Drunken Chicken is the drunken master of poultry powerhouses! Fatty, juicy chicken thighs are marinated in beer with an entire head of garlic, infusing every bite with malty goodness and garlicky gusto. Then the chicken is seared golden before being finished in the oven to the perfect tender temperature. With the marinated garlic bulbs served right beside it, Drunken Chicken brings the juiciness, the flavor, and the joy all at once! This is tavern-style food you could only dream about!

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  • 8 chicken thighs and/or legs, bone-in and skin-on
  • 1 (12-ounce) bottle beer
  • 1 bulb garlic, whole and peeled, cloves separated
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon white pepper
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, more or less as needed


Step 1 –Place the chicken in a plastic resealable bag.

Step 2 –In a small bowl, combine the beer, the garlic cloves, the salt, the garlic powder, the paprika, and the white pepper, stirring until the salt is dissolved.

Step 3 –Pour the beer mixture into the bag over the chicken.

Step 4 –Seal the bag and refrigerate it for at least 8 hours and up to overnight.

Step 5 –Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Step 6 –Drain the chicken, reserving the garlic cloves.

Step 7 –Heat a large cast-iron skillet over medium heat.

Step 8 –Add the vegetable oil to the skillet; it should be just enough to coat the bottom. You don’t want the final dish to be too oily.

Step 9 –Add the chicken and brown on both sides, about 2-3 minutes per side.

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Step 10 –Position the chicken thighs skin side up and place the reserved garlic cloves around the chicken.

Step 11 –Place the cast-iron skillet in the oven and bake until the chicken is a deep golden brown and reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees F, about 40-50 minutes.

Step 12 –Remove the chicken from the oven and tent it loosely with aluminum foil to allow it to rest for 15 minutes.

Step 13 –Serve with the garlic cloves.