Fig Whiskey Glazed Chicken Legs

Fig Whiskey Glazed Chicken Legs

Paul is balancing full time work and school this year; up early and home late. This means that he cooks on weekends, and weeknight cooking is up to me and my random taste inclinations. Paul claims to likes everything I make...but after the third consecutive meat-centric meal he made last weekend, I think I got the hint, more protein in the week. Our current favorite, these Fig Whiskey Glazed Chicken Legs, has a sweet and tangy glaze that turns the meat a rich mahogany hue. We licked our fingers clean while the dogs watched mournfully by.

Yield: Serves 5


   Dry Rubbed Chicken Legs:

  • 5 chicken legs, skin left on
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon sweet paprika
  • 1/2 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1/2 tablespoon black pepper
  • 1/2 tablespoon ancho chili powder
  • 1/2 tablespoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric

   Fig Whiskey Glaze:

  • 1/3 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 tablespoons fig preserves
  • 3 tablespoons rye whiskey
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 3 drops liquid smoke


  1. Heat the oven to 425 and prepare a large roasting pan (or a sheet pat with cooling rack in my case).
  2. For the Dry Rubbed Chicken Legs: In a small bowl, mix together the dry rub ingredients (salt, garlic, paprika, onion, black pepper, ancho, cumin, and turmeric).
  3. Generously sprinkle the dry rub over each chicken leg, rubbing it into the meat for even coverage.
  4. Spread the seasoned chicken legs onto the roasting pan, skin side up, and slide the pan into the oven. Set your timer for 1 hour (total). You will be glazing twice during roasting, once at 30 minutes in, and once at 45 minutes. 
  5. For the Fig Whiskey Glaze:  While the chicken starts to roast, prepare the glaze. In a small pot over medium heat, warm the Worcestershire, fig preserves, whiskey, balsamic vinegar, and liquid smoke. Whisk to combine. Once smooth, remove from heat.
  6. After the chicken has cooked 30 minutes, remove the sheet pan carefully from the oven, set on top of the stove, and generously brush the glaze over each chicken leg. Return to the oven and allow to cook for an additional 15 minutes. Repeat the glazing process, using the remainder of your glaze. At 1 hour total cook time, the chicken should be done: moist and juicy on the inside with a crispy deep mahogany skin. Rest 5 minutes and serve hot.