Yogurt-Marinated Chicken Thighs

Cuisinart original

This aromatic dish highlights yogurt’s versatility as a marinade.   


Makes 8 servings


10        green cardamom pods

8          whole cloves

2          dried chili peppers, stems removed

1          cinnamon stick, halved

1          teaspoon whole black peppercorns

1½        teaspoons kosher salt

4          garlic cloves, peeled and crushed, divided

1          one-inch piece ginger, peeled and cut into matchsticks

1          cup plain yogurt

½         cup coconut milk

8          chicken thighs, bone-in and skin on (about 2–2½ pounds)

2 to 3   large onions, peeled and sliced (about 4 cups)

½         small butternut squash, peeled and cut into ¼-inch x 2-inch wedges (about 2 cups)

Nutritional information

Nutritional information per serving:
Calories 308 (54% from fat) • carb. 16g • pro. 20g
• fat 18g • sat. fat 7g • chol. 84mg • sod. 534mg
• calc. 112mg • fiber 2g


1.   Using the back of a knife, gently crush cardamom pods and remove seeds. Discard pods and add seeds to a small skillet along with the cloves, dried peppers and cinnamon stick. Toast the spices over low heat until fragrant, about 5 minutes.

2.   Put the toasted spices, peppercorns, salt, 2 garlic cloves, ginger, yogurt and coconut milk into a large bowl. Whisk to combine and add the chicken thighs, turning to coat them evenly. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and allow thighs to marinate for 2 hours in the refrigerator and then 1 hour at room temperature.

3.   Preheat oven to 350ºF. 

4.   In a large baking dish, evenly spread the onions. Add the remaining garlic, and, in a single layer, top with the butternut squash wedges.

5.   Remove the chicken from the marinade, allowing any excess to drip back into the bowl. Arrange the chicken over the vegetables in a single layer.  Bake for 45 minutes, or until an internal temperature of 165ºF is reached.

6.   Turn oven to Broil to crisp and brown the chicken skin, about 3 to 5 minutes, watching closely to be sure not to burn.

7.   Allow chicken to rest for 5 minutes before serving.

Note: This dish does create a bit of liquid while cooking. To serve, use a slotted spoon to lift out a piece of chicken, some onions, and a slice of squash. Discard the excess liquid.