Baked Honey Garlic Drumsticks

When I was growing up, my mom made these amazing baked chicken drumsticks.  She would marinate them for 3 days, double bake them, and serve them with a side of disposable gloves.  My friends called them Mama Wang’s Chicken™ and joked that my mom should open up a shop that just sold chicken drumsticks.

Seriously, they were that good.

Unfortunately, my mom is a typical Asian cook and doesn’t believe in measuring cups and spoons.  So when I begged her for her recipe, she gave me gems like “you put sauce until it covers 1/4 of the bowl”.  We then spent the next 30 minutes arguing over how she can’t say things like that because she doesn’t own a universally-sized bowl.

But what I did get out of that conversation was the method that she did that made such a flavorful chicken.  However, I’m very impatient and I don’t have time to marinate things for 3 days.  So I came up with a speedy version that’s packed full of flavor.


Baked Honey Garlic Drumsticks

  • Servings: 6-8
  • Print


  • 4-5 lbs chicken drumsticks (~14-15 drumsticks)
  • 5 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1-inch piece of ginger, minced
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 tb sesame oil
  • 2 tb mirin
  • salt and pepper
  • Optional garnish: sesame seeds, scallions


  1. In a Ziploc bag or deep casserole dish, mix together garlic, ginger, soy sauce, honey, sesame oil, mirin, salt and pepper.  Dredge each drumstick in the mixture until it’s well coated.  Cover and refrigerate overnight, at least 12-18 hours.  If you put this in a Ziploc bag, you can just shake the contents and massage the chicken every once in a while.  If you did this in a casserole dish like I did, just rotate the chicken every once in a while to make sure the drumsticks are evenly marinated.
  2. Preheat oven to 400°F.  Line a large baking sheet with a Silpat, aluminum foil, or parchment paper.  Place drumsticks on the baking sheet.  Using a pastry brush or a spoon, brush each drumstick with marinade.  Bake for 30 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, take the remaining marinade and put in a small saucepan over medium heat.  As the marinade boils, the liquid will reduce and turn into a thick sauce (think chocolate syrup).  Take off the heat.
  4. Brush the reduced marinade on the chicken.  Return to oven and bake for another additional 20 minutes.  Make sure the chicken’s temperature reaches 165°F.
  5. Garnish with sesame seeds and scallions, if desired.

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