Wine-Baked Chicken Legs with Marjoram Recipe

Indulge in the rich flavors of wine-baked chicken legs with marjoram. This recipe combines the elegance of white wine with the robust taste of marjoram and tender chicken legs. Perfect for a fancy dinner at home or a special occasion, this dish is sure to impress with its delicious taste and refined presentation.

Wine-Baked Chicken Legs with Marjoram Recipe
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Marjoram might not be a staple in your kitchen but it's a key ingredient in this recipe. It's a slightly sweet and citrusy herb, often used in Mediterranean cooking. If you don't have it at home, you can find it in the fresh herbs section at most supermarkets. Dry white wine is another important ingredient. Use a good quality one that you would enjoy drinking, as it will significantly impact the taste of the final dish.

Ingredients for Wine-Baked Chicken Legs with Marjoram

Shallots: These are similar to onions, but with a milder, sweeter flavor. They add a depth of flavor to the dish.

Bay leaf: Used for its distinct and pungent flavor, it's usually removed before serving.

Chicken legs: The star of the dish, they are juicy and flavorful.

Dry white wine: Used to marinate the chicken legs and gives a rich flavor to the sauce.

Salt and pepper: Essential seasonings for enhancing the overall taste.

Heavy cream: It adds a creamy, luxurious texture to the sauce.

Unsalted butter: Used for a smooth finish and added richness to the sauce.

Marjoram: Aromatic herb that gives a unique flavor to the dish.

One reader, Anallese Mcneely says:

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This wine-baked chicken legs with marjoram recipe is a game-changer! The flavors are rich and the chicken comes out tender and juicy. The marjoram adds a delightful aroma, and the creamy wine sauce is simply divine. It's a must-try for anyone who loves a comforting and delicious meal.

Anallese Mcneely

Cooking Techniques to Master for This Recipe

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F: This step is essential to ensure that the oven reaches the correct temperature for baking the chicken legs.

Season the chicken with salt and pepper: This step is important to ensure that the chicken is well-seasoned before baking, enhancing its flavor.

Reduce the oven temperature to 300 degrees F: Lowering the oven temperature is necessary to continue cooking the chicken at a lower heat after the initial high-temperature baking.

Boil the pan juices over high heat until reduced to 2 cups: This step is crucial to concentrate the flavors of the pan juices, creating a rich sauce for the chicken.

Boil the cream until reduced by one-third: This process is important to thicken the cream and intensify its flavor, contributing to the richness of the sauce.

Whisk the butter into the sauce, 1 tablespoon at a time, until thoroughly blended: This technique is essential to emulsify the butter into the sauce, creating a smooth and glossy consistency.

Reheat the chicken legs in the oven for about 5 minutes: This step ensures that the chicken legs are thoroughly heated before serving, maintaining their delicious flavor and texture.

Spoon the sauce over the chicken legs: This technique is important to evenly distribute the flavorful sauce over the chicken, enhancing its taste.

Sprinkle with the marjoram leaves and serve: This step adds a fresh burst of flavor to the dish and completes the presentation before serving.

How To Make Wine-Baked Chicken Legs with Marjoram

Sink your teeth into these succulent baked chicken legs, that’s cooked in a creamy white wine sauce, for a belly-filling and luscious dinner meal!

Preparation: 30 minutes
Cooking: 1 hour 5 minutes
Total: 1 hour 35 minutes



  • 2large shallots
  • 1bay leaf
  • 6whole chicken legs
  • 2cupdry white wine
  • salt and freshly ground pepper
  • ¼cupheavy cream
  • 4tbspunsalted butter,cold
  • 2tbspmarjoram,chopped


  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

  2. Spread the shallots and bay leaf in a 14×12-inch baking dish or roasting pan. Arrange the chicken legs in the pan, skin side up, and pour the wine over the legs. Season the chicken with salt and pepper.

  3. Bake in the upper third of the oven for about 50 minutes, or until the skin is crisp and the chicken is cooked through.

  4. Reduce the oven temperature to 300 degrees F.

  5. Transfer the chicken legs to a heatproof platter. Discard the bay leaf.

  6. Pour the pan juices into a small saucepan and boil over high heat for about 10 minutes, until reduced to 2 cups. Add the cream and boil for 5 minutes until reduced by one-third.

