Hoisin Chicken Legs

For the longest time Ryan and I have had a love hate relationship with hoisin sauce. He loves it, I hate it. He loves putting it on just about anything. And for me, well, I had just about given up on Hoisin sauce. I had just assumed that I would never like the stuff.  Yet something made me give it a try again recently, perhaps it was the fact that I asked Ryan to pick up a bottle and I’m pretty sure he picked up the biggest bottle in existence, but either way I decided to give hoisin sauce one last try and I have to say I may have changed my tune. You see, when mixed with fresh ginger, garlic, soy sauce, honey, and a few other yummy ingredients, hoisin sauce can really boost up the flavor of your chicken dinner.

For those of you who are unsure what hoisin sauce is, its a sauce that is typically used in Chinese cooking. The ingredients usually include soy bean paste, garlic, chilies and other spices. The combination makes the sauce salty, sweet and slightly spicy. I usually pick up my bottle at the Asian grocery store but I have also seen many varieties in the Asian section of my local grocery store so you should be able to find it pretty easily.

Hoisin Chicken Legs Recipe

Serves 4 Prep Time: Cook Time:


  • 6 chicken drumsticks
  • 1/3 cup hoisin sauce
  • 1 teaspoon fresh minced ginger
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce
  • juice of 1/2 lime
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1/2 medium yellow onion, sliced



Rinse chicken and pat dry. Transfer to a bowl or other deep dish.


In another bowl mix together hoisin, ginger, garlic, soy sauce, lime juice, crushed red pepper, vinegar, sesame oil and honey. Pour over chicken. Cover chicken and marinate for 30 minutes.


Preheat oven to 400 degrees.


Transfer marinated chicken to a baking dish. Pour marinade over the top. Place sliced onions around the chicken. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove foil and cook for 15 - 20 minutes more or until the chicken skin has browned and the chicken is cooked through.




I served this with rice and poured the pan juices over the top. Delish! Enjoy!

Leave a Comment

  • Reply
    May 18, 2011 at 7:29 pm

    I just made this recipe for my family and it was a roaring success!!! To go along with it we had the Cucumber Salad also from your blog, and again, RAVE REVIEWS! I am new to your blog, but you already have the place of honor as the only “Favorite” on my computer’s Favorite Bar – that is big! :) Thank you so much for sharing your recipes, for the wonderful pictures of all the food, and your witty commentary on everything. I can’t wait to try more of your recipes now.

  • Reply
    May 18, 2010 at 7:37 am

    I use a marinade that has all of these ingredients, but I add about a cup of orange juice. Mellows the flavors and my kids love it.

    • Reply
      May 18, 2010 at 7:33 pm

      Debbie- I LOVE the idea of orange juice. I will definitely have to try that next time I make these.

  • Reply
    Senor Pablo
    February 19, 2010 at 7:18 am

    I tried this recipe today for my familly. Everyone has this to say. WOW!! Everyone loved it!! A great tasting recipe which I will try for my guests. Des! U have been a great inspiration for my cooking. I really like your blog. Thank you for sharing. I agree with your statement…

    “To me food doesn’t need to be over complicated or gourmet to be a meal you and your family will love”.

    God Bless!!

  • Reply
    Jamaican Foodie
    February 16, 2010 at 3:04 pm

    I LOVE HOISIN SAUCE!!! In fact I made a stir fry the other day with it and it was out of this world!!

  • Reply
    February 15, 2010 at 10:37 pm

    I’m always looking for new ways to prepare chicken especially when there is a sale on chicken legs and this seems to be an easy way to prepare chicken for family gatherings. I’m sure everyone will love it !

  • Reply
    February 15, 2010 at 10:30 pm

    Memoria- For me, I didn’t like it at first because of the sweetness. My husband likes to add it to his Mongolian BBQ and ground turkey stir-fry, two things that I associate with being very savory. But with this chicken I actually wanted a touch of sweetness, and the hoisin sauce was the perfect compliment.

  • Reply
    February 15, 2010 at 1:55 pm

    I have hoisin sauce in my kitchen, but I don’t know how it tastes yet. What did you not like about the taste? I need a heads-up about this before I use it haha. I am quite picky, and thus skeptical, when being introduced to new foods and ingredients.

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