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Pan Seared Chicken Thighs

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Fabulously flavorful pan seared chicken thighs are a low carb dinner winner any night of the week. Tender and juicy boneless thighs are quickly sautéed in a skillet, then smothered in rich pan gravy. Everything is made in just one pan – so this recipe (and cleanup!) couldn’t be any easier. The pan sauteed chicken thighs with gluten free gravy are ready in under 30 minutes, and perfect to serve with your favorite comfort food sides!

a white platter of chicken thighs with a bowl of green beans and mashed potatoes in the background

The Best Boneless Sauteed Chicken Thighs

While there are many different and terrific methods for preparing chicken, I must admit pan sautéing is my personal favorite. The high heat cooks the meat quickly as it sears in lots of savory flavor and juiciness.

Similar to our Perfect Pan Seared Chicken Breasts, this rustic dish features pieces of boneless and skinless chicken cooked in a skillet and smothered with simple pan gravy. The entire skillet chicken thighs recipe is low carb – and, because there is no breading and the gravy is made with cornstarch, it also happens to be gluten-free!

a stainless steel skillet of pan seared chicken

Here we’ve swapped breasts for thighs, which have more fat per piece but are still a yummy healthy(ish) option when compared to other proteins. And, honestly, the thighs are quite a bit juicier and more tender than breasts…

So I say they’re totally worth it! Additionally, thighs cook slightly faster than chicken breasts, which is great to keep in mind if you are on a tight time budget.

Sometimes, I add sliced mushrooms to give even more oomph and a wonderful earthy flavor to the skillet chicken thighs. However, these are certainly optional! Include them or skip; either way you will have an amazingly tasty pan gravy sauce to spoon over the chicken and side dishes.

Make this easy 30 minute pan seared boneless chicken thighs recipe for dinner tonight with your favorite sides, and let me know what you think in the comments section below. I’m sure your family will love it as much as we do!

Looking for a slow cooker chicken thigh recipe? Make smothered chicken thighs right in the crockpot with this easy chicken recipe.

What Ingredients You Need To Make Skillet Chicken Thighs with Gravy

There is nothing fancy here, just classic wholesome ingredients you know and love!

seasoned chicken thighs with all purpose seasoning and paprika on the right

For the skillet chicken thighs you need:

  • Boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • All-purpose seasoning
  • Olive oil

Ingredients needed to make the pan gravy:

  • Low sodium chicken stock
  • Cornstarch
  • Butter

I also love to include sliced mushrooms when sautéing the thighs. But these are optional!

How to Cook Chicken Thighs in a Pan

I prefer cooking chicken thighs in a pan on the stove because it gives me more control over the process, compared to baking in the oven. Skillet cooking on the stovetop gives that nice golden color to pan fried chicken, without any breading.

a stainless steel skillet with a tong and olive oil bottle in the background.

What to Serve WIth These Chicken Thighs And Gravy

Chicken smothered with gravy often includes some type of starchy potato goodness on the side. My fantastic no-drain Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes recipe is always a big hit! For even more bold flavor try these IP Garlic Mashed Potatoes.

Instant Pot Loaded Potato Casserole is another great option and a real crowd-pleaser. Or for a really cheesy side dish, I highly recommend you try this Hash Brown Casserole that tastes identical to the Cracker Barrel version.

Or keep things low carb and gluten free by serving with rice, cauliflower rice, or mashed cauliflower.

Pair the pan sauteed chicken thighs with a green veggie for a complete and completely satisfying meal! We love to have with steamed green beans or broccoli, or even a simple salad.

And I always like to have a basket of fresh rolls or biscuits on the table to sop up every bit of gravy from the plate!

Preparing The Best pan seared boneless chicken thighs

Pat boneless, skinless chicken thighs dry with paper towels. Brush on 1 tablespoon of olive oil, and sprinkle with all purpose seasoning. Let chicken stand at room temperature for 10 minutes. 

Heat a large stainless-steel skillet over medium-high heat. Add the remaining tablespoon of olive oil to the pan and swirl to coat.

Add the chicken thighs in the skillet, and sear on medium-high for 3 minutes on each side. Do not move the chicken at all between turning. 

searing chicken thighs in a skillet

Cover skillet with a lid, and let thighs cook for 4 minutes.