  7. Pour the sauce into a large glass measuring cup and let stand for 5 minutes.

  8. Reheat the chicken legs in the oven for about 5 minutes

  9. Whisk the butter into the sauce, 1 tablespoon at a time, until thoroughly blended. Season the sauce with salt and stir in the chopped marjoram.

  10. Spoon the sauce over the chicken legs, sprinkle with the marjoram leaves, and serve. Enjoy!


  • Calories: 1390.68kcal
  • Fat: 99.50g
  • Saturated Fat: 33.29g
  • Trans Fat: 0.78g
  • Monounsaturated Fat: 38.76g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat: 18.01g
  • Carbohydrates: 13.06g
  • Fiber: 2.20g
  • Sugar: 4.75g
  • Protein: 86.32g
  • Cholesterol: 530.79mg
  • Sodium: 1641.29mg
  • Calcium: 113.15mg
  • Potassium: 1321.17mg
  • Iron: 5.35mg
  • Vitamin A: 307.20µg
  • Vitamin C: 4.83mg

Pro Tip for Perfectly Cooked Chicken Every Time

To ensure your chicken legs are cooked evenly and thoroughly, it's important to arrange them in a single layer in the roasting pan. Overlapping the chicken can result in uneven cooking and may prevent the skin from becoming crisp. Additionally, using a dry white wine not only adds flavor but also helps to tenderize the chicken, resulting in a more succulent dish. Remember, the quality of wine you use can affect the overall taste of your dish, so choose a wine that you would also enjoy drinking.

Time-Saving Tips for Busy Cooks

Prep ahead: Chop vegetables, measure ingredients, and marinate the chicken the night before to save time on the day of cooking.

Use kitchen tools: Utilize kitchen gadgets like a food processor for chopping, a mandoline for slicing, and a garlic press for mincing to speed up the prep process.

Multi-task: While the chicken is baking, use that time to prepare side dishes or set the table to make the most of your time in the kitchen.

Organize your workspace: Keep all your ingredients and tools within reach to avoid wasting time searching for items while cooking.

Clean as you go: Wash and put away dishes, utensils, and tools as you cook to minimize the cleanup time after the meal.

Substitute Ingredients For Wine-Baked Chicken Legs with Marjoram Recipe

  • shallots - Substitute with onions: Onions can be used as a substitute for shallots in this recipe as they provide a similar mild and sweet flavor when cooked. Simply use half the amount of onions as the recipe calls for shallots.

  • dry white wine - Substitute with chicken or vegetable broth: Broth can be used as a non-alcoholic substitute for white wine in this recipe. It will still provide depth of flavor and moisture to the dish.

  • heavy cream - Substitute with coconut cream: Coconut cream can be used as a dairy-free substitute for heavy cream. It adds richness and creaminess to the dish while also imparting a subtle coconut flavor.

  • unsalted butter - Substitute with olive oil: Olive oil can be used as a substitute for butter to make the dish dairy-free. It adds a light, fruity flavor and helps to keep the chicken legs moist during baking.

Plating Ideas for a Delightful Presentation

  1. Elevate the chicken legs: Carefully arrange the wine-baked chicken legs on the plate, ensuring they are positioned neatly and elegantly.

  2. Garnish with fresh marjoram: Sprinkle the dish with fresh marjoram leaves to add a pop of color and a burst of aromatic flavor.

  3. Drizzle with reduction sauce: Artfully drizzle the rich, reduced wine sauce over the chicken legs, ensuring each piece is generously coated.

  4. Plate with precision: Pay attention to the placement of each element on the plate, ensuring a visually appealing presentation that showcases the dish's sophistication.

  5. Add a touch of elegance with a bay leaf: Place a single bay leaf strategically on the plate to add a touch of refinement and a subtle hint of fragrance.

  6. Incorporate negative space: Embrace the beauty of negative space on the plate, allowing the dish to stand out and be the focal point of the presentation.

  7. Use high-quality serving ware: Select elegant, high-quality serving ware that complements the dish and enhances the overall dining experience.

  8. Consider the color contrast: Pay attention to the color contrast on the plate, ensuring that the dish is visually striking and aesthetically pleasing.

  9. Emphasize the crispy skin: Showcase the crispy texture of the chicken skin by ensuring it is positioned prominently and remains visually appealing.

  10. Highlight the creamy sauce: Artfully highlight the creamy texture of the sauce, allowing it to complement the chicken legs and add a luxurious touch to the presentation.

