4. If you’re using (thin cut) chicken breasts, reduce cooking time to 10-15 minutes or you’ll end up with dry chicken.
Honey Soy Chicken
Recipe type: Main Entree, Chicken
Cuisine: Asian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
  • 1½ - 2 pounds boneless, skinless, chicken thighs (most of the fat cut and discarded)
  • 3 tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 3 tbsp. low sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tsp. sesame oil
  • 5 tbsp. honey
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • ½ tsp. ground ginger
  • ½ tsp. ground black pepper
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a 8x8" oven-proof pan with 2 layers of tin foil. I HIGHLY advise using foil in this dish because soy sauce & honey are STICKY and tend to adhere heavily on glass dishes when cooked at high temperatures. Unless you want to be scrubbing forever, use the foil!
  2. In small bowl, whisk together vegetable oil, soy sauce, sesame oil, honey, garlic, ground ginger, 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, checking occasionally to make sure the tops are not browning too quickly. If they are, cover with foil and resume baking until chicken is done.
  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, pour sauce over top of chicken. It's delicious so you want all the sauce you can get!
  7. Serve with white or brown rice and some steamed veggies.
Source: adapted from She Wears Many Hats


  1. Rhonda
    02/01/2014 at 9:34 pm

    I just made this tonight and we ALL loved it. My picky husband and children loved every bite and even ate seconds. I am so glad you shared. Thank you so much! By the way, I followed your directions to the “T” and it turned out great!!! Mine even looked like yours. :)

    • 02/03/2014 at 11:50 am

      Yay! Great to hear, Rhonda!

  2. rachel
    02/04/2014 at 12:45 pm

    Hey Julie!!! I LOVE your blog and all your recipe posts- thank you so much for doing what you are doing! I tried this recipe and fell in love with it. I am going to a “make-a-freezer-dinner” party and I was wondering if you think your recipe would still be good/taste the same if we mixed the sauce and the chicken together and then froze it, defrosted it and then make it according to your directions.

    • 02/05/2014 at 8:24 am

      Hi Rachel! I’m so glad you love my blog :) thank you! I don’t see why it would change anything if you froze it prepared and then made it according to my directions. I haven’t tried this but I honestly don’t see a problem. Enjoy!

    • erica
      11/07/2014 at 11:00 am

      I’ve made this and froze it. Worked Great! Except I put mine in the crock pot. I’ve also made it fresh then cooked in thr oven. Both great.

  3. Judy
    03/23/2014 at 12:50 pm

    It won’t get too dry?
    Not rice for me thank you. Mashed potatoes with that lovely sauce. Yum.

    • Julie
      03/24/2014 at 8:12 am

      It shouldn’t get too dry as this is made with chicken thighs/dark meat as opposed to chicken breasts/white meat.

      • Judy
        03/24/2014 at 8:18 am

        Thank you.
        I didn’t think of that. SMH

  4. 03/24/2014 at 12:24 am

    I made your honey soy chicken recipe tonight and was dissapointed in it.I followed all your directions.The sauce was just ok.It should of been thicker.It wasnt as tastey as I thought it would be.

    • Julie
      03/24/2014 at 8:04 am

      Hi Linda, sorry to hear; that’s unfortunate you didn’t like it. Mostly everyone else that’s made it has had positive reviews, as you can see in the comments above, and I know of readers who have this on their weekly menu. Everyone’s taste preference is different so I completely understand this not being a favorite dish for you. If you wanted a thicker sauce, you could’ve added some arrowroot powder or cornstarch to thicken it up.

  5. Amanda
    03/24/2014 at 7:26 pm

    I had intended on making Holy Yum, but I left my bag with the maple syrup in it at the store…oops. I doubled the recipe with chicken breasts and there is no left overs after 3 hungry boys and a husband devoured it. Might have to back off on my time a little more with the chicken breasts as they were just starting to get dry. Brown rice and broccoli as a side and I had happy campers. My only complaint is that there are no leftovers for my lunch tomorrow.

    • Julie
      03/25/2014 at 8:32 am

      So glad you enjoyed this! I hope you get a chance to make holy yum soon :)

  6. Deb
    03/26/2014 at 11:17 am

    Love this recipe. And I think I will try it on pork tenderloin. Speaking of pork tenderloin. I wonder if you have any ideas or could help me with a recipe I forgot ! YIKES I know it called for balsamic vinegar, brown sugar and I used mango preserves. (Instead of apricot). But it was missing something, because it was too wet and runny. When I first had the correct recipe, the balsamic, preserves and sugar got real thick and glazey like….but something is missing …there are more than 3 ingredients. HELP.

