How to cook chicken leg quarters on the stovetop?

In this article, we will answer the question “How to cook chicken leg quarters on the stovetop?”, and what are the tips to make the perfect chicken quarters?

How to cook chicken leg quarters on the stovetop?

Chicken leg quarters are the juiciest and the most flavorful parts of the chicken and it is too bad if you do not have the recipe and the tips you need to cook the perfectly tender and juicy chicken leg quarters. This article will give you a complete guideline on how you can make chef style chicken leg quarters at home and that too on the stovetop.

What are chicken leg quarters?

A chicken quarter includes the chicken leg and thighs. In other words, a chicken leg quarter is made up of the drumstick and the thigh. Chicken leg quarters are usually cheap as they require one less cut and are dark meat. Moreover, there is still a jury out for debate on whether or not dark meat is unhealthy.

What are the tips to make the perfect chicken quarters?

  • Buy Bone-in, skin-on chicken because the skin has fat that adds a lot of flavor to the end-product, and also the bone marrow in the bones penetrates into the chicken quarter meat.
  • In addition to providing flavor, skin acts as a barrier between meat and direct heat. This serves to prevent the chicken from drying out and becoming rubbery and chewy.
  • Prefer using a cast-iron pan instead of a non-stick or steel pan. It is because cast iron distributes and retains heat very well. This allows the chicken to get crispy from the surface while locking the moisture inside. Moreover, it is oven-safe.

How to prepare chicken leg quarters?

  1. Before cooking, pat dry your chicken using a paper towel. The drier the surface, the crispier will it be, once cooked.
  2. After drying, season the chicken quarters with celery salt, dried herbs, and smoked paprika, and some olive oil. Massage the seasoning gently into every nook and corner of the chicken leg quarter.
  3. Then using your fingers, carefully separate the skin from the muscles and stuff it with a pat or cubes of butter and lemon slices. The butter bastes the chicken while it cooks making it crispy and more flavorful. The lemon adds a tangy hint and makes the chicken tender while providing it steam. Use unsalted butter, this way you have autonomy over the seasoning.

Recipe to make the juiciest chicken leg quarters

The following method involves cooking the chicken partly in the pan and partly in the oven.


  • Chicken quarters, or thighs (Skin-on, and bone-in)
  • Pure butter
  • Sliced lemons (use sliced lemon for each chicken quarter)
  • Seasoning as per choice (e.g celery salt, pepper, paprika, and dried herbs)
  • Olive oil


  1. First of all, prepare the chicken. Wash and dry it. Rub it with seasoning and stuff it with butter and lemon.
  2. Set the oven to preheat at 450°F for 20 minutes.
  3. Coat the pan evenly with some oil. When the oil is warm, carefully place the chicken quarters on the pan, skin down. On medium-high heat, let the chicken cook and become golden-brown from both sides.
  4. Deglaze the pan with wine and garlic and transfer the pan to the oven. Bake the chicken quarters for 10-25 minutes. The internal temperature of the chicken should be at least 165℉.
  5. When completely baked, remove the chicken from the oven and serve warm.

The other method

To make chicken quarters in the pan skipping baking them in the oven, follow the instructions below:

  1. Wash and dry the chicken. The moisture on the chicken will spatter when it comes in contact with the hot oil. 
  2. After pat drying the oven, rub the chicken with salt, pepper, oil, and herbs of your personal preference.
  3. Heat oil in a 12-inch iron skillet or heavy-bottomed non-stick skillet. Once the oil is hot, place the chicken quarters skin down.
  4. Season the side of the chicken that is facing you and let the bottom side cook under low-medium heat for more or less 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, the skin should naturally release from the pan without being sticky. Also, it should have a golden-brown seared hue.
  5. Now turn the chicken upside down and cook the other side for another 25-30 minutes or until meat close to the bone slices off cleanly.
  6. When done, place the chicken on paper towels. Serve warm and enjoy.


In this article, we answered the question “How to cook chicken leg quarters on the stovetop?”, and what are the tips to make the perfect chicken quarters?


Sana Ameer

Hello, I'm Sana Ameer. I'm a student of Food Science and Technology at UVAS. I like to bake and I aspire to become a Food blogger.

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