Welcome to the Dark Meat Side


This week’s post is by Christine Luken.



 As a kid, I always wanted to eat white meat chicken.  However, as an adult, I have come to appreciate the virtues of dark meat.  First of all, chicken thighs and legs are cheaper per pound than chicken breast meat.  I stock up on boneless chicken thighs at Sam’s Club whenever I go.  I have found that dark meat doesn’t dry out the way that white meat does, especially when using the crock pot, because of its higher fat content. Despite this fact, recent research has shown that dark meat is actually very healthy for you. I guess you can say that I have officially gone over to the dark meat side!  Today, I’m going to share with you some of my favorite dishes made with boneless, skinless chicken thighs.



My stepsister, Leah, turned me onto this recipe for Chicken Taco Bowls.  I use thigh meat to make this in the crock pot.  It is a super easy recipe – and very versatile!  You can use this as taco or burrito filling, serve it over brown rice as I usually do, or use it as a nacho topping!  The leftovers – if you have any – freeze and reheat really well.  This would be a good candidate for cooking a double batch and stocking the freezer.



I frequently make my Crock Pot Chicken Cacciatore with frozen chicken thighs, even though the original recipe calls for chicken breasts.



If you are a fan of wine, try my Tuscan Red Wine Chicken Thighs which can be baked in the oven – or even better – grilled! I like to serve them with wild rice and garlic roasted asparagus.   In fact, just writing about this recipe is making me crave them!  I may have to rearrange this week’s meal plan so I can fit them in.



When I am feeling lazy in the kitchen, I will toss four frozen chicken thighs in the crock pot with a bottle of BBQ sauce.  If you’re concerned about all of the corn syrup and other additives in the store bought varieties, try my healthy and delicious homemade BBQ sauce.



What about you?  Have you gone over to the dark meat side?  If so, what are your favorite recipes that use dark meat chicken?


  1. Robin (Masshole Mommy) says:

    I need to get better about meal planning. I just can’t get my act together enough to do it :)

  2. I used to menu plan… a lot and the past two weeks have just gone to POT!!
    I need to get back into the swing of things…

  3. You can’t mess up chicken thighs. They always come out great.

  4. Like you, I used to only go for white meat, but now I’ve come to really love the flavor of dark meat! I love that it makes the whole meal more flavorful without needing to add a lot of extras to it.

  5. Pam says:

    My husband prefers dark meat chicken! I think white meat has its place but dark meat definitely seems to have more flavor!

  6. This is a meal plan my family would love. I want to try the crock pot chicken.

  7. I used to be the same way, super picky with white meat. Since I started experimenting with recipes I also enjoy dark meat in a lot of dishes.

  8. Tamara says:

    Fun! I’m always a white meat girl but lately I’ve been going to the dark side myself. It’s delicious.

  9. I am the opposite – when I was a child I only liked the dark meat – I hated white meat from the chicken. I think it was because my mom didn’t cook it right. now, that is ll I want – the white meat.

  10. Kendra says:

    That crockpot meal looks delicious!

  11. Bri says:

    I have not gone to the dark meat side yet. I still enjoy white meat over dark meat.

  12. I’ve always actually really liked the dark meat. I think it has more taste and is less dry.

  13. Liz Mays says:

    I find dark meat to be super flavorful! I like it a lot. I’d love to cook with it more.

  14. Tonya C says:

    I need to start doing this more often because my kids are always asking me “whats for dinner mom?” And I never know until the last minute.

  15. To be honest I don’t care since I like them both. I’m not picky at all.

  16. Carol Bryant says:

    We do our meal planning on the weekends and it has been a wonderful time saver so we do not have to think about what we want each night

  17. I prefer white meat, but my children prefer dark. It is good to learn some new recipes that I can try in order to make my children happy and able to enjoy meals.

  18. Rosey says:

    Chicken Taco Bowls sound good. My family would love to try ‘em.

  19. Krista says:

    Dark meat has always been my most favorite. Everyone in the family used to have a friendly fight over it at Thanksgiving time :)

  20. Trisha says:

    We’re trying to reduce our beef intake so I’ve been searching for different types of poultry recipes. I love using my crock pot so I’m totally going to add the Chicken Taco Bowls to the list of things I want to make!

  21. Censie says:

    We do not eat much dark meat but this meal plan looks really yummy!

  22. LauraFunk says:

    Simple chicken noodle soup! Love it with dark meat