Check the internal temperature of the chicken with a meat thermometer. Chicken thighs are done when the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F.

Remove chicken from pan and let rest on a plate or platter covered with foil while preparing gravy.

Make a Delicious Pan Gravy Sauce

While the pan seared boneless chicken thighs rest, make the gravy.

Mix cold chicken broth and cornstarch, and stir until smooth. 

Heat the skillet on medium heat, and add the butter. Then stir in the broth and cornstarch mixture.

Bring the gravy to a boil, and deglaze the pan by scraping to loosen browned bits. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 3 minutes or until thickened.

Spoon gravy over pan sauteed chicken thighs before serving.

chicken with pan gravy

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use bone-in chicken thighs in this pan-seared chicken recipe?

Yes, you can substitute the boneless chicken thighs for bone-in chicken thighs. After pan searing and cooking the chicken, be sure to avoid the bone when using an instant-read thermometer to check the chicken temperature.

My chicken always sticks to the pan. What am I doing wrong?

To avoid having chicken stick to your pan, follow these easy tips: Add oil to a warmed pan and swirl it in the pan to evenly coat the skillet. Once you place the chicken in the pan, DO NOT move it until it is time to turn the chicken (usually 3-4 minutes). Once the outside of the chicken sears with the oil, it “releases” the chicken and it will be easy to turn.

Which type of all-purpose seasoning do you recommend for chicken?

I prefer a blend of salt, pepper, garlic, and paprika for seasoning chicken. Chicken can be bland, so the garlic granules help give them a kick of flavor. And the paprika adds a touch of color – as well as flavor – to chicken.

4 chicken pieces in a pan

Easy Recipe For Perfect Pan Sauteed Chicken Thighs

a stainless steel skillet of chicken thighs
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5 from 1 vote

Pan Seared Chicken Thighs

This simple, easy pan seared chicken is perfect for dinner any night of the week. Serve with mashed potatoes or rice and fresh green beans with the pan gravy for an amazing dinner.
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword Chicken, 30 minute meals, chicken dinner, creamy chicken, chicken thighs recipe, pan seared chicken thighs, chicken recipes, easy chicken
Prep Time 4 minutes
Cook Time 16 minutes
resting time 10 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 230kcal

Equipment

  • 11" – 12" skillet with a lid

Ingredients

For the Pan Seared Chicken

  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs (4-6 chicken thighs)
  • 1 teaspoon all-purpose seasoning
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil divided

For the Homemade Chicken Gravy

  • 1/2 cup low sodium chicken stock (keep refrigerated until use)
  • 2 teaspoons corn starch
  • 1 tablespoon butter

optional

  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms

Instructions

Pan-seared chicken thighs

  • Pat boneless, skinless chicken thighs dry with paper towels. Brush on 1 tablespoon of olive oil, and sprinkle with all purpose seasoning. Let chicken stand at room temperature for 10 minutes.
  • Heat a large stainless-steel skillet over medium-high heat. Add the remaining tablespoon of olive oil to the pan and swirl to coat. Place chicken thighs in skillet, and sear on medium-high for 3 minutes on each side. Do not move the chicken at all between turning.
  • Turn heat down to low. If using sliced mushrooms, add them now. Cover skillet with a lid, and let thighs cook for 4 minutes.
  • Check the internal temperature of the chicken with a thermometer. Chicken thighs are done when the internal temperature is 165º. Remove chicken from pan and let rest on a plate or platter covered with foil while preparing gravy.

Make the homemade pan gravy sauce

  • While the chicken rests, make the gravy. Mix cold chicken broth in a measuring cup or small bowl and cornstarch. Stir until smooth.
  • Melt butter in the skillet on low-medium heat. Once it's melted, stir in the broth and cornstarch mixture. Bring the gravy to a boil, and deglaze the pan by scraping to loosen browned bits.
  • Reduce heat to low; simmer for 3 minutes or until thickened. Remove pan from heat. Spoon gravy over chicken thighs before serving.

Notes

Cooked chicken breasts can be kept in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days, and in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Nutrition

Serving: 1breast | Calories: 230kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 22g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 8g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 115mg | Sodium: 716mg | Potassium: 304mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 115IU | Calcium: 13mg | Iron: 1mg

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