Essential Kitchen Tools You'll Need

  • Baking dish or roasting pan: A large, oven-safe dish used for baking or roasting food in the oven.
  • Small saucepan: A small cooking pot with a handle and a lid, used for heating and preparing sauces, boiling liquids, or reheating small portions of food.
  • Heatproof platter: A platter or dish that can withstand high temperatures without cracking or breaking, used for holding and serving hot food.
  • Large glass measuring cup: A large, transparent measuring cup with graduated markings, used for accurately measuring and pouring liquids.
  • Whisk: A kitchen utensil with a handle and wire loops, used for beating, blending, and incorporating air into ingredients.
  • Oven: A kitchen appliance used for baking, roasting, and heating food by surrounding it with dry heat.

Storage and Freezing Guidelines for Leftovers

  • Allow the chicken to cool completely before storing or freezing.
  • Store leftover wine-baked chicken legs in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.
  • To freeze, place the cooled chicken legs in a freezer-safe container or zip-lock bag, removing as much air as possible.
    • Label the container or bag with the date and contents.
    • Chicken can be frozen for up to 2-3 months.
  • To reheat, thaw the frozen chicken in the refrigerator overnight.
    • Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C).
    • Place the thawed chicken legs in a baking dish and cover with foil.
    • Bake for 15-20 minutes or until heated through.
    • Remove the foil for the last 5 minutes of reheating to crisp up the skin, if desired.
  • Alternatively, you can reheat the chicken in the microwave.
    • Place the thawed chicken legs on a microwave-safe plate and cover with a damp paper towel.
    • Microwave on high for 1-2 minutes, or until heated through.
  • Note: The sauce may thicken or separate when refrigerated or frozen. To restore its consistency, gently reheat the sauce in a saucepan over low heat, stirring occasionally, until it reaches the desired consistency.

How To Reheat Leftovers for Best Results

  • Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Place the leftover chicken legs in a baking dish and cover with aluminum foil. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the chicken is heated through. This method will help to retain the moisture in the chicken and prevent it from drying out.

  • For a quicker option, you can use the microwave. Place the chicken legs on a microwave-safe plate and cover with a damp paper towel. Microwave on high for 1-2 minutes, or until the chicken is heated through. Be careful not to overheat the chicken, as it can become rubbery.

  • If you want to crisp up the skin of the chicken legs, you can reheat them in a skillet. Heat a small amount of olive oil or butter in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken legs and cook for 2-3 minutes on each side, or until the skin is crispy and the chicken is heated through.

  • To reheat the sauce, pour it into a small saucepan and heat over low heat, stirring occasionally. If the sauce has thickened too much, you can add a small amount of chicken broth or water to thin it out. Once the sauce is heated through, pour it over the reheated chicken legs.

  • If you have leftover shallots from the original recipe, you can reheat them in the microwave or in a small skillet over low heat. Serve the reheated shallots alongside the chicken legs for added flavor.

  • To add a fresh touch to the reheated dish, you can sprinkle some freshly chopped marjoram or parsley over the top of the chicken legs before serving.

Interesting Trivia About Marjoram and Chicken

Wine-baked chicken legs with marjoram is a classic French dish that combines the rich flavors of wine, marjoram, and cream to create a delicious and elegant meal.

Budget-Friendly or Splurge-Worthy?

This wine-baked chicken legs with marjoram recipe is moderately cost-effective for a household. The use of chicken legs and dry white wine may be slightly pricier, but the dish's rich flavors and elegant presentation make it worth the investment. The approximate cost for a household of 4 people is around $25-$30. The dish's versatility and ability to serve a family make it a practical choice. Overall Verdict: 8/10

Is This Chicken Dish Healthy or Not So Much?

The wine-baked chicken legs with marjoram recipe is a delicious dish, but it may not be the healthiest option due to several factors:

  • The recipe uses heavy cream and butter, which are high in saturated fat and calories. Consuming too much saturated fat can increase the risk of heart disease and other health issues.
  • The chicken legs are cooked with the skin on, which adds extra fat and calories to the dish.
  • The recipe calls for 2 cups of dry white wine, which contributes to the overall calorie count and may not be suitable for those who prefer to avoid or limit alcohol consumption.

