Thai Chicken Drumsticks (Baked)

Flavourful, tender on the inside and crispy on the outside, these Thai chicken drumsticks are baked in the oven for a healthy, protein-rich dinner main.

Baked Thai Chicken Drumsticks Recipe
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Thai Chicken Drumsticks

This chicken drumstick recipe is originally from my paleo reset but as it’s no longer a paid program, I am slowly bringing all those recipes on to my blog for everyone to enjoy!

What I love about this recipe is that it’s budget-friendly (assuming you have a few Asian sauces in the pantry already) and it’s ridiculously easy to make. The Thai marinade for the chicken is tangy, sweet and salty, really showcasing that perfect Southeast Asian flavour balance.

The only thing to remember is that these chicken drumsticks are best left to marinate for at least 12 hours. If in a rush, you can leave them in the marinade for an hour but the meat will be more flavourful and more tender, the longer you let it infuse.

This chicken drumstick recipe is gluten-free, low-carb, and Paleo-friendly.

Baked Thai Chicken Drumsticks
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Thai Marinade For Chicken

The marinade used in this recipe is the star of the dish. I mean, I baked chicken drumsticks but it could be wings, tenderloins, breasts or any other part of the bird.

The marinade features ginger, garlic, lime juice and zest, Tamari (or soy sauce), fish sauce, honey and sesame oil, plus a little chili. I LOVE all of these ingredients so I almost always have them on hand and think they are worth purchasing as can will continue to use them.

For example, the fish sauce can be used in my crying tiger beef and rice noodle salad, and ginger and garlic in my Asian chicken salad. Sesame oil and Tamari can then be used to make my Teriyaki baked salmon.

Thai marinade for chicken
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How To Make Baked Chicken Drumsticks

  • Step 1. Mix the marinade in a bowl, then toss the chicken drumsticks in it.
  • Step 2. Marinate the chicken overnight or for about 12 hours (24 is even better).
  • Step 3. Remove chicken from the refrigerator and let it come to room temperature before cooking, so about 15 minutes prior.
  • Step 4. Preheat the oven to 190 C/ 375 F, make sure it’s hot! Grease a flat baking tray with some oil and place the drumsticks on top. Bake for 30 minutes. Use the leftover marinade to baste the chicken halfway through.
How to bake chicken drumsticks in the oven
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What To Serve With Thai Chicken Drumsticks

As these chicken drumsticks are made with a Thai marinade, the most suitable side dishes would be Asian ones, or at least Asian-inspired.

Rice and noodles are the obvious choices, or you can try my coconut cauliflower rice or egg-fried cauli rice for a low-carb version. Stir-fried vegetables or even something as simple as steamed or boiled broccoli with garlic would go well. I often make my go-to side salad but with more of an Asian dressing or you can try my Asian shredded Napa cabbage salad or this refreshing and easy mango salad.

If you don’t want rice or noodles, you can make roast some sweet potatoes. Try my baked sweet potatoes with miso butter or kimchi sweet potato fries.

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Baked Chicken Drumsticks with Thai Marinade
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Thai Chicken Drumsticks (Baked)

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Author: Irena Macri
Servings: 4 servings
Course: Main
Cuisine: Thai
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5 from 1 vote
Calories: 369kcal
Flavourful, tender on the inside and crispy on the outside, these Thai chicken drumsticks are baked in the oven for a healthy, protein-rich dinner main. This chicken drumstick recipe is gluten-free, low-carb, and Paleo-friendly.


  • 8 chicken drumsticks
  • A dollop of coconut oil or a little olive oil for greasing the tray

For the Thai marinade

  • 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
  • 3 cloves garlic grated
  • Zest of 1 lime
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • ½ teaspoon chilli or ½ red chilli, finely diced
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Tamari or soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt


  • Combine the marinade ingredients in a large bowl.
  • Add the drumsticks and coat well using your hands. Transfer the chicken and the marinade to a ziplock bag or a container and store overnight in the fridge. Give them a shake once or twice to spread the marinade around.
  • Take out of the fridge 10-15 minutes before cooking. Preheat the oven to 190 C / 375 F.
  • Grease an oven tray with a little coconut oil or olive oil. Place the drumsticks evenly on a tray and pop in the oven, middle shelf, for 25-30 minutes. Reserve the marinade, and halfway through cooking, brush some over the drumsticks.
  • In the meantime, prepare the rice/noodles, veggies or a salad of choice.


  • Chicken: You can use any part of the chicken for this recipe: thighs, chicken wings, diced breast and so on. Turkey legs can also be used. You can pan-fry chicken thighs or breasts instead of baking them.
  • Marinating time: Ideally, you would want to marinate these for at least 12-24 hours before roasting. If that is not possible, give them at least half an hour to soak in the flavours.
  • Make-ahead: This is a great recipe to make a larger batch of marinated drumsticks to store in the freezer.


Calories: 369kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 28g | Fat: 26g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 13g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 139mg | Sodium: 1407mg | Potassium: 398mg | Fiber: 0.2g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 71IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 25mg | Iron: 1mg
Keywords: Chicken Drumsticks, Thai Marinade, Thai Chicken, Baked Chicken Drumsticks, Chicken Drumstick Recipe
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Irena Macri
By Irena Macri

About the author: Hi, I’m Irena Macri. I share delicious recipes that I have cooked and loved. I am a published cookbook author, have been food blogging for over 10 years and have a Diploma in Nutrition. You will find many healthy recipes as well as my favourite comfort food. More about me here | Subscribe to my newsletter and freebies

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  1. 5 stars
    This is a new favorite! So bright from the lime juice and zest. I thought I made enough for lunch tomorrow but it’s gone!

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