Roasted Chicken Legs with Fennel and Lemon

Roasted Chicken Legs with Fennel and Lemon

Roasted chicken with crisp skin and juicy meat makes a comforting dinner and fills your kitchen with wonderful aromas. Here, lemon and white wine add pops of acidity, while fennel lends freshness and a subtle anise flavor. We use a cast-iron fry pan, which sears the chicken skin beautifully. Before adding the legs to the pan, be sure to pat them thoroughly dry so they’ll brown well.

50 mins total time

20 mins active time


Serves 2



  • 3 whole bone-in chicken legs (drumstick and thigh)
  • Kosher salt

    to season

  • Freshly ground black pepper

    to season

  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 fennel bulbs

    trimmed, quartered and cored, fronds reserved for garnish

  • 2 large shallots

    peeled and quartered

  • ¼ cup (2 fl oz) dry white wine
  • 1 lemon

    cut into ¼-inch slices

  • 3 fresh thyme sprigs
  • 2 tbsp (1 oz) unsalted butter
  • Flaky sea salt

    to serve

  • ½ lemon (optional)


  • 1Insert the wire rack into position 6. Meanwhile, continue to the next step.
  • 2Pat the chicken dry with paper towels and season generously with the kosher salt and pepper.
  • 3Heat a large cast iron skillet over medium-high heat for 2 minutes. Pour in the oil and heat for 1 minute. Add the chicken, and sear for 3 minutes, until golden brown. Turn and sear the other side for 2 minutes. Transfer to a plate.
  • 4Add the fennel bulbs and shallots to the pan and cook, turning once, until lightly browned, about 1 minute per side.
  • 5Remove the pan from the heat, add the wine and stir to scrape any browned bits from the bottom of the pan.
  • 6Add the lemon slices and thyme, then the butter and swirl the pan to melt the butter. Return the chicken to the pan, nestling the pieces amongst the vegetables.
  • 7Once preheated, place in the oven and start the timer.
  • 8The chicken is ready when an instant-read thermometer inserted into thickest part of the meat, away from the bone registers 165°F. If not, give it a bit more.
  • 9Remove the pan from the oven. Garnish with fennel fronds and flaky sea salt. Taste the sauce and add a squeeze of lemon, if desired. Serve immediately.