Sticky Chinese Five Spice Chicken Drumsticks

Sticky Chinese Five Spice Chicken Drumsticks

Chinese five spice powder has a wonderful, complex flavor profile that is sweet, biting, and highly aromatic with hints of licorice, clove, and cinnamon. This marinade is a perfect example of how well this classic spice blend works with dark meat. These Chinese five spice chicken drumsticks will be a big hit any night of the week.


Makes: 4-5 servings
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 40 minutes
Total time: 1 hour


10 skinless chicken drumsticks
¼ cup soy sauce
2 T olive oil
2 T brown sugar
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped
1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
2 tsp Chinese Five Spice powder
2 tsp salt
1 T White Sesame Seeds
Optional: green onions for garnish


Take each chicken drumstick and make 2-3 slashes in its thickest parts. This helps the marinade to penetrate the meat. Optional: cut the tendon that attaches the meat to the bone and push the meat to the top of the drumstick to create a “lollipop” effect.

Combine soy sauce, olive oil, brown sugar, garlic, ginger, red pepper flakes, five spice powder, and salt in a large bowl and mix well. Add the chicken and stir everything so the chicken is well-coated in the marinade. Cover the bowl or transfer to a Ziploc bag and place in the refrigerator. Leave your Chinese five spice chicken to marinade for at least an hour.

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Transfer the chicken and marinade to a roasting dish and bake for about 40 minutes or until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165°F. If you want it to be a bit crispy, switch the oven to broil for the last few minutes.

Sprinkle the white sesame seeds on your Chinese five spice chicken drumsticks and serve hot! Green onions are also a nice garnish for this dish. Enjoy!

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