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This is your sign: it's time to change up your regular chicken dinner! You absolutely won't regret it if you swap in this crispy, crunchy, sweet-and-salty pistachio chicken. It tastes amazing, plus it's so simple to make — you could serve pistachio crusted chicken any day of the week or for a dinner party!
If you have extra pistachios kickin' around, also try this pistachio crusted salmon!
Why swap pistachio chicken for your regular crispy chicken recipe
- Taste reigns supreme: This is not to be overstated. The salty and crunchy pistachios, the sweet delicious honey, and the crispiness of the chicken after hanging under the broiler for a few minutes is truly what dinner dreams are made of.
- Simplicity is key: Without exaggerating, if you can put chicken in the oven, you can make this pistachio chicken recipe. It only takes 10 minutes to prep and the rest is oven time!
- Easy on the budget: Although things dabble in the fancier realm with the crushed pistachios in this recipe, you only need ⅓ of a cup. Head to the bulk section of your grocery store and only take what you need. Plus, this pistachio chicken uses chicken thighs which you can get at a better price than many other cuts of chicken or other kinds of meat.
You're going to be floored at how few ingredients produce this salty-sweet, delicious pistachio chicken:
- Pistachios: Use a food processor to grind your shelled pistachios. This will form the basis of your coating, so most pieces should be quite small but some larger pieces are ok too.
- Sea salt & pepper: Since there's so few spices in this recipe, generously season your chicken thighs before coating with the pistachios.
- Olive oil & cooking spray oil: You will drizzle the olive oil on the chicken before coating to help it stick to the meat, and then after you've coated each piece with pistachios you can spray with cooking spray oil to help the thighs crisp up in the oven.
- Honey: You wouldn't think it, but the honey is the very last ingredient you'll add to your chicken, after it's finished cooking. Drizzle the honey overtop of your cooked chicken, to get that perfect crispy, salty, sweet combination.
- Chicken thighs: Use boneless chicken thighs for this recipe. This is a flavorful and relatively economical cut of meat, however, you can use chicken breasts if you prefer.
How to make pistachio chicken
Here's what to do to make your pistachio crusted chicken thighs for supper:
- Crush the pistachios: Using your food processor grind the pistachios into small pieces. It doesn't need to be dust and it shouldn't be too chunky either.
- Prep the chicken thighs: Drizzle the chicken thighs with olive oil and give a good sprinkle of sea salt and pepper.
- Coat the chicken: Using your pistachio breading, coat each piece of chicken. Make sure the pistachios are pressed into the chicken so they stay on.
- Bake: Pop your chicken in the oven for ~15 minutes.
- Add the honey & serve: Once cooked, drizzle the honey over the chicken and serve immediately.
What to serve with pistachio chicken
Pistachio chicken goes well with so many dishes! Here are a couple of side dish options that will pair well with your centerpiece:
- Salad: You can slice the chicken and serve it over the salad as a great lunch option or you can serve salad on the side. Try pistachio chicken with our roasted winter green salad, arugula and wild rice salad, or a pomegranate salad with spinach – yum!
- Veggies: This chicken dinner is excellent with some garlic butter asparagus, grilled mushrooms, pan seared brussels sprouts, or some cauliflower rice.
- Starchy carbs: Mmm — you could go with rice, potatoes, or pasta! Try pistachio chicken with this garlic butter rice, or crispy roasted potatoes, maybe even some mashed purple sweet potatoes. If you want to serve your chicken over pasta, try this simple creamy tomato pasta or garlic butter pasta.
Can I use chicken breasts for this pistachio chicken recipe?
You can use chicken breasts, however, they simply aren't as tender or flavorful as chicken thighs. That said, if you choose to use chicken breasts all you have to do is adjust the cooking time to 20 minutes.
What dip would go well with pistachio chicken?
Can I use another type of nut instead of pistachios?
You can use other nuts to create the crust, like crushed almonds, pecans, or cashews.
How do I know when the chicken is cooked?
If you're baking chicken thighs it should take 15-18 minutes, and if you're using chicken breasts it will take a little longer in the oven, more like 20 minutes. To know for sure, use a meat thermometer to know when the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
- ⅓ cup shelled pistachios (ground in your food processor (some chunks are ok))
- 8 boneless chicken thighs (or 4 small chicken breasts)
- ½ teaspoon EACH: sea salt and pepper
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Cooking spray oil
- ¼ cup honey
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Add the shelled pistachios to your food processor and blend until they're mostly ground – a few chunks are ok.⅓ cup shelled pistachios
- Dry the chicken with paper towels and then season them with salt and pepper. Drizzle with the olive oil.8 boneless chicken thighs, 1 tablespoon olive oil, ½ teaspoon EACH: sea salt and pepper
- Place the ground pistachios into a shallow bowl. Working with one piece of chicken at a time, bread the chicken with the ground pistachios.
- Move the breaded chicken to the baking dish. Press any remaining pistachios onto the tops of the chicken and then spray the chicken with cooking oil.Cooking spray oil
- Bake the chicken for 15-18 minutes, or until they reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit. Once the chicken is cooked, drizzle the honey over the top and serve right away.¼ cup honey
We have thoroughly tested this recipe for accuracy. However, individual results may vary. See our full recipe disclosure here.