za’atar chicken

5 from 1 review


  • 4 large or 6 small whole chicken legs* (1300-1500g)
  • 2 teaspoons salt (12g) (or to taste)
  • 1/2 cup za’atar (60g)
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil (50g)
  • 2 or 3 lemons, cut in half


  1. Evenly salt the chicken thighs, and let them sit for 20-30 minutes to dry-brine (this will help them stay moist).
  2. Preheat the oven to 450°F (230°C).
  3. Combine the za’atar and olive oil.
  4. Place the chicken on a parchment-lined rimmed sheet pan, and coat evenly with the za’atar mixture. Really cake the mixture on in a thick layer, rather than brushing it on. If some falls to the side while you’re coating the chicken, scoop it back up and pat it on.
  5. Roast for about 20-30 minutes (shorter for smaller ones, longer for larger ones). The chicken is done once it’s seared on the outside, and 170°F (77°C) at its center. Let it rest for just a couple minutes before serving, baste with the juices, and squeeze the lemons on top before serving.


* If you prefer white meat, feel free to use chicken cutlets (whole breasts are more likely to dry out than cutlets). They will probably take less time to roast, so keep an eye on them (and don’t expect them to get as golden brown and crispy as legs, but do expect them to be delicious!).