2000s Recipes + Menus

Caramelized Chipotle Chicken

  • Active time:1 hr
  • Start to finish:1 3/4 hr
September 2009
When lacquered with a rich, complex sauce and roasted, chicken becomes a delicious crowd-pleaser. There’s enough chipotle here to make your lips hum, but not so much as to overshadow the balancing act created by the other ingredients—toasty garlic, onions, and ketchup, plus a kiss of brown sugar and cinnamon. View more of our favorite recipes from this issue.
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 8 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced (about 1/2 cup)
  • 2 medium onions, chopped (about 2 cups)
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup chopped canned chipotle chiles in adobo (from a 7-ounce can)
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 whole chickens (about 3 1/2 lb each), each cut into 8 pieces
  • Heat oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over medium-high heat until it shimmers. Cook garlic, stirring constantly, until golden, then transfer with a slotted spoon to a plate. Reduce heat to medium and cook onions, stirring occasionally, until golden-brown, about 15 minutes.
  • Add garlic and remaining ingredients, except chicken, to skillet with 1 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp pepper and simmer, stirring occasionally, until sauce is slightly thickened, about 25 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 450°F with rack in middle.
  • Coat chicken with half of sauce, then roast, skin side up, in a 17- by 11-inch heavy 4-sided sheet pan 25 minutes. Remove from oven and brush with remaining sauce, then continue roasting until chicken is cooked through and well browned in spots, 20 to 25 minutes more.
cooks’ note: Sauce can be made 1 day ahead and chilled.
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