To make this recipe healthier, consider the following suggestions:

  • Replace the heavy cream with a lower-fat alternative, such as evaporated skim milk or Greek yogurt, to reduce the saturated fat content.
  • Use a smaller amount of butter or replace it with a healthier fat source, such as olive oil, to decrease the saturated fat content further.
  • Remove the chicken skin before cooking to reduce the overall fat and calorie content of the dish.
  • Reduce the amount of wine used in the recipe or replace it with a low-sodium chicken broth to decrease the calorie count and make the dish more suitable for those who prefer to avoid alcohol.
  • Serve the chicken legs with a side of steamed vegetables or a fresh salad to increase the nutrient content of the meal and promote a balanced diet.

Our Editor's Honest Opinion on This Dish

The wine-baked chicken legs with marjoram recipe is a delightful combination of flavors and textures. The use of dry white wine adds a subtle sweetness and depth to the dish, while the marjoram brings a fresh and aromatic note. The cooking method ensures that the chicken legs are tender and juicy, with a crispy skin that adds a satisfying crunch. The creamy sauce, enriched with butter, complements the dish beautifully, adding a luxurious finish. Overall, this recipe is a wonderful choice for a special dinner, offering a perfect balance of savory and elegant flavors.

Enhance Your Wine-Baked Chicken Legs with Marjoram Recipe with These Unique Side Dishes:

Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes: Creamy mashed potatoes with roasted garlic and a hint of Parmesan cheese
Grilled Asparagus with Lemon Zest: Tender asparagus spears grilled to perfection and topped with a zesty lemon zest
Honey Glazed Carrots with Thyme: Sweet and tender carrots glazed with honey and sprinkled with fresh thyme for a burst of flavor

Similar Recipes to Try If You Love This Dish

Creamy Garlic Mashed Potatoes: Creamy mashed potatoes with a hint of garlic, perfect as a side dish for any meal.
Honey Glazed Carrots: Sweet and tender carrots glazed with honey, a delicious and healthy side dish for any occasion.
Lemon Blueberry Cheesecake: Indulgent and creamy cheesecake with a burst of fresh lemon and juicy blueberries, a perfect dessert for any gathering.
Beef and Vegetable Stir Fry: Tender beef strips and colorful vegetables stir-fried to perfection in a savory sauce, a quick and flavorful meal for any day of the week.

Appetizer and Dessert Ideas to Complete Your Meal

Crispy Bruschetta: Start your meal with a delightful combination of crispy baguette slices topped with fresh tomatoes, basil, and a drizzle of balsamic glaze. The burst of flavors and textures will awaken your taste buds and leave you wanting more.
Savory Stuffed Mushrooms: Indulge in these savory stuffed mushrooms filled with a rich mixture of cream cheese, garlic, and herbs. Each bite offers a creamy and flavorful experience that will leave you craving for another serving.
Chocolate Mousse: Indulge in a rich and velvety chocolate mousse, topped with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkle of cocoa powder. The perfect way to satisfy your sweet tooth after a savory meal.
Apple Crisp: Enjoy the warm and comforting flavors of baked apples, cinnamon, and a crispy oat topping. Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream for a delightful contrast of temperatures and textures.

Why trust this Wine-Baked Chicken Legs with Marjoram Recipe:

This recipe guarantees a delectable dish, as it features marjoram for a delightful aroma and flavor. The dry white wine adds depth and richness, while the bay leaf infuses a subtle earthy note. The use of shallots enhances the savory profile, and the addition of heavy cream creates a luscious and velvety texture. The careful reduction of the pan juices ensures a concentrated and robust sauce, complementing the succulent chicken legs perfectly. With the incorporation of unsalted butter, this recipe promises a luxurious and indulgent dining experience.

Want to share your experience making Wine-Baked Chicken Legs with Marjoram or discuss the recipe further? Join our Recipe Sharing forum to connect with fellow cooking enthusiasts!
How long does it take to bake the chicken legs?
It takes about 50 minutes to bake the chicken legs at 425 degrees F until the skin is crisp and the chicken is cooked through.
Can I use a different type of wine for this recipe?
Yes, you can use a different type of dry white wine if you prefer. However, the flavor profile may vary slightly depending on the wine used.
Can I substitute marjoram with another herb?
While marjoram adds a unique flavor to the dish, you can substitute it with oregano or thyme if needed.
Can I prepare this dish ahead of time?
Yes, you can prepare the dish ahead of time by marinating the chicken legs in the wine and seasoning, then refrigerating until ready to bake.
How do I know when the chicken legs are cooked through?
You can check for doneness by using a meat thermometer. The internal temperature of the chicken should reach 165 degrees F when fully cooked.

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