    • Julie
      03/26/2014 at 8:22 pm

      Hi Deb, I don’t know why that’s happening to you, as that particular recipe is not on my site. Some suggestions: have you tried adding cornstarch or arrowroot powder as a thickening agent? That might work. Or you might want to reduce the sauce for a bit to get it to thicken up after cooking.

      • Deb
        03/27/2014 at 4:46 pm

        Thanks for getting back to me. I don’t remember where I got the recipe lol But, I will take your advice, and try thickening it with cornstarch. Thanks again Happy Cooking !!

  7. Matt
    04/02/2014 at 8:14 pm

    Got this recipe yesterday and said it looked so good that I was going to try it right away. Well, I did and the wife and I both just loved it. I did find out one thing and that is, I’m going to double the sauce, it was so good. Thank you very much for the great recipe. OH, and by the way I will also be trying Holy Yum Chicken next.

    • Julie
      04/03/2014 at 8:21 am

      I’m so glad to hear this, Matt!! Thanks for letting me know! I hope you enjoy the holy yum chicken :)

  8. Sara
    04/03/2014 at 8:36 pm

    This chicken is sooooooooo good! I have made it twice in a weeks time! The first time I made it with chicken breast because that’s what I had on hand, it was dry but the flavor was great! So I had to make out again with the chicken thighs! Soooooo good! Thank you!

    • Julie
      04/04/2014 at 7:51 am

      I’m so happy to hear this, Sara! I’m thrilled you have enjoyed it so much!

  9. A Brown
    04/07/2014 at 8:36 pm

    This was SUPER tasty…. It’s my first time making it! I just ate fingers crossed bc idk if my bf will love it as much as I did.

    • Julie
      04/08/2014 at 8:35 am

      So glad to hear you enjoyed it. If your bf doesn’t like it, more for you :)

  10. Nilda
    04/19/2014 at 2:43 pm

    How about chicken drums and wings? Will they dry out cause I want to make it for my co-workers, which there is a lot of, so thighs are not pratictal for me.

    • Julie
      04/21/2014 at 5:54 am

      Hi Nilda, I’m sure drums and wings would work just fine!

  11. Meimei
    04/27/2014 at 6:52 am

    This was SUPERB! I’m a student living with my brother and we are always cracking our heads for ideas for dinner! I almost gave up on my sudden “baked honey chicken” idea until I came across your blog. The chicken turned out so tender and juicy that both of us had a very satisfying dinner thanks to your recipe! I hope you continue to post easy but delish recipes for college kids like us! :)

    • Julie
      04/28/2014 at 11:12 am

      So glad you enjoyed this, Meimei! Definitely check out the blog for more recipes like this – there are a ton that’s great for a college student!

  12. Farida
    04/30/2014 at 6:15 am

    Can i use chicken breasts instead of thighs?

    • Chelvis
      12/14/2014 at 8:31 pm

      really would like to use chicken breasts…have you ever tried?

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

        Please read the disclaimer above where it addresses the use of chicken breasts in this dish.

  13. 04/30/2014 at 8:35 pm

    This is the holy grail of recipes- fast, easy, cheap,& DELICIOUS. Top 3 favorite pins of all time! Can’t wait to see what else you have cooking on here. Thank you so much!!

    • Julie
      05/01/2014 at 11:33 pm

      Thanks, Christina! So glad you enjoyed :)

  14. Megann
    05/11/2014 at 12:09 am

    This was absolutely delicious!! Big thanks for sharing this recipe!! <33

    • Julie
      05/12/2014 at 9:15 am

      I’m glad you enjoyed! :)

  15. DJCooks
    05/12/2014 at 8:52 pm

    I love your cooking blog! I just made this and it is DELISH! I am always looking for a new way to cook chicken. I only made one change. I doubled the recipe and baked the chicken in half. I took the second half and added corn starch and cooked on the stove top. This produced a slightly thicker sauce to add over the chicken on the plate. I think I might also try cooking tofu in this sauce as well. Thank you for your wonderful blog. I always look forward to your posts!

    • Julie
      05/13/2014 at 8:24 am

      So glad you enjoyed this DJ! I’m so happy that you enjoy my blog :)

  16. Ellie
    05/18/2014 at 11:05 pm

    So if I wanted to cook this for five people would I just double the proportions and cook it longer?

    • Julie
      05/19/2014 at 8:14 am

      I would double the proportions but I would still cook it for 40 minutes and check on it at 40 minutes. Doubling the cook time to 80 minutes seems awfully long and I’d hate for you to dry out your chicken! Enjoy!

  17. 06/04/2014 at 5:21 pm

    Oh. My. Gosh.
    I made this tonight for dinner, and it may just be my new favorite recipe! I did do one thing slightly different (OH NO!), and added an extra tablespoon each of honey and soy sauce, and an extra teaspoon of oil, just because the amount of chicken I had was a little much, but it ended up perfect! I made some fried rice to go with it, and my boyfriend and I were both practically licking our plates clean! Thank you so much!

