Sweet Tea Braised Chicken Thighs

February 14, 2013
3 Ratings
  • Serves 4 - 6
Author Notes

Part of a tailgate contest win! I came up with this recipe as part of a Southern cuisine-themed tailgate contest menu at the Montpelier Horse Races in Virginia this past fall. We won Chef's Choice from Chef Jason Alley of Comfort and Pasture Restaurants. —Kristin Irani Myruski

What You'll Need
  • 4 English Breakfast tea bags
  • 2 lemons, juiced
  • 1 orange, juiced
  • 1/3 cup sorghum molasses (or other molasses)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons honey
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 10 chicken thighs, skinless, boneless (or with skin and bone)
  • salt and pepper
  1. in a sauce pan bring 6 cups of water to a boil, add tea bags and simmer for 2 minutes, then remove from heat and allow to steep 3 - 5 minutes until the brew is quite strong and dark
  2. remove tea bags and add lemon juice, orange juice, molasses and honey, whisking until dissolved; set aside
  3. in a large, deep skillet heat the oil over high heat
  4. generously season both sides of the chicken thighs and once the pan is smoking, place the side that had the skin down into the pan and allow to sear 3-4 minutes
  5. once the thighs have a golden brown sear turn them over to sear the other side
  6. once the second side is seared, turn the thighs over again and pour the steeped tea mixture over top
  7. allow to come to a boil and then reduce to barely a simmer for about 5-8 minutes or until thighs are cooked through
  8. remove thighs to a serving platter, tent with foil and keep remaining cooking liquid over high heat to reduce to sauce consistency, about 12-15 minutes
  9. pour sauce over top of the thighs and serve

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • foxeslovelemons
  • Kristin Irani Myruski
    Kristin Irani Myruski
  • LB (Laurie Beth)
    LB (Laurie Beth)
  • healthierkitchen
  • QueenSashy

6 Reviews

foxeslovelemons March 15, 2013
I was one of the recipe testers for this, and figured I would leave my head note here:

Kristin's sweet tea chicken was simple to prepare, and it simmered while I made the rest of my dinner. While my experience drinking sweet tea is limited, this chicken had just the right amount of sweetness and tea flavor - not overpowering at all, but enough tea, molasses and honey notes to make it different from any other braised chicken I've tried. This chicken was delicious on it's own, and I also think it would be a good base cooking method for other dishes that use chicken, like salads, sandwiches and pastas.
Kristin I. April 9, 2013
foxeslovelemons, thank you so much for testing and for the feedback! I really appreciate you taking the time to leave a note. Cheers! Kristin
Kristin I. February 15, 2013
Thanks for the interest - and endorsement : ) I'd love to hear how it goes!
LB (. February 15, 2013
I've had the pleasure of tasting this most yummy chicken dish :)
healthierkitchen February 15, 2013
This sounds really interesting and delicious. I will have to try!
QueenSashy February 15, 2013
Oh my, I am going to love this.