Are you looking for a chicken dish that will be tender, juicy, and oh-so delicious? This Apricot Glazed Baked Chicken uses the sweet pairing of apricot jam and tender chicken to create an amazing main course that can be served with your favorite side dishes!
Sweet and savory flavor combinations work so well! Why? They complement each other amazingly! This apricot glazed chicken is a perfect example of sweet and savory work in action to create an easy chicken recipe the whole family will love!
Apricots are small, orange-yellow fruits that are sweet and juicy with a slightly tart flavor. They can be used in a variety of recipes, from apricot jam to cookies, and also with chicken breast! This recipe uses apricot preserves along with soy sauce, mustard, and dried seasonings to create a delicious marinade to soak in all the goodness.
Simply bake the chicken in the oven until tender and juicy. The sugar in the apricot preserves will become caramelized, giving it a sweet and sticky glaze. The apricots provide an amazing flavor as well as a beautiful color to the chicken!
Apricot baked chicken can be served with a variety of different side dishes ranging from The Best Caesar Salad, Simple Roasted Asparagus to heartier sides like Slow Cooker Mashed Potatoes or Coconut Rice.
No matter how you enjoy it, this easy chicken dinner will be sure to wow your family and guests!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- It’s an easy, one-pan chicken dish that requires minimal prep and cleanup.
- The apricot preserves add an amazing flavor and beautiful color to the chicken that you won’t find in other dishes.
- It can be served with a variety of different side dishes for a complete meal!
- Apricot chicken is made with just eight simple ingredients you can find at any grocery store.
Ingredients You’ll Need for Apricot Glazed Chicken
- Chicken Breast – This high protein cut of chicken holds up well to glazes and soaks up the sweet and savory marinade well.
- Apricot Preserves – Gives the chicken breast its sweet flavor along with a sticky texture when baked in the oven.
- Whole Grain Mustard – Adds a bit of tanginess to the apricot glaze that also helps tenderize the chicken.
- Soy Sauce – Adds a rich and salty flavor to the chicken breast that gives it an umami boost. You can also use coconut aminos or tamari instead.
- Unsalted Butter – Adds a rich buttery flavor to the marinade that also helps smooth it out.
- Seasonings – A mix of salt, pepper, and dried thyme work together to enhance the natural flavors of the ingredients.
The Home Cook’s Guide to Salt
Learn about the basics of salt, plus the best salt for cooking (hint: it’s Kosher salt!) with this easy-to-understand guide to salt for home cooks.
How To Make Apricot Glazed Chicken
Assemble the marinade: To a large bowl or baking dish, add the apricot preserves, mustard, soy sauce, butter, thyme, salt, and pepper, and whisk until well combined.
Prepare the chicken breast: Trim any excess fat off of the chicken breast and pat dry with paper towels. Then add it to the marinade and toss it until coated on all sides.
Let it marinate: Cover the bowl or baking dish with plastic wrap and let the chicken marinate in the fridge for one hour or for up to 24 hours for maximum flavor.
Prepare for baking: Preheat the oven to 375F. While the oven is preheating, remove the chicken from the fridge and let it sit at room temperature for 30 minutes to take the chill off. If your chicken is marinating in a bowl, transfer it to a baking dish.
Bake the chicken: Cover the chicken breast with foil, then bake for 30-40 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for an additional 5-10 minutes or until the chicken is lightly browned and sticky. You can also broil it for 1-2 minutes for an even more browned color. The chicken is finished when the internal temperature reaches 165F.
Rest and serve: Remove the chicken from the oven and let it sit for 5-10 minutes to redistribute the juices. Serve over rice, with potatoes, or with your favorite side dishes. Enjoy!
- Always marinate the chicken for at least an hour to get the full flavor of the apricot glaze. For best results, marinate for up to 24 hours if you have the time.
- Use a meat thermometer to make sure the chicken is cooked to the proper temperature.
- Letting the chicken sit at room temperature before baking will ensure that it cooks evenly and doesn’t get tough in the oven.
- Keep an eye on the chicken while baking in the last 10 minutes to ensure it isn’t getting too browned. If so, reduce the oven temperature or cover with foil and finish cooking through.
- The apricot glaze will get more sticky and caramelized as it bakes, so if you want a thinner glaze, brush it on the chicken during the last few minutes of baking.
Variations & Substitutions
- Instead of soy sauce, use coconut aminos or tamari for a gluten-free apricot glaze.
- Add some cayenne pepper or red pepper flakes to the marinade for an extra kick of heat.
- Fresh thyme, rosemary, and sage all work nicely in this apricot-glazed chicken recipe.
- If apricot preserves aren’t available, apricot jam can be used instead.
- For a naturally sweetened marinade, add some honey or maple syrup.
- If you don’t have butter, you can use olive oil instead.
- Instead of apricot preserves, use other preserves such as raspberry, strawberry, or peach.
Storing & Freezing
Storing: Once cooled, any leftover chicken can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
Freezing: To freeze apricot glazed chicken, let it cool completely before wrapping tightly with plastic and then aluminum foil. Then place in a freezer-safe bag or container and store for up to 3 months. To defrost, transfer it from the freezer to the fridge the night before and let it thaw overnight before reheating and serving.
Can apricot glazed chicken be made in advance?
Yes! You can marinate the chicken with apricot glaze up to 24 hours in advance and store it in an airtight container in the fridge. Then when you’re ready to bake, take the chicken out of the fridge and let it sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before baking.
What’s the difference between apricot preserves and apricot jam?
Apricot preserves are made from apricots that have been cooked and mashed, while the apricot jam is made from apricots that have been cooked into a thick paste. Both can be used for this apricot glazed chicken recipe though one may be sweeter than the other.
Can this apricot-glazed chicken be grilled instead?
Yes! This apricot glazed chicken can also be grilled! To do this, preheat a grill to medium-high heat and lightly oil the grate. Grill the chicken for about 8 minutes per side over direct heat or until it reaches an internal temperature of 165F. Baste with apricot glaze during the last few minutes of cooking.
More Easy Chicken Dinner Recipes
- 20 Minute Honey Butter Chicken
- Easy Chicken Piccata
- Honey Balsamic Chicken with Cherry Tomatoes
- Honey Glazed Apple Roast Chicken
This Apricot Glazed Chicken uses the sweet pairing of apricots and tender chicken to create an amazing main course that can be served with your favorite side dishes!
- ¾ cup apricot preserves
- 1 tablespoon whole grain mustard
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce or coconut aminos
- 2 tablespoons melted, unsalted butter
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 2 teaspoons salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 4 pieces)
- In a large bowl or baking dish add the apricot preserves, mustard, soy sauce, butter, thyme, salt and pepper and whisk until well combined. Add the chicken and toss until well coated.
- Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to overnight.
- When ready to bake, remove from the fridge and let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes (if you have time) while you preheat the oven to 375 degrees. If you marinated in a bowl, transfer chicken and marinade to a baking dish and cover with foil.
- Bake chicken for 35-40 minutes covered, then remove the foil and bake for another 5-10 minutes until lightly browned. You can put chicken under the broiler for 1-2 minutes if you want some extra color.
- When chicken reaches 165 degrees remove from the oven and let sit for 5-10 minutes, then slice and serve over rice or with potatoes to soak up all those juices. Also pairs well with a simple salad.
Keywords: apricot chicken, apricot glazed chicken, apricot baked chicken