This Smoked Paprika Chicken recipe is healthy, tasty and so easy to throw together as a convenient weeknight meal. It takes hardly any time at all to get the spices, salts and breadcrumb mix measured out and into a bowl, then and even less to make a quick and simple egg wash. Dipping the chicken pieces is the fun part as you can see the spice mix come alive as it colours the meat.
This crispy smoked paprika chicken is my version of a healthy spicy KFC Chicken! I love making healthy versions of my favourite takeaways at home, like my Chilli Basil Chicken, Chicken Tikka Masala, and Cashew Nut Chicken, as well as this very delicious Fish Panang Curry!
Smokey paprika chicken thighs is one easy dish. I always have the spices and salts on hand so it’s just a matter of bringing it all together and getting it into the oven.
Garlic Paprika chicken with 3 types of paprika
Getting the perfect baked garlic paprika chicken thighs requires three different types of paprika - and I do recommending using all three, particularly if you enjoy spicy chicken. If you don't like spicy food, omit the hot paprika.
In my opinion, the three paprika spices together with the other spices, garlic salt, onion salt, thyme and oregano work together to give it a rich full smoky flavour, that I have not yet come across in any store bought smokey rub I've bought.
This DIY Smoked paprika rub is so easy to make, and it can be made ahead and kept in an air tight container for weeks at a time.
How To Make The Perfect Smoked Paprika Chicken Rub with Garlic
The spice rub on this smoked paprika chicken creates this bright vibrant and blackened, almost crustiness on the outside of the chicken. This is from combining the spices with breadcrumbs and dipping the chicken in the egg wash prior to the spice coating. This really is an essential part of the recipe as the egg wash helps the spices to stick and the breadcrumbs in the spice mix help to create a firm coating of spicy goodness.
Here's the rub:
- 3 teaspoons Smoked paprika
- ½ teaspoon Hot Paprika
- 1 teaspoon Sweet paprika
- ¾ teaspoon onion salt
- 1 teaspoon Garlic salt
- ½ teaspoon Thyme
- ½ teaspoon Oregano
- 2 tablespoons Breadcrumbs
This will be enough to coat around 500 grams or 1 pound of skinless chicken thigh.
Not only do all the spices on this garlic paprika chicken smell very aromatic, as soon as you lay the chicken in the spices and press into those flavours, you know its going to be good because that smokiness comes through right away.
When it gets cooking in the oven and that aroma starts to fill your house, that’s when mouth’s will begin to water. Crispy paprika chicken baked in the oven is something you simply must try if you love crumbed or breaded chicken in any form.
How to Make Crispy Crunchy Smoked Paprika Chicken Thighs
- Make the smoked paprika chicken rub as per above
- Prepare 2 bowls: one with the egg wash (1 egg + 1 tablespoon of milk + pinch of salt), and the second bowl with the rub
- Dip and press: Dip the chicken thighs into the egg wash, followed by firmly pressing into the spice rub on both sides
- Arrange: Place the chicken thighs into a large baking tray that has been lightly sprayed with oil
- Bake for 180 degrees C /350 degrees F for 30-40 minutes, or a bit longer if your chicken thighs are on the large side
Other oven baked crispy clean eating chicken dinners you might like: Oven Baked Panko Chicken Tenders, Healthy Asian Crispy Lemon Chicken, Baked Paprika Parmesan Chicken, and this Popcorn Chicken Salad.
I have been making these smoked paprika chicken thighs for years and the unique spice combination used in the rub is what sets this apart for any old regular baked spicy chicken.
If you love paprika and garlic, combined with chicken then this is one clean eating chicken dinner you don't want to miss out on.
Smoked Paprika Chicken
- Preheat oven to 180 degrees C/350 degrees F
- Spices: Grab all the spices, salts and breadcrumbs and measure out as per above and mix together in a medium sized bowl or plate
- Egg Wash: Create your egg wash by mixing together the egg and milk. Whisk until combined.
- Chicken: Dip the chicken into the egg wash to coat with the wash.
- Chicken: press outside of thigh into the spice mix smooth side down. Press firmly to get a good coating of spices.
- Chicken: Grab out your best baking tray and spray lightly with canola oil. Add chicken thighs spice side up and bake at 180 degrees C for 30-40 minutes, depending on how big and or thick the chicken thighs are.
- Preheat the oven before putting the chicken in. Putting chicken into a cold oven won’t allow that nice crispy dry coating to develop on the outside.