    • Julie
      06/05/2014 at 9:53 am

      Sound delicious! Glad you and your boyfriend enjoyed it so much!

  18. Katie
    06/10/2014 at 6:25 pm

    Made this tonight with breast meat and a little brown sugar because I didn’t have enough honey. Came out awesome! Just a little dry, next time chicken thighs. Thanks for the recipe!

  19. Sarah
    06/30/2014 at 8:07 pm

    I used to make a similar dish. It had pineapple slices that you placed under the chicken and then broiled the chicken/pineapple. The pineapple was a nice complement to the other ingredients. Just thought I’d share. :)

  20. Kimberly
    07/03/2014 at 9:20 am

    I am so excited to try this, your holy yum chicken is amazing. I am going to try it on the stove top since I make the holy yum chicken like that every time. I hope it works ok with breast meat since I dont have any thighs :( . We love everything we have tried from your blog you rock!!

    • Julie
      07/03/2014 at 8:22 pm

      Hope you enjoy this as much as holy yum! I’m sure it’ll turn out ok :)

  21. sophie
    07/09/2014 at 5:22 pm

    hey! i made this last night, with skinless chicken breast, bone included. i cooked it for 40 or so minutes at 425, however, although tender, i didn’t see the sauce congeal as much as i expected…it was all just liquid at the bottom of the pan. i did cover my chicken loosely for about 30 minutes of the cooking time. how can i get the sauce sticking to the chicken? appreciate it!

    • Julie
      07/10/2014 at 8:31 am

      The sauce it actually supposed to be more of a liquid-base sauce, as you can see in the photos. If you want it to stick to the chicken and congeal more, you could add a bit of flour/cornstarch/arrowroot powder to thicken it.

      • Mackenzie
        12/09/2014 at 6:55 pm

        Would you reccomend adding cornstarch during cooking or after?

      • Julie
        12/10/2014 at 12:55 pm


  22. Lisa
    07/11/2014 at 7:18 pm

    in the oven right now, smells divine! Thanks for sharing!

  23. Gloria
    07/13/2014 at 8:52 pm

    Just did this for my family, only that I used thighs with the bones, and they were amazed!! The chicken was tender and moist, full of flavor and it’s really easy to make. I will do the other yum version. Seriously, this is an outstanding recipe.

  24. Rebecca
    07/16/2014 at 3:13 pm

    Can the sauce be put in a container and refrigerated if I don’t want to use it all at once? This recipe looks delicious but I live on my own and would be cooking for one, so I definitely don’t need to cook 1 1/2 pounds of chicken. However, I’m not very good at cutting down recipes and always seem to get the math wrong. So could I just make the normal sized batch of sauce, use as much as I need and put the rest in the fridge for the next time I want to make it? I’m just asking because I’m not sure if the ingredients in the sauce would separate if it sat in a container for a little bit. Thanks!

    • Julie
      07/17/2014 at 9:19 am

      Yup, the sauce can be put in a container. You’ll just have to whisk it up when it gets to room temperature to get everything all nice and incorporated again!

  25. 07/22/2014 at 10:57 pm

    I made this last night and it was AMAZING! I accidentally forgot the ginger and pepper but it was still delicious. I can’t wait to make it next time I have friends over. So easy!

    • Julie
      07/23/2014 at 12:47 pm

      So glad you enjoyed this, Sara!

  26. kelly
    08/16/2014 at 7:12 pm

    Omg!! It is soooo good. My daughter is two and any meat is a struggle to get her to eat. She LOVED it.. she was eating mine!

  27. Rachel Toska
    08/17/2014 at 1:08 pm

    Love that you put the detailed instructions in the recipe..Sounds delish, and I cannot wait to try out! Poo on the Negative-Nellies! You go girl!

    • Julie
      08/18/2014 at 7:40 am

      Hope you enjoy it!

  28. Joe
    08/21/2014 at 10:14 am

    Oh my, all of your recipes look wonderful and I can’t wait to make all of them.

    • Julie
      08/21/2014 at 2:19 pm

      Thanks Joe! Hope you enjoy them!

  29. Amy b
    09/14/2014 at 9:15 pm

    Do you think chicken legs would work?

    • Julie
      09/15/2014 at 8:08 am

      Probably would!

  30. Tara
    10/03/2014 at 7:57 pm

    I made this tonight very yummy…. I did omit the ginger since I don’t like it but I don’t think it would have made a difference. (For me at least) also when she says use two foil sheets use them… I did and it still leaked out somehow and I was scrubbing FOREVER!!! Next time I will layer it different. I did get a little scared as my chicken was talking awhile to brown but in the end it was yummy and delish!!! Can’t wait for the leftovers tomorrow… Thanks for the great recipe!

