These sous vide chicken legs offer super tender chicken meat along with crispy skin. Drizzled with a delectable honey balsamic sauce, they are fingerlickingly delicious.

These sous vide chicken legs offer super tender chicken meat along with crispy skin. Drizzled with a delectable honey balsamic sauce, they are fingerlickingly delicious.

When it comes to cooking the dark meat of a chicken, there are so many ways to do it. To name a few, lemon pepper chicken, honey garlic chicken, and don’t forget that classic buttermilk fried chicken. They all sound familiar, don’t they?

However, my absolute favorite flavor for chicken legs goes to honey balsamic. The chicken marinade I used in this recipe is inspired by my One-Pan Balsamic Chicken with Roasted Vegetables.

These sous vide chicken legs offer super tender chicken meat along with crispy skin. Drizzled with a delectable honey balsamic sauce, they are fingerlickingly delicious.

It’s sweet and sour. It’s infused with garlic and herbs.
It’s gluten-free.
It can be easily turned into an amazing sauce to serve with the chicken.
It’s fingerlickingly good.

Instead of roasting, I used the sous vide cooking method to get the chicken perfectly tender from the inside out, allowing that honey balsamic flavor to soak in completely while cooking under the water at a precise temperature for two hours.

Then a good sear gets you charred and crispy skin. Together with the rich and sticky honey balsamic sauce, what more could you ask for?

These sous vide chicken legs offer super tender chicken meat along with crispy skin. Drizzled with a delectable honey balsamic sauce, they are fingerlickingly delicious.

Honey Balsamic Sous Vide Chicken Legs, Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1: Make the honey balsamic chicken marinade.

Honey Balsamic Marinade

Step 2: Marinate your chicken legs.

Step 2 -Marinate Chicken Legs
Step 3: Preheat water to 150°F using a sous vide precision cooker (I use Anova sous vide).

preheat water sous vide
Step 4: Place the chicken into a large sous vide bag in one layer and vacuum seal it. Pour the chicken marinade into a small bowl and set aside.

vacuum seal
Step 5: Lower the bag into the prepared water bath and set the timer for 2 hours.

sous vide in progress
Step 6: (Optional) Once the chicken is done, remove the bag from the water bath and drop it into an ice bath to fully chill. This step will help get extra-crispy skin when you sear it without overcooking the chicken underneath. At this point, if you make a big batch, you can leave the chicken in your fridge until you are ready to enjoy it.

Step 7: Once the chicken is chilled, remove it from the sous vide bag and place onto a serving plate; reserve the chicken juice, and press the chicken dry with paper towels. Sear it in a nonstick pan for 1-2 minutes on each skin side.

sear
Step 8: Make the honey balsamic sauce by boiling the chicken marinade.

boil the marinade
Step 9: Pour the sauce over the chicken and you are done!

Honey Balsamic Sous Vide Chicken Legs

What If I Don’t Have a Sous Vide?

Not ready for sous vide cooking yet? Another cooking method to make these delicious chicken legs is roast them in the oven at 425°F for 25-30 minutes. Flip the chicken to cook for an additional 5-10 minutes until it’s cooked through.

Remember to place the chicken legs on a roasting rack at least 1 inch apart from each other to allow enough air circulation so your chicken is roasted, not steamed.

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Honey Balsamic Sous Vide Chicken Legs

Honey Balsamic Sous Vide Chicken Legs

These sous vide chicken legs offer super tender chicken meat along with crispy skin. Drizzled with a delectable honey balsamic sauce, they are fingerlickingly delicious.

  • Author: Sharon Chen
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 2 hours 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 hours 15 minutes
  • Yield: 2 servings 1x
  • Category: Gluten Free
  • Method: Sou Vide
  • Cuisine: American
Scale

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds chicken legs (whole chicken legs, chicken thighs, or drumsticks), bone in and skin on

For the honey balsamic marinade:

  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh rosemary or 1 1/2 teaspoons dried rosemary
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh oregano or 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh thyme or 1 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Instructions

  1. Rinse chicken legs and pat dry with paper towels. Place them in a large Ziploc bag.
  2. Whisk all the marinade ingredients together in a small bowl. Pour over the chicken. Zip it up and shake well. Let the chicken marinate for at least an hour in the fridge.
  3. Once ready to cook, preheat water to 155°F using the Anova sous vide precision cooker.
  4. Transfer the chicken legs to a large sous vide bag  in one layer and seal using a vacuum sealer or a hand pump. Reserve the marinade in a small bowl and set aside.
  5. Once the water is ready, slowly lower the chicken into the prepared water bath. Make sure the chicken drumsticks are completely under the water. Cook chicken for 2 hours.
  6. Optional: Once the chicken is done, remove the bag from the water bath and drop it into an ice bath to fully chill. This step will help get extra-crispy skin when you sear it without overcooking the chicken underneath.
  7. Remove the chicken from the sous vide bag and scrape off any gelled juices using your fingers. Reserve the juices for other uses.
  8. Pat the chicken with paper towels. Heat a nonstick pan or cast iron skillet over high heat on the stove until hot. Place chicken in the skillet and sear for 1 minute on each side or until the skin is golden brown and crispy. Transfer the chicken to a plate and let it rest.
  9. While the chicken is resting, add the reserved marinade to the same skillet, bring to a rapid boil and continue cooking until the sauce is reduced and thickened, about 2-3 minutes. Pour the honey balsamic sauce over the chicken legs and enjoy!

Notes

  • When making the honey balsamic sauce, if the sauce is too thick, add some reserved chicken juices to it. If your sauce is not thick enough to your liking once you reduce it by half, dissolve 1 teaspoon cornstarch in 1 tablespoon cold water and stir into the sauce. Keep stirring, and the sauce will thicken nicely.  
  • Marinating the chicken overnight will enhance the flavor even more.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1
  • Calories: 746
  • Sugar: 13.5g
  • Sodium: 2576.6mg
  • Fat: 33.7g
  • Saturated Fat: 7g
  • Trans Fat: 0.1g
  • Carbohydrates: 19.1g
  • Fiber: 2.5g
  • Protein: 87.7g
  • Cholesterol: 412.5mg
These sous vide chicken legs offer super tender chicken meat along with crispy skin. Drizzled with a delectable honey balsamic sauce, they are fingerlickingly delicious.

8 thoughts on “Honey Balsamic Sous Vide Chicken Legs”

  1. I have a sous vide and so far I have only used it for steak. I really need to expand my horizons with it, as there are so many more things I could be making, like these yummy chicken legs. Love the honey balsamic flavor!

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