Citrus-Chipotle Sheet Pan Chicken Thighs

A little sweet heat does wonderful things for Citrus-Chipotle Sheet Pan Chicken Thighs! A blend of citrus juices (and their zest), the smoky heat of chipotle en adobo, cumin, garlic, and olive oil make a flavorful glaze for your favorite vegetables, and of course, the chicken thighs.

Sheet Pan Citrus-Chipotle Chicken Thighs on 2 black stoneware plates with copper flatware and striped napkin.

👩🏻‍🍳 Tamara Talks – About Sheet Pan Dinners

“Sheet pan dinners” are trending, and with good reason. Roasting tends to be a healthy and flavorful cooking method, and ONE. PAN. Less clean up time means more time to sit and enjoy a nice meal (with or without a glass of wine!).

My biggest concern when creating a “sheet pan dinner” is cooking times. It’s easy to come up with flavors that work with all the ingredients. Cooking times? Not so much. 

Admittedly, chicken breast is not my favorite. I do acknowledge its health benefits, and I use a good amount of it. However, I do not roast it. I see a lot of sheet pan dinners that include chicken breast, and they evoke images of shoe leather. Is that TMI?

Veggies require different cooking times to become tender and flavorful. The challenge, then, lies in cooking your protein and your veggies long enough to get the protein cooked, and not long enough to result in soggy vegetables. I don’t care for crunchy sweet potatoes either. Just sayin’…

When I began working on Citrus-Chipotle Sheet Pan Chicken Thighs, I knew I wanted to use chicken thighs – while a bit higher in fat and calories – they’re more forgiving with cooking time. The chicken thighs require about 20-30 minutes on 400° making them a good candidate for roasting alongside sweet potatoes. However, the sweet potatoes can take up to an hour unless they’re sliced fairly thin (as opposed to wedges or chunks). 

📋 Ingredients Notes

Here is a quick look at the ingredients in the recipe – it’s handy to use at the grocery store or as a summary of what you need. Skip to the recipe for quantities.

Citrus-Chipotle Glaze

  • chipotle chiles – Use 1 (or 2 if you like heat) chipotle chiles with about a tablespoon +/- adobo
  • blood orange – Tangerines, cara cara, clementines, any orange will substitute just fine. You use both zest and juice.
  • lime
  • lemon – I use Meyer lemons when I can get them. Grapefruit is a great addition!
  • ground cumin
  • garlic
  • sweetener – I typically use agave nectar. Honey also works well, but you may want to double the amount.
  • sea salt and fresh ground pepper

Sheet Pan Chicken Thighs and Vegetables

  • chicken thighs – I find they roast better than chicken breast, and result in a more moist chicken. The timing works out well with the vegetables in the recipe.
  • sweet potatoes
  • summer squash – Mexican grey squash, zucchini, yellow squash, patty pan are all great options.
  • shallots – Red onion is a great substitute.
  • bell peppers – I love colorful food, and like a mix!
  • tiny tomatoes
  • sea salt and fresh ground pepper
  • cilantro and/or scallions for garnish
  • Orange slices for garnish

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Citrus-chipotle glaze ingredients: Lemon, lime, blood orange with zest, chipotle chiles in adobo, cumin.

🔪 Step-By-Step Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees (375 convection roast).
  2. Prepare the glaze – Add the glaze ingredients to a small food processor. Pulse until smooth. Taste for sweetness and seasoning. Add to a large bowl.
  3. Prepare the chicken and vegetables – Cut the squash in fairly thick slices, and the sweet potatoes in thinner slices (they require more time). If the shallots are large, cut in half lengthwise. Cut the bell peppers in chunks. See photos for reference. Cut away any excess fat on the chicken thighs. Add the prepared vegetables and chicken to the glaze. Toss to coat.
  4. Roast the chicken and vegetables – Using a slotted spoon, add the vegetables and chicken thighs to 1 or 2 sheet pans in a single layer. Don’t pour the remaining glaze or you’ll have boiled not roasted food. Every 10 minutes or so, brush with remaining glaze. Roast until chicken juices are clear (160-165 degrees internal temperature). Vegetables should be tender. I find this takes 30-40 minutes.
  5. Serve – Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary. Garnish as desired. Enjoy!