    • Julie
      10/05/2014 at 2:08 pm

      Glad you enjoyed this!

  31. Meghan
    10/08/2014 at 12:00 pm

    This came out great! I followed the recipe as posted and added some fresh scallions when I served it for some brightness. But this is a keeper! My picky son even asked for more :)

  32. natlia
    10/22/2014 at 7:06 pm

    I made this today and it was amazing! definitely a keeper! thank you so much for sharing :)

    • Julie
      10/22/2014 at 8:13 pm

      I’m so glad you enjoyed it!

  33. Lizzie
    10/24/2014 at 12:26 pm

    Making this for the second time tonight! It’s so easy and affordable for a student budget, thanks so much!

    • Julie
      10/26/2014 at 2:54 pm

      Love that you’re enjoying it so much!

  34. Veggie
    10/29/2014 at 5:18 pm

    Just wondering if this recipe would work with vegan chicken legs?

    • Julie
      10/30/2014 at 7:39 am

      I’ve never used chicken legs in this recipe before – I’d imagine you’d have to cut down the cooking time a bit.

  35. Jessica
    10/30/2014 at 8:44 am

    I only have bone -IN chicken thighs. you think that will be ok?

    • Julie
      10/31/2014 at 7:10 am

      Yes, it should work just the same.

  36. danielle
    12/06/2014 at 8:58 pm

    hi Julie :)
    I’m going to make this next week for my holiday party! Was wondering, I wanted to make this in advance before my friends arrive. Is there anyway that i can maybe re-heat this:? Or perhaps put it back in the oven at 200 before my friends arrive?
    Thank you so much! :)

    • Julie
      12/08/2014 at 10:34 am

      Hi Danielle, you could make it early and maybe half an hour before they arrive put it in the oven at 200 degrees to warm it up.

  37. Danielle
    12/08/2014 at 3:05 pm

    Sounds great! Thank you!

  38. Nicole
    12/17/2014 at 2:56 pm

    Hi Julie! Is there a version of this recipe that will work in a crockpot?

    • Julie
      12/18/2014 at 12:50 pm

      Hi Nicole! No, unfortunately, I do not :(

  39. Lauren
    01/04/2015 at 6:16 am

    Have had this recipe several times now. Always DELICIOUS!! Also in the oven right now. Simply amazing Julie! Look forward to trying your other recipes .. :-D

    • Julie
      01/04/2015 at 6:20 pm

      Awesome! Hope you enjoy the other recipes :)

  40. Ashlynn
    01/04/2015 at 3:46 pm

    I am looking forward to adding this to the menu this week! I want to add veggies to go with it (broccoli, peppers)should i put it in with the chicken towards the end or just do them separately? I don’t want to mess up this tasty looking dish. Thanks

    • Julie
      01/04/2015 at 6:21 pm

      I would cook the vegetables separately then toss them in the extra sauce that you have after you’ve removed the chicken from the pan.

  41. Maggie
    01/07/2015 at 12:30 am

    This was great and every member of the family ate! A small miracle. However, I wanted to point out something interesting. I had 3 1/2 pounds of chicken so I made 1 1/2 pounds in a metal 8×8 and 2 lbs in a glass 8×8. The smaller portion in the metal pan came out like your picture, the larger portion didn’t have as nice a color, not sure if it was because there was too much chicken in the pan or if it was the type of pan. They both tasted delicious! Thanks!

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

      I think it’s because there was too much chicken in the pan so it was crowded and didn’t get as much color. Glad you enjoyed it either way!

  42. Deanna
    01/07/2015 at 3:30 pm

    I made this today for lunch and it was fantastic! Granted, I didn’t have any sesame oil, so I substituted with more vegetable oil. Still it was amazing and I couldn’t believe how easy it was to make! Thanks for sharing it!

  43. Abigail
    01/11/2015 at 7:48 pm

    Can this be done in a dutch oven?

    • Julie
      01/12/2015 at 7:37 am

      I’ve never tried it that way so I can’t give advice on that, sorry! :( it probably would work out, though, honestly.

  44. JEAN
    01/18/2015 at 3:08 pm

    Your disclaimers are hilarious and exactly what i would say! I notice that people still posted “changes” thought lol

    I am trying it YOUR WAY this week and cannot wait. It looks absolutely scrumptious!!

  45. Hattie Blackmon
    01/20/2015 at 6:50 pm

    This recipe is very delicious. I followed the directions and got fantastic results.

    • Julie
      01/21/2015 at 7:49 am

      Great to hear!!

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