I wax poetic about colorful food… This dish can be very colorful! On photo day, I chose a ruby sweet potato and a purple yam, orange bell pepper, shallot, multi-colored tiny tomatoes, and Mexican grey squash to join my boneless, skinless chicken thighs on the baking sheet.

A glass bowl of prepared veggies and chicken thighs in the citrus-chipotle glaze.
Sheet Pan Citrus-Chipotle Chicken Thighs on a copper sheet pan after roasting.

💭 Tips

Given the Mexican flavors in this dish (cumin, citrus, chipotle), I wanted to include Mexican grey squash (or zucchini). The trick is to get the sweet potatoes tender without having mushy squash! I cut the squash in fat chunks, and the sweet potatoes in thinner slices. Problem solved!

❓ FAQ

How long does this sheet pan dinner take to cook?

I have a “convection roast” setting on my oven which saves about 20% on cooking time, and it was perfectly roasted in 25 minutes. If you do not, plan on 30-45 minutes. You want to get the thighs to 165° internal temperature. Make sure the veggies are tender!

🍷 Pairing Suggestions

This sheet pan dinner is a one dish wonder. You don’t need any sides! We love it with a crisp rosé. Craft beer lovers will appreciate a saison (farmhouse ale).

2 black plates with chicken and vegetables, 2 glasses of rose, and black and white striped napkins.

Hubby says “the purple yam” (when cooked) “looks like salami in the dish.” 😂 Seriously, though, purple yam is loaded with anthocyanins, and is a super healthy and tasty way to get your veggies!

~~ Mark Andersen, husband.
A copper sheet pan with the prepared chicken thighs and veggies in the citrus-chipotle glaze just before roasting.

Sheet Pan Chicken Thighs with Citrus-Chipotle Glaze really is simple, and so delicious! Don’t forget it’s also gluten free, dairy free, and relatively low carb. And when you’re done? Only one pan to clean!

Signature in red and green with chiles and limes. Healthyish Latin cuisine.

Chicken Thighs Sheetpan Dinner on a plate with flatware and striped napkin

Citrus-Chipotle Sheet Pan Chicken Thighs

Roasted veggies and boneless, skinless chicken thighs coated with a citrus-chipotle glaze is a great riff on the trending “sheet pan dinner.”
5 from 2 votes

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Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Course Main Dishes
Cuisine Mexican
Servings 4 servings
Calories 355 kcal

Ingredients
  

Citrus-Chipotle Glaze

Sheet Pan Chicken Thighs

  • 16-24 ounces chicken thighs
  • 2 sweet potatoes - see notes. peeled and cut in 1/4″ slices
  • 2 Mexican grey or zucchini squash - cut in 3/4″ slices
  • several shallots or 1 red onion - cut into wedges or chunks
  • 2 bell peppers - red, yellow, or orange, cut in chunks
  • 1 cup tiny tomatoes
  • sea salt and fresh ground pepper
  • cilantro and/or scallions for garnish
  • Orange slices for garnish

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 400°.
  • Add the glaze ingredients to a small food processor. Pulse until smooth. Taste for sweetness and seasoning. Add to a large bowl.
  • Cut away any excess fat on the chicken thighs. Add the prepared vegetables and chicken to the glaze. Toss to coat.
  • Using a slotted spoon, add the vegetables and chicken thighs to 1 or 2 sheet pans in a single layer. Every 10 minutes or so, brush with remaining glaze. Roast until chicken juices are clear (160-165 degrees internal temperature) and vegetables are tender.
  • Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary. Garnish as desired. Enjoy!

Notes

In calculating the calories, I used 20 ounces of chicken thighs, and added about half of the glaze into the calculation.

Nutrition

Calories: 355kcal | Carbohydrates: 25g | Protein: 32g | Fat: 7g

NOTE: Macronutrients are an approximation only using unbranded ingredients and MyFitnessPal.com. Please do your own research with the products you’re using if you have a serious health issue or are following a specific diet.

Did you make this recipe? Please leave a comment and/or star rating! Email us with any questions: tamara@beyondmeresustenance.com

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